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Keywords:

  • Life history strategy;
  • Microsite;
  • Pyrogenic community;
  • Resprouting
  • Wunderlin (1982)

Abstract. This study deals with a quantification of pre- and post-fire seedling establishment and microsite characteristics in two Florida sand pine scrub sites burned in May 1993. In addition, life history characteristics related to seedling establishment are described for five perennial species –Calamintha ashei, Chapmannia floridana, Eriogonum floridanum, Garberia heterophylla and Palafoxia feayi. Post-fire seedling establishment in sand pine scrub was sparse (median = 1, 12 seedling/m2), with 17 of 35 species establishing seedlings. Chapmannia, Eriogonum, Garberia and Palafoxia resprouted and flowered after fire; Eriogonum and Garberia had strong post-fire seedling establishment responses within 19 months post-fire. Calamintha individuals were killed by fire, but this species had a strong post-fire seedling establishment response, presumably from seeds in a soil seed bank. Eriogonum and Calamintha seedlings established preferentially in plots centered on conspecific adults. For these species with poor seed dispersal, spatial patterns of seedling establishment may be influenced more by pre-fire adult plant location than by post-fire microsite conditions. Post-fire seedling density in sand pine scrub was much lower than in California chaparral and South African sand plain lowland fynbos.