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Old‐Growth Northern Hardwood Forests in Northeastern Minnesota

Flaccus, Edward, Ohmann, Lewis F.
Ecology 1964 v.45 no.3 pp. 448-459
Acer saccharum, Betula alleghaniensis, Clintonia borealis, Tilia americana, canopy, clay, exchangeable cations, glacial till, hardwood forests, herbs, highlands, nitrogen content, shrubs, soil horizons, stand composition, texture, Lake Superior, Minnesota, Wisconsin
Ten essentially undisturbed old—growth stands, growing on upland, well—drained sites, were sampled to describe the composition of the northern hardwood forest in a region close to its western limits. Nine of the ten stands lie in a belt along the north shore of Lake Superior. Acer saccharum and Betula lutea are the most important canopy dominants to the north, with Tilia americana added southward. The shrub layer is limited; the majority of herbs are spring—flowering, and highest presence—frequency indices are shown by Streptopus roseus, Clintonia borealis, and Maianthemum canadense. A₁, A₂, and B₂ soil horizons were analyzed for texture, exchangeable cations, and total nitrogen. The soils are mostly sandy loams, sandy clay loams, and loams, of Brown Podsolic or moderate Podsol type, developed from glacial till. Stand composition is compared with that of ten stands, lying eastward in Wisconsin and westward in Minnesota, from published studies by others. Species changes along east—west and north—south topoclines are described.