Transfer of eucalyptus plant production techniques

Transfer of eucalyptus plant production techniques
DateProject completed
FCBA has developed very special varieties of eucalyptus that are exceptionally resistant to frost and particularly non-aggressive through an approach that contributes to the preservation of endangered eucalyptus species (partnership with the University of Tasmania for 40 years). Their multiplication is however difficult and requires the use of specific in vitro culture methods developed by FCBA. A project was therefore initiated in 2016 to transfer and adapt plant production techniques to be used by nurseries specialising in in vitro culture (Martaillac, project leader) and forestry plants (Forelite).

The development of eucalyptus cultivation – a very specific species very different from those grown elsewhere in Europe and the world – on the scale of a thousand hectares in Aquitaine meets a need for diversification and the supply of raw material to industrial sites producing paper, bioenergy and green chemistry (biorefinery), most of which are located in the New Aquitaine region. The major limiting factor is the availability of plants.

The project consists of transferring the FCBA technology required for the production of high-performance mother plants, enabling forestry nurseries to produce the quantities needed to feed the eucalyptus cultivation development programme in the Nouvelle Aquitaine region in large quantities and at a measured cost. The section dedicated to cuttings has enabled Forelite to improve its cutting process. Based on the two forest varieties released since 2012, the project has led to the complete transfer of in vitro propagation to Martaillac nurseries, with an extension underway to more recent forest and ornamental varieties. A second project is in preparation to extend the range of species involved.

The forestry plants produced are intended for use as high-quality mother plants for cuttings by all the nurseries, while the distribution of the ornamental varieties is governed by licensing agreements.

Stages in the production of eucalyptus plants of FCBA varieties based on cuttings from in vitro plants. A: in vitro multiplication; B: rooting; C: transfer to greenhouse; D: end of growth in greenhouse; E: stock of mother plants feeding the cuttings; F: harvesting of a plot: only the trunk is exported and the tree grows back without intervention for a new growth period (coppicing)
Role of the partners and tasks of the technical transfer project 2017-2020