Abstract: The influence of the auxin transport inhibitors naphthylphthalamic acid (NPA) and methyl-2-chloro-9-hydroxyflurene-9-carboxylate (CF), as well as the gaseous hormone ethylene on cambial differentiation of poplar was determined. NPA treatment induced clustering of vessels and increased vessel length. CF caused a synchronized differentiation of cambial cells into either vessel elements or fibres. The vessels in CF-treated wood were significantly smaller and fibre area was increased compared with controls. Under the influence of ethylene, the cambium produced more parenchyma, shorter fibres and shorter vessels than in controls. Since poplar is the model tree for molecular biology of wood formation, the modulation of the cambial differentiation of poplar towards specific cell types opens an avenue to study genes important for the development of vessels or fibres.