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13 May 2019 Survivability of Wyoming Big Sagebrush Transplants
Charlie D. Clements, Daniel N. Harmon
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  • Wyoming big sagebrush is a dominant shrub species on millions of acres of rangelands throughout the Intermountain West and plays a critical role in the health and diversity of many wildlife species.

  • Restoration practices to re-establish Wyoming big sagebrush on degraded habitats have largely been met with submarginal success, yet the need to restore or rehabilitate Wyoming big sagebrush has become increasingly important due to extensive losses of big sagebrush habitats, fragmentation, and sensitive sagebrush obligate species.

  • Lack of success from seeding rangelands either by ground application or aerially has prompted some resource managers to look more closely at transplantng methodologies. Transplanting of Wyoming big sagebrush is largely done using cone-size containers or bare-stock plants and is recommended to be conducted in spring. This study was initiated in 2012 to test fall versus spring transplanting.

  • Fall transplanting success averaged 65% with a range of 41% to 82%, while spring transplant success averaged 41% with a range of 13% to 65%.

  • The cold desert of the Great Basin receives the majority of its precipitation during winter months, therefore providing a more reliable source of available precipitation for newly transplanted Wyoming big sagebrush seedlings. A significant part of increasing big sagebrush transplanting success is the combination of increased container size and moving the timing of transplanting from spring to fall due to an increase in favorable and reliable precipitation.

© 2019 The Society for Range Management.
Charlie D. Clements and Daniel N. Harmon "Survivability of Wyoming Big Sagebrush Transplants," Rangelands 41(2), 88-93, (13 May 2019).
Published: 13 May 2019
habitat improvement
shrub restoration
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