Lecture_Test_1_Notes - NRM 3501 Plant ID(Test#1 Aug 31st...

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NRM 3501 Plant ID (Test #1) Aug. 31 st : Biological Species- way of classifying by distinguishing characteristics, common gene pool, inter-fertile, viable offspring Grass- linear leaf, herbaceous (not woody), monocot, a plant that is in the grass family Forb- an herbaceous dicot Weed- defined by utility, “if I don’t want it it’s a weed” Difference between shrub and tree, short/tall, branches at base/top, BOTH woody Classification: Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species (King Philip Chewed Orange Flavored Gum Sticks) Grasslands of North America: From Canada Mexico / Indiana California Originally 300,000,000 ha (39% of US) Now 125,000,000 ha (16%) Floristically, grasses may make up less than 20% of the species richness of a grassland-BUT grasses make up more than 75% of the biomass, and fluctuations in biomass are closely tied to climate change in grasslands. In the Great Plains: Northern Great Plains Central Great Plains *look @ latitude & longitude Southern Great Plains short-----------mid grass---------tall--- Soils do strange things to plants / over-rides the effects of climate Southern Great Plains: Precipitation: 15-20” (west) 75% of which occurs 35-40” (east) between April & Sept. Evaporation: approx. 100” (west) 70” (east) rainfall + evaporation = soil depth soil water soil reaction nutrient cycling caliche- white, made from limestone precipitation/evaporation ratio < 1 Boundaries- ecotones: transitional zone between two communities containing the characteristic species of each
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Sept. 2 nd : Southern High Plains: West East : Short Tall grasses North Eastern New Mexico: short grass plains--blue gramma & buffalo grass Central Oklahoma: mid-grass prairie—side oats gramma & little blue stem *double the rainfall of N.E. NM West East: rainfall increases, more productive soil, good potential for biomass Eastern forest & prairie melt together; line fluctuates due to fires and rain fall South Western Missouri: West East Short Mid Tall Plant structure changes with direction (internodes stretch) Most of the biomass in grasslands is below ground, roots are more extensive then tops When blue gramma is the predominate grass in an area there isn’t much bare space it spreads out Question: What does cracking/swelling of ground do to plants roots?? Breaks them Lots of moisture and sand causes taller plants Sept. 4 th : -heavy clay soils in playa lakes get large cracks in bottom -gilgai-patters of high and low lands in playa lakes w/ cracks -ephemeral wetlands-playa lakes; wet then dry; cracking -the cracks tear up the root systems of grasses (petro perturbation) -probably don’t have mesquites and woody plants in basins because the roots can’t handle the cracking of the land -blue grama typically a bunch grass with spaces in between (does not cover like a mat): can grow laterally and right next to each other through stolons -grasslands in N. America: Great Plains—6 mil years old, plants have co-evolved
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Lecture_Test_1_Notes - NRM 3501 Plant ID(Test#1 Aug 31st...

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