RMK plans to store 100,000 litres of pine cones 18.01
RMK plans to increase its seed stocks with nearly 650 kilograms of pine seeds. Spruce seeds, however, will not be collected this year due to damage caused by pests.“Pines have had a good year for cones and we plan to collect 100,000 litres of cones which will provide us with 650 kilograms of seeds,” Esko Krinal, Head of the Seed and Plant Department of RMK, explained. The seeds are enough to grow 65 million pine trees.
Cone collection started in November and will continue until the end of March when the scales of the cones open and release their seeds as a result of the warmth and sunlight. RMK hopes to collect half of the cones from its nurseries in Estonia while the rest will come from suitable stands.
Spruce cones will not be collected this year as damaged cones are not suitable for seed stocks. Spruce cones were also not collected last year for the same reason.
465 kilograms of pine seed were collected last year with two thirds coming from nurseries and one third from stands. RMK collected 70 kilograms of silver birch seed last summer and 11 kilograms of black alder seed in autumn.
Stock will last for several years
RMK uses the seeds in its own nurseries as well as for sale to private persons. A total of 305 kg of spruce, 277 kg of pine, 94 kg of silver birch and 12 kg of black alder seed were collected last year.
As the national seed stock manager, RMK has a current stock of 2.8 tonnes of pine, 5.4 tonnes of spruce, 166 kilograms of birch and 34 kilograms of black alder seed.
On principle, RMK will keep eight years worth of spruce seed stock as spruce trees do not produce cones every year and the next good year for cones is hard to predict. Pine seed stocks must last for four years, birch and black alder for two.
RMK offers jobs for cone collectors
Cones suitable for seed stock are only collected from suitable felling sites in state forests. Individuals can participate in cone collection by signing a contract. The operations are managed by RMK nursery managers in their regions: Iisaku manager in Jõgeva, Lääne-Viru and Ida-Viru Counties; Purila manager in Rapla, Järva and Viljandi Counties; Reiu manager in Pärnu County, Rulli manager in Valga and Tartu Counties and Räpina manager in Põlva and Võru Counties. Conifer seeds are not collected in Harju and Lääne Counties or on the islands.
RMK Communications Specialist
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