Course code MežZ3003

Credit points 3

Forest Tree Improvement

Total Hours in Course120

Number of hours for lectures32

Number of hours for laboratory classes16

Independent study hours72

Date of course confirmation16.03.2021

Responsible UnitInstitute of Forest Management

Course developers

author prof.

Āris Jansons

Dr. silv.

author Mežsaimniecības institūts

Baiba Jansone


Course abstract

Students learn theoretical base of forest trees improvement (breeding), become acquainted with processes and tasks of forest tree improvement, display of heritability and variation, phenotype and genotype. Students also learn the methods of tree breeding – the basis of selection, hybridization, clone, family, provenance and ecotype. They become acquainted with classification of trees and stands from the breeding perspective, as well establishing and management of seed orchards.

Learning outcomes and their assessment

Knowledge and competence in tree breeding process and its practical realization. Competence to assess results of progeny tests and evaluate genetic gain.

Course Content(Calendar)

1. Aims of tree breeding, its historical development, components. 3 h.
2. Heredity and heritability. Diversity of tree morphotypes. Heritability of specific traits. 4 h.
3. Phenotypes and genotypes. Heritability coefficient selection differential, genetic gain. 3 h.
4. Population genetics. Methods of tree breeding. Selection. 3 h.
5. Hybrid breeding. Controlled crossing of different tree species. Perspective inter-species hybrids. 3 h.
6. Tissue culture. Ecotypes and provenances. 3 h.
7. Progeny trials of forest tree species. 3 h.
8. Breeding or deciduous and coniferous trees. 3 h.
9. Types of tree and stands from tree breeding purposes. 3 h.
10. Seed orchards – types, establishment and management. Seed crop, it assessment and collection. 4 h.

Requirements for awarding credit points

Passed two tests and individual assignment.

Description of the organization and tasks of students’ independent work

Presentation (7-10 min.) and analysis of the scientific study in foreign language based on provided key words. Student understands the kay message of the study and can explain it to the pairs. Understands the topicality of the study in context of forestry of Latvia.

Criteria for Evaluating Learning Outcomes

Grade is cumulative value from results of two tests and individual assignment (presentation). If not passed, written exam.

Compulsory reading

1. Forest Tree Breeding in Europe: Current State-of-the-Art and Perspectives. Pâques, Luc E (Ed.). Springer. 2013. 511 lpp.
2. Dreimanis A. Pazīmju iedzimšana un skaldīšanās pēcnācēju paaudzēs. Jelgava: LLA Mežkopības katedra, 2001. 14 lpp.
3. Dreimanis A. Izlase selekcijas darbā. Jelgava: LLA Mežkopības katedra, 2003. 9 lpp.
4. Dreimanis A. Kokaugu hibridizācija . Jelgava: LLA Mežkopības katedra, 2004. 15 lpp.
5. Misiņa M., Loža V. Ģenētika ar selekcijas pamatiem. Rīga: Zvaigzne, 1991. 396 lpp.

Further reading

Seppälä R., Buck A., Katila P. Adaptation of Forests and People to Climate Change: A Global Assessment Report. Tampere: Esa-Print Oy, 2009. - 224 lpp

Periodicals and other sources

Nature Climate Change ISSN 1758-678X
Global Change Biology ISSN 1365-2486