Preliminary results of experimental fires in the black spruce type of interior Alaska
Document Type: Report
Author(s): Leslie A. Viereck; M. Joan Foote; C. Theodore Dyrness; Keith Van Cleve; Douglas L. Kane; Richard D. Seifert
Publication Year: 1979

Cataloging Information

  • black spruce
  • fire use
  • interior Alaska
  • Picea mariana
  • taiga
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: December 16, 2020
FRAMES Record Number: 6300


Four units totaling 1 hectare in area were burned during the summer of 1976 in the Washington Creek experimental fire site near Fairbanks, Alaska. Original vegetation on the site consisted of an unevenly spaced stand of black spruce approximately 70 years old, with an understory of ericaceous shrubs and a nearly continuous cover of moss and lichen. One plot was burned on July 22 and the remainder on August 26 during two periods in the summer when the limits of the burning conditions were met. Measurements taken during the fire showed a difference of fire intensity among the four plots, which was also reflected in the percentage of area in each of five forest floor fire severity classes. Effects of the fires on vegetation, thickness of the organic layer, soil temperatures, phosphorus content of the forest floor, and the amounts of fuel are discussed. Seed fall from black spruce and revegetation of permanent plots during the 1976 season are given. Although the units were small, the burning under different weather conditions and with extra fuels placed on two of the plots resulted in a wide variation in the severity of burns and simulated conditions of a moderately severe wildfire.

Online Link(s):
Link to this document (3.2 MB; pdf)
Viereck, Leslie A.; Foote, M. Joan; Dyrness, C. Theodore; Van Cleve, Keith; Kane, Douglas L.; Seifert, Richard D. 1979. Preliminary results of experimental fires in the black spruce type of interior Alaska. PNW Research Note PNW-RN-332. Portland, OR: USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Forest and Range Experiment Station. 27 p.