USDA Forest Service
 

Pacific Southwest Research Station

 

Pacific Southwest Research Station
800 Buchanan Street
Albany, CA 94710-0011

(510) 559-6300

United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service. USDA logo which links to the department's national site. Forest Service logo which links to the agency's national site.

Publications and Products

Order a printed copy
of this publication.

Research Paper

Title: Mulching to regenerate a harsh site: effect on Douglas-fir seedlings, forbs, grasses, and ferns

Author: McDonald, Philip M.; Fiddler, Gary O.; Harrison, Henry R.

Date: 1994

Source: Res. Paper PSW-RP-222. Albany, CA: Pacific South-west Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture; 10 p

Station ID: RP-PSW-222

Description: Douglas-fir seedlings on the Arcata District, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Department of the Interior, in central coastal California, were planted in an effort to restore the natural forest to what was then pastureland. Douglas-fir seedlings were released from a complex forb-grass-fern plant community by applying very large (10-ft square) and very small (2-foot square) durable mulches one month after planting. The large mulches were installed directly over the existing plant community, and the small mulches were applied over a similar-sized scalp. Two-foot-square scalps and an untreated control provided additional comparisons. After five growing seasons, stem diameter (measured at 12 inches above mean groundline) of Douglas-fir seedlings with large mulches was 1.61 inches, and of seedlings with small mulches was 1.36 inches. Only seedlings with large mulches were significantly larger than counterparts with small scalps (1.22 inches) or in the control (1.26 inches) after 5 years. In spite of high cost, the promising role of large mulches for establishing fast-growing Douglas-fir seedlings on a harsh site and the increased stability and sustainability that the future trees will bring to the more natural plant community give large mulches a place in the toolkit of ecosystem managers.

Key Words: central California, Douglas-fir seedlings, herbaceous species, mulches, plant community dynamics

View and Print this Publication (1.6 MB)

Citation

McDonald, Philip M.; Fiddler, Gary O.; Harrison, Henry R.  1994.  Mulching to regenerate a harsh site: effect on Douglas-fir seedlings, forbs, grasses, and ferns  Res. Paper PSW-RP-222. Albany, CA: Pacific South-west Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture; 10 p

Last Modified: Nov 18, 2013 12:47:06 PM