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Burning Characteristics of Needles from Eight Pine Species

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Abstract:

Ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa), Jeffrey pine (P. jeffreyi), longleaf pine (P. palustris), and south Florida slash pine (P. elliottii var. densa) are fire resisters. Trees of these species are able to survive the direct effects of wildfires. Monterey pine (P. radiata), knobcone pine (P. attenuata), sand pine (P. clausa), and jack pine (P. banksiana) are fire evaders. Trees of these species are killed by wildfire, but species survive on the postfire site via seed germination. Needles were burned in a 2×2 factorial experiment to compare these eight species, all of which are prominent in fire-related communities. The experiment tested two factors—fire adaptive strategy (resisters vs. evaders), geographic region (western vs. eastern United States)—and interactions between those two factors. Flame height, flame time, ember time, burn time, percent fuel combusted, and mean rate of weight loss were measured. Longleaf pine, ponderosa pine, and south Florida slash pine had the highest values for flame height, percent fuel combusted, and mean rate of weight loss. Knobcone pine and Monterey pine had the longest ember time and burn time. Sand pine and jack pine had the longest flame time. Resisters tested highest in flame height, percent fuel combusted, and mean rate of weight loss. Evaders had greater flame and burn times. Western pines were significantly greater than eastern pines in all burning characteristics except flame time and mean rate of weight loss. Significant interactions between fire adaptive strategy and geographic region existed for all burning characteristics except mean rate of weight loss. The interaction was accounted for primarily by differences between western evaders, which had some of the highest values for each characteristic, and eastern evaders, which had some of the lowest values. FOR. SCI. 47(2):390–396.

Keywords: Needle flammability; eastern pines; environmental management; fire evaders; fire resisters; forest; forest management; forest resources; forestry; forestry research; forestry science; natural resource management; natural resources; western pines

Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: Biology Department, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA, 98225-9160, Phone: (360) 650-6599; Fax: (360) 650-3148 fonda@biol.wwu.edu

Publication date: 2001-08-01

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2015 Impact Factor: 1.702
    Ranking: 16 of 66 in forestry

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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