The forests of the present and past may not represent those of the future. We know that forest ecosystems may need to adapt to contend with the changing climate. Ecological restoration will continue to play an important role in repairing and restoring ecosystems in the future but how that will be done is not entirely known given an uncertain future. To test an adaptive strategy intended to aid the transition to new forest types with climate change, Quercus rubra and Quercus macrocarpa seedlings from northern and central seed zones in Minnesota were planted into four forest types across northeastern Minnesota in the spring of 2013. The growth, phenology and mortality of the seedlings were monitored during the 2014 growing season. Q. rubra had the greatest 2014 growth in all four forest types and the greatest 2014 growth, stem diameter and leaf number overall compared to Q. macrocarpa but did have lower survival. Seedlings from the central seed zone for both species retained their leaves for longer than their northern counterparts. Mortality, spring and fall phenology and growth data (height, leaf number, stem diameter, 2014 growth and SLA) was gathered at the seedling stage to analyze differences in the mean between the species, seed zones and forest types. This data set shows that the southern seedlings for both Q. rubra and Q. macrocarpa may have developed thicker leaves and greater leaf retention over time as a response to a warmer climate. These seedlings may provide potential seed sources for assisting the forests of Northeastern Minnesota to the climate of the future.
University of Minnesota M.S. thesis. November 2016. Major: Integrated Biosciences. Advisor: Julie Etterson. 1 computer file (PDF); vi, 45 pages.
Assisted Migration Of Quercus Rubra And Quercus Macrocarpa From Two Seed Zones Into Four Forest Types In Northeastern Minnesota.
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