Forests & Forestry
Tree seedlings receive foremost care while growing in a managed nursery: fertile soil; ample moisture; and weed, insect and disease control. Lifting seedlings out of this comfort zone shocks them. Consider: they are dislodged from the soil; their roots are often torn; they are handled several times; they are packaged, shipped, exposed to wind and heat, and placed in planting bags or machine buckets; their roots are unveiled to open air; and they are often replanted in harsh soil where they are left to high temperatures with the hope of adequate precipitation for sustenance through the first few growing seasons.
"SP663 Tree Planting Procedure for Small, Bare-Root Seedings," The University of Tennessee Agricultural Extension Service, SP663-1M-11/05 E12-4915-00-005-06 06-0096, http://trace.tennessee.edu/utk_agexfores/16