Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Potential Hemlock Hybrids Tolerant to Invasive Hemlock Woolly Adelgid

(Nov 10, 2010)
USDA. Agricultural Research Service.

New hemlock hybrids that are tolerant to the invasive insect known as Hemlock Woolly Adelgid (HWA) have been created by USDA scientists. Over the past few decades, two hemlocks native to the United States—Tsuga Canadensis (Eastern hemlock) and Tsuga caroliniana (Caroline hemlock)—have been under attack by the HWA. Originally from Asia, this aphid relative has spread to forests and backyards in 17 eastern states, killing hemlock trees and devastating natural ecosystems. The scientists and their colleagues crossed hemlock species native to the U.S. with germplasm—collected in Asia—of hemlocks that have shown tolerance to the insect. The hybrids are appealing not only due to their tolerance, but because they have good vigor and shape. Still, the researchers have several years of testing to complete before they can release these hybrids. Read more about the research in the article Saving America's Hemlocks, published in the Nov/Dec 2010 issue of Agricultural Research magazine.


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