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Planting Plans for Stream Restoration

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  032033,  2003 ASAE Annual Meeting . (doi: 10.13031/2013.13757) @2003
Authors:   Rosanna S. Brown
Keywords:   Stream restoration, planting plan, riparian buffer, vegetation, plants

The restoration of streambank vegetation is essential for improving a range of riparian functions, wildlife and aquatic habitats. Such efforts require that the dynamic processes of establishment, growth, and succession of riparian plant communities be allowed to occur. Relatively speaking, stream restoration design is still in its infancy compared to other engineering applications. This is due to the untold challenges that surface when a designer is faced with the numerous dynamic conditions found in stream restoration work. One of the fundamental shortcomings of stream stabilization projects is a lack of understanding of plant materials and specific functions they perform. There appears to be a disconnect between the research being conducted on vegetation-soil-water relationships and what the practitioners in the field need to design, implement and manage effective designs. Rather than deciding to simply plant willows, it is imperative that design teams dedicate the same academic disciplinary approach to plant materials selection, design criteria, planting plan, specifications and standards as they do other project elements.

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