Tree Regeneration in Church Forests of Ethiopia: Effects of Microsites and Management

Wassie, A., F.J. Sterck, D. Teketay and F. Bongers

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Tree regeneration is severely hampered in the fragmented afromontane forests of northern Ethiopia. We explored how trees regenerate in remnant forests along the gradient from open field, forest edge to closed sites and canopy gaps inside the forest. We investigated the effects of seed sowing, litter removal, and weeding on the regeneration success along this gradient. Regeneration success was investigated for four indigenous tree species, and measured in terms of seedling establishment, growth, and survival. Species performed differently according to site conditions. These results suggest that simple measures may improve seedling establishment, and that, for some species, forest edges are particularly useful for growth and survival after succesful establishment. Together with erecting fences, needed to protect seedlings against grazing, seed sowing, planting seedling, and soil scarification may contribute to maintain and restore church forests in the fragmented landscapes of northern Ethiopia.

Resource Type:
Peer-reviewed Article