Applied Vegetation Science

Cover image for Vol. 17 Issue 4

Early View (Online Version of Record published before inclusion in an issue)

Chief Editors: Milan Chytrý, with Alessandro Chiarucci, Valerio Pillar, Meelis Pärtel (Chair of the Editors)

Impact Factor: 2.416

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2013: 7/64 (Forestry); 55/196 (Plant Sciences); 58/140 (Ecology)

Online ISSN: 1654-109X

Associated Title(s): Journal of Vegetation Science


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  1. Original Articles

    1. Landscape context in colonization of restored dry grasslands by target species

      Karel Prach, Karel Fajmon, Ivana Jongepierová and Klára Řehounková

      Article first published online: 21 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12140

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      We consider the strongest point of our paper is the large-scale of the study. We are not aware of any such extensive restoration of grasslands using a species-rich regional seed mixture. The restoration was organized by our colleague Ivana Jongepierová (see photo) and without her enthusiasm the restoration, and thus this study, could not be possible to realize.

    2. Climatic characterization of forest zones across administrative boundaries improves conservation planning

      Heather A. Klassen and Philip J. Burton

      Article first published online: 21 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12143

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      The full climatic niche for British Columbia's Coastal Douglas-fir forest zone is determined from its mapped distribution and georeferenced plot data in the neighbouring USA. A new subzone is characterized, and the potential distribution of the extended zone is projected under a changing climate to identify climate refugia. For sensitive ecosystems with multi-jurisdictional distributions, this approach helps focus conservation efforts.

    3. Changes in landscape composition of differently irrigated hay meadows in an arid mountain region

      Eliane Riedener, Ramona L. Melliger, Hans-Peter Rusterholz and Bruno Baur

      Article first published online: 21 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12141

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      We examined consequences of a change in irrigation technique (from traditional flooding to sprinkler irrigation) for the plant diversity of species-rich hay meadows and the surrounding landscape in an arid Swiss mountain region. The installation of sprinklers was associated with a homogenisation of the landscape. The highly structured surroundings are important for the conservation of the meadows' plant diversity.

    4. Three decades of vegetation changes in peatlands isolated in an agricultural landscape

      Salomé Pasquet, Stéphanie Pellerin and Monique Poulin

      Article first published online: 21 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12142

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      We examined vegetation changes over three decades in temperate peatlands isolated in agricultural landscapes and affected by a recent fire. Results showed noteworthy species turnover with a significant forest cover increase in margins and post-fire succession through non-peatland to peatland species in the centre. The broader implication is that peatland conservation in highly modified landscapes must be linked to restoration.

  2. Special Feature: East Asian Forests

    1. Climatic effects on plant species distribution within the forest–steppe ecotone in northern China

      Hongyan Liu, Yi Yin, Qiuyi Wang and Siyuan He

      Article first published online: 15 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12139

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      Through paired plots of forest and steppe at 68 sites in the 2300 km long temperate forest-steppe ecotone in northern China, we found that temperature accounted more for plant species distribution of both forest and steppe than precipitation does, different from expected. Climate did not change the floristic distance between the forest understory and steppe at site level.

  3. Original Articles

    1. Vegetation dynamics of managed Mediterranean forests 16 yr after large fires in southeastern Spain

      Raquel Alfaro-Sánchez, Raúl Sánchez-Salguero, Jorge De las Heras, Enrique Hernández-Tecles, Daniel Moya and Francisco R. López-Serrano

      Article first published online: 15 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12137

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      Early treatments applied to post-fire regenerated P. halepensis forests of southeastern Spain, including removal of the understorey vegetation and thinning, are a suitable option to reduce fire hazards in the short term and to enhance the diversity indices when applied to very high tree density post-fire regenerated stands, even in areas with very limited resources such as semi-arid ecosystems.

    2. Land-use history and an invasive grass affect tallgrass prairie sedge community composition

      Devan Allen McGranahan, David M. Engle, John T. Mulloy, James R. Miller and Diane M. Debinski

      Article first published online: 30 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12136

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      Little research has reported on the abundance and diversity of upland grassland sedges (Cyperaceae). We found 21 species across five genera. Sedges averaged 23% of total plant cover in intact tallgrass prairie. Sedges provide substantial early-season forage for grazers. Although community composition varied with land-use history and across levels of an invasive species, diversity was unaffected by grazing history.

    3. Post-ranching tree–grass interactions in secondary Acacia zanzibarica woodlands in coastal Tanzania – an experimental study

      Roland Cochard, Peter J. Edwards and Ewald Weber

      Article first published online: 17 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12134

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      When clearings were created in secondary Acacia zanzibarica woodlands, resprouting occurred from acacia stumps and roots, and many seedlings established. The absence of ungulate grazing allowed prolific grass growth and associated competition for water. Acacia seedlings were killed and sprout densities decreased in the dry season, partly as a result of fires. Woodlands did not readily regenerate; clearings remained.

  4. Forum

    1. On the combination of species cover values from different vegetation layers

      Hagen S. Fischer

      Article first published online: 17 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12130

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      There is no standard in the definition of vegetation layers when recording relevés. The paper presents a universal formula to combine two or more cover values when relevés from different data sources are pooled.

  5. Original Articles

    1. Changes in the fruiting landscape relax restrictions on endozoochorous tree dispersal into deforested lands

      Daniel Martínez and Daniel García

      Article first published online: 17 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12135

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      Passive reforestation is scarce and spatially constrained, as few tree seeds arrive far from remnant forest. We show how dynamism in fruiting landscapes can relax restrictions on seed dispersal into deforested areas. An increase in fruit production by isolated trees remaining within those areas influenced frugivore activity resulting in more seeds dispersed out of the forest and further from it.

    2. Long-term climate forcings to assess vulnerability in North Africa dry argan woodlands

      Francisca Alba-Sánchez, José Antonio López-Sáez, Diego Nieto-Lugilde and Jens-Christian Svenning

      Article first published online: 15 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12133

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      North African dry woodlands constitute Mediterranean climatic-ecotone ecosystems of vital importance for human livelihoods and local biodiversity. To improve the basis for managing these key ecosystems, we have selected a Tertiary relict woodland (Argania spinosa) in order to clarify the sensitivity to long-term climate change (the present, the past glacial-interglacial cycle, and under future scenarios).

    3. Understanding long-term effects of topsoil removal in peatlands: overcoming thresholds for fen meadows restoration

      Agata Klimkowska, David J.D. van der Elst and Albert P. Grootjans

      Article first published online: 9 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12127

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      In the study we explore the long-term effects of topsoil removal on peat soils for fen meadow restoration. The vegetation and key soil characteristics were monitored. We found a delay in the vegetation recovery, due to acidification after pyrite oxidation. After groundwater discharge was successfully increased, a rapid recovery in the vegetation was observed.

    4. The rise and fall of Leptospermum laevigatum: plant community change associated with the invasion and senescence of a range-expanding native species

      Luke S. O'Loughlin, Peter T. Green and John W. Morgan

      Article first published online: 8 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12131

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      Shrub invasions often alter ground layer vegetation but the permanence of these changes is sometimes unclear. The study of plant community patterns across a chronosequence of Leptospermum laevigatum invasion and senescence found that canopy gaps promoted higher species diversity and created a community composition more similar to an uninvaded state. Gaps provided increased habitat heterogeneity in an otherwise uniform landscape.

    5. Strategies for restoring tree seedling recruitment in high conservation value tropical montane forests underplanted with cardamom

      Balram Dhakal, Michelle A. Pinard, I.A.U. Nimal Gunatilleke, C.V. Savitri Gunatilleke and David F.R.P. Burslem

      Article first published online: 4 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12129

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      We examined the strategies for restoring tree seedling recruitment in a high conservation value tropical forest disturbed by planting cardamom plants in its understorey. Results demonstrated that promoting cardamom population decline through minimal management of the crop stands is the most effective strategy for restoring tree regeneration although removal of relict cardamom plants also promotes tree seedling recruitment in forests.

    6. Impacts of prairie grass species restoration on plant community invasibility and soil processes in abandoned agricultural fields

      Wendy M. Mahaney, Katherine L. Gross, Christopher B. Blackwood and Kurt A. Smemo

      Article first published online: 21 AUG 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12128

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      We examine how the strategic selection of native prairie species for restoration can address problems commonly encountered during agricultural land restoration. Restoration using prairie grasses with particular traits reduced N cycling and availability, and led to a decrease in invasion by undesirable species from adjacent unrestored sites.

    7. Succession in salt marshes – large-scale and long-term patterns after abandonment of grazing and drainage

      Franziska Rupprecht, Antonia Wanner, Martin Stock and Kai Jensen

      Article first published online: 18 AUG 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12126

  6. Reports

    1. The Tropical managed Forests Observatory: a research network addressing the future of tropical logged forests

      Plinio Sist, Ervan Rutishauser, Marielos Peña-Claros, Alexander Shenkin, Bruno Hérault, Lilian Blanc, Christopher Baraloto, Fidèle Baya, Fabrice Benedet, Katia Emidio da Silva, Laurent Descroix, Joice Nunes Ferreira, Sylvie Gourlet-Fleury, Marcelino Carneiro Guedes, Ismail Bin Harun, Riina Jalonen, Milton Kanashiro, Haruni Krisnawati, Mrigesh Kshatriya, Philippa Lincoln, Lucas Mazzei, Vincent Medjibé, Robert Nasi, Marcus Vinicius N. d'Oliveira, Luis C. de Oliveira, Nicolas Picard, Stephan Pietsch, Michelle Pinard, Hari Priyadi, Francis. E. Putz, Ken Rodney, Vivien Rossi, Anand Roopsind, Ademir Roberto Ruschel, Nur Hajar Zamah Shari, Cintia Rodrigues de Souza, Farida Herry Susanty, Eleneide Doff Sotta, Marisol Toledo, Edson Vidal, Thales A.P. West, Verginia Wortel and Toshihiro Yamada

      Article first published online: 28 JUL 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12125

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      To improve our knowledge of the resilience of tropical logged forests, 20 research institutes are now collaborating on studies on the effects of logging on forest structure, productivity, biodiversity and carbon fluxes at large spatial and temporal scales. These studies are carried out in the Tropical managed Forests Observatory (TmFO), an international network including 24 sites and 490 permanent sample plots across South America, Africa and South East Asia.

  7. Special Feature: East Asian Forests

    1. Leaf traits in dominant species from different secondary successional stages of deciduous forest on the Loess Plateau of northern China

      Yongfu Chai, Xiao Liu, Ming Yue, Jiangchao Guo, Mao Wang, Pengcheng Wan, Xiaofei Zhang and Chenguang Zhang

      Article first published online: 28 JUL 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12123

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      The need to understand community dynamics through trait-based approaches is increasingly emphasized. Here, we examine changes in 22 leaf traits during succession and identify the changes in plant ecological strategies during secondary succession in the Loess Plateau ecosystem. The results confirm our hypothesis that shifts in leaf traits are different during forest succession, and that there is a combination of leaf traits that can be used to discriminate between the succession stages.

    2. Classification of Korean forests: patterns along geographic and environmental gradients

      Tomáš Černý, Martin Kopecký, Petr Petřík, Jong-Suk Song, Miroslav Šrůtek, Milan Valachovič, Jan Altman and Jiří Doležal

      Article first published online: 28 JUL 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12124

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      We provide the first comprehensive classification of Korean forest vegetation based on 3847 relevés classified by hierarchical ISOPAM method. We distinguished 11 forest types well separated along elevational and temperature gradients. These 11 forest types are further grouped into three main vegetation clusters, which are clearly separated by species groups with contrasting migration histories during the postglacial period.

  8. Original Articles

    1. Mapping continuous forest type variation by means of correlating remotely sensed metrics to canopy N:P ratio in a boreal mixedwood forest

      Kemal Gökkaya, Valerie Thomas, Thomas Noland, Harry McCaughey, Ian Morrison and Paul Treitz

      Article first published online: 9 JUL 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12122

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      Vegetation N:P ratio is an index of nutrient limitation and availability in plant communities. We predicted N:P ratio using imaging spectroscopy and LiDAR data in a boreal mixedwood forest canopy. The deciduous and coniferous forest type variation is the underlying mechanism that generates the observed spatial pattern in canopy N:P ratio, which is displayed by the N:P ratio maps.

    2. Functional diversity and grazing intensity in sub-alpine and alpine grasslands in Andorra

      Benjamin Komac, Clara Pladevall, Marta Domènech and Rosario Fanlo

      Article first published online: 29 JUN 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12119

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      This paper uses a combination of three different functional diversity indices and structural equation modelling in subalpine and alpine grassland communities in Andorra to understand the effects of grazing intensity on functional diversity and improve biodiversity conservation management. Our results highlight that grazing, a structural component of these mountain grasslands, leads to greater functional richness in the most grazed communities.

    3. Discriminant analysis reveals limited association between forest habitat types and the environment in western United States land classification

      Antonín Kusbach, John D. Shaw and James N. Long

      Article first published online: 27 JUN 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12121

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      We performed critical assessment of associations between units of the habitat type system and physiographic, climatic, and soils factors in interior western United States land classifications based on 2754 plots from the extensive FIA database, representing 185 different habitat types. Given its broad acceptance and importance in land management, a fundamental reexamination of the habitat type concept is warranted.

  9. Special Feature: East Asian Forests

    1. The geographical distribution and differentiation of Chinese beech forests and the association with Quercus

      Ze-Hao Shen, Jing-Yun Fang, Ching-An Chiu and Tze-Ying Chen

      Article first published online: 28 APR 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12108

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      As a dominant temperate forest type, beech forests in China are uniquely restricted in the subtropic mountains by precipitation seasonality of the monsoon climate, and differentiated on both temperature and moisture gradients among the community types. Within species ranges, the local abundance of oak in the beech forest is significantly regulated by topography.

    2. Contribution of environmental filtering and dispersal limitation to species turnover of temperate deciduous broad-leaved forests in China

      Yining Liu, Zhiyao Tang and Jingyun Fang

      Article first published online: 10 MAR 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12101

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      We applied different ways to study the relative importance of environmental filtering and dispersal limitation shaping species composition of temperate deciduous broadleaf forests in China. All three different approaches illustrate stronger effect of environmental filtering than that of dispersal limitation, indicating that the distribution of most species in temperate forests of China may be limited by the environments.

    3. The role of tree-fall gaps in the natural regeneration of birch forests in the Taibai Mountains

      Jianyi Y Ren, Abdulrashid Kadir and Ming Yue

      Article first published online: 15 JAN 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12090

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      In the Taibai Mountains, birch forests dominated by Betula albo-sinensis and Betula utilis are considered unsustainable for regeneration barriers. Tree-fall gaps play a central role in the natural regeneration of trees. In this study, seed germination and seedling emergence in gap and non-gap plots were investigated to explore the role of tree-fall gaps in the natural regeneration of birch forests.


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