Forest restoration is an activity that can be readily undertaken to address both the climate and biodiversity crises. In Aotearoa New Zealand, aspirations for large-scale native forest restoration are growing across governmental and private sectors and a considerable focus to date has been on forest establishment by actively planting native trees.
Grey willow (Salix cinerea) is widely established in New Zealand’s remaining swamps and fens, and in many areas has replaced endemic kahikatea (Dacrycarpus dacrydioides) forest. Conservation managers need to know how to restore willow-invaded wetlands to a resilient natural state, but knowledge on how to achieve this goal is limited. We planted kahikatea seedlings into an intact stand of grey willow and into areas where the herbicides glyphosate or triclopyr had been aerially applied to control willow ~1.5 years earlier.