Seeding or planting to revegetate the world’s degraded land? Preliminary findings from a systematic review

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Alexandro B. Leverkus, Alba Lázaro González, Francisco B. Navarro, Jorge Castro, María N. Jiménez, Enrique Andivia

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Revegetation is at the core of the actions needed to tackle the challenges of the UN Decade for Ecosystem Restoration. For many plant species, the selection of sowing or planting is paramount to secure revegetation success. Seedling planting has several key advantages over sowing, such as the avoidance of seed predation. However, seed sowing potentially generates lower impact on soil and vegetation. Sowing and planting may produce different root architectures at the level of the revegetated plants, different spatial heterogeneity at the level of restored habitats, and different economic cost in terms of management itself. However, we lack clarity about the conditions under which one method ought to be preferred over the other, and a comprehensive review targeting the studies that have addressed both methods is lacking. To move this topic forward, we are conducting a systematic review on how seeding compares to planting and how existing studies have addressed the difficulties in designing experiments on this question. Following a systematic review protocol, our review includes reproducible searches in relevant online databases, explicitly-defined study selection criteria and procedures, and the extraction of data and meta-data of relevant studies. In this talk, we will present preliminary findings of our review to address the following objectives: (1) collate and describe the available studies, (2) review how existing studies have dealt with methodological difficulties, (3) identify research clusters and gaps, and (4) summarize the results. Overall, we aim to produce new insights to enhance our technical capacity to restore the world’s terrestrial vegetation.

Resource Type:
Conference Presentation, SER2021

Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program