Founded in 1968, the Inland Empire Tree
Improvement Cooperative (IETIC) is a diverse group of 19 organizations in
eastern Washington, northern Idaho and western Montana who have joined
together to apply classical plant breeding techniques to important native
conifer species for the purpose of producing genetically improved tree seed
for commercial reforestation
and ecosystem restoration.
Inland Empire Tree Improvement Cooperative
College of Natural Resources
Forestry, Rangeland, and Fire Sciences
875 Perimeter Dr, MS 1133
Moscow, ID 83844-1133
Since the IETIC's first progeny tests
were established in 1974, more than 120 field tests have been established
with more than one million seedlings. While serving primarily as a "proving"
grounds for the thousands of parent tree selections that have been made in
the woods, these tests also server an important function as gene archives.
Members have access to IETIC genetic
materials and can clone top ranking trees through grafting, a technique used
for centuries in agriculture and horticulture. A branch tip from the
selected tree is "grafted" onto a seedling rootstock to produce a new tree.
These grafted trees are then planted together and managed for cone and seed
production. Seeds produced in these "seed orchards" are germinated and grown
to provide seedlings for reforestation and ecosystem restoration.