Ground vegetation can be a serious competitor to young seedlings planted for reforestation applications. Besides competing for nutrients, water, space and light during the growing season, competing vegetation can create a thick biomass in the fall which can smother seedlings, inhibit seed germination, and cause tree deformities. As well, when the competing vegetation dies back, thus providing a nutritious substrate for fungi and pest insects, it can effectively bury the young seedlings beneath it, a phenomenon known as snow-press, delaying spring soil thaw and keeping soils cold and wet, unfavourable conditions for the root system of young seedlings planted.
In areas described above, mortality of tree seedlings planted has increased dramatically.
Though sites with thick mass of vegetation can be converted to stands of young trees by mechanical site preparation, broadcast burning and herbicide applications, all the methods have however their limitations.
An alternative method to protect newly planted young tree seedlings is the application of TASSUCOL™ a non-toxic, environmental safe and bio-degradable mulch mat.
The mulch mats are installed around the base of the seedling and protect the seedling against grass and other competing vegetation directly surrounding planted seedlings and reduce competition for root space. By reducing competing ground vegetation the protective mulch mats improve the growth and survival conditions of the seedling in terms of temperature (thermal balance), water and nutrients and help create an open space around the seedling without Chemical Site Preparation.
The mulch mats encourage the seedlings to grow into tall and healthy trees and start to bio-degrade into the soil in approx. 2 - 4 years depending on the area they are being installed.
Foresters and Forest Research Institutes with a common goal for environmental awareness (advanced “green ideology”) became involved in the early 1990’s to help to develop TASSUCOL™ a mulch mat made of non-toxic, environmental safe, bio-degradable recycled and de-inked plant fibre, designed to be used as a protective mulch mat to protect tree seedlings for the decisive first years in Reforestation, Environmental, Conservation, Urban as well as Agro-Forestry and Greening applications.
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