The modern nursery, staffed by horticulture experts and equipped with facilities for both experimental and mass production, supplies home gardeners, flower and fruit growers, farmers, and foresters with seeds and seedlings of specified qualities. Under nursery conditions varieties of plants have been bred that have greater yields and are hardier, longer blooming, and more disease resistant than those grown in the ordinary farm or garden, where controlled selection and hybridization is usually impractical (see plant breeding). Grafting and budding are also commonly used by nurseries to produce superior plants, and some plants are now propagated from cells grown in a sterile medium.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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