Presenter: Terrie Jain, Researcher, USDA Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station, Moscow, ID
Before 1900, western white pine dominated the moist mixed-conifer forests, often representing 15%-80% of the trees within stands. Disturbances were prevalent, and western white pine played a critical role in theses forests' resilience. These forests changed with the accidental introduction of white pine blister rust. The exotic rust decimated the abundant western white pine. Changing forest management, including fire exclusion, didn't help. Most surviving western white pine were harvested under the assumption all would die. Now, western white pine has largely been replaced by grand fir and Douglas-fir. Idaho's state tree, western white pine could be key to restoring forest resilience in the face of root diseases and changing climate. Sponsored by the Idaho Native Plant Society White Pine Chapter.