Soil Recovery after Removal of the N2-fixing Invasive Acacia longifolia: Consequences for Ecosystem Restoration

Marchante, E., A. KjĂžller, S. Struwe and H. Freitas

Publication Date:

Invasion by Acacia longifolia alters soil characteristics and processes. The present study was conducted to determine if the changes in soil C and N pools and processes induced by A. longifolia persist after its removal, at the Sao Jacinto Dunes Nature Reserve (Portugal). Our results suggest that after removal of an N2-fixing invasive tree that changes ecosystem-level processes, it takes several years before soil nutrients and processes return to preinvasion levels, but this legacy slowly diminish, suggesting that the susceptibility of native areas to (re)invasion is a function of the time elapsed since removal. Removal of the N-rich litter layer facilitates ecosystem recovery.

Resource Type:
Peer-reviewed Article

Biological Invasions