Thankfully, there is a native oak species found here on the land Oregon White Oak Quercus garryana (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quercus_garryana) that appears to be a bit more resistant to P ramorum. Thus, whenever there is a good mast year, our Wildlands Program, directed by Brock Dolman, collects White Oak acorns and spreads them liberally around the land, hoping for the sprouting of a more drought/SOD resistant future forest. This practice is part of our Wildlands Stewardship Plan (https://oaec.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/Wildlands-Stewardship-Plan-06.20.2016-FINAL.pdf). Specifically, the section on Mixed hardwood management pages 63 – 66 refers to our management for SOD and collecting and planting white oak acorns: “In addition to attempting to slow the spread of SOD, OAEC staff was strategic about increasing the diversity and presence of oak species that are not susceptible to SOD, namely white oak, by collecting and planting acorns throughout the property.”
Last week, Brock gathered around 50 pounds of beautiful acorns from a particularly healthy Oregon White Oak on a neighbor’s land and took them home for redistribution around the OAEC backcountry. Here are the steps that he and the team took:
Success looks like a more diverse & resilient woodland over an uncertain 50 to 100+ year frame and we plant our hope for a drought and SOD resistant future forest with these seeds. We wish these little acorns well in sprouting and becoming healthy trees in the decades to come!