Meeting Forest Restoration Challenges: Using the Target Plant Concept

  • Kasten R Dumroese US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station and National Center for Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources, Moscow, Idaho, USA
  • Thomas D Landis Retired National Nursery Specialist, US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. Currently Native Plant Nursery Consulting, Medford, Oregon, USA
  • Jeremiah R Pinto US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station and National Center for Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources, Moscow, Idaho, USA
  • Diane L Haase US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, State and Private Forestry and National Center for Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources, Portland, Oregon, USA
  • Kim W Wilkinson Gibsons, British Columbia, Canada
  • Anthony S Davis University of Idaho, Moscow, USA
Keywords: Monitoring, Nursery, Outplanting, Reforestation, Seedling Quality, Stocktype

Abstract

Meeting forest restoration challenges relies on successful establishment of plant materials (e.g., seeds, cuttings, rooted cuttings, or seedlings, etc.; hereafter simply “seedlingsâ€). The Target Plant Concept (TPC) provides a flexible framework that nursery managers and their clients can use to improve the survival and growth of these seedlings. The key tenets of the TPC are that (1) more emphasis is placed on how seedlings perform on the outplanting site rather than on nursery performance, (2) a partnership exists between the nursery manager and the client to determine the target plant based on site characteristics, and (3) that information gleaned from post-planting monitoring is used to improve subsequent plant materials. Through the nursery manager–client partnership, answers to a matrix of interrelated questions define a target plant to meet the reforestation or forest restoration objectives. These questions focus on project objectives; site characteristics, limiting factors, and possible mitigation efforts; species and genetic criteria; stocktype; outplanting tools and techniques; and outplanting window. We provide examples from the southeastern United States, Hawai‛i, and Lebanon on how the TPC process has improved performance of seedlings deployed for reforestation and forest restoration.

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Author Biographies

Kasten R Dumroese, US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station and National Center for Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources, Moscow, Idaho, USA
Research Plant Physiologist and National Nursery Specialist
Thomas D Landis, Retired National Nursery Specialist, US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. Currently Native Plant Nursery Consulting, Medford, Oregon, USA
Retired National Nursery Specialist
Jeremiah R Pinto, US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station and National Center for Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources, Moscow, Idaho, USA
Research Plant Physiologist and Tribal Nursery Specialist
Diane L Haase, US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, State and Private Forestry and National Center for Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources, Portland, Oregon, USA
Western Nursery Specialist
Kim W Wilkinson, Gibsons, British Columbia, Canada
Social Ecologist and Environmental Management Specialist
Anthony S Davis, University of Idaho, Moscow, USA
Associate Professor of Native Plant Regeneration and Silviculture, Tom Alberg and Judith Beck Chair in Natural Resources, and Director, Center for Forest Nursery and Seedling Research

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Published
2016-06-05