Scientists & Staff

Assessing a planted American chestnut

Cornelia Pinchot

Research Ecologist
359 Main Road
Delaware, OH, 43015
Phone: 740-368-0039

Contact Cornelia Pinchot

Current Research

Silvicultural strategies for American chestnut reintroduction

Importance of site quality to long-term growth, survival and blight-resistance of backcross American chestnut

Use of American elm in mixed species plantings to restore degraded riparian ecosystems

Restoration of American elm through breeding

Artificial regeneration of northern red oak on xeric sites: effects of family and seedling quality

Research Interests

Restoration of iconic tree species

Biotic and abiotic factors affecting planted seedling establishment success


  • The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Phd Natural Resources, 2011
  • Master of Forestry, Yale School Of Forestry And Environmental Studies Forest Management, 2008
  • Oberlin College, Bachelor Of Arts Biology, 2003

Professional Organizations

  • Society of American Foresters, Ohio Chapter
  • Forest Stewards Guild
  • Society of American Foresters (SAF)
  • The American Chestnut Foundation

Featured Publications & Products

Publications & Products

National Research Highlights

Photo (1) USDA employee inoculating an American elm tree with the Dutch elm disease fungal pathogens. 
Photo (2) Healthy American elm tree (left) and a tree that has succumb to DED (right).

Forest Service moves American elm tree a big step closer to landscape restoration

Year: 2017

Over the past several decades, mature American elm trees have virtually disappeared from city streets and eastern forests as a result of Dutch elm disease. Forest Service scientists are on the cusp of developing sufficient genotypes to successfully restore new selections of American elm back to the landscape. Dutch elm disease inoculation trials initiated in Ohio in June 2016 yielded American elm cultivars that exhibit low levels of Dutch elm disease-induced decline one year later.

Planted American chestnut seedling in a thinning treatment (intermediate light-level treatment) on the Daniel Boone National Forest.

Reintroducing the American chestnut tree begins with getting the light right

Year: 2017

As efforts to breed a blight-resistant American chestnut tree progress, the Forest Service and its partners are researching how to reintroduce the species back into forested settings. Scientists are finding that getting the light right is an important piece of the puzzle.


Forest Service scientists develop a cold-hardy American elm tree

Year: 2017

Dutch elm disease largely eradicated mature elm trees from the eastern U.S. in the 1900s. Forest Service scientists are working to create site-adapted Dutch elm disease tolerant elm trees capable of tolerating the cold winters of the Chippewa National Forest in northern Minnesota.

Forest Service summer intern Daniel Delatte measuring the height of a planted hybrid American chestnut seedling. Cornelia Pinchot, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.

Getting Reacquainted with an Old Friend

Year: 2016

Forest Service scientists investigate site factors that will boost success rates in hybrid American chestnut plantings in forests. This will help managers select optimal planting sites for chestnut reintroduction on public lands.

American elm cuttings growing in the greenhouse. Kathleen Knight, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.

Elm Disease Resistance Research Gets a Boost

Year: 2016

Great news for disease-tolerant American elm! A grant from The Manton Foundation has provided the Forest Service’s Northern Research Station with an opportunity to accelerate American elm research in collaboration with Nature Conservancy.

Summer seasonal Tim Dirgins planting an American chestnut hybrid seedling. USDA Forest Service

An American Chestnut Hybrid May Survive in Nature if Properly Situated

Year: 2015

A team of scientists from the Forest Service, the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, and the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is evaluating the importance of site quality on competitive ability and long-term blight-resistance of hybrid chestnuts. Results from this project in western Pennsylvania will help land managers select chestnut reintroduction sites that increase chances of long-term establishment success.

Last modified: Friday, October 18, 2019