Use weed mats to protect planted trees
Overall effectiveness category Unknown effectiveness (limited evidence)
Number of studies: 1
Background information and definitions
Weed mats can be used to eliminate competing understory vegetation and help the establishment of planted trees.
Supporting evidence from individual studies
A replicated, controlled study in 1999-2002 in a degraded tropical forest in Hong Kong (Lai & Wong 2005) found no effect of using weed mats on thick-leaved oak Cyclobalanopsis edithae seedling height. Seedling height was similar in control and weed mat treatments after 37 months (control: 58; weed mats: 57 cm) and after 44 months (control: 83; weed mats: 85 cm). Fifteen oak seedlings were planted in each of four replicates (rows) of each control (no treatment after planting) and weed mats (0.4 × 0.4 m hessian cloth around each seeding) treatments. Seedlings were planted in June 1999 and observed for approximately 3.5 years.Study and other actions tested