The effectiveness of post-fire soil disturbance in restoring fynbos after alien clearance

  • Published source details Holmes P.M. & Foden W. (2001) The effectiveness of post-fire soil disturbance in restoring fynbos after alien clearance. South African Journal of Botany, 67, 533-539.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Disturb topsoil

Action Link
Shrubland and Heathland Conservation
  1. Disturb topsoil

    A controlled study between 1997 and 1999 in a former pine plantation in Western Cape, South Africa (Holmes & Foden 2001) found that digging over the soil did not increase vegetation cover or the density of native plants after two years. Vegetation cover in plots where soil was dug over (45% cover) was not significantly different from that in areas that were not dug over (53% cover). The same was true for the density of native plants (dug over: 8 plants/m2, not dug over: 7 plants/m2). Forty 4 m2 plots were located in a former pine plantation that had been felled and burned. Twenty plots were dug to a depth of 10–15 cm and the soil turned over. The remaining twenty plots were left undug. A 1 m2 quadrat was placed in each plot and used to estimate vegetation cover for two years.

    (Summarised by: Phil Martin)

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