The path back: oaks (Quercus spp.) facilitate longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) seedling establishment in xeric sites

ECOSPHERE
2016
Loudermilk, E. Louise; Hiers, J. Kevin; Pokswinski, Scott; O'Brien, Joseph J.; Barnett, Analie; Mitchell, Robert J.
Publisher N/A
SourceWeb of Science
Volume / Issue6-Jul
Pages N/A
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ISBN N/A
DOI10.1002/ecs2.1361
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Publication Date16-Jun
Article Datee01361
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AbstractUnderstanding plant_plant facilitation is critical for predicting how plant community function will respond to changing disturbance and climate. In longleaf pine (Pinus palustris Mill.) ecosystems of the southeastern United States, understanding processes that affect pine reproduction is imperative for conservation efforts that aim to maintain ecosystem resilience across its wide geographic range and edaphic gradients. Variation in wildland fire and plant_plant interactions may be overlooked in ñcoarse filterî restoration management, where actions are often prescribed over a variety of ecological conditions with an assumed outcome. For example, hardwood reduction techniques are commonly deemed necessary for ecological restoration of longleaf pine ecosystems, as hardwoods are presumed competitors with longleaf pine seedlings. Natural regeneration dynamics are difficult to test experimentally given the infrequent and irregular mast seed events of the longleaf pine. Using a long-term, large-scale restoration experiment and a long-term monitoring data site at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida (USA), this study explores the influence of native fire-intolerant oaks on longleaf regeneration. We test for historical observations of hardwood facilitation against the null hypothesis of competitive exclusion. Our results provide evidence of hardwood facilitation on newly germinated longleaf pine seedlings (
Created: 12/14/2017 10:31 AM (ET)
Modified: 12/14/2017 10:31 AM (ET)
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