Reforestation of land after fire extinguishing

Published by
Peter Kavinsky

Rafa Gonzalez |

Madrid, (EFE).- Erosion control and soil protection; cut, remove and remove wood, as well as coarse wood residues of burnt; repairing damage to road infrastructure and carrying out relocation or planting of greenery are the first steps that must be taken after extinguishing a forest fire in order to restore it.

But is it necessary in all cases to make a choice in favor of reforestation after a forest fire? Not in everything, a forestry engineer and reforestation platform partner explained to EFE.Reforestum» Juan Carlos Maldonado who pointed out that it depends on the type of vegetation and the species affected.

Green shoots in a scorched patch of forest fire that devastated the Sierra de la Culebra. EFE/Mariam A. Montesinos

Well, for example, there are certain types of conifers that are “very hardy and excellently adapted to fires” that “take advantage of high temperatures to open their buds and spread their seeds.”

Other species, such as quercineas, regrow after a fire, so in these cases there is no need to reforest, but only follow-up treatments to aid regeneration by clearing or thinning to secure a strong future adult mass. .

Likewise, according to this expert, “it may also be interesting for us from a forest management point of view to leave areas without reforestation, which in the future can serve as natural fire zones.”

And how long does it take for a piece of land to be considered restored? “This is a difficult question,” admitted Maldonado, because after a fire, due to high temperatures, a lot of organic matter is lost, which affects the microorganisms that inhabit the surface layers.

In addition, “erosion also causes great loss of fertile soil. Restoration of soil fertility can take from 1 to 5 years. Another problem is revegetation before the fire. We can talk about two or three years if the burnt areas were inhabited by shrubs, or much longer periods if we are talking about mature forest areas.

pyrophytic species

“Absolutely all kinds of plants are affected by fires,” the engineer emphasized, adding, however, that pyrophytes or pyrophiles “love fire” because they “are able to resist it.”

Absolutely all types of plants are affected by fires.

He added that this is an advantage in places and climates where these disasters recur, as species that do not support them leave that niche for those who resist them.

“In the Mediterranean climate and in the Iberian Peninsula we have many species resistant to fire, and as tree species we can name holm oaks, oaks, junipers, some types of pines, and with regard to shrub species we can find rock gardens, heathers or rosemary among others,” he said.

Wildlife is probably the hardest hit after the fire that destroyed its habitat, Maldonado assured, recalling that animals are disoriented, suffering from stress, dehydration and loss of nests, losing their natural niche and forced to look for new habitats.

early recovery

“All these factors have a decisive influence on their reproductive capacity. Therefore, the speedy restoration of lands affected by the fire is necessary to restore biodiversity and fauna habitats,” he stressed.

In addition, through reforestation, companies can neutralize their residual CO2 emissions and engage their communities in the forestry projects they support, said Diego Sanz, CEO and co-founder of Reforestum.

Web Edition: Javier Agramunt Valero

Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at

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