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Where will it grow? How well will it grow?
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Develop generic methods for predicting where and how well particular plants will grow in different environments.

Produce PC-based tools, which can be easily used by individuals and small organisations as well as large national and international organisations.

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Four basic techniques are applied:

  1. Interpolation relationships are developed to enable mean monthly climatic conditions to be reliably estimated for any location within the study area.
  2. "Climatic mapping programs" containing data for thousands of locations are developed to enable regions satisfying the requirements of particular species to be easily identified.
  3. The Plantgro program is used to evaluate the relative suitability of individual sites for particular species using soil as well as climatic information.
  4. Simulation mapping programs are developed which can run a simplified version of the Plantgro model for thousands of locations.
Five people have spent a major part of their time on the project over the last four years, thtough many more people have had some involvement. The main researchers have a variety of skills in forestry, ecology, agriculture, GIS and computation.

Interpolated Climate surface

CHINA and Southeast Asia:
Interpolated climate surface
(mean minimum temperature)

Climatic suitability of Acacia mearnsii

Climatic suitability of Acacia mearnsii

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Products from the research are being used by individuals and organisations in many countries around the world. In addition to their use in forestry, some of the programs and databases are being used to assist the selection of grass species, to analyse native bird distributions and to predict the risk of insect pests.

Results of the project have been summarised in a four page colour research note and in a 125 page proceedings volume entitled "Matching Trees and Sites".
Eight training courses in the use of the methods have been given in six countries in the last three years.

The work has been supported by ACIAR and AusAID

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Contact : Trevor H. Booth, CSIRO Forestry and Forest Products
PO Box 4008, Canberra, ACT 2600, Australia
Fax : + 616 281 8312
E-mail: trevor.booth@cbr.for.csiro.au | http://www.ffp.csiro.au/pff/species/