Determining the causal factors affecting the survival of young plantations in Udayapur, Nepal




Abstract. Ayer S, Bhandari Y, Gautam A, Gautam J. 2023. Determining the causal factors affecting the survival of young plantations in Udayapur, Nepal. Asian J For 7: 93-99. The plantation is a form of land management and rehabilitation to reverse land degradation, and the survival rate of seedlings is a critical factor for a successful plantation. This study aimed to investigate the survival rate of seedlings in ten plantation sites in Udayapur District, Nepal and identify the major causes of seedling mortality and stunted growth. Planting was done in April/May of 2020 and the total count of the seedlings was done in January/February 2021. Square plots of 5m x 5m each were used for inventory using systematic random sampling with 0.1% sampling intensity. Direct field observation and interviews with officials, heralu, and community forest users were conducted to identify reasons behind seedlings' mortality and stunted growth. The results showed that the overall survival rate of seedlings in the study site was 36.02%. However, site-wise survival rates varied significantly, with Paluwatar CF having the highest survival rate of 87.73% and Sunkoshi CF having the lowest survival rate of 10.76%. Species-wise survival rates also varied, with Syzygium cumini having the highest survival rate of 80% and Cassia siamea having the lowest survival rate of 5.55%. The major causes of seedling mortality were found to be soil composition and quality (38%), drought (27%), and plant diseases (12%). In addition, carelessness during handling, transportation, and after plantation (21%) were identified as the major causes of stunted growth. This study provides valuable insights into the factors affecting seedling survival and growth in a plantation site, which can be used to guide future plantation efforts. However, further research is needed to understand the complex interactions between different factors better and develop effective strategies for improving seedling survival and growth.



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