Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Plants, Soils, and Climate

Committee Chair(s)

Larry A. Rupp


Larry A. Rupp


V. Philip Rasmussen


Roger Kjelgren


Numerous wild bigtooth maple (Acer grandidentatum Nutt.) specimens in northern Utah have potential for use in landscapes, but improvements in selection and propagation need to be developed before these specimens can be introduced to the green industry. Criteria-based evaluations centered on aesthetics, function, and fall color were performed to objectively select superior bigtooth maple specimens. Out of 56 trees initially selected for red fall color, six were selected for propagation based on all three criteria. Five of the six selected trees yielded viable bud take via chip budding. Optimum time for chip budding propagation was determined by four experiments. Coppiced seedling rootstocks were used with the "return budding" of excised buds as scions to parent stock (2006) and grafting buds from wild trees as scions (2007 and 2009). A fourth experiment examined chip budding of wild scions on 2-year-old, containerized, seedling rootstocks. The general time period identified as the optimum time for budding bigtooth maple was July through mid-August. Propagation by cuttings was also explored as an alternative production method among bigtooth maple selections. Softwood cuttings were taken from six selections of wild bigtooth maples grafted on seedling rootstocks growing in a coppiced stool bed environment. Open-ended, black, velour, drawstring bags were placed over the end of pruned shoots at bud swell to initiate etiolation of the cuttings. The bags were left in place during shoot elongation to insure etiolation of the shoot base. Cuttings were harvested after 3 to 4 weeks, wounded, dipped in auxin, and placed on heating mats under an intermittent mist system. Rooting was evaluated on the cuttings after four weeks. Results showed the effects of etiolation to significantly increase the percentage of rooted cuttings and the number of roots per cutting.




This work made publicly available electronically on November 22, 2010.