Monitoring and Research
The Forest Service utilizes its facilities and research stations to help meet the needs of resource professionals involved in restoration and native plant material development. Sound scientific information is critical to guide management activities and protect genetic resources.
The National Forest Genetics Lab (NFGEL)
The National Forest Genetics Laboratory (NFGEL) provides genetic testing and information for integrated solutions to on-the-ground problems faced by natural resource managers and policy makers. Solutions are provided for public agencies, non-government organizations, and private industries across the United States, often spanning geographical and organizational boundaries.
Forest Service Research and Development
Forest Service Research Stations also play a vital role in understanding and protecting native plant genetic resources, and in the responsible development and use of native plant material in restoration of disturbed federal lands.
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Success Story: Long Live American Ginseng!
Prized for its fleshy taproot and similarity to the Asian medicinal plant Panax ginseng, American ginseng has been harvested both legally and illegally and exported to international markets since the early 1800s. Overharvests for the international market as well as other factors such as deer browse and habitat destruction are thought to have led to range wide population declines. Research has been initiated to assess current management policy on eastern and southern national forests in relation to population levels to determine if permitted harvest is consistent with long term sustainability of American ginseng.