Effect of proximity of buloke (Allocasuarina luehmannii) trees on buloke early sapling survival in a semiarid environment

Morgan, John W., Kviecinskas, Paulius A. and Maron, Martine (2013) Effect of proximity of buloke (Allocasuarina luehmannii) trees on buloke early sapling survival in a semiarid environment. Australian Journal of Botany, 61 4: 302-308. doi:10.1071/BT13002

Author Morgan, John W.
Kviecinskas, Paulius A.
Maron, Martine
Title Effect of proximity of buloke (Allocasuarina luehmannii) trees on buloke early sapling survival in a semiarid environment
Journal name Australian Journal of Botany   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0067-1924
Publication date 2013-01-01
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1071/BT13002
Volume 61
Issue 4
Start page 302
End page 308
Total pages 7
Place of publication Collingwood, VIC Australia
Publisher C S I R O Publishing
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Agricultural intensification has led to the dramatic decline of buloke (Allocasuarina luehmannii) and the plant communities it dominates in southern Australia. Conservation of remnant buloke woodlands and revegetation of agricultural land are both required for the persistence and improved ecological function of this threatened community. We examined the effect of proximity of mature buloke trees on early sapling survival, to provide guidelines for revegetation aimed at enhancing degraded remnants. We planted buloke saplings at different distances from the base of remnant mature trees at a site in western Wimmera, Victoria, with and without herbaceous competition. Mature buloke trees altered most soil nutrients (positively), soil water content (negatively) and soil conductivity (positively) at different gradients from the tree base, depending on the factor measured. Mature buloke trees had a strong negative effect on conspecific sapling survival in the first summer after planting in both the presence and absence of an herbaceous understorey, possibly because of the strong effect of trees on soil moisture. Competition from mature buloke was high nearest to the trees (up to 9m from tree base), but competition from the native understorey also appeared important for saplings in the tree gaps, as evidenced by their improved survival when the understorey was removed. We suggest that to establish buloke saplings in areas where mature trees already occur (i.e. enhancement plantings around isolated paddock trees), planting tubestock outside the canopy of mature buloke is necessary to enhance establishment success.
Keyword Plant ecology
Remnant vegetation
Alpine Plant Communities
Seedling Establishment
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management Publications
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