First off, these are not free. I'm selling them, but also open to trades and other barter.
I've grown out a couple hundred *pure* American Chestnut trees. These are not dunstans, not backcrossed hybrids, not GMO Americans. These are absolutely pure from a few secret sources of pure trees pollinated only by other pure trees. These have no blight resistance. They will only grow and persist west of the Rockies as we are free of the blight.
Anyways - I have had far higher germination than I expected, and far higher survival past that as well. This has left me with too many of these awesome, endangered, rare trees for me to care for on my own property.
In lieu of planting them in our woods and hoping 5-10% survive, I would rather they go out into the Permie world in groups of 3 or more to be well cared for and serve to provide genetic stock for future generations.
Especially now, with the new hybrids and GMO chestnuts being released, as well as extensive development here in the Northwest where many of the only blight-free pure American chestnuts remain, completely pure American chestnuts are going to get harder and harder to find. I would like to increase their numbers while it's still an option.
So, if you have a good place to put 3 or more, please send me a message or reply to this post and I will message you. Please plant them somewhere they are likely to persist for at least a few decades so they can produce plenty of nuts and seedlings before they are cut down by development. On that note, pure American nuts sell for as much as $1 apiece, so you could consider it a financial investment as well. I'm asking $50 for a bundle of 3 healthy trees. There will be price breaks if you buy more. Again, open to trades and barter as well.
If you have questions about their requirements or site preferences, spacing, etc, please post in the questions and I will reply for everyone to see.
I also have (way too many) other species for sale, including 15 pine nut species, 5 walnut species, ginkgo, yellowhorn, siberian pea shrub, douglas fir, european chestnut trees, comfrey, currants, jostaberries, gooseberries, coffee, horseradish, cornelian cherry, apples, pears, jujubee, milkweed, among others. Please feel free to message me if you're interested in any of those as well.
I am not west of the Rockies, unfortunately, but I think it is great that you are trying to bring back the American chestnut. There is a group here in Missouri doing the same thing with a resistant variety of Butternut that has been pretty much wiped out through the years for similar reasons. Good luck with your project!
Out of curiosity, is there evidence that Chestnut Blight still exists in its 'damaging' form today? Often, if the natural host has been largely eradicated, the pathogen will have become less aggressive, either due to mutation and/or the adaptation to new, alternate hosts. Is it for sure that if such a tree species is planted back in the original locale that it will succumb to the previous disease? We can't really compare this to Dutch elm disease since there are so many elms still around infected (likely) with close to the original aggressive strains of the fungus. Just don't know and was wondering if anyone else had been following this.
“The most important decision we make is whether we believe we live in a friendly or hostile universe.”― Albert Einstein
It’s still around. The blight doesn’t necessarily kill the entire tree, just the above-ground part. I’ve read that it’s pretty common for chestnuts to send up shoots from an ancient root system, which can live for up to 15 years before the blight knocks them back down.
Clay, shade, neighbor’s Norway maples.....we’ll work it out.
yep, we still often find american chestnuts in the woods here, regrowing from pretty dead stumps. you never see them very big. the bigger ones die and new ones keep coming. just enough to keep the blight around?