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Cultivation and irrigation of fernleaf biscuitroot (Lomatium dissectum) for seed production

Shock, Myrtle P.; Shock, Clinton C.; Feibert, Erik G. B.; Shaw, Nancy L.; Saunders, Lamont D.; Sampangi, Ram K. 2012. Cultivation and irrigation of fernleaf biscuitroot (Lomatium dissectum) for seed production. HortScience. 47(10): 1525-1528.

Native grass, forb, and shrub seed is needed to restore rangelands of the U.S. Intermountain West. Fernleaf biscuitroot [Lomatium dissectum (Nutt.) Mathias & Constance] is a desirable component of rangelands. Commercial seed production is necessary to provide the quantity and quality of seed needed for rangeland restoration and reclamation efforts. Fernleaf biscuitroot has been used for hundreds if not thousands of years in the western United States as a source of food and medicine. Knowledge about fernleaf biscuitroot is confined to ethnobotanical reports, evaluation of some of its chemical constituents, and its role in rangelands. Products derived from fernleaf biscuitroot are sourced from wild plant populations. Little is known about fernleaf biscuitroot cultivation or its seed production. Variations in spring rainfall and soil moisture result in highly unpredictable water stress at flowering, seed set, and seed development of fernleaf biscuitroot. Water stress is known to compromise seed yield and quality for other seed crops. Irrigation trials were conducted at the Oregon State University Malheur Experiment Station at Ontario, OR, a location within the natural environmental range of fernleaf biscuitroot. It was anticipated that supplemental irrigation would be required to produce a seed crop in all years. Fernleaf biscuitroot was established through mechanical planting and cultivation on 26 Oct. 2005 in a randomized complete block design with four replicates; plot size was 9.1 m ? 3.04 m wide. Irrigation treatments were 0 mm, 100 mm, and 200 mm/year applied in four equal treatments 2 weeks apart, timed to begin with flowering and continue through seed formation. First flowering occurred in the third year after planting. Seed production increased from the fourth through the sixth year. Optimal irrigation for seed production was calculated as 140 mm/year.

Keywords: rangeland restoration, medicinal plant, drip irrigation

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Title: RMRS Other Publications: Cultivation and irrigation of fernleaf biscuitroot (Lomatium dissectum) for seed production
Electronic Publish Date: June 25, 2013
Last Update:
July 9, 2013

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