RESTORATION EVIDENCE

Individual study: Restoring cut-over restiad peat bogs: a factorial experiment of nutrients, seed and cultivation

Published source details

Schipper L.A., Clarkson B.R., Vojvodic-Cukovic M. & Webster R. (2002) Restoring cut-over restiad peat bogs: a factorial experiment of nutrients, seed and cultivation. Ecological Engineering, 19, 29-40


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Add fresh peat to peatland (before planting) Peatland Conservation

A replicated, controlled, before-and-after study in 1998–2000 in a historically mined raised bog in New Zealand (Schipper et al. 2002) reported that amending plots with fine peat allowed greater cover of two sown species to develop, although for one species only in the absence of fertilizer. These results are not based on tests of statistical significance. After 810 days, plots amended with peat before sowing manuka Leptospermum scoparium seeds had 99–100% manuka cover, compared to only 1–68% manuka cover in plots not amended with peat. Plots amended with peat before sowing bamboo rush Sporadanthus ferrugineus seeds developed 0–32% rush cover (0–6% when fertilized; 32% when not fertilized), compared to 0–11% when not amended with peat. In March 1998, forty-eight 25 m2 plots were sown: 24 with manuka and 24 with bamboo rush. For each plant species, eight plots were on a 30 cm layer of fresh fine peat and 16 directly on the existing bare peat (but note this was also tilled). Some plots were fertilized with phosphorous, nitrogen or both. In June 2000, canopy cover was visually estimated in each plot. This study also reported the effect of fertilization in unsown plots (see original paper).

(Summarised by Nigel Taylor)

Add inorganic fertilizer (without planting) Peatland Conservation

A replicated, randomized, paired, controlled, before-and-after study in 1998–2000 in a historically mined raised bog in New Zealand (Schipper et al. 2002) reported that fertilized plots typically contained more plant species and had greater vegetation cover than unfertilized plots. These results are not based on tests of statistical significance. After two years, fertilized plots contained more plant species than unfertilized plots in 11 of 12 comparisons (fertilized: 3–8 species; unfertilized: 2–6 species). Fertilized plots had greater cover of two peatland-characteristic plants: manuka Leptospermum scoparium in 6 of 9 comparisons (for which fertilized: 1–92%; unfertilized: 0–87%) and bamboo rush Sporadanthus ferrugineus in 5 of 9 comparisons (for which fertilized: 2–27%; unfertilized: 1–8%). Total vegetation cover was also higher in fertilized plots in 6 of 9 comparisons. In March 1998, twenty-four plots (each 25 m2) were established, in six blocks, on bare rewetted peat. Six plots (one random plot/block) received each fertilizer treatment: N, P, N+P, or none. None of these plots were sown. In June 2000, canopy cover was estimated for every plant species in each plot.

(Summarised by Nigel Taylor)

Add inorganic fertilizer (before/after planting) Peatland Conservation

A replicated, randomized, paired, controlled, before-and-after study in 1998–2000 in a historically mined raised bog in New Zealand (Schipper et al. 2002) reported that fertilization had mixed effects on cover of two sown plant species after 810 days. These results are not based on tests of statistical significance. Fertilizer that included phosphorous increased cover of manuka Leptospermum scoparium (or did not reduce it from 100%) in all six cases, but fertilizing only with nitrogen reduced cover in all three cases. Fertilization increased cover of bamboo rush Sporadanthus ferrugineus in five of six cases on tilled plots (fertilized: 3–11%; unfertilized 1–2%), but reduced rush cover in all three cases on raised plots (fertilized: 0–6%; unfertilized: 32%). In March 1998, forty-eight 25 m2 plots were established, in six blocks, on bare rewetted peat (some tilled and some raised). All plots were sown with manuka or bamboo rush seeds. For each plant species, six plots (one random plot/block) received each of four fertilizer treatments: N (100 kg/ha), P (50 kg/ha), N+P, or none. In June 2000, canopy cover of every plant species was estimated. This study also reported the effect of fertilization in unsown plots (see intervention Add inorganic fertilizer without planting).

(Summarised by Nigel Taylor)

Introduce seeds of peatland trees/shrubs Peatland Conservation

A replicated, randomized, paired, controlled, before-and-after study in 1998–2000 in a historically mined raised bog in New Zealand (Schipper et al. 2002) reported that plots seeded with manuka Leptospermum scoparium typically contained fewer plant species than unseeded plots after 810 days, but had greater vegetation cover. Most of these results are not based on tests of statistical significance. Seeded plots contained fewer plant species in 9 of 12 comparisons (seeded: 1–6 species; unseeded: 3–8 species). In the other three comparisons, seeded plots contained more species. Accordingly, seeded plots were dominated by dense stands of manuka, with more manuka cover than unseeded plots in 11 of 12 comparisons (seeded: 5–100%; unseeded 0–92%). Total vegetation cover increased in both seeded and unseeded plots, but was significantly higher after 810 days in the former (seeded: 52%; unseeded: 40%). In March 1998, forty-eight plots (25 m2) were established, in six blocks, on bare rewetted peat. Manuka branches were placed on twenty-four plots (four random plots/block). The branches released seeds as they dried. Twenty-four control plots received no seeds/branches. Some plots were fertilized. Canopy cover of every plant species was estimated every 1–3 months until June 2000.

(Summarised by Nigel Taylor)

Introduce seeds of peatland herbs Peatland Conservation

A replicated, randomized, paired, controlled, before-and-after study in 1998–2000 in a historically mined raised bog in New Zealand (Schipper et al. 2002) reported that plots seeded with bamboo rush Sporadanthus ferrugineus typically developed greater rush cover than unseeded plots, but that seeding had no consistent effect on total vegetation cover or species richness. Most of these results are not based on tests of statistical significance. After 810 days, seeded plots had greater bamboo rush cover in 8 of 12 comparisons (for which seeded: 2–32%; unseeded: 0–8% cover) and lower bamboo rush cover in only three comparisons (seeded: 0–3%; unseeded: 4–27%). Total vegetation cover increased similarly in seeded and unseeded plots, with no significant difference after 810 days (seeded: 38%; unseeded: 40%). Seeded plots contained fewer plant species than unseeded plots in 5 of 12 comparisons but more in 4 of 12, with no difference in the other three. In March 1998, forty-eight plots (25 m2) were established, in six blocks of eight, on bare rewetted peat. Hundreds of bamboo rush seeds (1 g) were spread on twenty-four plots (four random plots/block). Twenty-four control plots were not sown. Some plots were fertilized. Canopy cover of every plant species was estimated every 1–3 months until June 2000.

(Summarised by Nigel Taylor)