UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Classification of mid-seral black spruce ecosystems in northern British Columbia Klinka, Karel 2001-12-31

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Classification of Mid-seral Black Spruce Ecosystemsin Northern British ColumbiaSummaryBlack spruce is one of the principal species of the Canadianboreal forest. While it is one of the major timber cropspecies in eastern Canada, in British Columbia it isconsidered a non- or less valuable crop species except onsites that are edaphically unsuitable for more valuablespecies, such as white spruce and lodgepole pine. Its valueas a crop species, however, cannot be debated in absenceof productivity data for pure and mixed-species stands ofblack spruce in BC. From over 2,000 reports on blackspruce published in Canada and the United States to dateonly a few originated in BC. A better understanding ofecology and growth of black spruce is needed inanticipation of future demands for timber resources inthe boreal forest in this province.In BC, late-seral (old-growth) black spruce-dominatedecosystems have been investigated by many researchers,including the Ecological Program Staff of the BC Ministryof Forests who presented a general overview of the BWBSand SBS zones and site classification for these zones.However, we still need additional information about early-and mid-seral stages for a more complete understandingof black spruce ecosystems. Therefore, we developedthis classification as a means to relate them to the othersin the North American boreal forest. We aimed to developa classification that organizes communities into groups ina way that shows the greatest number of vegetation andvegetation-environment relationships, is easily retained inmemory, and is easily conveyed through instructions. Theclassification, based on 122 plots, was done according tothe Braun-Blanquet approach and the methods ofbiogeoclimatic ecosystem classification. In addition, wealso quantified relationships between site index of blackspruce and direct and ecological measures of site quality.Scientia Silvica Extension Series, Number 26, 2001Other aspects of black spruce growth and boreal ecologyare presented in the following Scientia Silvica ExtensionSeries (SSES):  comparison of understory plant diversitybetween black spruce and trembling aspen ecosystems(SSES No. 32), and comparison of humus form and soilnutrients between black spruce and trembling aspenecosystems (SSES No. 31).Distribution frequencySample plotsinfrequentfrequentvery frequentisolated standplot locationnumber of plots at a location(2)(2)(7)(4)(3)(6)(6)(9)(3)(3)(4)(6)(8)(11)(5)Map showing the range of black spruce in BritishColumbia and the distribution of sample plots.ReferencesKrestov, P.V., K. Klinka, C. Chourmouzis, and G.Kayahara. 2000. Classification of mid-seral black spruceecosystems in northern British Columbia. Forest SciencesDepartment, University of British Columbia, Vancouver,BC. 88 pp.Ordering InformationThis report is available in full colour or black-and-whiteprinted versions or in electronic format on Scientia SilvicaCD-ROM. Ordering information is available onwww.forestry.ubc.ca/klinka or from Karel Klinka(klinka@interchange.ubc.ca)Site association  Parent vegetation unit 100 SbPl ? Lichens  110 Picea mariana ? Cladina stellaris association 200 SbPl ? Moss  120 Picea mariana ? Vaccinium vitis-idaea association 300 Sb ? Wood Horsetail  131 Picea mariana ? Equisetum sylvaticum: typic subassociation 400 Sb ? Tamarack  132 Picea mariana ? Equisetum sylvaticum: Larix laricina subassociation 500 SbSw ? Soopola llie  211 Picea glauca & mariana ? Viburnum edule: Shepherdia canadensis subassociation  600 SbSw ? Common Mitrewort  212 Picea glauca & mariana ? Viburnum edule: Mitella nuda subassociation  700 SbSw ? Meadow Horsetail  220 Picea glauca & mariana ? Equisetum pratense association 800 (Sb) ? Swamp Birch  310 Picea mariana ? Betula nana association  Site associations delineated in mid-seral black spruce ecosystems, and their relationships with the parentvegetation units.Scientia Silvica  is published by the Forest Sciences Department,The University of British Columbia, ISSN 1209-952XEditor: Karel Klinka (klinka@interchange.ubc.ca)Production and design: Christine Chourmouzis (chourmou@interchange.ubc.ca)Financial support: Site Productivity Working Group, BC Ministry of ForestsFor more information contact: Karel KlinkaCopies available from: www.forestry.ubc.ca/klinka, or K.Klinka,Forest Sciences Department, UBC,3036-2424 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z4Edatopic grid showing the generalizedrelationships of the eight siteassociations to soil moisture and soilnutrient regimes.VP12345678VDMDSD(f)F -M(f)VM(f)W(f)VW(f)PMRVRSoil nutrient regimeSoil moisture regime100SbPl-Lichens200SbPl-Moss500SbSw-Soopolallie300Sb-Wood Horsetail600SbSw-CommonMitrewort 400Sb-Tamarack700SbSw-Meadow Horsetail800 (Sb)-Swamp birchfens, marshes, and swampsgrasslands, shrubs,and/or stunted treesnon-forested bogs


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