Index of Species Information

SPECIES:  Salix drummondiana


SPECIES: Salix drummondiana
AUTHORSHIP AND CITATION : Uchytil, Ronald J. 1991. Salix drummondiana. In: Fire Effects Information System, [Online]. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory (Producer). Available: [].
ABBREVIATION : SALDRU SYNONYMS : Salix bella Piper Salix subcoerulea Piper SCS PLANT CODE : SADR COMMON NAMES : Drummond's willow beautiful willow blue willow TAXONOMY : The currently accepted scientific name of Drummond's willow is Salix drummondiana Barratt [3,13]. Early taxonomists subdivided Drummond's willow into several species or varieties. Recent taxonomic treatments, however, have placed these in synonomy; thus there are currently no recognized subspecies or varieties [3,13]. Brunsfeld and Johnson [9] reported that plants from eastern Washington and northern Idaho appear to be clearly distinct at some taxonomic level, and that further study of the group is needed. LIFE FORM : Shrub FEDERAL LEGAL STATUS : No special status OTHER STATUS : NO-ENTRY


SPECIES: Salix drummondiana
GENERAL DISTRIBUTION : Drummond's willow occurs from the southern Yukon Territory south through British Columbia to the Sierra Nevada of California and eastward throughout the Rocky Mountains [3,13]. In British Columbia it generally occurs 100 miles (160 km) or more inland [7]. In Washington it is found only east of the Cascade Mountains, and in Oregon it is found only in the Wallowa and Steens mountains [20]. ECOSYSTEMS : FRES20 Douglas-fir FRES21 Ponderosa pine FRES23 Fir - spruce FRES26 Lodgepole pine FRES29 Sagebrush FRES36 Mountain grasslands FRES44 Alpine STATES : CA CO ID MT NV NM OR UT WA WY AB BC YT BLM PHYSIOGRAPHIC REGIONS : 4 Sierra Mountains 5 Columbia Plateau 6 Upper Basin and Range 8 Northern Rocky Mountains 9 Middle Rocky Mountains 10 Wyoming Basin 11 Southern Rocky Mountains 12 Colorado Plateau 16 Upper Missouri Basin and Broken Lands KUCHLER PLANT ASSOCIATIONS : K007 Red fir forest K008 Lodgepole pine - subalpine forest K011 Western ponderosa forest K012 Douglas-fir forest K015 Western spruce - fir forest K020 Spruce - fir - Douglas-fir forest K050 Fescue - wheatgrass K052 Alpine meadows and barren K055 Sagebrush steppe SAF COVER TYPES : 201 White spruce 204 Black spruce 206 Engelmann spruce - subalpine fir 207 Red fir 210 Interior Douglas-fir 211 White fir 216 Blue spruce 217 Aspen 218 Lodgepole pine 237 Interior ponderosa pine 256 California mixed subalpine SRM (RANGELAND) COVER TYPES : NO-ENTRY HABITAT TYPES AND PLANT COMMUNITIES : Drummond's willow commonly dominates or codominates shrubby communities along middle elevation mountain streams. It frequently mixes with the ecologically similar Booth willow (Salix boothii). For taxonomic simplicity, riparian communities dominated by either willow are classified as Booth willow types in eastern Idaho, western Wyoming, and Utah [29,44]. Published classifications listing Drummond's willow as a dominant part of the vegetation in community types (cts), dominance types (dts), habitat types (hts), or plant associations (pas) are presented below: Area Classification Authority w CO montane and subalpine Baker 1989 riparian pas MT riparian dts Hansen & others 1988 nw MT riparian hts Boggs & others 1990 w-c MT wetland cts Pierce & Johnson 1986 NV riparian cts Manning & Padgett 1989 e ID, w WY riparian cts Youngblood & others 1985a UT, se ID riparian cts Padgett & others 1989


SPECIES: Salix drummondiana
IMPORTANCE TO LIVESTOCK AND WILDLIFE : In the West, all classes of livestock eat willows (Salix spp.), but cattle probably consume more than others because they tend to frequent riparian areas [38]. Drummond's willow is palatable to livestock, but its importance in their diets has not been reported. Moose consume large amounts of Drummond's willow during the winter, but use by other ungulates is generally moderate to light. In Glacier National Park, moose, elk, and white-tailed deer consumption of Drummond's willow was moderate, light, and practically nil, respectively [36]. In the Uinta Mountains of Utah, it made up 92 percent of moose winter browse [31]. Winter consumption by moose in southwestern Montana was also high [37]. In some areas of Yellowstone National Park, overbrowsing by moose and elk has stunted Drummond's willow; most plants do not reach heights above 5 feet (1.5 m) [10,30]. Willows are a preferred food and building material of beaver [1]. Willow shoots, catkins, buds, and leaves are eaten by ducks and grouse, other birds, and small mammals [2,18]. In Colorado, red-napped sapsuckers drill wells in the stems and feed on the sap of Drummond's willow. Heavy drilling can occur, with up to 90 percent of a single plant's branches containing wells. These wells serve as feeding sites for other animals such as warblers, hummingbirds, chipmunks, and red squirrels [15]. PALATABILITY : Most willows are palatable to livestock and big game [2,38]. In the West, willows are generally more palatable to sheep than to cattle and tend to become more palatable to stock as the growing season advances [38]. In Oregon, Drummond's willow is highly palatable to livestock, big game, and beavers [21]. In a Yellowstone National Park study, Drummond's willow was moderately to highly palatable to elk; however, it was considered to be slightly less palatable than yellow and sandbar willow (Salix lutea, S. exigua) [30]. In most areas, it is highly palatable to moose [31]. NUTRITIONAL VALUE : Drummond's willow's protein value is rated as poor, and its energy value as fair [12]. COVER VALUE : Drummond's willow often forms 6.5-to 13-foot-tall (2-4 m) thickets that provide good cover for a variety of wildlife species, especially moose, and excellent nesting and foraging habitat for ducks, shore birds, vireos, warblers, and sparrows [14]. Dense overhanging branches provide shade for salmonids [2,19]. VALUE FOR REHABILITATION OF DISTURBED SITES : Drummond's willow is recommended for use in revegetating disturbed riparian areas. It is especially useful for streambank stabilization. It is usually planted as rooted or unrooted stem cuttings [33]. Drummond's willow stems contain predeveloped root primordia. Stem cuttings develop roots along the entire length of the buried portion within about 10 days of planting [33]. Because it roots quickly, unrooted Drummond's willow cuttings may be planted on sites with sufficient moisture throughout the growing season to start and maintain growth [26,33]. Rooted cuttings have higher survival rates than unrooted cuttings. Procedures and techniques for collecting, preparing, and planting willow cuttings are described by Platts and others [33] and McClusky and others [26]. OTHER USES AND VALUES : All willows produce salacin, which is closely related chemically to aspirin. Native Americans used various preparations from willows to treat tooth ache, stomach ache, diarrhea, dysentery, and dandruff [27]. Native Americans also used flexible willow stems for making baskets, bows, arrows, scoops, fish traps, and other items [21]. OTHER MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS : Drummond's willow provides important streambank protection by effectively stabilizing soils. Heavy grazing in moist Drummond's willow communities can lead to soil compaction, streambank sloughing, and damage to willow plants [6]. Drummond's willow becomes decadent or stunted when overbrowsed by cattle or wild ungulates. Plants recover relatively rapidly when browsing is excluded [10,35].


SPECIES: Salix drummondiana
GENERAL BOTANICAL CHARACTERISTICS : Drummond's willow is a deciduous shrub generally between 6.5 and 13 feet (2-4 m) tall, but occasionally up to 20 feet (6 m) tall [9,13]. Male and female flowers occur on separate plants in erect, nearly sessile catkins [9]. The fruit is a two-valved capsule. RAUNKIAER LIFE FORM : Phanerophyte REGENERATION PROCESSES : Drummond's willow's primary mode of reproduction is sexual. It produces an abundance of small, light-weight seeds. Like most willows, it probably begins seed production at an early age (between 2 and 10 years) [18]. At maturity, the fruit splits open and releases the seed. Each seed has a cottony down that aids in dispersal by wind and water [8]. Seeds are dispersed during the growing season and remain viable for only about 1 week [8]. The seeds contain significant amounts of chlorophyll and photosynthesis generally begins as soon as the seed is moistened. Germination occurs within 24 hours of dispersal if a moist seedbed is reached [8]. Exposed mineral soils are the best seedbed [18]. Germination and/or seedling establishment is inhibited by litter [18]. Vegetative reproduction: Drummond's willow sprouts from the root crown or stem base if aboveground stems are broken or destroyed by cutting, flooding, or fire [18]. Detached stem fragments will root if they are buried in moist soil [18]. This occurs when stem fragments are transported by floodwaters and deposited on fresh alluvium [3,18]. SITE CHARACTERISTICS : Drummond's willow occurs along the borders of streams, rivers, beaver ponds, and lakes, and in wet meadows and marshes [6,9]. It grows at moderate elevations from lower forested and nonforested foothills to subalpine habitats. It is generally most abundant in subalpine fir (Abies lasiocarpa)-Engelmann spruce (Picea engelmannii) habitat types [6,9]. In these cool habitats, it is not restricted to steamsides, but occupies moist, well-aerated soils of meadows, broad valley bottoms, side slope seeps, and stream and pond margins [6,9,25]. At lower elevations it is uncommon, and usually confined to the edges of streams in sagebrush (Artemisia spp.), Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), or ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) vegetation zones [6,9]. In a valley in northwestern Yellowstone National Park dominated by silver sagebrush (Artemisia cana), Drummond's willow is primarily found within 65 feet (20 m) of the river's edge [30]. Soils: Drummond's willow typically grows on moist, well-aerated mineral soils [19]. Textures vary greatly from cobbles and gravels immediately adjacent to waterways to sandy or clay loams in broad valleys [19]. It often occurs on fine-textured soils of sediment-filled beaver ponds [44]. Shallow organic soils overlying alluvium may develop on wet, marshy, sedge-dominated sites [44]. Water tables vary from near the surface to about 39 inches (1 m) [19,44]. Elevation: Drummond's willow grows at moderate elevations in the mountains. Elevational ranges for the following western states are presented below: from 8,400 to 9,500 feet (2,560-2,896 m) in California [28] from 4,000 to 7,100 feet (1,220-2,165 m) in nw Montana [6] from 7,000 to 10,790 feet (2,135-3,290 m) in Utah [43] from 6,000 to 10,000 feet (1,829-3,049 m) in Wyoming [2,44] Associates: Associated shrubs include Booth willow, Barclay willow (Salix barclayi), planeleaf willow (S. planifolia ssp. planifolia), Geyer willow (S. geyeriana), mountain willow (S. monticola), Wolf willow (S. wolfii), mountain gooseberry (Ribes montigenum), whitestem currant (Ribes inerme), bearberry honeysuckle (Lonicera involucrata), thinleaf alder (Alnus incana ssp. tenuifolia), red-osier dogwood (Cornus sericea), alder buckthorn (Rhamnus alnifolia), and marsh cinquefoil (Potentilla palustris) [4,6,9]. Understory associates include bluejoint reedgrass (Calamagrostis canadensis), beaked sedge (Carex rostrata), water sedge (C. aquatilis), tufted hairgrass (Deschampsia cespitosa), Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis), field mint (Mentha arvensis), and arrowleaf groundsel (Senecio triangularis) [6,9,23,29]. SUCCESSIONAL STATUS : Drummond's willow tends to form relatively stable, long-lived seral communities that are maintained by seasonal flooding or high water tables. However, these sites experience successional shifts if water tables change. If sites become wetter, sedges may replace Drummond's willow. If they become drier, Drummond's willow may be replaced by upland shrubs or conifers [18,44]. In northwestern Montana, high-elevation thinleaf and Sitka alder (Alnus sinuata) are seral to Drummond's willow [6]. SEASONAL DEVELOPMENT : Drummond's willow generally begins flowering in May [12,28].


SPECIES: Salix drummondiana
FIRE ECOLOGY OR ADAPTATIONS : Drummond's willow sprouts from the root crown following top-kill by fire [6,21]. Its abundant wind-dispersed seed may be important in colonizing burned areas. Fire is relatively infrequent in the meadow and streamside habitats Drummond's willow occupies. In fact, these riparian areas frequently act as fire breaks. However, under dry conditions, riparian habitats can burn severely [11]. FIRE REGIMES : Find fire regime information for the plant communities in which this species may occur by entering the species name in the FEIS home page under "Find Fire Regimes". POSTFIRE REGENERATION STRATEGY : survivor species; on-site surviving root crown or caudex off-site colonizer; seed carried by wind; postfire years 1 and 2 off-site colonizer; seed carried by animals or water; postfire yr 1&2


SPECIES: Salix drummondiana
IMMEDIATE FIRE EFFECT ON PLANT : Willows on organic soils may be killed by severe fires which burn deep into the soil, char the roots, and prevent sprouting [45]. Less severe fires only top-kill willows. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF FIRE EFFECT : NO-ENTRY PLANT RESPONSE TO FIRE : Top-killed Drummond's willow plants sprout following fire. Quick, hot fires generally result in numerous sprouts per plant. Slow burning fires result in fewer sprouts because these fires often burn down into the roots, reducing Drummond's willow's sprouting ability [6]. Although there is no documentation of Drummond's willow seedling establishment following fire, other willows have been observed to do so when moist mineral soils are present [40]. Drummond's willow seeds are dispersed in the summer, remain viable for only about 1 week, and require moist mineral soil for germination. Therefore, the degree of seedling establishment following fire depends upon the season of burn, on the weather, and on the amount of mineral soil exposed [41]. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF PLANT RESPONSE : NO-ENTRY FIRE MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS : Prescribed fire can be used to rejuvenate decadent Drummond's willow [6]. Wet, poorly drained sites may be difficult to burn until they dry out in the late summer or fall.


SPECIES: Salix drummondiana
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