Salt Cedar (Tamarix spp) Essay

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Introduction In the past 200 years salt cedar (Tamarix spp.) have been encroaching in western waterways. Salt cedar was introduced accidentally as an ornamental that escaped control, and purposefully as a bank stabilizer (Sher, Marshall, & Taylor, 2002). The species in the Tamarix genus where thought to be very useful until it was observed that they displaced native genus’s Salix (willow) and Populous (aspen, and popular) trees. It is now considered a weed in 7 western state (Zouhar, 2003). Effects of Tamarix presence and invasion have been sensed in terms of native tree species displacement, loss of biodiversity, water loss, and salt accumulation. Not only is there effect on abiotic factors but on native animal species, such as the …show more content…
In the Green River of Utah it was found that propagation by seedlings was higher when there was a flood one year, followed by a drought like conditions, followed by another flood year (Birken & Cooper, 2006). Native taxa such as Populus and Salix do not proliferate as well in such conditions. Reasons for its success are due to its drought tolerance being greater than that of the native trees. A drought year gives the seedlings a great opportunity to establish without being scoured away by rushing water and the seedlings are not exposes an excess of water. Its seeds cannot survive under constant flooding.
Tamarix is well adapted for arid riparian areas with constant stream flow. Tamarix is the phreatophyte—meaning that it likes to maintain its water supply from water that is at or near the soil surface. Given its phreatophytic growth habit, tamarix likes to establish its roots in area that are constantly inundated by moving water Tamarix is wonderful for site stability for this very reason (Birken & Cooper, 2006).
Under the canopy of full grown salt cedar trees the vegetation is sparse, and the soil salt content in higher then under native trees (Ohrtman, 2012). Utilization of rivers and lakes is lower when salt cedar is the dominating vegetation. Animals in every order of large vertebrate is less likely to be hound in under salt cedar dominance then under native flora deceasing over all biodiversity (Dudley & De Loach, 2004). There is some

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