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Journal of Arid Land

Article Title

Wind-proof and sand-fixing effects of Artemisia ordosica with different coverages in the Mu Us Sandy Land, northern China

Abstract

Wind erosion is a key global environmental problem and has many adverse effects. The Mu Us Sandy Land of northern China is characterized by an arid climate, where vegetation patches and bare sand patches are usually distributed mosaically, and aeolian activities occur frequently. Vegetation plays a significant role in controlling wind erosion. Artemisia ordosica is the most dominant native plant species in the Mu Us Sandy Land. It is urgent to study the wind-proof and sand-fixing effects of Artemisia ordosica in the Mu Us Sandy Land. This study analyzed the wind-proof and sand-fixing effects of Artemisia ordosica based on the field data of wind regimes, aeolian sediment transport, and surface change of Artemisia ordosica plots with four coverages (denoted as site A, site B, site C, and site D) in the Mu Us Sandy Land during the period from 1 June 2018 to 29 June 2019. The coverages of Artemisia ordosica at site A, site B, site C, and site D were 2%, 16%, 29%, and 69%, respectively. The annual average wind speeds at 2.0 m height above the ground for site A, site B, site C, and site D were 3.47, 2.77, 2.21, and 1.97 m/s, respectively. The annual drift potentials were 193.80, 69.72, 15.05, and 6.73 VU at site A, site B, site C, and site D, respectively. The total horizontal aeolian sediment fluxes during the period from 2–3 June 2018 to 6 June 2019 at site A, site B, site C, and site D were 4633.61, 896.80, 10.54, and 6.14 kg/m, respectively. Site A had the largest surface changes, and the surface changes at site B were significantly weaker than those at site A, whereas the surface changes at site C and site D were minimal. The results indicated that Artemisia ordosica significantly reduced the wind speed, drift potential, aeolian sediment transport, and surface changes. The higher the coverage of Artemisia ordosica is, the more obvious the effects of wind-proof and sand-fixing. Wind erosion would be effectively controlled in the Mu Us Sandy Land if the coverage of Artemisia ordosica is greater than 29%. These results provide a scientific basis for evaluating the ecosystem service function of Artemisia ordosica and the vegetation protection and construction projects in the Mu Us Sandy Land.

Keywords

Artemisia ordosica; wind-proof; sand-fixing; wind erosion; aeolian sediment flux; Mu Us Sandy Land

First Page

877

Last Page

893

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