Title: Short-term bryoid and vascular vegetation response to reforestation alternatives following wildfire in conifer plantations
Author: Kayes, Lori J.; Puettmann, Klaus J.; Anderson, Paul D.
Source: Applied Vegetation Science. 14: 326-339
Description: How are dynamics of early-seral post-fire vascular plant and bryoid (terrestrial mosses, lichens, and fungi) vegetation impacted by reforestation activities, particularly manual vegetation removal and planting density? Does the relationship between vegetation dynamics and vegetation removal differ between harsh (west-facing) and moderate (east-facing) aspects? Plantations severely burned in a recent wildfire were planted with conifer seedlings as a four-species mixture or a mono culture, at two different densities, with and without manual vegetation removal. A subset of plots was also planted on a contrasting aspect within each plantation. The contrasting aspects differed in potential solar insolation and were indicative of moderate (eastern exposure) and harsh (western exposure) site conditions. Structural layer cover and community composition differed between areas that received reforestation treatments and untreated areas. However, variability within treatments in a plantation was greater than variability within treatments across plantations. Effects of vegetation removal on composition and structure were more evident than effects of planting or altering planting density. These reforestation treatments may be implemented without substantially altering early-seral vegetation community composition dynamics, especially in areas with harsh site conditions. Site conditions, such as aspect, should be evaluated to determine need and potential effects of reforestation before implementation. Monitoring for exotic species establishment should follow reforestation activities.
Keywords: aspect, bryophytes, fire, mixed-species plantings, plantation management, shrub removal, site condition, vegetation dynamics, vegetation removal
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Kayes, Lori J.; Puettmann, Klaus J.; Anderson, Paul D. 2011. Short-term bryoid and vascular vegetation response to reforestation alternatives following wildfire in conifer plantations. Applied Vegetation Science. 14: 326-339.