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You are here >1Up Info > Wildlife, Animals, and Plants > Plant Species > Shrub > Species: Lespedeza bicolor | Bicolor Lespedeza

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SPECIES: Lespedeza bicolor | Bicolor Lespedeza
IMMEDIATE FIRE EFFECT ON PLANT : Fire may top-kill bicolor lespedeza. High-severity fires may consume seeds stored in the seed bank and destroy underground portions of the plant. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF FIRE EFFECT : NO-ENTRY PLANT RESPONSE TO FIRE : Bicolor lespedeza generally increases in density under a frequent burning regime (4 years) [7,26] because it sprouts from the root crown after top-kill [7,23,25] and establishes new individuals from both on- and off-site seed sources [8]. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF PLANT RESPONSE : On a site cleared and burned every 4 years since 1962 in the Georgia Piedmont, bicolor lespedeza density was 1,529 per acre (619/ha) compared to 0 on an adjacent site with no previous burning history [5]. The effects of burning, fertilizing and a combination of both on the plant community in the Alabama Piedmont was studied. The extent of coverage of bicolor lespedeza on the various treated sites is as follows [26]: Unburned and unfertilized= 0.01 Fertilized only= 0.16 Burned only (4 year interval)= 0.73 Burned and fertilized= 0.60 Bicolor lespedeza spread into the woods as a result of regular burning on the North Auburn area and on a large Piedmont private quail preserve in Alabama. On these areas it has become the dominant understory species [26]. Bicolor lespedeza germination has been shown to increase with dry heat treatments of up to 194 degrees Fahrenheit (90 deg C). The percent germination of bicolor lespedeza seed treated with dry heat during the summer of 1966 was as follows [9]: Dry heat (degrees C) Control 45 60 70 80 90 100 110 (% germ) 4 44 68 80 100 100 0 0 FIRE MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS : Prescribed fire can increase bicolor lespedeza density [5,9,26] and consequently improve the habitat for northern bobwhite and other game birds. Nitrogen is a main soil nutrient lost during fire [31]. Because bicolor lespedeza is a nitrogen-fixing plant, it can be planted on burned sites to restore nitrogen to the soil [17].

Related categories for Species: Lespedeza bicolor | Bicolor Lespedeza

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Information Courtesy: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory. Fire Effects Information System

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