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Free Content Studies on the Plant Community of a North Florida Salt Marsh

Part I. Primary Production

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Juncus roemerianus is the dominant salt marsh angiosperm in northwestern Florida, and its growth and production was determined in three soil zones. Productivity of Spartina alterniflora and Distichlis spicata was also measured. Total net aerial production of J. roemerianus decreased landward from 949 g/m2/yr in low marsh to 595 g/m2/yr in upper marsh and 243 g/m2/yr in high marsh. Production of S. alterniflora also decreased landward from 700 g/m2/yr low marsh, 335 g/m2/yr upper marsh and 130 g/m2/yr high marsh. Height and diameter of Juncus leaves and diameter of rhizomes also decreased landward. Annual mean below ground biomass of Juncus was 3.7, 3.8, and 8.7 times the annual mean above ground biomass in low, upper, and high marsh zones.

Decomposition rates of Juncus and Spartina decreased landward and rates in low and upper marsh were higher than any previously reported for either species. Spartina decomposed faster than Juncus.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 1978

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  • The Bulletin of Marine Science is dedicated to the dissemination of high quality research from the world's oceans. All aspects of marine science are treated by the Bulletin of Marine Science, including papers in marine biology, biological oceanography, fisheries, marine affairs, applied marine physics, marine geology and geophysics, marine and atmospheric chemistry, and meteorology and physical oceanography.
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