One Year Later: Sugar Pine Seedlings Are Growing Strong
Healthy Sugar Pines to Be Planted in Tahoe in Spring 2020
Incline Village, NV—October 2, 2018—Thanks to supporters of a 2017 Tahoe Fund Signature Project to restore the Tahoe forest hardest hit by tree mortality, healthy sugar pine seedlings are currently growing at the U.S. Forest Service Placerville Nursery and will be relocated to the University of California, Davis Tahoe City Field Station next year.
Last year, cones were collected from 100 different sugar pine trees in the Tahoe Basin. These seeds were cultivated at the USFS Placerville Nursery and are being maintained there until spring 2019. In the spring of 2020, 10,000 seedlings will be replanted on public and private lands in the Tahoe area.
“It’s exciting to see all these healthy, strong trees,” said Dr. Patricia Maloney, TERC Associate Director and Project Scientist at the University of California, Davis. “Species and genetic diversity matters, and we are hopeful this effort will promote diverse and resilient sugar pine populations in our forests.”
Over the last several years, severe and prolonged drought has resulted in extensive tree mortality in Sierra Nevada forests, resulting in the reporting of more than 100 million dead trees. In the Lake Tahoe Basin, 168,000 trees were reported dead in 2017, more than double 2016 figures, many of which were along Tahoe’s north shore.
“It’s crucial to the Tahoe environment and the human experience of this magnificent natural landscape that we preserve and restore the sugar pines,” said Tahoe Fund Board Chair Katy Simon Holland. “We’re grateful to be able to work with UC Davis and our partners to ensure sugar pines thrive here.”
Last summer, in partnership with the California Tahoe Conservancy, generous Tahoe Fund supporters helped raise $36,000 of the project costs to assist scientists at UC Davis to begin their efforts to repopulate the hardest hit areas. Thanks to the Martis Fund, a collaborative project of Martis Camp landowners, DMB/Highlands Group (the developers of Martis Camp), Mountain Area Preservation (MAP), Sierra Watch, and many other donors, the seeds were collected. Now, watch our trees grow!