African Journal of

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Biotechnol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1684-5315
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJB
  • Start Year: 2002
  • Published Articles: 12257

Full Length Research Paper

Community succession analysis and environmental biological processes of naturally colonized vegetation on abandoned hilly lands and implications for vegetation restoration strategy in Shanxi, China

X.Z Liu1, F. Zhang1*, H.B. Shao2,3* and J.T. Zhang4
  1Institute of Loess Plateau, Shanxi University, Taiyuan 030006, China 2The CAS / Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Processes, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research, the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Yantai 264003, China. 3Institute for Life Sciences, Qingdao University of Science & Technology (QUST), Qingdao 266042, China. 4College of Life Sciences, Beijing Normal University, Beijng 100875, China.
Email: [email protected], [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 31 January 2011
  •  Published: 14 February 2011



Data were collected simultaneously at different succession stages using a space-for-time substitution, and were analyzed using the quantitative classification method (TWINSPAN) and the ordination technique (DCA). The community succession of natural colonized plants on abandoned hilly lands in Shanxi are below: Assoc. Potentilla chinensis Setaria viridis → Assoc. Artemisia sacrorum S. viridis +Oxytropis caoraloa → AssocA. sacrorum Artemisia capillaries → AssocA. capillaries Pedivularis shansiensis Echinops pseudosetifer → Assoc.Hippophae rhamnoides– A. sacrorum Cleistogenes squarrosa → Assoc. H. rhamnoides Ostryopsis davidianaA. sacrorum → Assoc. O. davidianaA. sacrorum Dendranthema chanetii → Assoc. Populus davidianaCaragana korshinskiiA. sacrorum → Assoc. Larix principis-rupprechtiiH. rhamnoidesA. sacrorum. This established a recovery model of natural vegetation on abandoned hilly lands in Shanxi. The structure, composition and life-forms changed significantly during succession. Four indices of species diversity were used to analyze changes in the heterogeneity, dominance, richness and evenness of species during the succession process. The species richness and heterogeneity of plant communities increased significantly, the dominance decreased obviously and the evenness decreased slightly. The analysis of variance (ANOVA) also proved the significance of these five indices. Pioneer species of S. viridisA. sacrorumO. caoraloaA. capillariesP. shansiensisE. pseudosetifer, C. squarrosaH. rhamnoidesO. davidiaC. korshinskiiP. davidiana and L. principis-rupprechtii, etc. colonize successfully and play important roles on the vegetation restoration of abandoned hilly lands.


Keywords: Abandoned hilly lands, vegetation community succession, environmental biological process, soil quality.


DBH, Diameter at breast height; TWINSPAN; two-way indicator-species analysis. DCA, de-trended correspondence analysis; DS, dominance index; EA, species evenness; 

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