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Forests 2018, 9(8), 493; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9080493

Spatio-Temporal Dynamic Architecture of Living Brush Mattress: Root System and Soil Shear Strength in Riverbanks

1
School of Soil and Water Conservation, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing 100083, China
2
Hubei Key Laboratory of Ecological Restoration of Rivers and Lakes and Algae Use, Hubei University of Technology, Wuhan 430068, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 June 2018 / Revised: 28 July 2018 / Accepted: 8 August 2018 / Published: 13 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Afforestation and Reforestation: Drivers, Dynamics, and Impacts)
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Abstract

As a basal measure of soil bioengineering, the living brush mattress has been widely applied in riparian ecological protection forest construction. The living brush mattress shows favorable protective effects on riverbanks. However, there are few reports on the root structure and the soil strengthening benefit of the living brush mattress. The present work reports a series of experiments on root morphology and soil shear strength enhancement at the temporal and spatial scales. The object of the study is 24 living brush mattress trees constructed with Salix alba L. ‘Tristis’ (LBS hereafter). Traditional root morphology and mechanical measurement methods were used to collect the parameters. The results showed that the root systems of LBS had the characteristics of symmetry and upslope growth. The roots were mainly distributed in a cylindrical region of the soil (radius × thickness: 0.4 m × 0.5 m) and their biomass increased with different growth rates for the periods from 1 to 5 and from 5 to 7 years. Both age and slope position were factors that influence root growth. The root diameter falls within 0–5 mm, has a significant effect on the soil shear strength and provides a conical-shape potentiation zone to ensure the efficient protection of a riverbank. The results of this study demonstrate that LBS is an efficient and feasible engineering measure in the field of riverbank protection. View Full-Text
Keywords: living brush mattress; root distribution; shear strength; spatio-temporal scales; soil bioengineering; riverbank living brush mattress; root distribution; shear strength; spatio-temporal scales; soil bioengineering; riverbank
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Zhang, D.; Cheng, J.; Liu, Y.; Zhang, H.; Ma, L.; Mei, X.; Sun, Y. Spatio-Temporal Dynamic Architecture of Living Brush Mattress: Root System and Soil Shear Strength in Riverbanks. Forests 2018, 9, 493.

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