Western white pine, due to the introduction of white pine blister rust and salvage, is a speck of what it once was in the moist forests in the West and is a major species of concern. Billions of dollars have been invested in this species since the 1910’s because of its high economic, social, and ecological value. For these reasons, for the last 100 years, forest managers and scientists have invested in white pine by genetically selecting white pine blister rust resistant trees followed by investment in developing western white pine management strategies to restore its abundance throughout the Northern Rocky Mountains, where it once dominated moist mixed-conifer forests. Our research goal is to continue this research legacy and provide scientific findings to inform forest managers on their 1) progress and 2) effectiveness at increasing and sustaining western white pine forests into the future.
We planned a multi-faceted approach focused on addressing the following questions to provide robust scientific information to evaluate management effectiveness and to provide a suite of management strategies to increase the abundance of western white pine.
The research has produced the following short-term results:
The long-term research and management goal is to provide a short- and long-term view of increasing western white pine abundance, so that over time (decades to centuries), the moist mixed-conifer forests can evolve so they maintain their economic, social, and ecological value within uncertain future climate and society needs. This includes a state-of-knowledge synthesis of our long-term and current scientific contributions and knowledge on moist mixed-conifer forests and the management strategies that can insure future resilience of these valuable forests.
This research has been presented in over 50 webinars, presentations at conferences, and demonstrations over the last 15 years.