This 5-year strategic plan is meant to serve as a guide towards meeting the challenges of native plant production and ecological restoration in the Rogue Basin region.
Project Milkweed is a collaboration with the Xerces Society, the native seed industry, and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to increase commercial availability of milkweed seed. Since 2010 this partnership has worked to address some of the major production challenges faced by the native seed industry and has expanded commercially viable milkweed production to regions where seed was not previously available.
During Project Milkweed surveys of native seed producers, yield loss from insect pests was consistently the most significant challenge reported. Further complicating the situation is the abundance of monarch butterfly caterpillars, crop pollinators, and predatory insects, all of which are typically found in seed production plots and which are vulnerable to insecticides used for pest control.
Download PDF: Managing Milkweed Crop Pests: A Native Seed Industry Guide (3MB)
Native thistles are a largely misunderstood and wrongly maligned group of wildflowers. These diverse plants fill a variety of significant ecological niches, similar to cone flowers, prairie clovers, camas, and compass plant. Native thistles are not only resplendent – with sublime blue-green foliage, interesting stem and leaf architecture and gorgeous blossoms – they are hardy, thriving in dry and disturbed habitats.
Download PDF: Native Thistles: A Conservation Practitioner’s Guide (3MB)
This bulletin will help you use cover crops to encourage populations of pollinators and beneficial insects on your farm while you address your other resource concerns. It begins with a broad overview of pollinator and beneficial insect ecology, then describes cover crop selection and management, how to make cover crops work on your farm, and helpful and proven crop rotations. It will also touch on the limitations of cover crops and pesticide harm reduction, among other topics.
Download PDF: Cover Cropping for Pollinators and Beneficial Insects (727KB)
Milkweed plants (family Asclepiadaceae) are the only food source for monarch butter y caterpillars. However, milkweed has severely declined in North America due to drastic changes in land use or management, like agriculture and development. Milkweed losses and other stressors are associated with declines in migratory monarch butterflies over the past 20 years [1, 6, 7]. To compensate for the loss of milkweed, gardeners across North America are helping monarchs by planting native species of milkweeds, and by keeping milkweeds safe from pesticides.
Download PDF: Why Grow and Sell Native Milkweed? (839KB)
Five species of milkweed are native to Oregon. This guide includes profiles of the four most common species, all of which are used as a larval host plant by the monarch butterfly.
Asclepias cordifolia (purple milkweed, heartleaf milkweed)
Asclepias cryptoceras ssp. davisii (Davis’ milkweed)
Asclepias fascicularis (narrow-leaved milkweed)
Asclepias speciosa (showy milkweed)
A profile of each of these species includes descriptions of flowers, leaves, and seed pods, accompanied by photos and distribution maps. Supporting these profiles is a simple guide to identifying milkweeds based on their distinctive flowers and fruits.
Download PDF: A Guide to the Native Milkweeds of Oregon (836 KB)
Phytophthora species are some of the most problematic plant pathogens in nursery production systems. The quarantine pathogen Phytophthora ramorum has received the most notoriety, but many Phytophthora species pose a challenge for nursery growers.
These pathogens cause trouble because of their persistence and spread in infested soil and water, and their ability to attack a wide variety of plants. Some species cause root rot, whereas others cause foliar blight and shoot dieback. Several species can infect plant parts both above and below the ground.
In collaboration with Niklaus Grünwald and Val Fieland of the USDA-ARS Horticultural Crops Research Laboratory, Carrie Lewis and I (Oregon State University) recently completed a three-year project to determine the most common sources of Phytophthora contamination in nurseries. We applied a systems approach to identify three critical control points in nursery production systems: contaminated soil/gravel beds, contaminated irrigation water, and used pots. Another potential source of Phytophthora spp., not included in our study, is nursery stock brought in from off site.
Details historical information, ecological impacts, biology and ecology, mechanical, cultural, chemical and biological control, and how to develop a management plan for eradication of yellow starthistle.
Download (PDF): Yellow Starthistle Management Guide (8 MB)
Yellow starthistle is an invasive plant that has been listed as a noxious weed in Arizona and New Mexico. This field guide serves as the U.S. Forest Service’s recommendations for management of yellow starthistle in forests, woodlands, rangelands, and deserts associated with its Southwestern Region. The Southwestern Region covers Arizona and New Mexico, which together have 11 national forests. The Region also includes four national grasslands located in northeastern New Mexico, western Oklahoma, and the Texas panhandle.
Download (PDF): Field Guide for Managing Yellow Starthistle in the Southwest (2 MB)
The major audience for this book, as for its two predecessors, is those who are involved in the growing and planting of trees and shrubs. Their involvement can be collection and sale of seeds, production of nursery stock (both bare- root and container), or planting itself. Planting for commercial forest production is the traditional mainstay of tree planting, but planting for wildlife food, watershed protection, urban environmental improvement, ornamental enhancement, wetland mitigation, and carbon sequestration are all on the increase. Ecosystem management, now commonly used in the management of many federal and other governmental forest lands, has decreased the use of planting to regenerate the forests and has increased the role of natural regeneration. Those who apply these practices will find this book useful also in the data on flowering and seed production. Although the book is not intended to be a detailed textbook on seed ecology and physiology, there is sufficient scope and depth to the material included to make it useful to anyone who studies seeds.
Download (PDF): The Woody Plant Seed Manual (21MB)
Seeds of 69 taxa native to the Willamette Valley, Oregon were subjected to four germination treatments: two under ambient late winter into summer environmental conditions (untreated (fresh) seed or dry and frozen seed) and two in controlled environment chambers (some seed was cold stratified at 5°C then placed in a 10°C/20°C chamber, other seed was placed in 10°C/20°C chamber then moved to a 5°C/15°C chamber). At least 93% of the taxa tested can tolerate desiccation and frozen storage.
One third of the taxa had a maximum mean germination above 80% in at least one of the four germination treatments, 55% of the taxa had a maximum mean germination rate between 10% and 80%, and only 12 % of the taxa had less than 10% germination. A total of 88% of the taxa had their highest germination in one or both of the two treatments, fresh and cold stratification.
Salvaging native plants is the act of rescuing plants from a construction or disturbance site before they are destroyed. We have not found salvage to be a cost effective method for obtaining most of the plants we sell in our nursery or use in our own projects. However, we do sometimes salvage plants, either to obtain plants that are dif cult to propagate, to increase the genetic diversity of plants in our nursery, because they are unusual species that we don’t have access to otherwise, or to preserve plant genetics on a disturbance site for future replanting. Factors important to consider in salvaging plants include species, size, site access and soil type, whether to use hand or mechanical techniques, time of year, available crew, etc.
Download (PDF): Salvaging Plants for Propagation and Revegetation (275KB)
J. Herbert Stone Nursery produces over 20,000 pounds of native grass seed annually from 36 species endemic to public lands in the western states. Nursery seedbeds are established from wild seed collections. Each collection (referred to as seedlot) is grown separately from other seedlots of same species to prevent cross pollen contamination. Sowing, culturing, harvesting and storage practices for seed and seedling production are discussed. Methods and strategies for achieving successful restoration projects using native grass seed and seedlings are also addressed.
Download (PDF): Propagating Native Grass Seed and Seedlings (202KB)
Details different methods of seed storage, different types of seed storage structures, temperature control methods, packaging materials, monitoring methods, and more.
Download (PDF): Principles and Practices of Seed Storage (11MB)
The genetic variation contained within a species is paramount for its survival and future evolution. Species exhibit a large range in their levels and patterns of genetic variation. This range in population structure is basic to the use and conservation of genetic diversity in plants. In order to understand, conserve, and manage plant populations, it is necessary to measure the levels of genetic variation within a species. We have at our disposal a variety of estimation tools. These tools provide information about plant identity, taxonomy, hybridization, parentage and mating systems, and levels and structure of genetic diversity. Genetic information can be used to guide restoration and revegetation projects, conservation concerns, and seed transfer movement. Our role at NFGEL is to conduct laboratory genetic tests and provide information to land managers so that they may better utilize and manage plant species.
Download (PDF): Genetic Studies in Native Plants (209KB)
Pacific madrone (Arbutus menziesii) seeds can be extracted and cleaned in a procedure which utilizes a mortar and pestle, a blender with a rubber blade, and several sieves. The method involves several steps but is not difficult and can result in a large amount of seed in a short period of time. Following extraction, the seeds can be dried and stored at low moisture content (6%) in sealed containers at 3-5°C or given a cold strati cation treatment and then sown. Cold stratification periods of 60 days or longer increased the initial rate of germination compared to seeds stratified for 40 days but resulted in seed losses due to premature germination during stratification. For lots from the Puget Sound Lowlands, cold stratification for 40 days is adequate; seeds in stratification longer than 40 days should be monitored closely for premature germination.
Download (PDF): Extraction and Germination of Pacific Madrone Seed (150KB)
The Oregon Plant Atlas allows the user to generate customized plant distribution maps from herbarium specimen and observation data. The default search results displayed are “Flora vouchers”, specimens from the OSU Herbarium and selected vouchers from other herbaria. These serve as reference material for the upcoming Flora of Oregon. Any combination of available specimens or unvouchered observations can be mapped by selecting the appropriate checkboxes.
Visit (website): Oregon Flora Plant Atlas
The Native Plant Network is devoted to the sharing of information on how to propagate native plants of North America (US, Canada, Mexico and the Pacific Islands). Search the database for extensive details on how to propagate different plants, or scroll through alphabetically.
Visit (website): Native Plant Network Propagation Protocols
This landowner guide describes how to apply conservation practices for Oregon white oak and California black oak habitats on private lands in southern Oregon and northern California. The document first discusses the importance and history of oak habitats and then provides detailed conservation guidelines for oak habitat restoration. Also, the guide includes supplemental resources for the restoration- minded private landowner, including a list of organizations that will assist with private lands restoration as well as step-by-step instructions for monitoring birds on your land to track the return of wildlife following oak restoration activities.
Download (PDF): Restoring Oak Habitats in Southern Oregon & Northern California (4MB)
The primary purpose of this Guide is to encourage private landowners to conserve, and when appropriate, actively manage Oregon white oaks that already exist on their property, and consider planting additional oaks. In the early chapters of the Guide, we describe some of the uses and benefits of this remarkable tree in hopes of motivating landowners to take action. An introduction to the ecology of the Oregon white oak is included so the reader can better understand how management practices are founded on aspects of the tree’s biology. Later chapters are designed to help landowners develop land management goals and understand the process of natural resource planning.
Download (PDF): A Landowner’s Guide for Restoring and Managing Oregon White Oak Habitats (7MB)
Author: Bennett, M. Date: 2007
Listed as a noxious weed in Oregon, Himalayan blackberry rapidly occupies disturbed areas, is very difficult to eradicate once established, and tends to out-compete native vegetation. For those trying to restore or enhance native streamside vegetation, Himalayan blackberry control is a major problem.
This publication discusses the biology of Himalayan blackberry, its effects on riparian functions, and strategies for managing Himalayan blackberry specifically in riparian areas.
Download (PDF): Managing Himalayan Blackberry in western Oregon riparian areas (MB)
This guide to Himalayan Blackberry includes information on species description, origin and habitat, reproduction and basic ecology, ecological threat, and details a variety of control methods.
Download (PDF): Controlling Himalayan Blackberry in the Pacific Northwest (252KB)
This booklet is an introduction to the North Mountain Park Nature Center’s interpretation of regional plants. It explores local plant communities, human plant use, and the impact of use upon the local environment. The term “local” refers to the Rogue Valley of southwest Oregon, with an emphasis on the Ashland area.
This booklet is not meant to be a technical work but rather is to be used by educators and others seeking an introduction to the topic of local plants. We hope that readers of this booklet will be inspired to use this information to help make decisions that will enhance the livability of the Rogue Valley for its people, plants and wildlife now and in the future.
Download (PDF): Plants of the Rogue Valley (2MB)
This publication is a step-by-step guide to riparian tree planting in interior southwest Oregon, including Jackson and Josephine counties and the noncoastal portions of Douglas County. Compared to other parts of western Oregon, this area experiences hotter, drier summers, and lower annual precipitation, which poses unique challenges for the survival and growth of riparian plantings. While some details apply mainly to this region, the principles discussed are broadly applicable to tree-planting projects in riparian areas throughout the Pacific Northwest.
Download (PDF): A Guide to Riparian Tree Planting in Southwest Oregon (2MB)
Abstract: British Columbia’s considerable diversity of soils, topographies and climates have given rise to a rich variety of native plant species. Many commercially valuable tree species have well established protocols for seed collection, planting stock production, seedling handling and planting. Comparatively little is known about these activities for non-commercial shrub and tree species. Many of these deciduous shrub and tree species are being used for watershed restoration and rehabilitation of eroded slopes, road edges and landings. Demands for planting stock are increasing each year.
Download (PDF): Propagation of Interior British Columbia Native Plants from Seed (275KB)
In its Acoarse filter@ approach to conservation biology, gap analysis relies on maps of dominant natural land cover types as the most fundamental spatial component of the analysis for terrestrial environments. For the purposes of GAP, most of the land surface of interest (natural) can be characterized by its dominant vegetation. Vegetation patterns are an integrated reflection of the physical and chemical factors that shape the environment of a given land area. They also are determinants for overall biological diversity patterns, and they can be used as a currency for habitat types in conservation evaluations
Download (Word): Manual and Land Cover Type Descriptions: Oregon Gap Analysis, 1998 Land Cover for Oregon (125KB)
The information in Milkweeds: A Conservation Practitioner’s Guide is gathered from interviews with native plant nurseries and seed producers, gained firsthand through Project Milkweed, and synthesized from scientific literature. It provides conservation professionals with information about optimizing milkweed seed production methods, offers guidance on incorporating milkweeds into restoration and revegetation efforts, and highlights milkweeds’ unique characteristics and value to wildlife. Native seed producers, restoration practitioners, land managers, monarch conservationists, gardeners, and landowners will all find this guide valuable.
Download (PDF): Milkweeds: a Conservation Practitioner’s Guide (6MB)
The Native Seed Production Manual for the Pacific Northwest contains detailed, species-specific information for 17 grasses, 60 forbs, and 7 sedges and rushes found throughout the Western regions of Oregon and Washington. It also contains information on all aspects of seed production, from establishment and weed control to harvesting and seed processing. The back section features an equipment overview, which explains the various types of equipment used at the Corvallis Plant Materials Center.
Download (PDF): Native Seed Production Manual for the Pacific Northwest (31.6MB)