Study

A review of tree planting for dryland salinity control in Australia

Summary

Man-induced salinisation is a major form of land and water degradation in the drylands of southern Australia, particularly in Western Australia, South Australia and Victoria, and has occurred as a result of native vegetation clearance for conversion to agricultural land. Tree planting, in combination with other vegetation treatments, is regarded as a leading solution to salinity reversal. This paper reviews various aspects of tree planting programmes in the affected regions.

Six State and general scientific papers were reviewed, the aim being to draw together experiences and views upon successes, failures and constraints of tree planting programmes.

Small test sites, demonstrations and farmer plantings are abundant in some areas. Research shows that planting trees can significantly lower groundwater tables, and thereby reverse the causal process of salinisation. Substantial progress has been made towards ascertaining which tree species to grow, how to plant, where to plant, at what density and configuration to plant, and how much area to plant. The economic potential for commercial tree planting has given impetus to partial reforestation in higher rainfall (> 600 mm/yr) areas. Major tree planting programmes, however, are struggling at an early stage.

The main constraints identified are primarily related to cost and uncertainty of success. Tree planting should be progressively tested and researched, ensuring availability of results so that others can gain knowledge of best practice, and so that techniques can be refined accordingly.


Note: If using or referring to this published study, please read and quote the original paper, this can be viewed at:

http://www.springerlink.com/content/gg27160w79v71038/fulltext.pdf

 

Output references

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, terrestrial mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read the latest volume: Volume 18

Go to the CE Journal

Discover more on our blog

Our blog contains the latest news and updates from the Conservation Evidence team, the Conservation Evidence Journal, and our global partners in evidence-based conservation.


Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape Programme Red List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Bern wood Supporting Conservation Leaders National Biodiversity Network Sustainability Dashboard Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx British trust for ornithology Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Butterfly Conservation People trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust