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Protocol Information

Native Plant Nursery
USDI NPS - Glacier National Park
West Glacier, Montana 59936
(406) 888-7835

Family Scientific Name: Asteraceae
Family Common Name: Sunflower family
Scientific Name: Symphyotrichum laeve (L.) A. & D. Love laeve (L.) A. & D. Love
Common Synonym: Aster laevis L.
Common Name: Smooth aster
Species Code: SYMLAE
Ecotype: Subalpine meadows, Logan Pass, Flathead Co., Glacier National Park, MT.
General Distribution: S. laeve var. laeve is a widespread North American species, occurring from east of the Cascades to the Atlantic coast.
Propagation Goal: Plants
Propagation Method: Seed
Product Type: Container (plug)
Stock Type: 172 ml conetainer
Time To Grow: 4 Months
Target Specifications: Height: 6 to 10 true leaves, 6 cm
Caliper: n/a
Root System: Firm plug in container.
Propagule Collection: Seeds are hand collected in mid Spetember when achenes separate easily from the receptacle. Seeds are tan at maturity.
Seeds are collected in paper bags and kept in a well ventilated drying shed prior to cleaning.
Propagule Processing: Seeds are cleaned by NRCS using a hammermill and office clipper.
Seed longevity is up to 7 years at 3 to 5 C in sealed containers.
Seed dormancy is classified as non-dormant.
Seeds/Kg: 2,420,000/kg
% Purity: 100%
% Germination: 80 to 100%
Pre-Planting Treatments: Stratification lengths used have varied from 75 days to 5 month cold, moist stratification on high elevation seed sources. Stratification is not necessary for lower elevation sources.
Growing Area Preparation/
Annual Practices for Perennial Crops:

Greenhouse and Outdoor nursery growing facility.
Sowing Method: Direct Seeding. Seeds are lightly covered with medium. Conetainers are filled in late fall and irrigated thoroughly prior to winter stratification.
Growing medium used is milled sphagnum peat,perlite, and vermiculite with Osmocote controlled release fertilizer (13N:13P2O5:13K2O; 8 to 9 month release rate at 21C) and Micromax fertilizer (12%S, 0.1%B, 0.5%Cu, 12%Fe, 2.5%Mn, 0.05%Mo, 1%Zn) at the rate of 1 gram of Osmocote and 0.20 gram of Micromax per conetainer.
Establishment Phase: Seed germinates uniformly in 10 to 15 days at 22C. Germination to true leaf stage is 7 to 15 days. Seedlings are thinned at this stage.
Length of Establishment Phase: 4 weeks
Active Growth Phase: There is rapid root and shoot development during the growing season. Plants are fertilized with 20-20-20 liquid NPK fertilizer at 100 ppm bi-weekly until fall.
Length of Active Growth Phase: 12 weeks
Hardening Phase: Plants are fertilized with 10-20-20 liquid NPK fertilizer at 200 ppm in early fall; pots are leached with water, irrigation is gradually reduced through September and October.
Length of Hardening Phase: 4 weeks
Harvesting, Storage and Shipping: Total Time To Harvest: 4 months without stratfication
Harvest Date: July and August for planting at high elevations.
Storage Conditions: Overwinter in outdoor shadehouse under insulating foam and snow.
Length of Storage: 5 months
Outplanting performance on typical sites: Outplanting Site: Logan Pass, Glacier National Park, MT.
Outplanting Date: After snowmelt at high elevations.
Outplanting Survival at 3 Years: 88%
Other Comments: S. laeve var. laeve is a species that occupies disturbed areas in several elevation zones in the Park. It is very tolerant of limited moisture conditions and sharply drained soils and gravel and is widely used for restoration in a variety of habitats.
References: Flora of the Pacific Northwest, Hitchcock and Cronquist, Univ. of Washington Press, 7th printing, 1990.

Seed Germination Theory and Practice, 2nd Edition, Deno, Norman, publ.1993.

Glacier Park Native Plant Nursery Propagation Records, unpublished.

Seeding Rate Statistics for Native and Introduced Species, National Park Service,Hassell, Wendel, April 1996.

1999 Revegetation Monitoring Report, Glacier National Park, Asebrook, J. and Brenneman, B., unpublished.

Wick, Dale; Hosokawa, Joy.; Luna, Tara.; Evans, Jeff.; Corey, Susan. 2008. Propagation protocol for production of container Symphyotrichum laeve (L.) A. & D. Love laeve (L.) A. & D. Love plants (172 ml conetainer); USDI NPS - Glacier National Park, West Glacier, Montana. In: Native Plant Network. URL: http://www.nativeplantnetwork.org (accessed 30 August 2015). Moscow (ID): University of Idaho, College of Natural Resources, Forest Research Nursery.