Study

Diversifying agricultural catchments by incorporating tallgrass prairie buffer strips

  • Published source details Hirsh S.M., Mabry C.M., Schulte L.A. & Liebman M.Z. (2013) Diversifying agricultural catchments by incorporating tallgrass prairie buffer strips. Ecological Restoration, 31, 201-211.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Sow seeds in part of site

Action Link
Grassland Conservation
  1. Sow seeds in part of site

    A replicated study in 2006–2011 in nine arable fields in Iowa, USA (Hirsh et al. 2013) found that after sowing seeds in strips within the fields, the total number of plant species and the number and cover of native plant species increased with time. From 1–4 years after strips were seeded, there were increases in the total number of plant species (from 38 to 55 species), and the number (from 25 to 39 species) and cover (from 38 to 69%) of native plant species. The cultivated part of fields with planted strips had similar numbers (11–15 species) and cover (5–7%) of weeds to fields without strips (13 species, 4% cover). Twelve arable fields of 0.5–3.2 ha were studied. In nine fields, one to three strips, comprising 10–20% of the field area, were tilled and seeded with 31 species of locally-collected tallgrass prairie seeds in July 2007, and mowed annually. Three fields were left as entire crop fields cultivated with a corn-soybean rotation, and treated with synthetic fertiliser and glyphosate. Plant cover and species were recorded in twelve 0.5-m2 quadrats within the planted strips and 12 quadrats within the crop area of each field each summer from 2008–2011.

    (Summarised by: Philip Martin)

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