American chestnut

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Steve Galehouse
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American chestnut

Post by Steve Galehouse » Tue Jun 07, 2011 10:09 pm

ENTS-

I occasionally encounter American chestnut saplings while exploring...here is a photo of one in a local Metropark. There is another individual in the park as well, but neither approach fruiting size.
DSCI0086.JPG
Steve
every plant is native somewhere

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James Parton
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Re: American chestnut

Post by James Parton » Wed Jun 08, 2011 12:38 am

It is still nice to see them around. Even at a reduced state.
James E Parton
Ovate Course Graduate - Druid Student
Bardic Mentor
New Order of Druids

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Joe

Re: American chestnut

Post by Joe » Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:20 am

Check out the American Chestnut Foundation: http://www.acf.org/

I recently attended a forestry event where the work of the foundation was discussed and they gave each of us 4 chestnuts to plant. They came from trees that have been crossed with Chinese chestnut then backcrossed with American chestnut in order to be very close genetically to the American variety. The ACF will keep track of all that they give out and follow their development, retaining the right to view them and take future chestnuts.
Joe

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jamesrobertsmith
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Re: American chestnut

Post by jamesrobertsmith » Wed Jun 08, 2011 5:44 am

Joe wrote:Check out the American Chestnut Foundation: http://www.acf.org/

I recently attended a forestry event where the work of the foundation was discussed and they gave each of us 4 chestnuts to plant. They came from trees that have been crossed with Chinese chestnut then backcrossed with American chestnut in order to be very close genetically to the American variety. The ACF will keep track of all that they give out and follow their development, retaining the right to view them and take future chestnuts.
Joe
I'd really like to get some of those. We have some acreage at close to 4K feet near the NC/VA border. I think there's some good old chestnut habitat there. Would love to plant a few and make sure they're safe from deer.

Joe

Re: American chestnut

Post by Joe » Wed Jun 08, 2011 5:51 am

After that event, some of my forestry clients asked if they could get some- I then contacted the sponser of the event who said the foundation is very fussy about who they give them out to, since there aren't many, and they want to be able to follow the development of them- so, it may be tough to get any- however, if you ask them and say you are a forester or arborist or biologist or whatevery you are and you will be happy to sign their documents agreeing to give them rights to the tree (to see them and take chestnuts for further distribution + GPS location) you may get lucky. You can say you heard about this from a forester who got them at one of their official events.
Joe

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Will Blozan
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Re: American chestnut

Post by Will Blozan » Wed Jun 08, 2011 6:43 am

ENTS,

I'd like to know what happens when decades of careful back-crossing work gets "front-crossed" once planted in the wild. I'm no geneticist but it seems the native pollen will overwhelm and "erase" the reintroduced "genetically modified" strains as they subsequently cross.

There is a group using native pollen only (I'll look for link)- this seems to be the route to go. Also, I have never seen a hybrid chestnut that looks American.

Will

Joe

Re: American chestnut

Post by Joe » Wed Jun 08, 2011 8:04 am

Will Blozan wrote:ENTS,

I'd like to know what happens when decades of careful back-crossing work gets "front-crossed" once planted in the wild. I'm no geneticist but it seems the native pollen will overwhelm and "erase" the reintroduced "genetically modified" strains as they subsequently cross.

There is a group using native pollen only (I'll look for link)- this seems to be the route to go. Also, I have never seen a hybrid chestnut that looks American.

Will
what you say makes sense- they claim or hope this will succeed but who knows?
Joe

TN_Tree_Man
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Re: American chestnut

Post by TN_Tree_Man » Wed Jun 08, 2011 8:18 am

ENTS,

The US Forest Service (in partnership with ACS) has been working on the reintroduction of the American chestnut for a few years now. Some trees have been planted in "test plots" to monitor their survival and progression. The feds are secretive regarding the exact locations of the planting sites, however, Cherokee National Forest and Mt. Pisgah National Forest (Tennessee and North Carolina) contain some of these modified trees.

http://www.fs.fed.us/r8/chestnut/index.php
Will Blozan wrote: I'd like to know what happens when decades of careful back-crossing work gets "front-crossed" once planted in the wild. I'm no geneticist but it seems the native pollen will overwhelm and "erase" the reintroduced "genetically modified" strains as they subsequently cross.
Will--I think that the hope of the project is to establish stands of chestnuts containing the blight resistant dominant allele. Those trees containing the "native pollen" or non-blight restistant will subsequently drive themselves into extinction.

There is a great deal of optimism regarding this project.

Steve Springer
"One can always identify a dogwood tree by it's bark."

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Rand
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Re: American chestnut

Post by Rand » Wed Jun 08, 2011 9:03 am

Will,

I believe the American Chestnut Cooperators Foundation are what you are thinking of:

http://www.accf-online.org/

They are taking nut requests:
ACCF chestnuts are all-Americans from open pollination in several Virginia and West Virginia plantings. The mother trees are blight resistant, but this characteristic may be inherited by perhaps 10% of their offspring. More generations of breeding are necessary to produce American chestnuts with blight resistance that is regularly inheritable. Meanwhile, from the first very small sample of F2 progeny of Ruth and Miles which are over 1.5 inches dbh and have their first blight cankers, it appears that in the second generation we may expect at least 25% in this breeding line to inherit blight resistance. In the past few years, the maturing of many grafts of original blight survivors, as well as selected F1 and F2 progeny, and regular cutting of those chestnuts in our breeding plots which do not pass durable blight resistance tests has greatly improved the quantity of nuts with improved blight-resistance expectations which we can distribute to our growers. When ACCF stock is planted within the area infested by blight, natural selection will reveal the resistant individuals; scions from these can then be grafted into the new shoots on chestnuts killed by blight.

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James Parton
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Re: American chestnut

Post by James Parton » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:00 am

Will Blozan wrote:ENTS,

I'd like to know what happens when decades of careful back-crossing work gets "front-crossed" once planted in the wild. I'm no geneticist but it seems the native pollen will overwhelm and "erase" the reintroduced "genetically modified" strains as they subsequently cross.

There is a group using native pollen only (I'll look for link)- this seems to be the route to go. Also, I have never seen a hybrid chestnut that looks American.

Will
Will,

It seems that few native American Chestnuts get large enough to produce pollen. Do you think there are actually enough pollen producing trees in enough areas to " front cross " the introduced trees? I would think " probably not ". In some areas, like near the Pisgah Inn, yes. But in most I think it would be no problem.
James E Parton
Ovate Course Graduate - Druid Student
Bardic Mentor
New Order of Druids

http://www.druidcircle.org/nod/index.ph ... Itemid=145

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