Annals of Forest Science

, Volume 70, Issue 1, pp 21–30

Effects of nurse shrubs and tree shelters on the survival and growth of two Austrocedrus chilensis seedling types in a forest restoration trial in semiarid Patagonia, Argentina

  • María Florencia Urretavizcaya
  • Guillermo E. Defossé
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s13595-012-0234-z

Cite this article as:
Urretavizcaya, M.F. & Defossé, G.E. Annals of Forest Science (2013) 70: 21. doi:10.1007/s13595-012-0234-z


• Context

Harsh environmental conditions in xeric sites of Andean Patagonia, affect the emergence, survival, and growth of either naturally grown or planted Austrocedrus seedlings.

• Aims

We evaluated the effects of nurse shrubs and tree shelters on the survival and growth of Austrocedrus seedlings as compared to unprotected (control) areas and how differently produced seedling types perform under these treatments.

• Methods

In 2006, two Austrocedrus seedling types (1 + 2 = S1 and Plug 2 + 1 = S2) were planted under shrub cover (C1), tree shelter (C2), and control (C3). Soil surface temperature and moisture were measured for each treatment during the first growing season, while seedling survival and height were recorded during 5 years.

• Results

Survival was not affected by cover type the first year, but it was affected by seedling type (S1 > S2). After an extremely dry second growing season, seedling survival significantly decreased in relation to either cover or seedling type. Five years after plantation, survival was significantly higher for C1 and C2 (40–60 %) as compared to C3-S2 (18 %). Seedling height was significantly affected by cover, but not by seedling type.

• Conclusions

The use of nurse shrubs and/or tree shelters is useful in Austrocedrus seedling restoration trials. Seedling morphology appears as relevant for survival in semiarid environments.


Temperate forests Xeric site Nurse plants Facilitation Seedling morphology Seedling quality 

Supplementary material

13595_2012_234_Fig5_ESM.jpg (2 mb)
Online Resource 1

Austrocedrus seedling growing in a nurse shrub treatment in 2011, 5 years after plantation (JPEG 2042 kb)

13595_2012_234_Fig6_ESM.jpg (2.1 mb)
Online Resource 2

Austrocedrus seedling growing in a tree shelter treatment in 2011, 5 years after plantation (JPEG 2117 kb)

13595_2012_234_Fig7_ESM.jpg (2.9 mb)
Online Resource 3

Austrocedrus seedling growing in a control treatment in 2011, 5 years after plantation (JPEG 3013 kb)

Copyright information

© INRA / Springer-Verlag France 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • María Florencia Urretavizcaya
    • 1
  • Guillermo E. Defossé
    • 1
  1. 1.Área de Conservación y Manejo de Bosques, Centro de Investigación y Extensión Forestal Andino Patagónico (CIEFAPCONICET) and Universidad Nacional de la PatagoniaEsquelArgentina

Personalised recommendations