Somerville Seedlings

Our Facility


The Burack farm is the main site of the seedling nursery production and is approximately 250 acres in size. This acreage is made up of over 40 fields ranging in size from 1 acre to 4 acres. Each field is divided up into 4 foot wide nursery beds that run the length of the field, with a 2 foot walkway alongside each 4 foot bed.


Above ground irrigation is used to keep trees fed with ample water, and help move fertilizers and other chemicals into the root zone. This system is extensive and consists of hundreds of sprinklers and thousands of linear feet of aluminum 2, 3, 4 and 6 pipe.

Water is pumped from an on-site pond which is continually recharged with water from the near-by Boyne River. The nursery renews its MOE Permit-To-Take-Water every 10 years.


Some fields have shade structures, similar to Ginseng production, that cover the entire field at a height of 9-10 feet. These are used for our high density seedbeds where sun-sensitive species such as spruce, cedar, fir and hemlock are reared from germination through to the end of their 2nd growing season.


Among the buildings used at the nursery are 2 large coolers for storing seedlings in the spring, a production barn for packaging seedlings and making wreaths/garlands in the fall, several storage buildings, a maintenance shop and a main office building.


Nursery production consists of various operations starting in late winter and running through to December. These activities include:
Seeding plan and seed stratification
Seedling lifting and shipping
Spring seeding
Spring transplanting (traditional bare-root and greenhouse plugs)
Culture of seedlings (ongoing) including nutrient management, integrated pest management, irrigation and heat/frost protection
Summer transplanting (traditional bare-root and greenhouse plugs)
Seed collection
Fall seeding
Fall lifting
Hardwood harvest/heel-in

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