Reforestation Services Program
Located at Lewis A. Moran Reforestation Center, 5800 Chiles Road, Davis, CA 95618
California has been devastated in recent years by catastrophic wildfires, changing the landscape of forests and wildlands, our homes and lives. As fires sweep through the state, keeping our forests healthy and wildfire resilient is more important than ever. Growing enough trees to meet the increasing need is our highest priority—and future seedlings will contribute to the strength and restoration of the state’s forestlands.
ATTENTION LANDOWNERS! Identifying healthy trees for cone collection is an important first step to harvesting seeds for future reforestation needs. CAL FIRE is asking landowners to assist with locating developing cone crops on native California conifers (pine, fir, cedar, redwood). A potential stand of conifer trees consists of approximately 15-20 healthy trees with the top third of the tree containing unopened cones. Please take note of the location (e.g. GPS coordinates) and tree species observed. Please contact the Seed Bank Manager with information about your potential crop.
If you have tree climbing experience, are privately insured, and are interested in cone collections, please contact Denia.Troxell@fire.ca.gov for details.
WHO WE ARE
The L.A. Moran Reforestation Center has a long-standing history of serving California. Established in 1921, the Reforestation Center has been growing tree seedlings since its inception 100 years ago. Embracing CAL FIRE’s ongoing mission to protect the people and resources of California, the Reforestation Center has produced millions of tree seedlings for the state’s reforestation efforts.
The demand for tree-growing operations has expanded dramatically over the last decade due to California’s drought, tree mortality, and devastating wildfires. The Reforestation Center provides a reliable source of quality tree seedlings and seed stock to private landowners and public forests in California. We are expanding our operations to meet the growing needs of our communities.
WHAT WE DO
Our native tree seeds are important for California’s future. Conifers like pine, sequoia, and cedars form cones. These cones produce seeds, part of the forest’s natural reproduction cycle. The Reforestation Center specializes in processing, lab testing, and growing seedlings from cone-bearing trees.
To obtain the highest quality seeds, the Reforestation Center surveys vast and often difficult to traverse locations throughout California. Harvesting superior seeds require using cones produced in the top one-third of the tree! We work closely with highly-trained climbers to reach these heights. Once harvested, the cone seeds return to the Center, where staff begins the rigorous procedure of processing and laboratory testing.
The Nursery is where trees are propagated from seed we collect and are carefully grown in state-of-art greenhouses. Because growing from seed can take an entire year, the Nursery works with public and private forests to forecast where demand will be for future seasons. The need for quality seedlings is only growing.
If you are a private forestland owner or want to restore native trees on your property, the Reforestation Center offers available seedlings to both private and public forestlands.
THE STATE SEED BANK
The state seed bank is a long-term seed repository stored in sub-zero freezer banks. Containing over 30,000 pounds of seed, the Seed Bank provides a wide variety of native tree species from a range of areas and elevations throughout the state. This helps restore native lands exposed to shifting climates, and rising uncertainties in the forest ecosystem.
The Seed Bank acts as protection against the threat of state-wide extinction, striving to preserve species for current and future generations of Californians. It is a vital part of reforestation’s future.
CAL FIRE’s L. A. Moran Reforestation Center is always seeking professional tree climbers for cone sampling and cone collections between July and October across the State. You must have your own liability insurance and gear. For more information, please contact the Seed Bank Manager.
LOOKING TO THE FUTURE
We have worked for the past 100 years to foster sustainability in our forests, and we endeavor to work for another hundred—to provide healthy forests for a safer California.
For questions on your reforestation needs, please contact us at (530) 753-2441.
Seed Bank Manager
Reforestation Center Announcements
CAL FIRE At Capacity for 2023 Sowing Season. The Reforestation Services Program received an overwhelming amount of interest in seedling sales this year. If you’ve made a request for 2023 and have not heard back yet, we are planning to respond to you in the near future. While we were able to support requests for 225,000 seedlings, we expect to expand our facilities in the years to come to provide upwards of 1 million seedlings annually. For those entities still looking for assistance in this arena, please visit the Conifer Seedling Sources document linked below for other nurseries to consider for growing your seedlings. You still may continue to request seed from us via the Request Form link provided you have an outside nursery identified for sowing. We expect to invite seedling requests again, for the 2024 sowing season, in April 2023.
Seed/Seedling Request Form
To request seeds please visit our seedling request form below. **Please note that seedling requests have met capacity and will not be entertained again at this link until 2023.
- California Seed Zone Map
- Seed Ordering Process
- Seed Terms of Sale
- Seedling Ordering Process
- Seedling Terms of Sale
- Conifer Seedling Sources
- 2022 Cone Crop Survey and Cone Collection Certification (PDF)
- 2022 Seed Bank Assessment of Needs
- Cone Crop Survey Sheet
- Cone Crop Survey ESRI Field Maps Instructions
- Cone Crop Fact Sheet
- CAL FIRE Reforestation Center Fact Sheet
- Reforestation Cycle Flyer
- Raising Forest Seedlings at Home
- California Native Plant Link Exchange
- Urban Forest Ecosystems Institute
- National Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources (RNGR) Program
- Reforestation Practices for Conifers in California
- Collecting and Sowing Acorns for California's Native Oaks
- How is California Saving its Forests?
- An Introduction to L.A. Moran Reforestation Center
- L.A. Moran Reforestation Center 100 Year History
- How to Get Seedlings from L.A. Moran Reforestation Center
- 2022 USFS and CAL FIRE Cone Survey and Collection Training
- Reforestation and Afforestation Practices for California - Recordings and Handouts from 2014 (UCANR)