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The Center for Native Grasslands Management




Title: Species selection for native grassland establishment and restoration in the Black Belt Region of Mississippi and Alabama
Year: 2010
Author(s): Seymour, W.
Source Title:
Source Type: Proceedings
pages: 22
Original Publication: http://nativegrasses.utk.edu/publications/ENGSproceedings_web.pdf  
Abstract: The Black Belt Region of Mississippi and Alabama is characterized by thin calcareous alkaline soils overlaying Upper Cretaceous marine deposits. These soils fostered and supported significant areas of native grasslands pre‐European influence. In 2009, we conducted a botanical survey on a 250-acre prairie remnant in Chickasaw County, Mississippi, documenting the vascular flora and defining the vegetation types on the site. The study documented 452 taxa in 234 genera and 74 families with a non-native species occurrence of only 7.4 percent. The highly diverse flora documented contained 14 species with little or no prior record in Mississippi, 16 species listed for “tracking” or “watchlist” by Mississippi Natural Heritage Programs, and 3 species that appear to be undescribed taxa. The study methods gave particular emphasis to documenting the vegetation type within which each species was found. In addition, detailed frequency data were collected for each species located with 265 grassland species. Three primary vegetation types were identified on the study site. A synthesis of the species frequency data by vegetation type is being used to formulate seed mixes for establishment and restoration of native grasslands in the upland Black Belt ecological region. Diverse seed mixes are proposed to provide self-perpetuating plant communities consisting of the dominant grass, forb, and legume species found in this region.
Publisher: Proceedings of the Seventh Eastern Native Grass Symposium. Knoxville, TN, October 5-8, 2010
Editor(s): C. Harper
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