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Jannie Francianne Guimarães, Adriana Pedrosa Diniz, Débora Cristina Rother, Emanuela Wehmuth Alves Weidlich, Ricardo Ribeiro Rodrigues
Ecological restoration of tropical forests plays an important role in minimizing the consequences of environmental degradation. Among the active restoration techniques, seedling planting has been the most used, although it still has a high cost, especially to control non-native species. This study aims to experimentally assess the cost-efficiency of three active restoration techniques: (1) simultaneous random planting technique, (2) simultaneous technique using functional groups approach (50% of fast growing and covering species and 50% of late successional species), and (3) non-simultaneous technique (late successional species planted one year after the initial planting) based on structural and functional parameters. The three techniques were implemented with and without direct sowing of green manure between the lines of native species seedlings, aiming to control competitive non-native grasses in the initial phase. The experiment was carried out in Atlantic Forest, Paraguay. Green manure contributed to the increase of forest structure complexity by closing the canopy and controlling competitive grasses. Plots with green manure also had taller seedlings with better quality, such as growth, color and canopy architecture. Besides the ecological benefits, plots with green manure had lower maintenance costs as the fast shading inhibits the growth of competitive grasses, leading to less control interventions. The treatments show sing of difference that can be expressed in later samplings. Overall, the simultaneous treatment using functional groups approach with green manure was the most suitable technique combining the lowest maintenance cost and the lowest invasive grass coverage.
Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program