BEN # 276

Adolf Ceska aceska at victoria.tc.ca
Thu Nov 15 14:53:12 EST 2001


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No. 276                              November 15, 2001

aceska at victoria.tc.ca                Victoria, B.C.
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 Dr. A. Ceska, P.O.Box 8546, Victoria, B.C. Canada V8W 3S2
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MANAGEMENT OF _PHALARIS ARUNDINACEA_ IN CENTRAL EUROPE
From: Karel Prach <prach at bf.jcu.cz>

In  Central  Europe,  _Phalaris arundinacea_ L. is a highly com-
petitive, dominant grass in sites with a high groundwater table,
high amounts of nutrients, especially nitrogen, and a  permeable
(sandy or gravelly) substratum. Vertical and/or horizontal water
movement in the rhizosphere favours the species.

In  the  past  three  decades _P. arundinacea_ has expanded into
alluvial  grasslands  alongside  eutrophicated  water   courses,
especially  where  hay  cutting  or grazing no longer occurs. In
those conditions, its expansion into alluvial meadows was  rapid
(Conchou & Patou, 1987; Klimesova & Cizkova, 1996; Prach et al.,
1996;  Straskrabova  et  al., 1996). The species became a strong
dominant in the 5 years following meadow abandonment, increasing
its cover from less than  1%  to  approximately  40%.  Intensive
lateral vegetative spread by rhizomes ensured the expansion.

Studies  show,  however,  that  _P. arundinacea_ is sensitive to
regular cutting and Regular frequent cutting is the most  effec-
tive  way  to  control  the species. In a compact sward that was
experimentally cut three times a year, it was nearly  eliminated
after  only  4  years (Straskrabova & Prach, 1998; Prach et al.,
1999). In the Central-European climate, three cuts a year (early
June, late July and late September) showed the best results, two
cuts a year (June and August) were less effective,  whereas  one
cut a year had no desirable effect.

Mechanical  disturbance  techniques  such  as  scraping  are not
effective because the species  readily  regenerates  from  small
rhizome  fragments.  _P.  arundinacea_  is  also able to survive
long-lasting flooding, therefore artificial impoundment  is  not
an effective management strategy.

In  conclusion, eutrophication and low or non-management are the
main reasons that _P. arundinacea_ has  expanded  into  alluvial
grasslands,  however,  regular and frequent cutting is an effec-
tive measure to prevent expansion and will control  the  species
even under eutrophicated conditions.

References:

Conchou  O.  &  G.  Patou.  1987.  Modes  of  colonization of an
   heterogeneous alluvial area on the edge of the  Garone  river
   by Phalaris arundinacea L. - Regulated Rivers 1: 37-48.
Klimesova,  J.  & H. Cizkova. 1996. Limitations of establishment
   and growth of _Phalaris arundinacea_ in the  floodplain.  Pp.
   131-145  in: Prach K., J. Jenik, & A.R.G. Large. (eds.) 1996.
   Floodplain Ecology and Management. The Luznice River  in  the
   Trebon Biosphere Reserve, Central Europe. SPB Academic Publ.,
   Amsterdam.
Prach,  K., C.B. Joyce, & J. Straskrabova. 1999. Case study 13 -
   The Luznice River Floodplain, Czech Republic. Pp. 124-128 in:
   Benstead, P., P.V. Jose, C.B.  Joyce,  &  P.M.  Wade.  (eds.)
   European  wet  grasslands: guidelines for management and res-
   toration. Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, Sandy.
Prach, K. &  J.  Straskrabova.  1996.  Restoration  of  degraded
   meadows:  an  experimental approach. Pp. 87-93 in: Prach, K.,
   J. Jenik, &  A.R.G.  Large.  (eds.)  Floodplain  ecology  and
   management.   The  Luznice  River  in  the  Trebon  Biosphere
   Reserve, Central Europe, pp. 87-93, Amsterdam.
Straskrabova, J., K. Prach, C.B. Joyce, & M. Wade. (eds.)  1996.
   Aluvialni  louky  -  jejich  soucasny stav a moznosti obnovy.
   [Alluvial meadows - their recent state and  possibilities  of
   their  restoration.]  Agentura  ochrany  prirody  a  krajiny,
   Praha. 176 p. [Czech]


_AMMOPHILA BREVILIGULATA_ (POACEAE) NEW TO BRITISH COLUMBIA
From: Nick Page [napage at interchange.ubc.ca]

Extensive  populations  of   _Ammophila   breviligulata_   Fern.
(American  beachgrass)  were  discovered during surveys of beach
plant communities on the west coast of Vancouver Island, British
Columbia between June and September  2001.  This  is  the  first
report  of  _A.  breviligulata_  in  British  Columbia. (Voucher
collections are deposited in the University of British  Columbia
herbarium [UBC] in Vancouver, B.C.) _Ammophila breviligulata_ is
a  large,  rhizomatous  beach  grass  that  functions as a sand-
stabilizer in  its  native  habitat.  Together  with  _Ammophila
arenaria_  (L.)  Link.  (European beachgrass or marram grass) it
has caused substantial changes to sand movement, beach  morphol-
ogy,  and  vegetation  along  sand beaches and adjacent dunes on
western Vancouver Island.

In Clayoquot Sound, _Ammophila breviligulata_ occurs in  beaches
of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, Long Beach Unit (Wickanin-
nish Beach, Schooner Cove, Radar Beach) and south west Clayoquot
Sound  (Stubbs Island and Vargas Island). In its native range it
occurs on beaches along the Atlantic coast from Newfoundland  to
North  Carolina,  as  well  as  the Great Lakes (Kartesz, 1999).
Introduced populations have been reported from California (Hick-
man, 1993; Kartesz, 1999), and Oregon and  Washington  (Seabloom
and   Wiedemann,   1994).   In   British   Columbia,  _Ammophila
breviligulata_ is found in two habitats:

 1. It occurs as isolated clumps  or  patches  in  the  sparsely
    vegetated  lower  beach where it appears to be more tolerant
    of harsh environmental conditions than _Ammophila arenaria_.
 2. It is also sporadically dominant in the  first  beach  ridge
    where  it  forms  pure  stands  or  is  intermixed  with _A.
    arenaria_ and the native beachgrass  _Leymus  mollis_  Trin.
    (Pilger) (dune wildrye grass).

Like  _A.  arenaria_,  vigour of _A. breviligulata_ declines and
flowering ceases inland from the first beach  ridge  where  sand
movement  is  reduced.  Seabloom and Wiedemann (1994) documented
this pattern in beaches of Washington State.

_Ammophila breviligulata_ is distinguished from _A. arenaria_ by
smaller ligules (1-3 mm versus 10-30 mm long in _A.  arenaria_),
wider  and  less  inrolled leaves, longer flower spike (25-35 cm
versus 15-25 cm long in _A. arenaria_), and  scaly  rather  than
puberulent  leaf  veins  on  the  upper leaf surface (Hitchcock,
1950). Vegetative material may also  be  confused  with  _Leymus
mollis_.  However, leaves of _Leymus mollis_ are typically wider
(15-20 mm versus 5-15 mm long  in  _A.  breviligulata_  and  are
distinctly   glaucous   compared   to  yellowish  green  in  _A.
breviligulata_. As well, _L. mollis_ generally has auricles  and
has puberulent rather than scaly leaf veins.

Based  on  the  presence  of  _Ammophila breviligulata_ in older
beach vegetation on the west coast of Vancouver  Island,  it  is
unlikely  that  it  was  introduced  recently.  It may have been
present since the first introduction of _A. arenaria_ in  1940's
on  Stubbs  Island in south Clayoquot Sound. Alternately, it may
have  dispersed  from  populations  introduced  in  Oregon   and
Washington  for  shore  stabilization.  Seabloom  and  Wiedemann
(1994) used the distinct transition between older _A.  arenaria_
communities  and  more  recent _A. breviligulata_ communities to
establish the approximate date of invasion  along  the  southern
Washington coast. _Ammophila breviligulata_ was first introduced
on  the  Clatsop  Peninsula  in  northern Oregon in 1935 and has
invaded northward through the dispersal  of  rhizome  fragments.
However,  although _A. breviligulata_ is present from the Colum-
bia River to the Olympic Peninsula, it  is  the  dominant  beach
grass  only  within 75 km of the original introduction site. The
dominance of _A.  breviligulata_  at  several  Vancouver  Island
beaches may indicate a second point of introduction in proximity
to Clayoquot Sound.

_Ammophila breviligulata_ appears to have been overlooked during
previous  botanical  surveys in coastal British Columbia because
of its superficial resemblance  to  either  _Leymus  mollis_  or
_Ammophila  arenaria_, depending on vigour and whether flowering
panicles were present. In particular, it  was  not  noted  in  a
comprehensive assessment of beach plant communities in Wickanin-
nish  Beach  in  Pacific  Rim  National Park Reserve by Kuramoto
(1965). How its presence might change management  activities  to
control  _Ammophila_  species along beaches on the west coast of
Vancouver Island  is  unknown.  Seabloom  and  Wiedemann  (1994)
concluded   that  _A.  breviligulata_  and  _A.  arenaria_  were
ecologically similar and both depress native plant diversity  in
beach vegetation.

References:

Hickman,  J.C.  (ed.)  1993. The Jepson Manual: Higher Plants of
   California. University of California Press, Berkeley.
Hitchcock, A.S. 1950. Manual of Grasses of  the  United  States.
   U.S. Government Printing Press, Washington, DC.
Kartesz,  J.T.  1999.  A  Synonymized  Checklist  and Atlas with
   Biological Attributes for the Vascular Flora  of  the  United
   States,  Canada,  and  Greenland. First Edition. In: Kartesz,
   J.T., and C.A.  Meacham.  Synthesis  of  the  North  American
   Flora,  Version  1.0. North Carolina Botanical Garden, Chapel
   Hill, NC.
Kuramoto, R.T. 1965. Plant Associations and  Succession  in  the
   Vegetation of the Sand Dunes of Long Beach, Vancouver Island.
   University  of  British  Columbia,  Department of Botany, Un-
   published M.Sc. thesis.
Seabloom, E.W. and A.M. Wiedemann. 1994.  Distribution  and  ef-
   fects    of   _Ammophila   breviligulata_   Fern.   (American
   beachgrass) on the foredunes of the Washington coast. Journal
   of Coastal Research 10 (1): 178-188.
Wiedemann, A.M. and A. Pickart. l996. The _Ammophila_ problem on
   the Northwest Coast of North  America.  Landscape  and  Urban
   Planning 34: 287-299.

Contact information:
Any  questions  or  comments  should  be  directed to Nick Page,
Institute for Resources and Environment, University  of  British
Columbia at [napage at interchange.ubc.ca]. Information or opinions
on  the  potential  ecological  effects  and control methods for
_Ammophila breviligulata_ are welcomed.


NEW VARIETY OF CORALLORHIZA MACULATA (ORCHIDACEAE) IN WASHINGTON
From: Tisch, E.L. 2001. _Corallorhiza maculata_  var.  _ozetten-
   sis_ (Orchidaceae), a new coral-root from coastal Washington.
   _Madrono_ 48: 40-42.

_Corallorhiza  maculata_  var.  _ozettensis_  Tisch  is  a newly
described orchid from western Washington.  It  occurs  in  foggy
rainforests  bordering  the  Pacific  coast of the north Olympic
Peninsula. Unlike typical _C. maculata_, its flowers are consis-
tently non-spotted, with a narrow, white  labellum  bearing  two
apical undulations and low, non-rugose basal lamellae.

Key to three varieties of _Corallorhiza maculata_ (Raf.) Raf. in
   coastal Washington:

1. Labellum  white  at  early anthesis (darkening with age), its
   lateral nerves usually simple; the  margins  of  its  central
   lobe sub-entire
   ............................  _C. maculata_ var. _ozettensis_

1. Labellum  usually  white,  spotted  with  purple, its lateral
   nerves often prominently branched; the central lobe  distally
   crenate-undulate.

   2. Central lobe of labellum distinctly expanded, its broadest
      distal  portion  > 1.5 times  wider  than its base; labial
      apex broadly rounded to retuse
      .........  _C. maculata_ var. _occidentalis_ (Lindl.) Ames

   2. Central lobe of labellum slightly if at all expanded,  its
      broadest  distal  portion < 1.5 times wider than its base;
      labial apex narrowly rounded to acute
      ...........................  _C. maculata_ var. _maculata_

_Corallorhiza maculata_ var. _ozettensis_ grows in moist, foggy,
very shady  to  moderately  illuminated  forests  bordering  the
northwest  coastline  of  the  Olympic Peninsula. The collection
sites, all within 300 m of the Pacific Ocean, are overstoried by
mixture  of  _Picea   sitchensis_,   _Thuja   plicata_,   _Tsuga
heterophylla_  in  the  tree  layer;  _Vaccinium alaskense_, _V.
ovatum_, _V. parvifolium_  and  _Menziesia  ferruginea_  in  the
shrub  layer. The common herb associates are _Blechnum spicant_,
_Polystichum  munitum_,   _Maianthemum   dilatatum_,   _Tiarella
trifoliata_, _Listera caurina_, and _L. cordata_.


YELLOW CEDAR PLANT PRESSES
From: Nick Golinski [plantpress at hotmail.com]

Plant   presses   constructed  of  yellow-cedar  (_Chamaecyparis
nootkatensis_) are for sale for $35 CDN + postage.  Presses  are
standard  size  (12" x 18" = ca. 30 cm x 46 cm ), with 4 lateral
and 6 horizontal slats that are nailed and glued  for  increased
sturdiness. Included for your convenience are two 1" x 5ft. (ca.
2.5  cm x 1.5 m) nylon straps with plastic buckles. Cardboard is
not provided. Yellow-cedar is noted for its  durability,  light-
ness  and  strength.  The wood used for making the presses comes
from top-quality off-cuts (e.g., from  mouldings,  boat-building
materials, etc.).

For  orders or more information, please contact Nick Golinski at
plantpress at hotmail.com


BOOK REVIEW: SPANISH BOTANISTS TREAT NORTH AMERICAN VEGETATION
From: Toby Spribille [toby.spribille at gmx.de] and
      Adolf Ceska [aceska at victoria.tc.ca]
Rivas-Martinez, S., D. Sanchez-Mata, D. & M. Costa. 1999.  North
   American  boreal  and  western  temperate  forest vegetation.
   (Syntaxonomical  synopsis  of  the  potential  natural  plant
   communities  of North America, II). _Itinera geobotanica_ 12:
   5-316. Colour map  in  map  pocket.  Madrid.  ISSN  0213-8530
   [hardcover]

Available from the authors at dsmata at eucmax.sim.ucm.es in

This  book  presents  a forest vegetation classification for the
coniferous forests of temperate and boreal North  America  based
on  field data obtained during the travels of a group of Spanish
vegetation  scientists  from  Madrid,  led  by  Salvador  Rivas-
Martinez.  It  is  the  second  in a series of monographs by the
Madrid working group on North  American  vegetation  formations,
the  first  being  a  work  on  the arid regions of the American
Southwest and Mexican Sonora (_Itinera geobotanica_  10,  1997).
Like  the  first  monograph,  the  present  volume  is concerned
primarily with obtaining a large-scale overview of  climate  and
vegetation types.

One  is  introduced  into  the work by a comprehensive review of
bioclimatology, the study of the  relationship  between  climate
and living things, and the premises of the worldwide bioclimatic
classification. We are then led through an overview of terms and
concepts  in  climatology, geobotany and biogeographic typology.
This is followed by a complete biogeographic typology  of  North
America, divided into sectors and subsectors.

The  next  part  of the book delves into the vegetation of these
sectors and subsectors. The  methods  discussion  is  brief  and
consists  primarily  of  references  used for identification and
nomenclature and explanation of what is contained in the tables;
it gives little insight into how associations and  higher  units
were derived and how synonymies were decided. However, it can be
concluded that the authors visited zonal vegetation types in the
various  bioclimatic  sectors and subsectors and made vegetation
releves, and put these together into tables largely on the basis
of occurrence in the same region. There is  little  evidence  of
actual tablework with these releves and certainly no evidence of
any replicable numerical work.

The  authors  proceed to describe the hierarchy of the new class
_Linnaeo americanae-Piceetea marianae_ (supplemented by five new
forest classes in _Itinera geobotanica_ 13: 349-352, 1999),  and
numerous  new  orders, alliances and associations. Most of these
are  described  for  the  first  time.  Vegetation  tables   are
presented for every unit (although Table 16 is missing).

Although  the individual releves are likely quite representative
of the various bioclimatic regions from which they  were  taken,
the vegetation units which have been made out of them are often-
times  rather  dubious.  Phytosociological tables are often com-
prised of only few releves from  widely  scattered  areas,  with
little  in  common  except physiognomy. One example is Table 63,
made up of 6 releves from 5 states and provinces,  an  area  the
size  of western Europe. Some new associations are based on only
two releves, and often from very restricted areas. The  associa-
tion  _Oplopanaco-Alnetum rubrae_, for instance, is based on two
releves (Table 34) gathered a few kilometers from each other  in
northern  British  Columbia.  Table  31  is also an example of a
table  where  all  releves  are  gathered  from  within  a   few
kilometers  of  each other. This is not necessarily illegitimate
in itself, but it does give cause to reflect on the scope of the
book. For the purposes of comparison, it is useful to point  out
that  the  number  of  published  releves presented in this book
(about 450) divided by the size of the study area (an  estimated
12,000,000  sq. km)  would  translate to a density of one releve
every 25,000 sq. km, or about 20 for the area of Spain.

Some of the tables are so unconvincing they  actually  serve  to
undermine  the  units which they are meant to demonstrate. Table
39, for instance, is a brief synoptic table  of  two  alliances,
_Piceo-Abietion  bifoliae_ and _Pino-Pseudotsugion glaucae_. Our
attention is drawn to the rather empty box of alliance character
taxa for  the  former.  This  group  of  ecologically  unrelated
species has no diagnostic value and obviously does not represent
a group of character species by any definition.

Another  unfortunate  distraction for the floristically inclined
are the disturbingly numerous taxonomic  misidentifications  and
simply impossible species. Examples include, but are by no means
limited  to,  _Brachypodium  sylvaticum_,  given in many tables,
which is not  found  in  northwestern  North  American  forests,
_Vancouveria  hexandra_,  a  conspicuous plant reported from the
botanically well-known Goldstream Provincial Park  on  Vancouver
Island (Table 19), which would be new for Canada, and _Aquilegia
coerulea_,  a  plant  of  talus  in the central Rocky Mountains,
reported from forests of Klickitat County Washington (Table 20).
Furthermore, species  lists  for  well-known  communities  which
typically have 45-50 vascular plant species per releve have only
15-20  listed.  The  listing  of  _Bryophyta gen. et sp. pl._ in
numerous tables (esp. Tables 10-12 and 67-69) is inexcusable.

Some clarification on the methods for synonymization of  syntaxa
would  have  been useful. Without this, lists of plant community
synonyms appear rather arbitrary.  For  instance,  an  order  of
western  montane  forests  first  described  by  V.J. Krajina is
listed as a synonym of the  quite  different  order  of  eastern
boreal  forests  _Gaultherio-Piceetalia_. The order _Betuletalia
pumilae-glanduliferae_,  described  by  S. Kojima  (_Phytocoeno-
logia_ 14: 1-17, 1986)  for mire  communities in  Banff National  
Park,  is  subsumed  under the new and completely unrelated sub-
arctic order _Ledo decumbentis-Betuletalia glandulosae_.

A  number  of  inconsistencies in the tables and text could also
cause confusion. As one example, in Table 36 (_Alno tenuifoliae-
Populetum trichocarpae_), releve 1 is  designated  as  the  type
releve, but in the list of releves provided at the end, releve 3
is  given  as the type. To further confuse things, the floristic
composition of the type releve  listed  in  the  text  does  not
correspond  to  the  same releve in the table. Furthermore, con-
stancies are also commonly miscalculated in the tables.

One of the most disheartening aspects of not  only  the  present
book,  but  also  the  authors'  previous work on North American
deserts, is the virtual disregard for the vast amount of vegeta-
tion research which has taken place in  the  region  under  con-
sideration,   including   basic   descriptive  community  class-
ification. Literally thousands of  pages  of  literature,  basic
descriptions  and  ecological and floristic characterizations in
the form of published articles, theses and technical reports are
completely disregarded or afforded only  passing  mention  -  or
subsumed  as  synonyms  under  the various "newly" described as-
sociations, alliances and orders. It is not that  Rivas-Martínez
and  his  colleagues  were  entirely  unaware  of  this research
either, as they cite some of it and synonymize names  liberally.
It  is  untenable  to  ignore  previous works (phytosociological
groupings and synecological observations) only because the names
their authors used did not comply with the International Code of
Phytosociological Nomenclature.

The Braun-Blanquet method applied in this work has  been  highly
successful  in the study of European vegetation and its applica-
tion is spreading. In North America it  is  an  obvious  way  to
standardize  the  study  of  vegetation and unify the results of
many diverse, endemic classification systems. Unfortunately, the
publication by Rivas-Martinez et al. does not help this effort.

[Note: This book was also reviewed  by  Dieter  Mueller  Dombois
(_Phytocoenologia_  30: 269-271,  2000)  and  by Michael Barbour
(_Journal for Vegetation Science_ 12: 593-594, 2001).]

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