Should We Adopt New Techniques for Tree Nurseries?

Climate change has caused widespread changes in the way we look at botany, gardening and growing plants and trees. Many types of businesses and industries will be significantly impacted by the effects of climate change as it continues to worsen in the coming years. One question to ask—should wholesale tree nurseries adopt new techniques in the wake of climate change?

Here are some issues to keep in mind that might cause nurseries on a broader level to change some of the practices they use in growing their trees.

  • Introduction of new insects and other pathogens: As climates across the world change, trees will be exposed to new types of insects and pathogens that make their way into previously unexplored territories. This means tree nurseries will need to start carrying trees that are resistant to these pests and pathogens or figure out ways to treat or grow these trees to prevent them from being affected.
  • Changes in temperature and general climate: Wholesale nurseries will also have to consider the temperature aspect of climate change, as well as humidity and other such changes. While climate change will make life more difficult for some trees, others will begin to thrive. Wholesale tree nurseries will likely need to change the selection of trees they offer to ensure their trees will be able to withstand the coming environmental changes.
  • Pressure in the market for specific species and products: There is a large movement right now for “organic” products and certain trendy species of plants. Depending on the type of plant, it might be hard for nurseries to accommodate these market desires and economic pressures if those plants are affected by climate change.

New Methods A Pressing Need

However nurseries decide they will best adjust to the changing needs and environments brought about by climate change, it is important they prepare themselves for the inevitable sooner than later. Climate scientists repeatedly have warned the world that the damage being done to the earth is actually increasing in pace.

Canada was dealt a recent blow in terms of climate change preparation with regard to trees when the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry decided to close the Ontario Tree Seed Plant within the next year.

The plant is home to processing and storage of billions of tree seeds, and acts as the seed bank for future forests in Ontario. The shutdown was a total surprise, and was not accompanied by any analysis of cost-cutting options or any consultation with clients or stakeholders. Seed banks act as an important resource for preventing mass endangerment and extinction of plant species caused by climate change.

Soil Advocates can help provide the information about the steps tree wholesalers must take to combat potential effects of climate change, contact us at Soil Advocates.

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By |2018-10-19T18:42:11+00:00October 4th, 2018|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , |

About the Author:

Dr. Leanne J Philip, BSc. (Hon.); MSc.; PhD. is the Managing Director & Chief Scientist of Soil Advocates Inc. She studied at the University of Guelph as an undergraduate (Plant Biology, Environmental Management and Urban Horticulture) and as a graduate student (Plant & Soil Interactions). She has a keen interest in soil sciences, which lead her to the University of British Columbia in Vancouver for doctoral studies in soil carbon sequestration and movement within British Columbia’s clear-cut soils. Further work in soil sciences in Europe and Canada reinforced Dr. Philip’s belief that soil processes and mechanisms belowground drive aboveground aesthetics and plant interactions. While active in both research, mentorship and teaching, most recently Dr. Philip has been working in applied soil sciences in industry and community outreach. Dr. Philip is a native of southern Ontario and is a strong advocate for scientific literacy within her community and responsible environmental stewardship.

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