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Understory plant community response after 23 years of hardwood control treatments in natural longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) forestsAuthor(s): John S. Kush; Ralph S. Meldahl; William D. Boyer
Source: Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 29: 1047-1054.
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
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DescriptionIn 1973, a study was established in south-central Alabama, U.S.A., to determine the effects of hardwood control treatments on understory succession and overstory growth in natural stands of longleaf pine (Pinus palustris Mill.). The treatments were seasonal biennial burns and a no-burn check, each combined with three supplemental hardwood control treatments (one-time chemical, periodic mechanical, and untreated check). Green vegetation less than 1 cm d.b.h. and organic litter were destructively sampled to determine the effects of 23 years of treatments on understory vegetation and identify changes in this community since last sampled in 1982. Among the hardwood control treatments, the only significant differences occurred in the shrub and green biomass (total of tree, shrub, woody vine, and herbaceous species masses) component of the understory. There were significant differences for all vegetation components when comparing the burning to no-burn treatment. Green biomass estimates were variable but showed an increase for all but two of the 12 treatment combinations when compared to 1982 biomass. The major change occurred in the accumulation of organic litter, which increased 119 percent when averaged across all treatments. The chemical treatment did not eliminate any species when compared with the other hardwood control treatments.
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CitationKush, John S.; Meldahl, Ralph S.; Boyer, William D. 1999. Understory plant community response after 23 years of hardwood control treatments in natural longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) forests. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 29: 1047-1054.
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