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The essential role of tree-fern trunks in the regeneration of Weinmannia tinctoria in rain forest on Réunion, Mascarene Archipelago

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 July 2007

Géraldine Derroire
Affiliation:
CIRAD, UMR 53, 7 chemin de l'IRAT, 97410 Saint-Pierre, Réunion, France ENGREF, 14 rue Girardet, CS 14216, 54042 Nancy Cedex, France
Laurent Schmitt
Affiliation:
CIRAD, UMR 53, 7 chemin de l'IRAT, 97410 Saint-Pierre, Réunion, France
Jean-Noël Rivière
Affiliation:
CIRAD, UMR 53, 7 chemin de l'IRAT, 97410 Saint-Pierre, Réunion, France
Jean-Michel Sarrailh
Affiliation:
ENGREF, 14 rue Girardet, CS 14216, 54042 Nancy Cedex, France
Jacques Tassin
Affiliation:
CIRAD, UPR 37, Campus International de Baillarguet, TA 10/D, 34398 Montpellier Cedex 5, France

Abstract

The regeneration processes and the spatial distribution of the shade-intolerant Weinmannia tinctoria seedlings in the south of Réunion were investigated, with a special focus on the role of tree-ferns in seedling establishment. Mature individuals and seedling patches of Weinmannia tinctoria, and also tree-ferns, were mapped on two 1-ha rain-forest plots. Weinmannia tinctoria has hemi-epiphytic behaviour since seedlings were generally located on plant supports (99.6%). Regeneration was better on a support than on the ground, and germination tests showed that seeds were light-stimulated. Tall tree-ferns (Cyathea spp.) were suitable supports. Cyathea glauca and C. excelsa were more suitable supports than C. borbonica. Weinmannia tinctoria establishment complies with the facilitation model of succession and is dependent on tree-ferns.

La régénération et la distribution spatiale des semis de Weinmannia tinctoria, espèce intolérante à l'ombre, ont été étudiées dans le sud de La Réunion. Nous nous sommes intéressés au rôle des fougères arborescentes sur l'émergence de plantules. Les adultes matures et les taches de semis (ensembles de plusieurs plantules) de Weinmannia tinctoria, de même que les fougères arborescentes, ont été cartographiés sur deux parcelles de 1 ha en forêt humide. Weinmannia tinctoria a un comportement hémi-épiphyte car les semis se situaient principalement sur des supports (99,6%). La régénération se révélait meilleure sur les supports qu'au sol, et les tests de germination ont montré que les semences germaient mieux à la lumière. Les grandes fougères arborescentes (Cyathea spp.) constituaient des supports privilégiés. Cyathea glauca et Cyathea excelsa représentaient des supports plus favorables que Cyathea borbonica. W. tinctoria apparaît donc comme une espèce qui s'installe principalement en utilisant le modèle de facilitation et qui dépend de la présence de fougères arborescentes.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
2007 Cambridge University Press

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