Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Effects of slash on herbaceous communities in pinyon–juniper woodlands of northern Arizona

Published source details

Stoddard M.T., Huffman D.W., Alcoze T.M. & Fulé P.Z. (2008) Effects of slash on herbaceous communities in pinyon–juniper woodlands of northern Arizona. Rangeland ecology & management, 61, 485-495


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A replicated, controlled study in 2003-2005 in temperate coniferous forest in Arizona, USA (Stoddard et al. 2008) found that addition of pruned trees had mixed effects on cover of understory plant groups. Total understory plant cover was higher in the pruned trees treatment in seeded plots in site #1 (pruned trees: 12.4; control: 3.7%). Exotic-plant cover was lower in the pruned trees treatment in seeded (pruned trees: 0.1; control: 1.9%) and non-seeded plots (pruned trees: 0.2; control: 1.6%) in site #2. In both sites, in seeded plots, cover (pruned trees: 1.6-3.9; control: <0.2%) and seed-density (pruned trees: 7-28; control: 2-3/m2) of grasses was higher in pruned trees treatment plots. Total understory plant cover in site #2 (pruned trees: 11.7-16.3%; control: 11.0-16.1%) and in non-seeded plots in site #1 (pruned trees: 10.7; control: 8.1%) was similar between treatments. Exotic-plant cover in site #1 (pruned trees: 0.0-0.3; control: 0.0%) was similar between treatments. Cover (pruned trees: 0.2-0.9; control: <0.2%) and seed-density (pruned trees: 2-9; control: 0/m2) of grasses in non-seeded plots were similar between treatments. Two pairs of 1 m2 treatment plots: control and pruned trees (at 9 kg/m2) were established within 15 forest openings (0.02-0.05 ha) at each of two sites; one pair of seeded (10 g/m2 mixture of four native grasses seeded in 2003) and one pair of non-seeded plots. Data were collected in 2005.