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Oregon listed plant permits


Native plants that are listed as threatened or endangered in Oregon are protected on all non-federal public lands (state, county, city, etc.) under the Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 564, commonly known as the Oregon Endangered Species Act. The Oregon Department of Agriculture is given the responsibility for conservation of native plants under the Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR) 603-073-0001. These rules outline the list of activities that require a listed plant permit in Oregon. There are two types of Oregon listed plant permits: non-commercial (research, restoration or public land action) and commercial (wholesale/retail or restoration). Currently, both of these permit types are free.

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Definition of terms

Several specialized terms are used on this Web page. These terms are defined below.
Action/land action: Any activity resulting, or potentially resulting, in the taking of a threatened or endangered species, including all ground disturbing, vegetation disturbing, plant growth suppressing, or reproduction inhibiting activities within the known or suspected habitats of such species, or release of biocontrol agents directed at noxious weeds or other pest plant species, as well as any exchange, transfer, or sale of state-owned land that would result in any population of a listed species being removed from state jurisdiction (i.e., the land is no longer state-managed, as defined in these rules).
State lands: All non-federal public lands (state, county, city, public utility, etc.)
Take: Collect, cut, damage, destroy, dig, kill, pick, remove, transplant, transport, or otherwise disturb. Also includes the collection or disruption of pollinators or other organisms required by plant.

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Activities requiring a permit

The OAR 603-073-0001  prohibits the following activities without an Oregon listed plant permit. In Oregon, a permit is needed to:
  • introduce or take or attempt to take a listed species to/from non-federal public lands
  • import, export, transport for commercial purpose, purchase or sell (or attempt any of above) any listed plant or part of plant
  • collect, store, preserve, possess, cultivate, clone, micropropagate or in any other way propagate or attempt to do any of the above with any listed plant or part of plant
Any land action on Oregon non-federal public lands which results, or might result, in the taking of a threatened or endangered species requires either a permit or a consultation with staff at ODA. In order to determine which option is the most appropriate, non-federal public land managers should email ListedPlants@oda.state.or.us for more information.
Federal agencies or their agents are exempt from permit requirements if the land action occurs on federal land only, or if listed plant materials are being transported between federal properties on state or private roads.
Contractors receiving an Oregon Department of Agriculture personal services contract are not required to obtain a permit if an exception is provided for in writing in the contract.
Private land owners are not required to have a listed plant permit when making management decisions on their own land.

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Non-commercial permits

There are two types of non-commercial permits: research or public land action.
Research permits: Research permits may be issued only for purpose of conducting investigations that enhance the biological understanding, conservation and recovery of listed species, or for non-commercial propagation or transplantation activities that enhance the survival or recovery of such species.
Public land action permits: Any land action on Oregon non-federal public lands which results, or might result, in the taking of a threatened or endangered species, requires either a permit or a formal consulation with ODA. In order to determine which option is the most appropriate, non-federal public land managers should email ListedPlants@oda.state.or.us.

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Commercial permits

There are two types of commercial listed plant permits allowed under (OAR 603-073 -0010-4 ):
Retail/wholesale: In rare cases, commercial listed plant permits may be issued by the ODA. Only departmentally licensed nurseries and dealers of native plants may possess, propagate or transfer ownership of a listed species for commercial purposes. Plants must originate from propagules or vegetative stock collected in the wild prior to the date the species was listed. Retail dealers must have a listed plant permit before purchasing from a wholesale dealer. Wholesale dealers are not responsible for the specimens after selling them to a retailer, but they must record all listed plant transactions in a log. The seller's permit extends to the purchaser if a listed plant transaction log is kept. All plants must have a pre-printed plastic pot tag stating that the specimen is a listed species, and propagation or other distribution is prohibited.
Restoration: Permits can also be issued to a licensed commercial plant grower to collect and propagate species if the grower is providing cultivated materials for use in department-sponsored conservation programs.

A commercial permit may be renewed by submitting a renewal application. Renewal applications must include the number of specimens of the listed species sold during the period of time covered by the previous permit. If a commercial permit holder stops commercial transactions of the listed plant, they must notify ODA in writing.

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Permit application process

1. Determine whether a commercial or non-commercial permit is needed.
2. Submit completed permit application, complete with accompanying documentation, to:
       Native Plant Conservation Program, Oregon Department of Agriculture
       2082 Cordley Hall, Dept. of Botany and Plant Pathology
       Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon 97331
3. A final decision on the granting or denial of a permit shall be made within 120 days of receipt of the final, completed application. Written notification of denial or a copy of the permit will be sent to the applicant at that point.
4. If a permit is granted, a non-commercial permittee will submit an annual written research summary report no later than the first day of May of the year following the calendar year during which the study or program commenced.

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Permit application requirements

A completed permit application must include the following items:

  • Completed permit application form
  • Resume of principal investigator
  • Description of external funding sources and participating agency or institution
  • A one to two page detailed project summary or description of facilities (in case of botanical gardens, herbaria or other repositories) with clear statement of objectives and a statement justifying the project (description of how the project will benefit the conservation of the species)
  • In the case of field projects, written evidence that state agency or other landowner or manager has been contacted, and permission for the proposed project has been provided
  • In the case of botanical gardens, herbaria or non-commercial repositories of native plant materials, a list of all accessions of listed plant materials currently stored at the facility

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