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Wildflower strip establishment for the delivery of ecosystem services in sweet cherry orchards

Mateos-Fierro, Z., Garratt, M., Fountain, M., Ashbrook, K. and Westbury, D. (2018) Wildflower strip establishment for the delivery of ecosystem services in sweet cherry orchards. In: Ecosystem and Habitat Management: Research, Policy, Practice, 27-28 Mar 2018, Worcester, UK, pp. 179-186.

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The practice of introducing wildflower habitats in cropped areas is an approach that can be used to enhance ecosystem services. The value of such an approach will be affected by the establishment success of the sown species. To investigate this, 12 strips of wildflower habitat were established in alleyways between rows of cherry trees at three sites in the West Midlands (UK). The establishment of plants in sown strips was compared to six untreated alleyways that received conventional management. Eight forb species and one grass species was sown in strips measuring 1 m × 95 m. The establishment success of the sown species and their contribution to the vegetation of the alleyway was determined using percentage cover assessments in replicate quadrats. Dactylis glomerata, Leucanthemum vulgare, Prunella vulgaris and Lotus corniculatus established most consistently and with greater cover values in the sown strips. However, the sown strips were also associated with a greater abundance of unsown species, some of which are classed as weeds.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Department of Sustainable Land Management > Centre for Agri-environmental Research (CAER)
ID Code:83213

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