Silvicultural reclamation of lands

Silvicultural reclamation consists in the implementation of land reclamation measures that would provide radical improvement of lands by using soil-conserving, water controlling and other features of protective forest planting. This form of silvicultural reclamation includes the following types of land reclamation: soil-saving reclamation implies protection of lands against erosion through afforestation on ravines, gullies, sands, river banks, and other areas; field-protecting reclamation means protection of lands from the effects of adverse phenomena of natural and anthropogenic nature by protective forest planting at the boundaries of agricultural lands; grassland-protecting reclamation means prevention of degradation of grazing lands by protective forest planting. A particular type of silvicultural reclamation is bio-drainage.

Silvicultural reclamation implies a package of reclamation measures that ensure radical improvement of lands by using soil-conserving, water controlling and other features of protective forest planting.

Silvicultural reclamation plays an essential role in desertification control. The following approaches are used at silvicultural reclamation: steppe foresting, growing of field-protecting and soil-protecting forest shelter belts, sand fixation (including by using chemical substances), improvement of grasslands, afforestation of highly degraded lands.

Silvicultural reclamation of steppe and desert areas, especially of secondary anthropogenic nature gives an opposite example (taking into account of the second effect). Reforestation leads to significant improvement of water regime, rise of air humidity, decrease in wind speed and other positive phenomena that improve land productivity.

Among all types of land reclamation, silvicultural reclamation is the most adapted to the natural conditions of ecosystems. It promotes improvement of microclimate and snow distribution, overcoming of erosion and deflation, improvement of the water regime of landscapes, etc. The techniques of creation of forest protection for different purposes, from noise-protection to erosion-preventing measures, are well-known. One of the key conditions providing high effectiveness of forest reclamation is creation of multistoried lignosa, when debris layer on the soil conforms to the optimal conditions for development of pedofauna and other species of fauna. Such conditions form in tree plantings if they have sufficient sizes. In addition, multistoried tree and bush vegetation contributes to attenuation of other effects of transformation and rehabilitation of the enumerated ecosystem components being transformed.

Silvicultural reclamation is especially important in the package of measures for ablation and soil eolation control because of its cheapness and environmental harmlessness. Basic forest reclamation soil-saving measures are represented by: creation of water-control forest belts in forest-poor areas; creation of water-protection tree plantings around ponds and water bodies; continuous soil-saving forest plantations on highly eroded steep-side and waste lands that are unfit for agricultural use.