BC’s forests cover two-thirds of our total landmass and our forests generate more than $11.6 billion in economic activity each year. The main objective of this project was to assess the utility/value and applicability of genomic selection to operational tree improvement programs and in particular the Douglas-fir breeding program.
The researchers developed a genomic selection predictive model tool which predicted height, diameter, and wood density for Douglas-fir breeding. The user-partner, the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations (MFLNRO), concurs that this can be a viable tool for testing and selecting parents in forestry however there is still more research needed to make it fully integrated into their program. Additional research support from MFLNRO is anticipated to continue this project and delve in to the next research phase: selection of new material, its propagation, and distribution to the Industry and Government seed orchards.