Prairie T.R.U.S.T. (Testing of Rural and Urban Shade Trees) Project
The rural and urban forests of the Canadian Prairies are at serious risk from invasive pest species such as Emerald Ash Borer, Dutch Elm Disease, and Cottony Psyllid. The purpose of this tree project is to develop an expanded list of tree cultivars suitable to survive and thrive in these zones. The findings are of importance to the public, municipalities, landscape architects, and nursery growers.
In the absence of a government operated program for the testing of new cultivars of shade trees for the colder climate zones of Canada (zones 3 to 2), WNGG have established a short-term trial of approximately 150 cultivars that are either new to the region, or previously not in widespread cultivation but have shown anecdotal evidence for worthiness in these climate zones. Each cultivar/selection in the trial will be evaluated for five years or until the tree reaches a tree bole caliper of 80 mm. Each tree in the trial is measured for height, width, caliper, vigour and hardiness. The presence of flowers, seed, disease and insects is also recorded.
A list of the best performing trees will be produced and distributed once all the trees have completed the trial period. This list will be the basis for a "Prairie Tested" recommended tree list. The end user whether it is the farmer, municipal forestry program landscape architect, or private owner will benefit in purchasing a "Prairie Tested" tree that has shown to be prairie hardy and has a high resistance to insects, disease and environmental factors.
Project Leader: Rick Durand
Site Managers/Trial Site: