Umatilla Native Plant Nursery Operational Support V

Salmonid Habitat Restoration and Acquisition

Pre-Restoration Acquisitions And Nursery Operations
Project ID18-Umat-05
Recovery DomainsInterior Columbia
Start Date03/01/2019
End Date02/29/2020
Last Edited10/21/2021
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The CTUIR Tribal Native Plant Nursery exists primarily to provide materials for restoration projects conducted by the Fisheries and Wildlife Habitat programs of the tribes and their conservation partners in the region. Plant materials produced at the Nursery are planted along numerous tributaries of the Lower Snake River and the Mid Columbia River. These plants provide shade and bank stabilization: practices that benefit Threatened summer steelhead, Threatened bull trout, and Threatened and reintroduced Chinook and Coho salmon. Nursery employees collect seed near each project site to produce plants that are adapted to the unique soil and climate conditions of each site. Collection procedures and cultural practices are followed to maintain genetic diversity and to produce plants that are capable of surviving the austere conditions of this region. PCSRF funding for salaries has made this labor intensive work possible.

The purpose of the project was to provide nursery services and locally adapted native plant products in support of restoration projects within the territory of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation. Plant materials from the native plant nursery may be used throughout the Columbia Basin for fish habitat restoration and watershed restoration projects with a focus on the Umatilla, Grande Ronde, Walla Walla, Tucannon and John Day Basins. Projects supported include CTUIR and their conservation partners. Services include site assessment and treatment prescription development, plant collection and propagation and maintenance of specified native plant species. There are currently very few native plant nurseries in the area and none that specialize in the production of locally adapted stock. This project will fund nursery operations and activities occurring during the 2019 calendar year.

The funds supplied by the PCSRF for salaries benefitted the CTUIR Tribal Native Plant Nursery by providing a crew to perform everyday needed tasks for running a nursery, maintaining infrastructure and producing plants.
Retaining full time as well as seasonal employees year after year has increased the vision of the program. Crew members are contributing more than just their time and energy. Because of their history and commitment to the program they are evaluating procedures in production and suggesting modifications to increase quality and reduce expenses. Challenges of a changing climate are providing new learning opportunities each year as we seek to produce hardy resilient plants with increased ability to survive in the severe conditions of the Eastern Oregon out-planting sites.

Worksite #1 Work: CTUIR Tribal Native Plant Nursery (CTUIR TNPN)

Developed planting plan with Habitat project managers, conservation partner project leaders, and contractors for restoration projects.(Using PCSRF Funds for salary)
Collected seed and/or cuttings from proposed site and prepare for propagation. (Using PCSRF Funds for salary)
Sowed appropriately to produce plants that are suitable for project site and meet target dates for out-planting. (Using PCSRF Funds for salary)
Maintained plants in a manner that encourages robust root growth and adequate shoot growth.
Monitored for diseases and pests, changing practices as needed to produce healthy plants. Harden plants with changes to fertilizer and irrigation protocols to encourage dormancy. (Using PCSRF Funds for salary)
Communicated with habitat managers regarding success of particular species and container types, making necessary adjustments to future planting plans. (Using PCSRF Funds for salary)

Project Benefit    

Plant materials produced at the Nursery will benefit Threatened summer steelhead, Threatened bull trout, and Threatened and reintroduced Chinook and Coho salmon by assuring the availability of healthy and vigorous locally sourced native plant materials for use in habitat restoration projects by the CTUIR and conservation partners (USFS, USFWS, OR Dept of Parks and Recreation, ODFW, ODOT, County Soil and Water Conservation Districts, City Parks, Tri-State Steelheader’s Assoc, National Wild Turkey Federation and Sage Grouse Initiative enrollees. 3
The plants grown at the Tribal Native Plant Nursery are from seed collected by the nursery at the project sites or at nearby locations with similar abiotic and plant community characteristics. While it is more expensive to gather seed and raise plants with this degree of fidelity to local genetics, the prices at TNPN are generally comparable to other nurseries who do not apply such standards in seed selection.
Although we do not have the metrics to evaluate success rates of TNPN plants compared to plants from other nurseries, the value of growing plants from locally adapted seed has been demonstrated in multiple common garden studies. It is not surprising that planting success and long range outcomes are superior when the genetics have been challenged with conditions specific to this area. Locally sourced materials not only assure long term resilience, they also prevent unintended introduction of non-adapted genetic materials to the watersheds. 5, 7

Native riparian plants provide shade, structure and a substrate for macroinvertebrates that feed native fish stocks. Native plant products support CTUIR’s “River Vision” which identifies a healthy riparian condition as a key component or touchstone to achieving healthy floodplain conditions necessary to protect, restore and enhance tribal First Foods for the perpetual cultural, economic, and sovereign benefit of CTUIR. Use of locally adapted plant stocks helps protect the ecological integrity of the local plant communities while improving overall floodplain health and fish production potential.

TNPN makes native plants available to the local community. Participants in Pollinator gardens through the NRCS or riparian restoration through CURB projects are guided through the process. Many however, are interested in utilizing native plants for water conservation, suitability to the location and beauty. Tribal Native Plant Nursery personnel listen to the objectives of the homeowner to provide plants that will meet their needs and will suit their location. The merits and needs of each species are discussed and suggestions are given to increase the success of those plantings.


Metric Completed Originally

Funding Details

Report Total:$100,000

Project Map


CTUIR Tribal Native Plant Nursery    

  • Worksite Identifier: CTUIR Tribal Native Plant Nursery
  • Start Date: 01/01/2019
  • End Date: 02/29/2020
Area Description

No Area Description data was found for this worksite.

Location Information

  • Basin: Lower Snake
  • Subbasin:
  • Watershed:
  • Subwatershed:
  • State: Oregon
  • Recovery Domain: Interior Columbia
  • Latitude: 45.6775
  • Longitude: -118.068


  • Un-Named ESU Coho
  • Mid-Columbia River Spring-run Chinook Salmon ESU
  • Snake River Fall Chinook Salmon ESU
  • Snake River Spring/Summer-run Chinook Salmon ESU
  • Middle Columbia River Steelhead DPS
  • Snake River Basin Steelhead DPS




  • C.0 Salmonid Habitat Restoration and AcquisitionY (Y/N)
    •      . . C.0.a Habitat restoration and acquisition funding 100,000.00
    •      . . C.0.b Length of stream treated/protected .00
    •      . . C.0.c
      Project identified in a Plan or Watershed Assessment
      The ESA Recovery Plans for the species indicated under the targeted ESU’s identify stream enhancement reaches and needs (including restoration of riparian vegetation) which this project will help address.
    •      . . C.0.d.1 Project Monitoring (LOV)
    •      . . C.0.d.2 Monitoring Location (LOV)
    •      . . C.0.d.3
      Monitoring text (from Phase I)
      Most monitoring of short and long term survival post planting is done at the habitat implementation sites as part of those projects.
    •      . . C.12 Pre-Restoration Acquisitions And Nursery OperationsY (Y/N)
      •      . . . . C.12.a Pre-restoration funding 100,000.00
      •      . . . . C.12.c.1 Nursery operationY (Y/N)
        •      . . . . . . C.12.c.2
          Species (scientific) name(s) of plants
          Acer glabrum Achillia millefolium Alnus incana Alnus rhombifolia Alnus sinuata Amelanchier alnifolia Artemisia tridentata Asclepsia speciosa Atriplex canescens Balsamorhiza saggitus Betula occidentalis Carex amplfolia Carex aquatilus Chrysothamnus nauseosus Chrysothamnus viridis Cornus sericea Crataegus douglasii Eriogonum heracleoides Eriogonum niveum Frangula purshiana Holodiscus discolor Juncus balticus Koeleria macrantha Mimulus guttata Philadelphus lewisii Physocarpus malvaceus Pinus ponderosa Populus balsamifera trichocarpa Populus tremuloides Prunus emarginata Prunus virginiana Pseudoroegneria spicata Pseudotsuga menziesii Purshia tridentata Ribes aureum Ribes cereum Rosa woodsii Salix amygdaloides Salix exigua Salix scoulerii Sambucus nigra cerulea Sarcobatus viridis Schoenoplectus acutus Sorbus scopuli Spiraea douglasii Symphoricarpos albus Thermopsis montana
        •      . . . . . . C.12.c.3 Number of each species raised per year 121,364