Plant Materials Center Update
Here are 5 things that you should know about the PMC for March 30, 2023:
As of 3/30/23 sales stood at $1,683,844. That is 119% of the annual sales revenue budget of $1,114,300. Sales to date are $176,769 ahead of where they were on the same date last year when they were $1,507,075. Kudos to the staff for their hard work and dedication to making that happen!
Transplanting Wraps Up
Before the end of the day today the 2023 transplant season will be finished. In less than two weeks almost 250,000 plugs will have been transplanted. This is done to produce plug-1 conifers. The PMC produces some conifer seedlings from seed and some are grown as transplants.
The transplants begin as one-year-old greenhouse-grown seedlings that are grown in plug trays and are referred to as plugs. These plugs are transplanted out in the field at the PMC and grown for one growing season. This creates a seedling with good size, caliper, and root mass. They also cost more than two-year-old seedlings. They are in high demand so it is recommended to order early and if one wants a large quantity of them and has a couple of years of lead time, consider having them contract grown to better ensure they are available when needed.
The PMC has shipped 1,704,373 plants of the 1,792,229 plants sold this year so far. Those numbers will continue to increase. The cooler will remain on through the month of April and there are plants still available to purchase. Check the PMC website (https://wacdpmc.org) to see what is available for late-season conservation plant needs.
After transplanting has been completed attention turns to laying out irrigation pipe, beginning weed control, and cover cropping. After a field has been harvested the soil needs to have the organic matter and nutrients used in the process of growing bare root seedlings. Chicken manure is spread and incorporated on these fields followed by planting a barley cover crop. This practice has resulted in some amazing soil for our plants to grow in.
Fall Seedbed Begins to Germinate
Many of the deciduous, hardwood trees and shrubs grown from seed at the PMC begin as seeds planted in the fall. After spending the winter in the wet, cold ground they are ready to germinate and grow in the spring. Waiting all winter to see how we did is a long wait so it is exciting to see those seeds start to grow. The species that typically germinate early have started and we are still waiting on those that take their time.
I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any questions. You can find older posts about the Plant Materials Center at https://hub.wadistricts.org/topics/wacd/pmc/
Director of Nursery Operations