Umatilla Native Plant Nursery Operational Support VII

Salmonid Habitat Restoration and Acquisition

Pre-Restoration Acquisitions And Nursery Operations
Project ID20-Umat-05
Recovery DomainsInterior Columbia
Start Date03/01/2021
End Date03/31/2022
Last Edited09/27/2021
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The purpose of the project is 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.

The plants are sold to the Tribal habitats and to other conservation partners and are generally installed by contractors at the project site. Frequently, plants from other nurseries are intermixed with plants from our nursery at the staging area. The nursery does not monitor the success of the plants after they leave the nursery because we cannot be responsible for the planting techniques. Habitat managers survey total revegetation over a period of years but those surveys do not distinguish between plants from TNPN, plants from other nurseries and plants that naturally regenerate.

Proposed Work (funded through this PCSRF project):

Develop planting plan with Habitat project managers, conservation partner project leaders, and contractors for restoration projects
Collect seed and/or cuttings from proposed site and prepare for propagation.
Sow appropriately to produce plants that are suitable for project site and meet target dates for out-planting.
Maintain plants in a manner that encourages robust root growth and adequate shoot growth.
Monitor for diseases and pests, changing practices as needed to produce healthy plants.
Harden plants with changes to fertilizer and irrigation protocols to encourage dormancy.
If needed, overwinter in protected space, transplant to desired container, then manage growth until the next planting season.
Communicate with habitat managers regarding success of particular species and container types, making necessary adjustments to future planting plans.

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 tribal entities (CTUIR, Nez Perce, and Burns Paiute) and conservation partners (USFS, USFWS, OR Dept of Parks and Recreation, ODFW, ODOT, County Soil and Water Conservation Districts and City Parks), enrollees in DOI projects such as the Sage Grouse Initiative, EQUIP, CURB and CREP. Also, various non-profit organizations such as Tri-State Steelheader’s Assoc, National Wild Turkey Federation, Blue Mountain Land Trust, Walla Walla Basin Watershed Council, Umatilla Basin Watershed Council and North Fork John Day Watershed Council.

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.

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 beauty, as wildlife attractants, and water conservation. Tribal Native Plant Nursery personnel listen to the objectives of the homeowner to provide plants that will meet their needs and will suit the conditions of 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: 02/01/2021
  • End Date: 01/31/2023
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


  • 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




  • C.0 Salmonid Habitat Restoration and AcquisitionY (Y/N)
    •      . . C.0.a Habitat restoration and acquisition funding .00
    •      . . C.0.b Length of stream treated/protected
    •      . . C.0.c
      Project identified in a Plan or Watershed Assessment
    •      . . C.0.d.1 Project Monitoring (LOV)
    •      . . C.12 Pre-Restoration Acquisitions And Nursery OperationsY (Y/N)
      •      . . . . C.12.a Pre-restoration funding
      •      . . . . C.12.c.1 Nursery operationY (Y/N)
        •      . . . . . . C.12.c.2
          Species (scientific) name(s) of plants
        •      . . . . . . C.12.c.3 Number of each species raised per year