Quercus rubra Seedling Biomass Response Related to Mean Annual Temperature Conditions of Associated Provenance

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Conference Proceeding

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College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science


—Quercus rubra L. is a hardwood species found throughout the eastern United States. Although climate change is projected to increase this species’ suitable habitat range, current population structures and migration patterns may not be suitable to sustain future forest health. To investigate how populations respond when planted outside of their traditional ranges, we collected seeds from 22 Q. rubra populations spanning the species range and planted them in two common garden sites. Ford forest (cooler and drier) and Kellogg Forest (warmer and wetter) sites are located in Michigan’s upper and lower peninsulas, respectively. During the 2019 and 2020 growing seasons, Q. rubra biomass increased with increasing seed source mean annual temperature (MAT), with a steeper slope at Ford in 2020. We also observed more frost damage at the Ford site in plants that evolved with a higher MAT.

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