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Effect of environmental gradients on the natural regeneration of mixed coniferous forest, Swat, Pakistan

Majid Ullah, Saeed Gulzar, Mohammad Irfan Ashraf and Rahmatullah Qureshi

Forests are the natural resources which produce timber, fuel wood, habitats for wildlife, conserve water and reduce soil erosion. The natural forests of Pakistan are declining at an alarming rate due to anthropogenic pressure and mismanagement. In order to check the status of natural regeneration, this study was conducted in district Swat of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. A total number of 100 plots, measuring 20X20 meter quadrat were undertaken at different ecological zones in mixed coniferous forest of Swat, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan during 2016-2018. In each plot, the number of seedlings was counted and each seedling was tagged. Seedling percentage was calculated along the altitudinal gradient. The regeneration percentage of Pinus roxburghii, Cedrus deodara and Picea smithiana decreased with the increase of elevation. Among the environmental factors, aspect was positively correlated to the natural regeneration. The increase in slopes resulted in slight increase in the natural regeneration percentage of Pinus wallichiana, Picea smithiana and Abies pindrow. Overall, the percentage of natural regeneration of all the species was higher on the northern aspect. Regeneration assessment is a key to the forest health. This study shall contribute to planning, conserving and decision making in natural forest management and development programs

To Cite this article: Ullah, M., S. Gulzar, M.I. Ashraf and R. Qureshi. 2023. Effect of environmental gradients on the natural regeneration of mixed coniferous forest, Swat, Pakistan. Pak. J. Bot., 55(4): DOI:  

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