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Similarity between the soil seed bank and the standing vegetation in the Strandveld Succulent Karoo, South Africa



Similarity between the soil seed bank and the standing vegetation in the Strandveld Succulent Karoo, South Africa



Land Degradation & Development 14(6): 527-540, November-December



The similarity in species composition and abundance between the soil seed bank and its associated vegetation was studied in six vegetation units of the Strandveld Succulent Karoo, South Africa. A total of 103 taxa were recorded in the vegetation, of which 34 taxa were also present in the seed bank. Five taxa were unique to the soil seed bank. In general, the taxa most abundant in the vegetation were also recorded in the seed bank and vice versa. Mean seed bank density varied between different plant types. Perennial taxa were most abundant in the vegetation, while annual taxa were most abundant in the seed bank. Annual taxa (excluding grasses) yielded the highest similarity between vegetation and seed bank (67.9 per cent), while that of perennial (excluding grasses) and grass taxa were 34.2 per cent and 40.0 per cent respectively. An overall similarity of 47.0 per cent between the seed bank and its associated vegetation was obtained for this part of the Strandveld Succulent Karoo. The seed bank of the study site will be a good source of future annual vegetation, but not of perennial vegetation. Topsoil replacement, sowing and transplanting of selected species will be essential for the success of post-mining revegetation efforts following complete destruction of the existing vegetation. Annual species may be recruited from the soil stored seed bank, while many perennial species will have to be reintroduced by means of sowing and/or transplanting.

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Accession: 004318261

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

DOI: 10.1002/ldr.582


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