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The Center for Native Grasslands Management

Projects: Other Studies


Burn Timing Study

Timing of prescribed burning may have important implications for plant communities and wildlife habitat within grassland/early successional settings. Preliminary studies in Tennessee and elsewhere suggest that late growing season burns (September) produce more desirable results, at least for controlling woody encroachment, than dormant season burns (March). However, effects of burns in late spring and early summer have not been tested.  We will test four burning dates in old-field/native grass settings at four locations in Tennessee.

Four replicates of each treatment (burn date) were installed in a randomized block design at each location.  Treatments are four burn dates, March 1, April 15, May 15, and Sept 1, 2007, and an unburned control.  Individual plots will be 100x100’, for a total of  7.1 ac at each location. Vegetation will be sampled using two perpendicular random transects in each plot with a modified line-intercept method.

Dr. Allan Houston (left) and the Ames burn crew conducting the March 1 burns in the Burn Timing Study in an old field site dominated by native grasses Ames Plantation Research and Education burn crew wraps up the initial burn of 2008: James Morrow (seated on dozer), (left to right) Jimmy Simmons, James "Hooch" McDonald and Larry Teague


Surface Mine Reclamation with Native Grasses

Seeding strategies to successfully establish NWSG on surface mine reclamation sites are essential if they are to be used as an herbaceous cover crop.  To date experience is limited and success low with these species in these settings.

NWSG may be an important component of reforestation efforts on these sites due to their compatibility with tree seedling growth and survival, especially versus various exotic species currently used.  No work has been initiated on this project at this time, but planning is underway to identify sites and partners.