Great Basin Native Plant Project Francis Kilkenny USFS Rocky Mountain Research Station


Great Basin Native Plant Project

Francis Kilkenny USFS Rocky Mountain Research Station Boise, Idaho USA


The Great Basin Public Lands

: 41 x 10 4 km 2

Total Area

: 55 x 10 4 km 2

Oregon Idaho Nevada Utah California

Native Plant Program

 Needs assessment/ species selection

Which, from where and how much?

 Cultural practices

For agricultural seed production

 Wildland seedings

Multiple species – multiple issues

 Science delivery

Where is the info?

Species Selection: Seed Collection

Research Project s

Collectors:  Project Cooperators  Seeds of success  Agency personnel  Volunteers, students

Germplasm conservation Initial increase

Species Selection: Provisional Seed Zones

Based on:  Minimum winter temperature  Aridity index  Omernik ecoregions overlay Development of pooled sources A Bower et al. 2010.

Species Specific Seed Zones:

Evidence for adaptation - Correlation between traits and source environments -

Allium acuminatum

Collect seed from many sources Grow families in common environments Measure many adaptive traits Seed zone map Oregon Idaho Nevada


Trait vs source environment (RC Johnson et al. 2010)

Cultural Practices for Seed Production

Seed Technology

Harvesting methods, Seed cleaning techniques, Storage regimes, Germination requirements,Testing protocols

Stand Establishment

Soil requirements, Seeding equipment, Seeding strategies

Stand Maintenance

Weed control, Irrigation, Seed predators, Diseases, Pollinators, Harvesting

Sagebrush Seed Storage Lot WP High Purity Seed 6 months 80 60 40 20 0 -20 -8 2 Storage Temperature C 20 70 30 50 40 E R H %

Initial Seed Increase

USDA Forest Service Nursery Private Growers USDA Plant Materials Center

Wildland Seedings Greenhouse, laboratory and small plot studies

  Seed ecology Seedbed/microsite requirements  Species interactions  Response to environmental variables

Large plot seedings

 Operational equipment  Multi-species seedings

Science Delivery

 Websites  Technical notes  Video  Plant guides  Planting protocols  Seed transfer guidelines  Manuals  Manuscripts  Workshops  Symposia  Field tours

Future Priorities: The Vision

   Species selection priorities: manager feedback, production capacity Increased focus on genetics: more species specific seed zones, rapid testing of provisional seed zones, climate change,

enclosure / common garden network!!!

Focus on seed increase: work to set up a better / more rapid way to increase seed stock for foundation seed


USDI Bureau of Land Management, Native Plant Materials Development Program and Great Basin Restoration Initiative Great Basin Cooperators