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Tree thinning treatments alter soil properties, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and understory plant communities


Neal, Suzanne M. 2007. Tree thinning treatments alter soil properties, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and understory plant communities. Flagstaff, AZ: Northern Arizona University. 73 p. Thesis.

Forest management practices designed to reduce fire risk, particularly thinning followed by burning slash piles, can cause below ground disturbance that creates favorable conditions for exotic plant species. Newer fuel-reduction methods, such as mechanical mastication are being examined as potential alternatives to the burning of slash piles. We compared soil properties (both physical and chemical), arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF) response, and plant community composition in replicated plots of pinyon-juniper (Pinus edulis-Juniperus osteosperma) woodland both six months and two and a half years after treatment by mechanical mastication and slash pile burning relative to untreated controls. We measured AMF responses because of their importance in both promoting the growth of many native plant species and in increasing soil stability. To our knowledge, this is the first study to measure both understory plant and AMF response to mastication or AMF community response to slash pile burning.

Keywords: tree thinning treatments, soil properties, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, pinyon-juniper (Pinus edulis-Juniperus osteosperma)


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http://www.fs.fed.us/rm/pubs_other/rmrs_2007_neal_s001.pdf

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Title: RMRS Other Publications: Tree thinning treatments alter soil properties, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and understory plant communities
Electronic Publish Date: May 5, 2009
Last Update:
May 5, 2009

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