SOIL SEEDBANK AND VEGETATION REGENERATION POTENTIAL IN MONTANE GRAZING LAND OF EASTERN TIGRAY, ETHIOPIAJournal: International journal of ecosystems and ecology science (IJEES) (Vol.4, No. 4)
Publication Date: 2014-11-10
Authors : Gebrewahd Amha ABESHA;
Page : 591-608
Keywords : Seedbank; seedling density; species composition;
Restoration of vegetation is highly dependent on the banked seed in the soil. This study was conducted in Kilte - Awelaelo eastern Tigray, Ethiopia. The study aimed at assessing soil seed bank flora, and determining vegetation regeneration potential. A total of 45 quadrats measuring 20m×20m (400m2) were laid out in 15 sample sites from three corresponding land use types (i.e. ten years enclosure, five years enclosure and open grazing land). From each land use type five sites having three quadrats were investigate. Each quadrat was laid out at an interval of 400m in five parallel transects each 200m apart from other, to collect data on soil seed bank , five randomly located plot 1m2 area each, was selected and marked, within each 400m2 sample quadrat of sample sites located along the main transect. At the center of each plot, three sub plots, 15cmX15cm, were marked in a triangular shape. Soil samples were removed from three separate soil layers, each three centimeters thick (0-3cm, 3-6cm and 6-9cm) and was germinated in green house. The study revealed that, a total of 1949 seedlings belonging to 65 species and 29 families germinated in the green house experiment. The forbs comprised 60.66%, grasses 16.66%, legumes 13.11%, trees/shrubs 4.80%, 3.20% climbers and 1.60% sedge of the total germinated plant species. There was significant (P<0.05) difference in seedling density and species composition along land use type and layers but species composition did not significantly vary in layer3 (6-9cm). The seedling density in the land use type and along depth ranged from 275-876 and 49-333 seedling m-2, respectively. In conclusion the present study discovered that, the two enclosure sampled sites part of the montane grazing land had shown relatively highest level of soil seed bank flora. As a result, expansions of enclosure with proper management is instrumental practice for restoration of degraded grazing lands.
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