Experimental biodiversity enrichment in an oil-palm plantation

Anne Gérard focuses on the establishment and monitoring of the enrichment planting experiment, in which tree species richness will be varied systematically in order to study the effects on biodiversity and associated ecosystem services.

In this first phase of the experiment, she will concentrate on the determinants of growth and survival in the planted trees, natural succession and seed rain. In this context, she is interested to find out how growth dynamics and individual tree performance differ in different species combinations and under different site conditions (soil, shelter by oil palms) as a silvicultural basis for ecosystem restoration in oil palm plantations.

Furthermore, she will analyze the competition between trees and oil palms in oil palm based agroforestry systems. In order to successfully implement ecologically sustainable and economically viable management concepts, knowledge about the effects of plant competition on growth and yield is essential.