Assessment Of Soil Seedbank Composition Of Woody Species In Moraghat Forest, Jalpaiguri, India

Research Article
Anup Kumar Sarkar
Soil, Seed bank, Territorial forest, Quadrate, Woody species, Viable eed, Regeneration.

The soil seed bank plays an important role in the natural environment of many forest ecosystems, functioning as natural seed reserves for future regeneration of many plant species. Seed mortality in soil is one of the key factors for the persistence and density fluctuations of plant populations. In restoring forests, the first step is to quantify the actual and potential levels of natural regeneration ability of plant by examining the role of soil seed banks as propagule donors. In present work, soil seed bank assessment of woody plant species was made in Moraghat forests so as to evaluate composition and estimate their regeneration status. A total of 32 quadrates were established in selected four sites of the forest. The quadrates (20m x 20m) were laid along line transects. Composition and status were determined by direct count. Results showed the presence of seeds of 14 plant species in the soil. Schima wallichii (DC.) Koth. had the highest seed density and Importance Value Index. The similarity between the soil seed bank, and above-ground vegetation was more or less same in most of the quadrate sites. However natural regeneration ability is very poor in many tree species. Therefore natural regeneration process should be assisted through direct seedling planting.