Thanks Thanks:  0
Likes Likes:  0
Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Question for you forestry type folks

  1. #1
    Alex Clark's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Life Long Alaskan
    Posts
    3,248
    Post Thanks / Like

    Question for you forestry type folks

    As many of you know, large areas of Alaska suffered from years of Spruce Beetle infestation.

    I have been taking the spruce cones from the live trees around my property and dropping them out of the cub over areas that are now nothing but dead trees or recent fire burn areas.

    50 pounds at a time...

    Is there anything I can do to the spruce cones to make them more likely to germinate?

  2. #2
    Gary Reeves's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Lake Clark National Park, Alaska
    Posts
    658
    Post Thanks / Like
    Alex,

    Don't drop the cones. Shuck them and spread the seeds as if by the wind.

    Try to get them out early to be under the snow layer.

    Enough spread and nature will take care of the germination.

    GR

  3. #3
    Ursa Major's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Coeur d'Alene, Idaho
    Posts
    1,078
    Post Thanks / Like
    Alex,

    Gary is generally right about spreading seeds rather than cones. A couple of things you may want to consider. Trees are generally well adapted to where they occur, and trying to transplant one tree that grew (and produced cones) at sea level to another location at 5000 feet msl may prove a little tough for the new seedling. Not to say it won't work, but the closer you can get to the same elevation, aspect, and slope, the better it will work.

    The second thing is to try to get the seed onto freshly disturbed ground (like right after a fire). The scarified seed bed will allow the tree seed to start without competition from other plants like grass. The calamagrostis grass that comes in after most fires in south central Alaska is pretty tenacious and will make it difficult for the seedling to compete, or get a root started.

    The best way to regenerate trees in much of the area would be to plant 2 year old seedlings while scalping individual planting sites. This is as you can imagine, pretty expensive. In most cases the spruce will eventually naturally come back after displacing all of the initial invaders like grass, alder and other non climax vegetation - however it may take a long long time. We likely won't be around to see it the way that it was.

    If its any consolation, Spruce Bark Beetle infestations are nothing new. Most of the existing spruce stands in SC Alaska are the result of large scale stand replacement events like fires or insect attacks. There is historical record that Cook's voyage and others (Russians) noticed many dead and dying spruce trees in the area. Tree ring data also shows a long pattern of previous insect attacks and stand damage. This infestation happens to be larger than any other noted in North America - at least it is better documented.

  4. #4
    Alex Clark's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Life Long Alaskan
    Posts
    3,248
    Post Thanks / Like
    True that it is nothing new, just the human intervention. Mother nature would have had a few nice fires to maintain the balance.

    So instead of standing down-town protesting everything like the local space cadet idiots, I figure that actually doing something positive is better than nothing.

    I will try shucking them next time around. It will take up less room.

  5. #5
    high time cub's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    143
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Clark
    I figure that actually doing something positive is better than nothing.
    http://www.concierge.com/cntraveler/...alog.html#more

  6. #6
    high time cub's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    NY
    Posts
    143
    Post Thanks / Like

  7. #7
    mvivion's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Bozeman,MT
    Posts
    12,520
    Post Thanks / Like
    Alex,

    Actually, it depends on what species of SPRUCE you are dealing with. Pines are very different than spruce, and different species of spruce require different treatments to germinate.

    For example, some species of trees actually require heat from a fire to scarify the seed so that it will germinate.

    But, the point is, every species has different requirements.

    Get in touch with the Alaska Extension Office in Palmer. They have a LOT Of info on native Alaska species, and should be able to give you some advise.

    MTV

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Fairbanks, AK
    Posts
    4
    Post Thanks / Like
    If you want to improve your success and increase your work load. You can put the cones in a burlap bag hang them in a warm dry place for a few weeks the cones should open, build your self a tumbler like they use at raffles, or bingo (wire mesh) so the cones stay in and the seed fall though. Place in another bag rub the seeds back and forth (this knocks off the wings) pour through a light breeze or fan to separate the seeds and wings. Then you have pure seeds ready to sew. As, mentioned before putting the seeds in bare soil or burned areas would have better success rates.

    I'd say the burned areas would benefit the most, because the cone survival rate would be a lot lower, the beetle killed tree would just drop there cones right were they die.

    As, for the white spruce should grow fine though out the peninsula, if there's any Sitka spruce may not grow every where?

    Every little bit helps.

    Paul

Similar Threads

  1. Hi Folks, New Guy
    By BC Flyer in forum Cafe Supercub
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 01-09-2008, 10:43 PM
  2. Off Topic question for Anchorage folks, Award steins or mu
    By Alex Clark in forum Cafe Supercub
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 04-11-2007, 01:40 AM

Bookmarks

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •