Provenances vs. microhabitat influence on field performance of Quercus robur seedlings

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Ivona Kerkez Jankovic
Mirjana Šijačić-Nikolić
https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4811-3616
Marina Nonić

Abstract

Provenance trials, as the subject of continuous analyses, provide empirical information about the plasticity of tree species. Changing climate and environmental conditions likely favor genotypes with high levels of plasticity. Finding the suitable provenance for the reintroduction of pedunculate oak to habitats that are threatened and where this species no longer exists provides important information for the targeted use of the available gene pool. The dominant ecological factors in the development of pedunculate oak forests are groundwater level and changes in the hydrological regime of habitats. In this study, we established nursery and field provenance trials to test two pedunculate oak seed provenances from different hydrological conditions to investigate the influence of seedlings' provenance and field microhabitat on growth parameters and survival. In the nursery trial, the height and ground level diameter were measured. After three years in the pilot object, the height and diameter were analyzed again, as well as the survival. To determine the microhabitat influence planting area was divided in two ways: three repetitions and two planting blocks. In this study, significant differences in analyzed growth parameters between the chosen provenances were obtained at the end of the first vegetation period. In later ontogenetic phases influence of the provenance is missing. As the difference between provenances disappears, the influence of microhabitat occurs (significant differences between repetition or planting blocks). After the second year of development, no significant difference was observed between the two provenances of different hydrological regimes, but there are significant differences between the microhabitats in the afforested area (established pilot object).

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Kerkez Jankovic, Ivona, Mirjana Šijačić-Nikolić, and Marina Nonić. “Provenances Vs. Microhabitat Influence on Field Performance of Quercus Robur Seedlings ”. REFORESTA, no. 14 (December 29, 2022): 19-35. Accessed February 4, 2023. https://journal.reforestationchallenges.org/index.php/REFOR/article/view/168.
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