Eradication techniques for invasive Berberis aquifolium in coastal dunes (Belgium)

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    Non-native Berberis aquifolium is notoriously invasive in Belgian coastal dunes. With
    its strong clonal growth through suckers, this evergreen shrub outcompetes native
    species and affects dune succession. To prevent further secondary spread and
    mitigate its impact, there was an urgent need for knowledge on the effectiveness of
    control measures, both at the level of individual plants as on habitat level. Here, we
    report on two removal experiments. First, small Berberis clones were subjected to one
    of four treatments (manual uprooting, foliar herbicide application, stem cutting followed
    by herbicide or salt application), with regrowth being monitored up to one year after
    treatment. Plants proved most susceptible to foliar herbicide application (5%
    glyphosate solution), resulting in 77% of the clones apparently killed. Second,
    mechanical removal using a heavy excavator was applied in a highly infested area
    (350 m², with nearly 100% Berberis cover) and accompanied by manual removal of
    smaller rhizome/stolon fragments. The action was documented in detail and the
    outcome monitored in terms of regrowth from different depths. The rooting system
    appeared to be relatively shallow (30-40 cm). The limited regrowth from superficially
    buried rhizome fragments could easily be pulled out. We present some guidelines that
    may serve as a starting base for future control, and may become further refined as
    experience builds up.
    Original languageEnglish
    Number of pages1
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

    Thematic list

    • Management
    • Invasive species (nature management)
    • Invasive species (fauna management)
    • Invasive species (management)
    • Invasive species (species diversity)
    • Beaches and dunes
    • Flora

    EWI Biomedical sciences

    • B003-ecology
    • B004-botany

    Taxonomic list

    • plants (Plantae)

    Free keywords

    • invasive species
    • exoten
    • invasieve soorten

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