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Anthropogenic disturbances and restoration


Novel, reconstructed or degraded ecosystems are increasing in prevalence worldwide. How we manage and restore these ecosystems to be self-sustainable and resilient is a pressing issue. Toward this goal, we study ecological principles underlying forest establishment on reclaimed landscapes previously mined for oil sands. Specifically, we investigate root structure and function of herbaceous plants, shrubs and trees establishing on reclaimed areas. These reconstructed ecosystems are novel in the sense there are no natural analogues.

Relevant publications

Gaster J, Karst J, Landhäusser SM. 2015. The role of seedling nutrient status on development of ectomycorrhizal fungal communities in two soil types following surface mining disturbance. Pedobiologia 58: 129-135

Hankin S, Karst J, Landhäusser SM. 2015. Influence of tree species and salvaged soils on the recovery of ectomycorrhizal fungi in upland boreal forest restoration after surface mining. Botany 93: 267-277

Schott K, Karst J, Landhäusser SM. 2014. The role of microsite conditions in restoring trembling aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) from seed. Restoration Ecology 22: 292-295