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    Description

    Fire ecology studies in eastern hardwood forests usually use plot-based inventory methods and focus on sprouting stems to detect changes in vegetative composition and structure. Rarely are individual stems studied and stems that fail to sprout are usually ignored. In this study, an individual stem mortality approach was employed. Four hundred fifty stems of eight different species were tagged before prescribed burns. Top-killed stems later were analyzed to determine why some died and others did not. Root collar diameter and root collar location proved to be critical in rootstock survival. These findings indicate why oak and hickory, with their seed burial, hypogeal germination, and root-development strategies, are more likely to survive surface fires than many of their competitors.

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    Citation

    Brose, Patrick; Van Lear, David 2004. Survival of Hardwood Regeneration During Prescribed Fires: The Importance of Root Development and Root Rollar Location. Gen. Tech. Rep. SRS-73. Asheville, NC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southern Research Station. pp. 123-127

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