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US Forest Service Research & Development
Contact Information
  • US Forest Service Research & Development
  • 1400 Independence Ave., SW
  • Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
  • 800-832-1355
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Kristina Connor

Project Leader
521 Devall Drive
Auburn University, AL 36849-5418
Phone: 334-826-8700 x33
Fax: 334-821-0037
Contact Kristina Connor


Current Research

Early work focused on the physiology and biochemistry of "recalcitrant" forest tree species. Such seeds are sensitive to moisture loss and have short storage lifespans. Projects examined temperate recalcitrant seeds for measurable physical and chemical changes that may occur when seeds are subjected to desiccation, aging, long-term storage, or prolonged exposure to natural conditions. We used FT-IR, GC, and DSC to examine lipid, carbohydrate, and protein fractions of seeds for deterioration over time. Current research addresses understory seed production, dormancy, storage potential, and longevity in the seed bank. Seed bank ecology of pondberry (Lindera melissifolia), white-topped pitcher plant (Sarracenia leucophylla), ramps (Allium tricoccum), blue cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides), and black cohosh (Actaea racemosa) are being studied. Other research focuses on restoration of longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) and longleaf pine silvopasture.

Why This Research is Important

The Range-Wide Conservation Plan for longleaf pine lists understory restoration as a key element in its overall strategy. However, to be successful, large-scale outplantings of understory plants will require (1) sufficient quantities of seeds from understory species and (2) information on the basic life history of these plants. While major understory species, such as wiregrass and bluestem, have been studied, little is known of less prominent native species such as pineland nerveray and the various pitcher plant species.

Education

  • Utah State University, Ph.D. Forest Ecology, 1988
  • VPI, M.S. Forest Biology, 1976
  • Southern Illinois University, B.S. Forestry, 1974

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Last updated on : 07/10/2014