Expanding Nursery Capacity in the Pacific Northwest with Strategic DroneSeed/Silvaseed Partnership
June 7, 2022 | 3 min read
Strategic Partnership to Support Reforestation in the Pacific Northwest
Fueled by climate change and other factors, wildfire size and intensity is increasing dramatically across the Pacific Northwest. This poses a growing threat to the incredible ecosystems found there, and creates a pressing need to scale reforestation.
Despite this need to scale, nursery production and seed collection has not been able to keep up with the ever-increasing demand for reforestation in post-wildfire landscapes.
Why is seed so important?
Wildfires are burning hotter than ever before, eviscerating any seeds left in the soil and treetops. This loss of genetic material in the landscape prevents the natural regeneration of forest lands, leaving them vulnerable to invasive species and grassland conversion. The reintroduction of seed/seedlings into these post-wildfire landscapes plays a vital role in forest recovery and forest resilience.
In order for a seedling to have the highest chance of survival, the seed that the seedling was propagated (grown) from, needs to come from the correct “seed zone”. Foresters use seed zones, splitting up a tree’s native range into parcels where habitat conditions are roughly similar. These are then further categorized by elevation. Growing quality seedlings that have the correct, genetically appropriate seed zone is at the center of a successful reforestation project. But in a climate where seed is in high demand, it makes it challenging to secure the most ecologically suitable seed.
Addressing Barriers through Partnerships
One Tree Planted is working hard to meet that need and to establish key partnerships to secure seedling supply for our planting partners for years to come. As part of our efforts, we've partnered with DroneSeed’s recently acquired Silvaseed Nursery in Roy, Washington.
Silvaseed Nursery has been working within the restoration space for over 125 years, providing services ranging from cone collection and processing to foreign and domestic seed sales, seedling production and more. DroneSeed is scaling reforestation to mitigate the worst effects of climate change by combining seed and seedling supplies with reforestation services like seeding with aerial drones and hand planting — and plans are already underway to double the Silvaseed Nursery capacity.
HERE'S HOW THIS PARTNERSHIP WILL WORK
One Tree Planted has been working diligently to address the main barriers to restoration work in the Pacific Northwest (PNW), which are preventing people from replanting forests that have been degraded or destroyed by wildfires. They include seed collection challenges, low seed availability, narrow species diversity, access to nursery space, and high up-front costs of seed acquisition and seedling cultivation.
This partnership is part of our ongoing effort to build a network of nurseries that ensures our partners have access to reserved nursery space and seed. This alliance between DroneSeed/Silvaseed & One Tree Planted will have a profound impact on private landowners, providing both funding and resources to meet their reforestation needs.
With a commitment to acquire up to 5 million seedlings for reforestation projects over the next 3 years, One Tree Planted and DroneSeed/Silvaseed are uniquely suited to help accelerate reforestation across the Pacific Northwest. With Silvaseed’s native seeds and strategically located grow space and One Tree Planted’s funding, the partnership removes barriers for interested landowners and planting partners.