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Author Topic: A bit of larch comparison  (Read 244 times)

saskatchewanman and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline wisconsitom

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A bit of larch comparison
« on: September 11, 2019, 12:22:32 PM »
The star of the show in my tree plantation area is the hybrid larch Larix x marschlinsii, a cross of European and Japanese larch.  This is not a tree for saturated soils but like all larch. does require a cool-ish and moist climate.  It is planted on upland portions of my site.  All around the area where my land lies are numerous swamps containing much eastern larch, AKA tamarack.  We had just about the best spring/early summer conditions for either of these trees one could hope for....cool and wet.  Early growth reflected that in both tree types and was robust.  Then, as is wont to happen, the pests showed up, but only in the native tamaracks.  Mainly, larch case-bearer, these trees looked like hell by mid-July.

But the hybrid stuff in my plantation blocks was and is untouched by this or any other pest.  I only mention because I've noticed a tendency of some to lump all trees within a genus together as if they are the same item.  

This does not, of course, mean that my trees will never be afflicted with anything.  I can, for example, imagine sawfly larvae showing up some day, although to date-I've now got trees aged 11 years-this has not taken place at all.  Heck, maybe porcupines will yet do damage!  But it does at least hint at the prospect that the hybrid entity does indeed-as the big guys have pointed out repeatedly-have some genetics going that tend to produce more protective chemicals....or something...than the native item.  These hybrid trees also show resistance to larch canker, far beyond the swamp trees right next to them.

Offline brianJ

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Re: A bit of larch comparison
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2019, 12:41:42 PM »
Being on a better site also gives them an edge with insect and disease resistance.

Offline barbender

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Re: A bit of larch comparison
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2019, 01:04:37 PM »
Plant them in the swamp and compare, if it's going to be apples to apples scientific comparison. 
Too many irons in the fire

Offline wisconsitom

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Re: A bit of larch comparison
« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2019, 10:40:02 AM »
Specifically not trying for apples to apples, but just making note of some general observations.  I have already lost one or two trees that were down in the saturated area, or close to it.  Meanwhile, trees that are tip-toeing adjacent to wet zone are fine and unblemished.

Interestingly to me at least, the couple that succumbed had already gained about 25 feet in height before dying.

That's maybe 2 trees out of right around 3000 that were planted.

Most are in upland sandy loam of relatively high pH.

I'm already seeing colonization at the ground level under these trees by mushrooms of the genus Suillus, a constant companion of larch and a mycorrhizal associate of the trees.

Offline Nebraska

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Re: A bit of larch comparison
« Reply #4 on: September 12, 2019, 11:06:55 PM »
Will these fancy lartch grow on a really eroded clay side hill in Northeastern Nebraska? That would be impressive, I've got 15 year old oak trees that might make two feet tall. 

Offline wisconsitom

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Re: A bit of larch comparison
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2019, 10:32:59 AM »
Hi Nebraska.  Larch dislike heat, so if you think your area gets hot...I tend to think it probably does...I would not spend $$/effort with these trees in that situation.

Not that it doesn't get hot here in central WI in summertime....but it's all relative, ya know?

Black locust is an invasive species up here but might be ideal for what you are facing.  I've yet to see any place it won't grow!

Offline Nebraska

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Re: A bit of larch comparison
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2019, 06:07:13 PM »
There's black locusts in the road  right of way and grove across from this spot about 150 yards away. I'll dig a couple up this fall and move them. We dont have lots of therm in this area though getting a little far north maybe.  I'll try them. It's funny if you go a few yards east the oak trees are 15 feet tall,  30  to 40 yards west and south oaks and walnut doing well. Two spots out of twelve acres of tree fields maybe half an acre  won't even  really grow decent grass. Topsoil takes a long time to regenerate once it's washed down the river. Of course if this was semi good ground that wasnt steep  or wet in spots, I wouldn't own it,  never would have gotten a chance. It would be 200 bushel corn like it is across the fence.  :) I figured its way to hot for larch here.


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