Original Articles

Influence of sward defoliation and soil disturbance on seedling emergence and survival in the Southern Tall Grassveld

Published in: African Journal of Range & Forage Science
Volume 13, issue 3, 1996 , pages: 131–136
DOI: 10.1080/10220119.1996.9647909
Author(s): K.M. AdamsDepartment of Zoology, Republic of South Africa


Seedling emergence, survival and species composition were recorded on vegetation subjected to seven practicably feasible soil and defoliation treatments. Soil disturbance, with defoliation removal, produced the greatest number of emergents; these also had the best survivorship compared to other treatments. Recruitment of desirable species in humid South African rangelands seems to require not only sufficient seed supply, but also improved conditions for their emergence and survival. The latter seems to be best achieved by eliminating competition, inter alia by tilling the soil. Where no soil or defoliation treatment was applied, no surviving seedlings were produced.

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