CONUS Seedlot Selection Tool
The Seedlot Selection Tool Eastern United States project expands upon the existing Seedlot Selection Tool to add support for mid and Eastern U.S. regions. This project extends the original Western region to cover the entire conterminous United States. Together with other projects, these additions complete full coverage for the continental United States, Canada, Alaska, and Mexico. The project also adds seed zones in Eastern states. Seed zones – geographically defined areas, which specify a distance beyond which seed should not be moved – are used to determine tolerance for climate variance.
The Seedlot Selection Tool supports natural resource managers in matching seedlots (seed collections from a known origin) with planting sites based on climatic information. CBI’s Nikolas Stevenson-Molnar, Ken Ferschweiler, and Bill Klinkow completed the programming for the Eastern expansion, while Kai Foster coordinated a webinar presented by our collaborators for them to show off the new functionality.
Application display: The SST maps potential seed sources for a planting site, while considering potential future climates. Orange and red areas indicate best suitability for the stated goal given a set of climate constraints.
This web-based mapping application is used to map either current or future climates, and is particularly valuable for considering options for responding to climate change. It allows users to select a tree species, a transfer limit method (using an established seed zone or creating a customized one), a climate scenario, and a set of relevant climate variables, to display either seedlots that are appropriate for planting on a particular site or sites that are appropriate for planting seedlings from a particular seedlot.
The application allows the user to control many input parameters so the results reflect the management practices, available knowledge of adaptation, climate change assumptions, and risk tolerance of the user. Because of the uncertainty in climate projections, this application is a planning and educational tool. It can be used to explore alternative future conditions, assess risk, and plan potential responses, but cannot tell the user exactly from which seedlot seedlings will be optimally adapted to a particular planting site in the future.
Accessing the tool and additional information:
More on the tool including detailed instructions are available on the website: https://seedlotselectiontool.org/sst/
Support for the SST comes from the USFS, OSU, CBI, and the USDA Northwest Climate Hub.