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Evidence-based cultivation recommendations in climate change

Laubholzwald mit einem rot markierten Baumstamm rechts

Research cooperation for the realization of sustainable and climate-adapted forest conversion.

The selection of suitable tree species is preceded by a complex decision-making process in forest management. At a time when the range of tree species needs to be expanded or adapted to climate change, this decision-making process is becoming increasingly difficult. The present project provides a data-based basis for this decision-making process by modelling cultivation-relevant information on 30 tree species. Four essential aspects of tree species selection, (1) the cultivation risk, (2) the growth performance, (3) the region of provenance and (4) the plasticity are mapped with different methods and summarized at the end to a cultivation worthiness index.

To tackle this complex research question one resorts to the experience of four different institutions which will be combined under international research cooperation. Here, the BFW collaborates with the Bavarian State Institute of Forestry (LWF – project leader), the State Forest of Mecklenburg-West Pomerania (AöR) and the University of Greifswald (Uni-HGW).

The project sets the conditions to sustainably manage and preserve forests in the future and to better estimate the potential of all important main and secondary tree species as well as the most important non-native tree species. To this end, established approaches to modelling species distribution (by LWF), growth performance (by Aör) and provenance (by BFW) are further developed and merged together. Both field work and analysis to determine the phenotypic plasticity of tree species (by Uni-HGW) close research gaps regarding the actual adaptability of species and provenances to warming and increasing summer drought.

Europakarte mit grünen Markierungen und Inventurpunkten, die das Verbreitungsareal am Beispiel der Schwarzkiefer zeigt
Distribution range using black pine as an example (Source: Caudullo et al. 2017).

As a result, models and user-friendly digital maps will be available. These maps can be integrated into existing decision support systems or used to set up digital information systems. The project is financed by the german Waldklimafonds.

Project partners and sponsors