The goal of this Grower’s Guide is to provide practical advice for the establishment and maintenance of hybrid poplar plantations, plantings of trees in rows managed like an agronomic crop to produce fiber and biomass. Hybrid poplar are planted on several continents in a wide variety of applications: examples, in addition to biomass/wood production, include windbreaks, shelterbelts, phytoremediation, mine reclamation, and wastewater treatment. Advice for the establishment of hybrid poplar in these applications should come from other sources, as this guide is focused on growing hybrid poplar in plantation settings. Plantations could be owned by a private landowner or a corporation.
Short-rotation woody crops (SRWC) show promise to fill specific niches in the world’s developing bioeconomy. These crops, such as eastern cottonwood, hybrid poplar, and hybrid willow, are receiving increasing interest as plantation crops to provide biomass for renewable energy such as combustion for combined heat and power – CHP, biofuels, bio-based chemicals, and bioproducts. Hybrid poplars have also been grown to produce wood for pulp and paper and oriented strand board (OSB) as well as veneer for plywood manufacturing. The selection of hybrid poplar, cottonwood, or willow depends on the region is which they will be grown and the end use.
NRRI developed this Grower’s Guide in partnership with University of Minnesota Extension as part of the Next-Gen Poplars project. This project is a USDA NIFA grant-funded opportunity to advance the genetics, economic analysis, and utilization of hybrid poplars in the midwestern United States.
Buchman, Daniel; Jackson, Jeffrey; Berguson, William E; McMahon, Bernard G; Nelson, Neil D; DuPlissis, John; Host, George E.
Grower's Guide for Hybrid Poplar Plantations for Biomass Production.
University of Minnesota Duluth.
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