The decline of Taxodium distichum, bald cypress, forests along the Gulf Coast of North America is partly due to elevation loss and subsequent flooding. In many coastal wetlands, a common approach for coastal restoration is to rebuild elevation through the application of dredge spoil, but this technique has not been used widely in coastal forests due to concerns of negatively impacting trees. This experiment explored health responses of Nyssa aquatica, water tupelo, and T. distichum saplings to applications of low salinity dredge spoil in a greenhouse setting. Compared to controls, saplings of T. distichum grown in 7 and 15 cm sediment depths had higher final heights, and stem and total biomass while N. aquatica did not respond. Because saplings of these species were not negatively impacted by dredge spoil application in this greenhouse study, field trials using shallow sediment applications might be conducted with careful monitoring of ecosystem responses, e.g., seed bank expression, seedling regeneration, root and canopy production. Dredge spoil application has the potential to improve the ecosystem health of sinking swamp forests by raising their elevation.
|Title||Data for sediment application to cypress and tupelo seedlings in greenhouse study - 2016|
|Authors||Isabel Grandy, Linda Messina, Evelyn R. Anemaet, Beth A. Middleton|
|Product Type||Data Release|
|Record Source||USGS Digital Object Identifier Catalog|
|USGS Organization||Wetland and Aquatic Research Center|