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God that is a depressing video. At 37 I am far too young to have ever seen a living mature Chestnut and have never acknowledged a living sprout although I will now that I watched that video. Either way I hope that someday these genetically altered plants can reclaim their territory. It's also scary to think about this happening to the Oak as well which is a real possibilty. Eventually we'll have one world ecosystem. That will not be a good day.
 

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Sad story. What a wonderful tree. I did run into 2 producing American's on a gameland in Schuylkill County this spring turkey season. Hulls all over. Don't run into them too frequently.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
This tree has haunted me since I was a young boy. I was reading a book on Whitetail Deer, by Leonard Lee Rue, and in it he mentioned that we will never know the full impact of the loss of the American Chestnut on the deer population. I thought to myself what the heck is he talking about. That was a very long time ago, and today I can't go into one of Pa. woodlots and not know that something is missing. The forest that we spend so much time in just does not look like it should, something is very wrong.

The good news is we are very close to starting to right this wrong. But it will take an army...a CHESTNUT PLANTING ARMY!
 

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Man that is sad but very informative, I had no idea about the American chestnut. It's weird to think that the woods we walk today are not what they once were. Maybe someday they will be again but that's hard to say.
 

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Great informative video. I was aware of the history but that was a good video to share with others.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
There is now a tree that is being planted that they believe is blight resistant enough to start the comeback.

I was recently part of a planting at the Milford Experimental Forest. We planted over 1,000 trees!

I have to tell you, it was a special feeling holding those seeds in my hands. I've waited over 35 years for these blight resistant trees!
 

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FLDBRED - I'll be the first in line to buy as many seeds as I can and plant them everywhere I can walk my feet to. I'll trespass if I need to hahahaha. I'm just into it!! I'm only 37 and have no recollection of the forrest of old. I'll also be dead before there is a tree worth looking at in Pa most likely and it will be 100's of years if not 1000's until the 400 million trees could be replaced. I'll never see it. But I would like to die someday know that I did something to help. I am dying to get one to plant in my yard.

I just hope that the 84% American Chestnut grows at GRAND as the old one did and the Asian traits stay to the blight resistance only. Guess we're years and years away from know that though. Still a ton of time.
 

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Typo...I'm sorry....3-4 BILLION tree to recover. Ya, I'm going to go out on a limb and say I wont live to see that happen. I'm going to go out on a limb and say man kind wont see that happen lol. Some other creature might but we are 1000's of years from that tree being completely restored. 3-4 Billion trees lost in 50 years....how is that ever possible??????? Mind boggling.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Trout 2003 said:
FLDBRED - I'll be the first in line to buy as many seeds as I can and plant them everywhere I can walk my feet to. I'll trespass if I need to hahahaha. I'm just into it!! I'm only 37 and have no recollection of the forrest of old. I'll also be dead before there is a tree worth looking at in Pa most likely and it will be 100's of years if not 1000's until the 400 million trees could be replaced. I'll never see it. But I would like to die someday know that I did something to help. I am dying to get one to plant in my yard.

I just hope that the 84% American Chestnut grows at GRAND as the old one did and the Asian traits stay to the blight resistance only. Guess we're years and years away from know that though. Still a ton of time.
Trout,

I hear ya buddy! There is seed available right now, but it is terribly expensive. They will be making it more available to members as time goes by. If you volunteer for some of the projects you stand a good chance of receiving some seed.
At 37 you WILL DEFINATELY see trees worth while! The American Chestnut is one of the fastest growing trees. It should start to produce some nuts IN JUST SIX TO SEVEN YEARS,don't confuse it with the oak or other nut trees. A 20 year old tree will be a nice large tree, and you'll only be 57.
There have already been thousands of these trees planted in old strip mine sites. The seed orchards are really starting to produce tons of the blight resistant seed. It will take some time, but light is finally in sight!

Like yourself, I plan on making an all out effort to plant as many as I can.
 

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Well hopefully seeds will be made available. I suppose I'll join the chestnut fed. Just learning about it to be honest but I am highly motivated to see a change. I dont really know why hahaha but I just feel compelled to leave a stamp in that manner.
 

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Glad to hear there is an effort to recover these trees! It is always a sad thing to see what we have lost in our forests over the years. For example, when I read some of the stories about our local streams it honestly brought tears to my eyes. The Little Conemaugh river was one of the greatest wild trout streams in the state before the influence of deep mining, and now it is all but dead. Sorry, went off on a tangent. It is great that there is hope on the horizon for these trees!
 

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I hunt the property where these trees were planted in Milford and know the landowners. The chestnut re-introduction is still a ways off as the blight resistance breeding program seems not to be yielding the hypothetical blight resistance traits so desired by all involved. It is still very much a work in progress. Some of the trees planted at the Milford Experimental Forest since I have been a member have, in fact, produced nuts! That is not to say that they will remain healthy for their entire life as the blight could still appear on them.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Stonewall said:
I hunt the property where these trees were planted in Milford and know the landowners. The chestnut re-introduction is still a ways off as the blight resistance breeding program seems not to be yielding the hypothetical blight resistance traits so desired by all involved. It is still very much a work in progress. Some of the trees planted at the Milford Experimental Forest since I have been a member have, in fact, produced nuts! That is not to say that they will remain healthy for their entire life as the blight could still appear on them.
A work in progress for sure, the final tree is yet to be produced. Some areas and some tree families seem to do better than others. But they have come a long way in 30 plus years. They feel they can produce a tree with as much blight resistance as the Chinese Chestnut with continued backcrossing and then there are the genetically engineered trees, that will be even MORE blight resistant than the CC. A lot of work to do, but at least now there is light.
 
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