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Salt tolerance screening of selected Australian woody species — a review

Niknam, S.R. and McComb, J. (2000) Salt tolerance screening of selected Australian woody species — a review. Forest Ecology and Management, 139 (1-3). pp. 1-19.

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This review critically evaluates the strategies for selection of salt tolerant woody Australian species for land reclamation. There is evidence that in selecting material to screen, provenances from saline areas will show higher levels of salt tolerance than those from non-saline areas. However, there are sufficient numbers of exceptions to justify inclusion in trials of some material from non-saline areas. Because of the complexity and long term nature of field trials, large numbers of species and provenances have been screened as juvenile plants (up to 1 year old) in the glasshouse. For very few of these, has the match between performance in glasshouse and field been checked. In Eucalyptus, the genus for which most species have been screened, the assessment of salinity tolerance is the same in the field and glasshouse for 20 species, three appear more tolerant in the field than the glasshouse and five are less tolerant in the field than would be expected from glasshouse results. For 13 eucalypt species there are conflicting results between different glasshouse and/or field trials. A similar picture emerges for Melaleuca, Acacia and Casuarina though in these genera fewer species have been tested in both glasshouse and field. Glasshouse trials have a role where specific information is needed from juvenile plants such as the ability of a species to exclude salt from the leaves, or performance under controlled conditions of waterlogging or saline waterlogging. However, as the objective of most experiments is to identify superior salt tolerant lines for the field, despite the complexity and cost, well designed and monitored field trials are the ultimate test. Researchers are also encouraged to consider inclusion of appropriate standard lines of Eucalyptus camaldulensis and E. occidentalis to enable better comparisons between trials.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Biological Sciences and Biotechnology
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Copyright: © 2000 Elsevier Science B.V.
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