Ecology of Eucalypts in the Introduced Range

A special issue of Forests (ISSN 1999-4907). This special issue belongs to the section "Forest Ecology and Management".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (13 April 2022) | Viewed by 8242

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Centre for Functional Ecology, University of Coimbra, 3000-456 Coimbra, Portugal
Interests: eucalypt ecology; plant ecology; forestry; invasive species; fire ecology

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Guest Editor
Instituto Politécnico de Coimbra, IPC · Escola Superior Agrária de Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal
Interests: eucalypt ecology; seed ecology; fire ecology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Eucalypts are the most planted broadleaves in the world. They have expanded over all continents, and are currently a major source of income in many countries. Because of the economic benefits that result from eucalypt plantations, there has been a strong increase of the planted area in several world regions in recent decades. However, as fast-growth exotic trees, eucalypts also raise major concerns regarding their impacts on the ecosystem. These impacts are associated with the basic physiological processes of tree growth such as nutrient extraction and water uptake, with consequences of intensive silviculture, for example on soil stability and with the exotic nature of the species, which may cause a disruption in food chains and a consequent loss of biodiversity. Therefore, the ecology of eucalypts in the introduced range deserves the attention of many researchers, making it a field of investigation with great potential. Studies of eucalypt ecology are not necessarily associated with the assessment of negative impacts but are also directed to the improvement of plantation management. Considering the broad range of scientific topics that can be approached under the umbrella of eucalypt ecology, we invite you to gather your research and submit a manuscript to this Special Issue.

Prof. Dr. Joaquim S. Silva
Dr. Ernesto Deus
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • ecological impacts
  • ecological integration
  • eucalypt ecology
  • industrial plantations
  • fast-growth trees
  • intensive silviculture

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

24 pages, 3007 KiB  
Article
Microsite Drivers of Natural Seed Regeneration of Eucalyptus globulus Labill. in Burnt Plantations
by Ana Águas, Hugo Matias, Abel Rodrigues, Tanya Bailey, Joaquim Silva and Francisco Rego
Forests 2022, 13(6), 889; https://doi.org/10.3390/f13060889 - 7 Jun 2022
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Abstract
Fire regimes are changing in several regions of the world. In those regions, some exotic species may be better adapted to new regimes than the native species. This study focused on identifying the microsite characteristics associated with the occurrence of post-fire Eucalyptus globulus [...] Read more.
Fire regimes are changing in several regions of the world. In those regions, some exotic species may be better adapted to new regimes than the native species. This study focused on identifying the microsite characteristics associated with the occurrence of post-fire Eucalyptus globulus regeneration from seeds, outside the species native-range. This information is important in helping to assess the naturalization status of the species, to understand its invasion risk, and to manage wildlings in plantations. To characterize the establishment niche, pairs of microsites (sapling presence/absence) were sampled in four salvage-logged plantations of E. globulus two years after fire (20 pairs/plantation). Microsites of wildlings from three size classes and control microsites were established in one of these plantations (20 quartets) in order to characterize the recruitment niche and to assess ontogenic niche shifts. Two post-fire wildling cohorts were identified. The first emerged just after fire and was abundant. The second emerged after logging and was scarce, probably due to seed limitation. First-cohort wildlings were observed in microsites characterized by a high incidence of fire-related variables (charcoal, ash, increased soil pH and K). The aggregated distribution of these wildlings and their association with other species may indicate the existence of facilitative relationships and/or the exploitation of resource-rich patches. All these factors were relevant for first-cohort persistence and likely also for its establishment and recruitment. Second-cohort wildlings occurred in microsites where salvage-logging disturbance was evident, showing the importance of this disturbance for its emergence. Wildling size diversity was explained by the two recruitment events and by the asymmetrical competition between wildlings and adults. No niche shifts were detected. The high densities of E. globulus wildlings found established in burnt plantations indicated naturalization was in progress. The timing of major recruitment events and the phenology of the species should be considered for monitoring this regeneration and scheduling control interventions, if required. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecology of Eucalypts in the Introduced Range)
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13 pages, 1638 KiB  
Article
Growth Response to Weed Control and Fertilisation in Mid-Rotation Plantations of Eucalyptus pellita in South Sumatra, Indonesia
by Maydra A. Inail, Eko B. Hardiyanto, Daniel S. Mendham and Erlanda Thaher
Forests 2021, 12(12), 1653; https://doi.org/10.3390/f12121653 - 29 Nov 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1766
Abstract
We report on a study of mid-rotation weed control and nutrient management in Eucalyptus pellita plantations in South Sumatra. The study was established at two contrasting sites (representing high and low productivity for the region) that had previously carried three rotations of Acacia [...] Read more.
We report on a study of mid-rotation weed control and nutrient management in Eucalyptus pellita plantations in South Sumatra. The study was established at two contrasting sites (representing high and low productivity for the region) that had previously carried three rotations of Acacia mangium. A combination of weed control, nitrogen (N), and phosphorus (P) fertiliser were applied at 1 and 2 years after establishment. We found that the addition of up to 250 kg N ha−1 applied either at 1 year or 2 years after planting did not improve growth. The application of P (30 kg P ha−1) at age 1 year (in addition to 12 kg P ha−1 applied at planting) did not enhance tree growth either. Keeping the plantation free from weed competition throughout rotation (full weed control) enhanced wood volume up to age 4 years at the high-productivity site, while it improved wood volume up to the end of rotation at age 6 years at the low-productivity site. An additional experiment assessing the effect of weed control in the early phase of plantation establishment revealed that weed competition reduced young tree growth of E. pellita substantially. The results of the studies support the current practice of plantation management of E. pellita in the region that applied only P fertiliser at planting time and that kept trees free from weed competition before canopy closure. Full weed control throughout rotation is worth practicing at lower-productivity sites to achieve maximum productivity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecology of Eucalypts in the Introduced Range)
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18 pages, 2945 KiB  
Article
Origins, Diversity and Naturalization of Eucalyptus globulus (Myrtaceae) in California
by Jennifer M. Yost, Sascha L. Wise, Natalie L. R. Love, Dorothy A. Steane, Rebecca C. Jones, Matt K. Ritter and Brad M. Potts
Forests 2021, 12(8), 1129; https://doi.org/10.3390/f12081129 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3186
Abstract
Eucalyptus globulus is native to southeastern Australia, including the island of Tasmania, but is one of the most widely grown hardwood forestry species in the world and is naturalized on several continents. We studied its naturalization in California, where the species has been [...] Read more.
Eucalyptus globulus is native to southeastern Australia, including the island of Tasmania, but is one of the most widely grown hardwood forestry species in the world and is naturalized on several continents. We studied its naturalization in California, where the species has been planted for over 150 years. We sampled 70 E. globulus trees from 53 locations spanning the entire range of the species in California to quantify the genetic variation present and test whether particular genotypes or native origin affect variation in naturalization among locations. Diversity and native affinities were determined based on six nuclear microsatellite markers and sequences from a highly variable chloroplast DNA region (JLA+). The likely native origin was determined by DNA-based comparison with a range-wide native stand collection. Most of California’s E. globulus originated from eastern Tasmania. Genetic diversity in California is greatly reduced compared with that of the native Australian population, with a single chloroplast haplotype occurring in 66% of the Californian samples. Throughout California, the degree of E. globulus naturalization varies widely but was not associated with genotype or native origin of the trees, arguing that factors such as local climate and disturbance are more important than pre-introduction evolutionary history. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecology of Eucalypts in the Introduced Range)
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