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Urban Naturalization, A Recently Adopted Approach Towards Sustainable Cities
Jaime Aguilar Rojas, M Anne Naeth

University of Alberta

Published: 08 June 2015 by MDPI AG in 8th Conference of the International Forum on Urbanism (IFoU) in 8th Conference of the International Forum on Urbanism (IFoU)
MDPI AG, 10.3390/ifou-D001
Abstract:Naturalization is a relatively new management strategy for green areas within the urban environment. The approach undertaken in this research was to stop mowing and then plant with native species. The information available for decision makers regarding naturalization is very limited. The urban planner based on previous experiences is recommended to establish native species to the region. Native species have specific adaptations that allow them to withstand and survive in their endemic habitat. By limiting human intervention and reintroducing native species an area is eventually naturalized, meaning no further management of the area is needed to become an assemblage of the naturally occurring landscape. The current study assesses how successfully these native plant species establish in an urban setting using naturalization as a management approach. A comparison between soil tillage and no tillage combined with compost and topsoil amendments being tested to identify the most suitable species for urban naturalization and the best management practices to enhance this practice. Naturalization is a strategy that presents a great opportunity for urban centers to integrate native species into the landscape. If done properly, a successful naturalization strategy can significantly improve city management costs, promote preservation of local species, restore environmental services and encourage more members of these communities to embrace naturalization as a desirable strategy to follow.

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