Will Black Oaks Survive Climate Change in the Midwest?

Black oaks may face many threats from climate change in the coming years. Photo: Willow, Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 2.5)

The survival of some species of oaks, among them black oak, have been threatened as forested areas in North America are cleared for agriculture, urban development, and other forms of development.  It is a major goal of many forest managers to maintain current populations of oak (Quercus spp.) for timber, wildlife, and conservation biology. Currently, black oak is distributed throughout …

Invasive Plants and Your Forests

Adapted from PINEMAP publication NC AG-771 (2013), by H. Cole, M. Megalos and C. Temple.
Original article may be found at http://www.pinemap.org/publications/fact-sheets/Healthy_Forests_Invasive_Plants_and_Your_Forests.pdf


Invasive plants are referred to by many names: nonnative, exotic, nonindigenous, alien, or even noxious weeds. They come in all forms, including trees, shrubs, vines, grasses, and ferns. Invasive plants are aggressive survivalists and exhibit distinct adaptive strategies and characteristics:

  • Grow vigorously
  • Survive in a range of conditions
  • Reproduce quickly
  • Difficult to eradicate

Invasive Plant Concerns

Invasive plants …

Experts: Start with the Home and Work Out to Protect Against Wildfires

Embers are the leading cause of home loss during wildfire. Embers are burning pieces of vegetation or construction materials that can be lofted high into the air, carried by wind, or transported by fire whirls.

Released July 10, 2013

Experts from eXtension.org advise homeowners to create defenses against wildfires by starting with the house and then working out from the structure. Homeowners don’t need to be overwhelmed, but the wildfire that killed 19 Arizona firefighters and destroyed more than 100 …

What Are Invasive Species, and Why Should We Be Concerned About Them?

An invasive species is a nonnative species (in any reproductive stage, including seed, egg, spore, or other propagule) whose introduction causes or is likely to cause economic harm, environmental harm, or harm to human health. These species grow and reproduce rapidly, causing major disturbance to the areas in which they are present.

Yellow Starthistle
Steve Dewey, Utah State University, bugwood.org

The majority of nonnative species, including most of our sources of food and fiber, are not harmful, and many are highly beneficial. …

Management Strategies for Family Forests

An Ohio forest
Figure 1. Millions of American families own forested land.

Written by Eli Sagor, University of Minnesota

About Family Forests

The term “family forests” refers to forested or wooded property owned by individuals or families. This same ownership group is sometimes referred to in research as non-industrial private forest landowners. Family forests account for about 60% of the nation’s forested and wooded land, the vast majority of which is in ownerships smaller than 500 acres. The decisions that the nation’s 10.4 …

Climate Change and Planting Trees

Written by Chris Schnepf, University of Idaho

Climate change questions are especially important for tree planters to consider. Gardeners and farmers usually only have to anticipate climate over the coming months. However, tree planters must anticipate climate over the next 30 years or more and consider not only the average anticipated climate conditions but, more critically, extremes of temperature, drought, and other environmental conditions the trees may have to endure. This is difficult enough for a given site assuming past …

Promote Resilience to Change

Adapted from: Millar, Constance I., Nathan L. Stephenson, and Scott L. Stephens, 2008. (February 5, 2008). Reframing forest and resource management strategies for a climate change context. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Climate Change Resource Center. Media: millar020508.pdf

Figure 1. Thinning of overly dense pine stands can promote resilience to wildfire and, thus, to climate change, as confirmed by research in California’s Blacks Mountain Experimental Forest. After the pine stand (left) underwent mechanical thinning followed by a prescribed