As part of its reforestation program, TimberWest operates the Mount Newton Seed Orchard on the Saanich Peninsula. Mount Newton provides critical support to the ongoing sustainable management of our private lands and public tenures with a reliable source of high quality seed and cutting material. The orchard facilitates the ongoing research and development of improved seed which is selected for desired form and growth rates.
Genetic Improvement of Forest Trees
The process of improving forest trees is the same as all classic breeding programs, where individuals with certain desirable traits are selected from within the original population. These individuals are then bred together and the resulting offspring are planted on a wide variety of test sites and at ¼ rotation (12-15 years) are evaluated. Parents that pass on the desirable characteristics are selected as the new breeding population.
Average annual production includes:
- Douglas fir: Seed potential for 3,800,000 trees with between 11% and 19% *genetic worth
- Western red cedar: Seed potential for 2,100,000 trees with 18% genetic worth
- Western white pine: Seed potential for 50,000 trees
- Western hemlock: Seed potential for 1,700,000 trees with 13% genetic worth
*The genetic material provided to the Mount Newton Seed Orchard has a genetic worth rating attached to it. This rating is used to determine the increased volume at a harvest age of 60 years, expressed as a percentage over a common base. These estimations are verified by long term realized gain trials.
Mount Newton Seed Orchard
|1450 Mount Newton Cross Road |
|Saanichton, BC V8M 1S1 |
|Contact: ||Tim Crowder, Supervisor |
|Phone: ||250-652-4211 |
|E-mail: ||firstname.lastname@example.org |