2012 Lolo Forest-wide WBP Cone Collection

Project: Lolo Forest-wide WBP Cone Collection

Agency/Forest or Park/District:   Lolo National Forest, Montana

Project coordinator:  Mike Mueller

Contact: Mike Mueller – Plains/T.Falls Ranger District, Lolo National Forest  408 Clayton/P.O. Box 429  Plains, MT 59859  (406) 826-4353   mlmueller@fs.fed.us


Past cooperators include the Flathead NF

Potential cooperators include the Beaverhead-Deerlodge, Bitterroot, Clearwater, Helena, Idaho Panhandle, Kootenai, Lewis and Clark NF‟s. The Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribe and Glacier NP are also within the seed zones that encompass the Lolo NF.

Source of funding /amount

FHP: $17,500

Supplemental funding: $5,610 funding from appropriated dollars

Dates of restoration efforts

Summer 2012


To collect potentially rust resistant seed from WBP trees in areas exposed to the white pine blister rust

Acres/ha treated

1 collectable area (up to 30 trees)


The WBP cone collection has three basic parts:

1. Visiting different WBP sites across the forest in June to determine the extent of the current cone crop. This is accomplished by district personnel using high powered  binoculars and counting visible cones. The selected trees are flagged and marked on the GPS. Since 2007, we have successfully procured an operational size (20+ trees) collection at different sites on the forest every year.

2. In early July, contracted climbers will climb selected trees and install nutcracker and squirrel resistant cages over the cones to protect the seeds until maturity. This step is supervised by forest contract inspectors to assure quality control.

3. The end of August, the contract climbers will climb the caged trees, remove the cages and collect the cones. This step will also be supervised by forest contract inspectors to assure quality control.

Planting? If so, source of seedlings? Resistance?    No


Project has been completed and the collection was approx. 10 bushels of cones from 46 trees. We contributed approx. 70,000 seeds to the regional WBP seed inventory to be used by any forest within the seed transfer zone.

Monitoring since completion of the project


            Plans for future monitoring?

No monitoring – it’s a cone collection for the nursery seed bank

Will outcome meet goals?

The seeds will be planted out when needed by any forest within the seed transfer zone

Future actions/follow up?