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You are here >1Up Info > Wildlife, Animals, and Plants > Plant Species > Shrub > Species: Salix myrtillifolia | Blueberry Willow
 

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FIRE EFFECTS

SPECIES: Salix myrtillifolia | Blueberry Willow
IMMEDIATE FIRE EFFECT ON PLANT : Blueberry willow is sometimes present as scattered individuals in black or white spruce (Picea glauca) forests. Severe fires in these vegetation types can kill willows by completely removing soil organic layers and charring the roots [31]. Less severe fires only top-kill plants. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF FIRE EFFECT : NO-ENTRY PLANT RESPONSE TO FIRE : Blueberry willow's density probably increases shortly after burning. However, it is shade intolerant,and density will decline as young trees overtop it. Viereck and Little [26] noted that low blueberry willow became locally abundant in the early successional stages that follow fire in low-lying black spruce types. Tall blueberry willow seeded onto clearcut and burned white spruce floodplain forests in interior Alaska [33]. Burning on these sites exposed much mineral soil, which provided excellent seedbeds for the invading willow. DISCUSSION AND QUALIFICATION OF PLANT RESPONSE : Fire severity affects the mode of willow postfire recovery. Following light-severity fires most willows recover quickly, sending up new shoots from undamaged root crowns. Few if any seedlings establish following this type of fire because the partially consumed organic soil layers comprise an unfavorable seedbed. Following severe fire, however, the primary mode of recovery is seedling establishment. Severe fires that burn into organic soils kill willows, but expose mineral soils which provide excellent seedbeds [32]. FIRE MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS : NO-ENTRY

Related categories for Species: Salix myrtillifolia | Blueberry Willow

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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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