11-07-13 Restoration Update

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11-07-13 Restoration Update

November 7, 2013

Dan Mummey's Restoration Update describes fall seeding, crested wheatgrass restoration, and leafy spurge control efforts.

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11-05-13 Restoration Update

Last week we sprayed crested wheatgrass restoration areas to control emerging seedlings and deplete the weed seedbank. Poa bulbosa is a salient problem in crested wheatgrass areas. This species senesces early in the spring before crested wheatgrass is most vulnerable to glyphosate. We expect treatment during fall green up will be effective.

Indian Ridge Leafy Spurge Control Our data indicate that spraying imazapic in the fall for two consecutive years is effective for leafy spurge control. Last week we sprayed areas of Indian Ridge to control leafy spurge and cheatgrass. We expect follow-up treatments to reduce leafy spurge cover by over 90%.

The goal of seeding these areas was to fill niches between established natives. The seed mix includes ruderal rapid colonizers, interspace species, and deep-rooted, longlived species.

Seeding North Center-Pivot Seeding of the north center-pivot aims to increase native cover and crowd out weedy species. White campion and kochia are the salient weed problems. The goal of this planting is to increase native cover and competition. The seed mix contained the same species used in the south center-pivot. We increased the proportion of seeds of deep-rooted species relative to the south center-pivot to compete with white campion.

Stockpen and Entrance Sainfoin Stockpen Soils in the area are high in salts and nutrients. Sainfoin establishment from a previous seeding ranges from good to poor. We sowed winter wheat and sainfoin to thicken stands, deplete nutrients, compete with weeds, and increase forage. Entrance Sainfoin Sainfoin establishment was good but browing pressure is high. We sowed winter wheat to compete with weeds and increase forage potential.

Seeding Orchard House Sainfoin Soils in this area are high in nutrients and salts. The goal of seeding is to remove soil nutrients, decrease weeds, and produce forage. Winter wheat was drill-seeded. Winter wheat emerged within a week after seeding. This shallow-rooted species is a better competitor with kochia and winter annuals than sainfoin.

The grass plantation produces hay and seed for road and bank restoration. Bluebunch wheatgrass, slender wheatgrass, Great Basin wildrye, Sandberg bluegrass, and blue grama are growing on the site. Slender wheatgrass is shortlived and expected to decline this year. We seeded this area with Idaho fescue, rough fescue, and bluebunch wheatgrass to increase hay and seed production (red polygon). The green polygon encloses a Great Basin wildrye field. We included American vetch (Vicia americana) in the seed mix for this area. This species is a drought-tolerant, rhizomatous, climbing vine that uses larger plants for support. American vetch is nutritious forage for deer, game birds, and small animals.

Jess and Joal work hard to keep the tractor and drill moving non-stop. Winter is approaching and there is still a lot of seeding to do.

Jess Kindred constructs seed mixtures this year.

Imprinters ensure broadcast seed contacts the soil.