§ 613.3 NRCS responsibilities in plant materials.  

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  • NRCS operates or enters into agreements with State universities or other State organizations to operate PMCs. NRCS also cooperates, both formally and informally, with other Federal, State, county, and nonprofit agencies or organizations on the selection of plants and evaluation of plant technology to increase the capabilities of PMCs. NRCS employs specialists for testing and selecting plant materials for conservation uses and the development of plant materials technology. NRCS' responsibilities are to:

    (a) Identify the resource conservation needs and cultural management methods for environmental protection and enhancement.

    (b) Assemble and comparatively evaluate plant materials at PMCs and on sites where soil, climate, or other conditions differ significantly from those at the Centers.

    (c) Make comparative field plantings for final testing of promising plants and techniques in cooperation with conservation districts and other interested cooperators.

    (d) Release cooperatively improved conservation plants and maintain the breeder or foundation stocks in ways appropriate for particular State and plant species by working with experiment stations, crop improvement associations, and other State and Federal agencies.

    (e) Produce limited amounts of foundation or foundation-quality seed and plants available for allocation to conservation districts, experiment stations, other Federal and State research agencies, State seed certifying organizations and directly to commercial growers (if other options do not exist) that will use the material to establish seed fields, seed orchards, or vegetative plantings for large-scale increase.

    (f) Encourage and assist conservation districts, commercial seed producers, and commercial and State nurseries to produce needed plant materials for conservation uses.

    (g) Encourage the use of improved plant materials and plant materials technology in resource conservation and environmental improvement programs.