Standing crop, biomass allocation patterns and soil-plant water relations in Symphoricarpos occidentalis Hook. following spring burning
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): J. T. Romo; Perry L. Grilz; R. E. Redmann; E. A. Driver
Publication Year: 1993

Cataloging Information

  • biomass
  • Canada
  • disturbance
  • dominance (ecology)
  • fire frequency
  • fire management
  • grasslands
  • herbaceous vegetation
  • leaves
  • moisture
  • plant communities
  • plant growth
  • population density
  • post fire recovery
  • prairies
  • regeneration
  • Saskatchewan
  • season of fire
  • shrubs
  • soil moisture
  • Symphoricarpos
  • Symphoricarpos occidentalis
  • water
  • water quality
  • watershed management
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 37177
Tall Timbers Record Number: 11622
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Call Number: Journals-A
TTRS Abstract Status: Okay, Fair use, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


The impacts of autumn or spring burning on Symphoricarpos occidentalis were studied in Fescue Prairie in central Saskatchewan. Symphoricarpos density increased two- to three-fold over preburn density in the 1st 2 growing seasons following a burn. Individual shoot weights were approximately one-third those of plants in reference (un-burned) sites. Leaves that were approximately two to three times larger, combined with increased stem densities, enabled plants in burned stands to re-establish a leaf area equal to reference sites within 2 mo of growth in the 1st growing season. Total standing crop of S. occidentalis was reduced only for the early part of the 1st growing season following burning. In the 1st growing season following burning, xylem water potentials and stomatal conductance of burned plants equalled or exceeded those of reference sites. A delayed effect of burning was expressed in the 2nd growing season, with soil moisture, xylem water potentials and turgor potentials being lower in burned plants than in the reference. Flexibility in resource allocation, with a larger proportion of biomass in leaves, and unaffected or improved water status are adaptive features that enable S. occidentalis to regain its position in the plant community the 1st growing season following disturbance by burning. One-time burning in autumn or spring should not reduce the dominance of S. occidentalis in this region. © American Midland Naturalist. Abstract reproduced by permission.

Online Link(s):
Romo, J. T., P. L. Grilz, R. E. Redmann, and E. A. Driver. 1993. Standing crop, biomass allocation patterns and soil-plant water relations in Symphoricarpos occidentalis Hook. following spring burning. American Midland Naturalist, v. 130, no. 1, p. 106-115.