An experiment compared 2 yr of mowing, mulching, spot treatment with glyphosate, or no maintenance for reed canarygrass control and measured their effect on the establishment of red alder and arroyo willow. At one site, pretransplant control of reed canarygrass was poor, and mulching or no maintenance gave 9 and 14% control, respectively, at 5 mo after planting (MAP), but glyphosate spot treatment and mowing resulted in 89% and 72% control, respectively. The highest leafiness percentage by 24 MAP for arroyo willow and red alder at that site occurred in spot-treated plots (59 and 6%, respectively). Tree protection resulted in 30% more arroyo willow saplings with leaves at 24 MAP, at an average height of 68 cm at 17 MAP. Over the 2-yr trial at that site, mowing required far more time (30.6 min/plot) than either mulching or spot spraying (18.6 and 13.5 min/plot, respectively). At a second site, pretransplant weed control was excellent and maintenance programs controlled reed canarygrass from 88 to 98% by 5 MAP. Tree leafiness of red alder was improved 20% at 24 MAP by tree protection, with protected trees being 107 cm tall compared with 64 cm when left bare. Over the 2-yr trial at that site, mulching required 14.8 min/plot, compared with 12.9 and 7.6 min/plot for mowing and spot treatment. Annual spot treatment of reed canarygrass regrowth with glyphosate may be the most cost-effective means of achieving successful reestablishment of native broadleaf trees in northwestern riparian systems.
Nomenclature: Glyphosate; reed canarygrass, Phalaris arundinacea L.; arroyo willow, Salix lasiolepis Benth.; red alder, Alnus rubra Bong