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Development of Hardwood Seed Zones for Tennessee Using a Geographic Information System

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For species that have no or limited information on genetic variation and adaptability to nonnative sites, there is a need for seed collection guidelines based on biological, climatological, and/or geographical criteria. Twenty-eight hardwood species are currently grown for reforestation purposes at the East Tennessee State Nursery. The majority of these species have had no genetic testing to define guidelines for seed collection location and can be distributed to sites that have a very different environment than that of seed origin(s). Poor survival and/or growth may result if seedlings are not adapted to environmental conditions at the planting location. To address this problem, 30 yr of Tennessee county precipitation and minimum temperature data were analyzed and grouped using a centroid hierarchical cluster analysis. The weather data and elevational data were entered into a Geographic Information System (GIS) and separately layered over Bailey's Ecoregions to develop a seed zone system for Tennessee. The seed zones can be used as a practical guideline for collecting seeds to ensure that the resulting seedlings will be adapted to planting environments. South. J. Appl. For. 27(3):172–175.

Keywords: Hardwood; Tennessee; adaptation; environmental management; forest; forest management; forest resources; forestry; forestry research; forestry science; geographic information system; natural resource management; natural resources; seed zone

Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: 1: Department of Forestry, Wildlife & Fisheries, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN, 37996-4563, 2: U.S. Geological Survey, Biological Research Division, Knoxville, TN, 37996-4563, 3: North Central Forest Experiment Station, USDA Forest Service, 202 ABNR, Columbia, MO, 65211-7260, 4: Department of Animal Sciences, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN, 37966, 5: Statistical and Computing Services, Tennessee Agricultural Experiment Station, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN, 37966,

Publication date: 2003-08-01

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  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Southern Journal of Applied Forestry covers an area from Virginia and Kentucky south to as far west as Oklahoma and east Texas.
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