Conference Reports – 12th Biennial

Short Rotation Woody Crops Operations Working Group Conference

July 23-25, 2018 Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Pre-Conference Field Tours:

Host: Bernie McMahon, University of Minnesota – Natural Resources Research Institute (UN-NRRI)

Poplar Breeding and Development Program,

  • Minnesota Power Property
  • University of Minnesota North Central Research and Outreach Center
    • Legacy Plantings
    • Clonal Stool Beds and Preservation (Coppice)
    • Progeny Trial​

Monday, July 23, 2018

Pre-Conference Field Tours:

  • University of Minnesota – Natural Resources Research Institute (UN-NRRI)
  • USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station, Institute for Applied Ecosystem Studies, Rhinelander WI​

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Welcome and Opening Remarks

  • Bob Martini, Nicolet College Board of Trustees, Nicolet College
  • Ron Zalesny, USDA Forest Service and SRWCOWG Chair​

Plenary Sessions

Moderator: Jim Richardson, Poplar and Willow Council of Canada

  • Barb Thomas,  Current Trends and Challenges in North American Poplar Breeding
  • Andrej Pilipović, Investigation of Phytoremediation Potential of Poplar and Willow Clones in Serbia: A Review​

Moderator: Bill Headlee, University of Arkansas at Monticello, USA

  • Joris Van Acker, Potential for the Agricultural Sector to Produce Poplar Wood as Contribution to the Forestry Wood Industry Chain
  • Biljana Kulišić, Reaching Economic Feasibility of SRC Plantations by Monetarizing Ecosystem Services: Showcase Contribution of SRC to Long-term Ragweed ​​​Control in the City of Osijek, Croatia​​ 

Technical Sessions

Genetics and Physiology  

Moderator: Raju Soolanayakanahally, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Canada

  • Carlos Gantz, Genetic parameter estimates for coppiced hybrid poplar bioenergy trials
  • Eric Fabio, Genetic and environmental effects on variability in first rotation shrub willow bark and wood elemental composition
  • Yue Hu, Is hybrid vigor possible in native balsam poplar breeding?
  • Jennifer Riehl, Uncovering the genetic architecture of growth-defense tradeoffs in a foundation forest tree species​ 


Moderator: Ian McIvor, Plant and Food Research, New Zealand

  • Ron Zalesny, The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative: Reducing runoff from landfills in the Great Lakes Basin, USA
  • Rich Hallett, Evaluating poplar genotypes for future success: Can phyto-recurrent selection assessment techniques be simplified?
  • Elizabeth Rogers, Survival and growth of poplars grown in soils amended with fibercake residuals from paper and containerboard production
  • Andrej Pilipović, Growth and physiological responses of three poplar clones grown on soils artificially contaminated with heavy metals, diesel fuel, and herbicides
  • Tim Volk, Changes in foliar nutrient status of shrub willow cultivars growing as an evapotranspiration cover on a former industrial site
  • Raju Soolanayakanahally, Mitigating the downstream effects of excess soil phosphorus through cultivar selection and increased foliar resorption
  • Ron Zalesny, Survival and growth of poplars and willows grown for phytoremediation of fertilizer residues​

Stakeholders, Bioproducts, Harvesting and Logistics

Moderator: Brian Stanton, GreenWood Resources, USA

  • Noelle Hart, Stakeholder assessment of poplar’s feasibility as a feedstock and ecosystem services provider in rural Washington
  • Patricia Townsend, Barriers and opportunities for use of short-rotation poplar for the production of fuels and chemicals 
  • Don Rockwood, Short rotation eucalypts: opportunities for bioproducts
  • Daniel de Souza, Variability of harvester performance depending on phenotypic attributes of short rotation willow crop in New York State
  • Obste Therasme, Cover protection affects fuel quality and natural drying of mixed leaf-on willow and poplar woodchip piles​   

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Biomass Production

Moderator: Patricia Townsend, Washington State University, USA

  • Marzena Niemczyk, Growth patterns and productivity of hybrid aspen clones in northern Poland
  • Brian Stanton, The economics of rapid multiplication of elite hybrid poplar biomass varieties: expediting the delivery of genetic gains
  • Richard Shuren, The biomass production calculator:  A decision tool for hybrid poplar feedstock producers and investors
  • Jesus Espinoza, AHB Growth and yield of hybrid poplar mono-varietal production blocks for biofuel production
  • Solomon Ghezehei Poplar productivity as affected by physiography and growing conditions in the southeastern USA
  • Scott Hillard, Hybrid poplar stock type impacts height, DBH, and estimated total dry weight at eight years in a hybrid poplar plantation network at multiple sites​

Ecosystem Services

Moderator: Solomon Ghezehei, North Carolina State University, USA

  • Ian McIvor, Tree willow root growth in sediments varying in texture
  • Jules Cacho, Environmental benefits of shrub willow as bioenergy strips in an intensively managed agricultural system
  • Todd Rosenstiel, Quantifying the unknown: the importance of field measurements and genotype selection in mitigating the atmospheric impacts of poplar cultivation
  • Obste Therasme, Greenhouse gas and energy balance of willow biomass crops are impacted by prior land use and distance from end-users

Closing Remarks

  • Ron Zalensy, USDA Forest Service and SRWCOWG Co-Chair

Poster Session

  • Chung Ho Lin, Developing Phytoremediation Technology using Pseudomonas putida and Poplar for Restoring Petroleum-contaminated Sites
  • ​​Amanda Foust, Comparison of Statistical Techniques for Evaluating Fiber Composition of Early Rotation Pine and Hardwood Trees for the Production of Cellulose
  • Rich Hallett, Freshkills Anthropogenic Succession Study: Phase I: Deer Cafeteria Study
  • Scott Hillard, Adapting an Aspen Short Rotation Yield Model to Represent Hybrid Poplar Yield for Regional Hybrid Poplar Production Estimation
  • Bill Headlee, Potential Biomass Production of Four Cottonwood Clones Planted at Two Densities in the Arkansas River Valley, USA
  • ​​Neil Nelson, Growth Performance and Stability of Hybrid Poplar Clones in Simultaneous Tests on Six Sites in Minnesota, USA
  • ​​Neil Nelson, Genetic Development, Evaluation, and Outreach for Establishing Hybrid Poplar Biomass Feedstock Plantations in the Midwestern United States
  • ​​Elizabeth Rogers, Citizen Science in the Greenhouse: A Phytoremediation Case Study.​