A naturalist from Missouri brings a kind of chestnut tree that is thought to have died out back from the grave
Back from the dead! Chestnut tree that is thought to have died out is slowly being brought back to life by a naturalist from Missouri, who pollinates seeds by hand in secret bushes
- The naturalist Steve Bost brings an almost extinct chestnut tree back to life
- The Ozark-chinquapin was thought to have died out until a forest was discovered at the beginning of 2000
- Bost has now turned 45 mature trees into 117 trees hidden in 15 test plots spread across the country
- Bost collects the pollen from a healthy tree, dries it, puts it in a pot and then drives it for up to 20 hours to manually pollinate another tree in one of the plots
A tree that was long thought to be wiped off the surface of the earth is quietly recultivated by a naturalist from Missouri.
A report from National Geographic details the efforts of Steve Bost, who directs the efforts to manually pollinate the Ozark kinquapin tree – a once fertile type of chestnut tree.
Although the trees were thought to have been completely decimated by a maroon fire that roamed the parts of the US in the mid-20th century, Bost embarked on a mission to locate all the remains in the early 2000s and into the mountains. cross the Ozark in Missouri for directions.
The Ozark Chinquapin was thought to be extinct until a naturalist pursued a forest of 45 wild mature trees that served in the Ozark mountains
The chestnuts of the tree are praised by both humans and animals and have almost disappeared from the memory of most people in the Ozark region
Despite the predictions of many nature researchers, Bost & # 39; s efforts proved fruitful.
At the beginning of the 2000s, with the help of Ozark residents, Bost found a large number of about 45 mature trees growing in the wild – a discovery that a joint effort by the naturalist and by state and private agencies to collect the species. rescue did arise.
As reported by National Geographic, Bost has successfully grown the first 45 kinquapins in an ever-growing forest that currently contains 117 mature trees, some of which are as high as 30 feet – half the height of a mature adult.
Unlike other attempts to save American chestnut trees, which involve crossing the specimens with inhospitable Chinese chestnuts, Bost intends to keep the genetic makeup of the chinquapin pure.
To achieve this individuality, the naturalist of Missouri has undergone a process that is both difficult and unknown.
Steve Bost (photo above) went on a mission to find surviving Chinquapins about 20 years ago.
The Ozark chestnut is covered with burs and flowers in late May to early June after the threat of frost was over.
National Geographic reports that Bost collects the pollen from a healthy tree, dries it, puts it in a pot and then drives it for 20 hours to pollinate another tree by hand.
WHAT IS THE OZARK CHINQUAPIN?
The Ozark chinquapin, also called Ozark chestnut, is a drought-tolerant hardwood tree that once grows to a height of 65 feet and a diameter of 2 meters.
It was once found in northern Louisiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi and Georgia and produces fertile nut crops that both humans and wildlife loved.
In the 1960s, however, the tree was decimated by a bacterial fire that engulfed the United States. Until recently it was thought to be extinct.
Now a naturalist, Steve Bost, wants to bring the tree back to life by hand pollinating a secret quarry discovered at the beginning of 2000.
The naturalist helped to grow the 45 original trees in a forest with 117 mature trees.
To increase the chances of survival of trees, researchers have also closely monitored the efforts, choosing not to reveal the location of its valued chestnut trees.
& # 39; If you ask people here in nature where these trees are, they will really become quiet, he told National Geographic.
This cumbersome method can also help to prevent unintended genetic wrinkle effects from introducing new species into the gene pool of the ecosystem.
If Bost were to succeed in his attempts to put the chinquapin chestnuts back into circulation, he might be the only person who ever destroyed an almost extinct tree species.
So far, Bost and his group have added around 1,000 test seedlings and saplings to the first group of mature trees and are currently monitoring 15 test plots through the The Ozark Chinquapin Foundation that Bost founded.
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