Bruce A. Roundy
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Sagebrush Steppe Restoration Situations and Techniques
Bruce A. Roundy, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT
Sagebrush steppe communities are at risk due to increased wildfire and weed dominance, as well as sagebrush decadence and mortality. Post-fire rehabilitation techniques have been most successful when introduced or native grasses have been sown using methods such as drilling or broadcasting and chaining to cover seed. Mechanical methods to renovate decadent stands of sagebrush in conjunction with seeding may help diversify these communities, but there appears to be an inverse relationship between sagebrush mortality from mechanical treatments and herbaceous species seeding success. Increasing native plant diversity after mechanically and chemically treating crested wheatgrass stands is being studied on a number of sites. Use of fire, chemical, and mechanical treatments to restore big sagebrush communities across a range of residual native perennial understory and pinyon-juniper overstory densities is being tested across the Great Basin.