Factors affecting the early growth and survival of indigenous seedlings planted for the purpose of ecological restoration
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Science
This report consists of two parts: 1) a review of factors affecting the early growth and survival of indigenous seedlings planted for the purpose of ecological restoration; 2) field trials of different treatments at establishment of planted Coprosma robusta and Phormium tenax on an overburden dump and coastal dunes at Cape Foulwind, Westport, New Zealand. The literature review includes information from New Zealand and international sources. Where little is information is available on indigenous species information from forestry research has been discussed. Little is known about the nutrient requirements of indigenous seedlings in the field. Mycorrhiza may have some importance in restoration, particularly on disturbed ground. Weeds and vertebrates have a major influence on growth and survival, while the effects of invertebrates requires further evaluation. The fertiliser trial showed that cement kiln dust significantly reduced growth compared to the control in some instances. No significant response was observed from blood and bone. It was concluded that insufficient blood and bone was applied. The addition of compost in the planting hole did not have a significant effect on growth or survival. In several analyses there was significantly greater growth and survival in plots receiving weed mat than in plots receiving hand weeding or no weeding. Hand weeding resulted in similar growth, but higher survival, as not weeding. Little difference in growth and survival was detected in the planting density trial. Physical and chemical analysis of the overburden dump soil showed this site to be a poorer medium for growth than the coastal dunes. This was supported in all analyses by significantly less growth on the overburden dump than on the coastal flat.