THE EFFECTS OF FLOODING ON THE GROWTH OF BALD CYPRESS IN FRESHWATER RESTORED WETLANDS.
Understanding the changes happening in forested coastal wetlands is critical to planning successful wetland restoration projects. Bald cypresses (Taxodium distichum) are commonly planted in restored wetlands in this region because they are native to eastern NC, play a major role in the ecology of wetlands, and are commercially viable to propagate. The question remains whether this species will be resilient to the effects of increased flooding due to sea level rise. This study examined the effects of water level on the growth of bald cypress trees. We compared the diameter at breast height (DBH) of 258 bald cypress trees in 2017 to measurements collected in 2012 in a restored wetland. Sampling plots were grouped in three classes: “low” (<10 cm), “intermediate” (10-30 cm) and “high” (>30cm), according to their water depth. Analysis of variance showed no significant differences in tree growth between water level classes. Using linear regression, water levels did however have a negative effect on the DBH of bald cypress trees in the studied region. This suggests that an increase in water levels have a detrimental effect on the growth of bald cypress trees.
Eleazer Reyna Ocampo (Primary Presenter/Author), North Carolina State University, firstname.lastname@example.org;
Matthew Stillwagon (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), North Carolina State University, email@example.com;
Marcelo Ardon (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), North Carolina State University, firstname.lastname@example.org;