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Hydrobiologia

, Volume 340, Issue 1–3, pp 277–284 | Cite as

Long-term effects of sheep grazing on giant hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum)

  • Ulla Vogt Andersen
  • Birgitte Calov
Control of Freshwater and Riparian Vegetation Biological and Biomanipulative Approaches

Abstract

A meadow dominated by a mature, flowering stand of Giant Hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum) was grazed by sheep in the years 1987–1993. After two years Giant Hogweed cover was much reduced and a typical meadow vegetation was established. By 1993 Giant Hogweed was completely eliminated though total species diversity was much reduced. Soil sampled from the grazed area developed no Giant Hogweed seedlings in a germination test and contained no viable seeds of the species. In contrast soil from adjacent stands produced numerous seedlings with a peak emergence from samples taken after the winter. Seeds collected in October showed a viability in tetrazolium test of 88%. Germination averaged 22% after storage at room temperature and 25% following three weeks treatment at −18°C. It was concluded that the persistence of Giant Hogweed seeds in Danish meadow soils is less than seven years.

Key words

Heracleum mantegazzianum seed bank germination grazing meadow vegetation biodiversity 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ulla Vogt Andersen
    • 1
  • Birgitte Calov
    • 2
  1. 1.Botanical SectionRoyal Veterinary and Agricultural UniversityFrederiksberg CDenmark
  2. 2.Danish Forest and Landscape Research InstituteHoersholmDenmark

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