Invalid Unit Specified
Association Detail Report: CEGL004763
Pinus taeda - Quercus alba / Chasmanthium sessiliflorum Forest

The U.S. National
Vegetation Classification
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Translated Name:Loblolly Pine - White Oak / Longleaf Woodoats Forest
Colloquial Name:East Gulf Coastal Plain Loblolly Pine - White Oak Forest
This forest of the East Gulf Coastal Plain is dominated by Pinus taeda and Quercus alba. It is a naturally occurring community which may bear some resemblance to, but should not be confused with, successional loblolly stands. Examples are most typically found on upper to midslopes in dissected topography both within the range of longleaf pine and north of this range. Pinus taeda and Quercus alba are the most constant and diagnostic species of this association. A number of other hardwoods may be present in stands but they occur in low levels of importance. Woody vines and shrubs may be frequent, and herbs are typically sparse and not very diverse. This forest tends to occur in landscapes affected by frequent fire, but this community is less fire-prone than adjacent upland vegetation.
No Data Available
The concept of this type is supported by plot data collected in Mississippi (NatureServe Ecology unpubl. data, R. Wieland unpubl. data). The type concept was originally somewhat broader as suggested by the inclusion of Quercus falcata as a nominal (which tends to occur on slightly drier sites in the region, and infrequently co-occurs with Quercus alba).
Synonomy: < IA6e. Loblolly Pine - Shortleaf Pine - Oak Forest (Allard 1990)

Related Type Name:

Short Citation:
  • Allard 1990
  • ALNHP 2002
  • McWilliams 1992
  • NatureServe Ecology - Southeastern U.S. unpubl. data
  • Nordman et al. 2011
  • Smith 1996a
  • Southeastern Ecology Working Group n.d.
  • Wieland 1994b
  • Wieland 2000b
  • Wieland unpubl. data
States/Provinces:AL, FL?, GA, LA?, MS
Range:This association is found in the East Gulf Coastal Plain of the United States.
US Forest Service Ecoregions
Domain Name:
Division Name:
Province Name:Southeastern Mixed Forest Province
Province Code:231   Occurrence Status:Confident or certain
Section Name:Coastal Plains and Flatwoods, Lower Section
Section Code:232B     Occurrence Status:Confident or certain
No Data Available
Stands of this association are dominated by Pinus taeda and Quercus alba, and these two species are the most constant and diagnostic species. Although the relative proportion of the two may vary somewhat between examples, in most cases Pinus taeda is strongly dominant followed by Quercus alba (NatureServe Ecology unpubl. data, R. Wieland unpubl. data). Other important trees recorded in some known examples of this association include Pinus echinata, Liquidambar styraciflua, Carya glabra, Carya alba, and Oxydendrum arboreum. Less commonly encountered species found in some stands currently attributed to this type are Pinus glabra, Magnolia macrophylla, Quercus coccinea, and Fagus grandifolia. Small amounts of other Quercus spp. may also be present (i.e., Quercus falcata and Quercus rubra), but if these are found in high relative abundance, they would be indicative of other associations. A number of subcanopy and shrub species may also be present, but none are considered particularly diagnostic. These can include Cornus florida, Acer rubrum, Ostrya virginiana var. virginiana, Prunus serotina var. serotina, Nyssa sylvatica, Ulmus alata, Hydrangea arborescens, Callicarpa americana, Hamamelis virginiana, Morella cerifera (= Myrica cerifera), Vaccinium elliottii, and Vaccinium arboreum. Woody vines are frequent; Vitis rotundifolia sometimes dominates the ground layer. Other vines include Berchemia scandens, Gelsemium sempervirens, Parthenocissus quinquefolia, Toxicodendron radicans, and Bignonia capreolata. Herbs tend to be sparse and not very diverse; Chasmanthium sessiliflorum may be dominant. Other herbs may include Elephantopus carolinianus, Botrychium dissectum, Polystichum acrostichoides, Sanicula smallii, Mitchella repens, Aristolochia serpentaria, Dichanthelium boscii, Euphorbia corollata, and Hypericum hypericoides.
Stands have been documented on somewhat moist, moderately well-drained, sandy soils on lower slopes near streams in the Coastal Plain of Mississippi (NatureServe Ecology unpubl. data, R. Wieland unpubl. data). Stands also occur on flat uplands with locally variable microtopography including evident depressional areas (R. Wieland unpubl. data) which are sometimes known as flatwoods.
Low - Poorly Documented
The natural dominance of Pinus taeda in this community indicates relatively infrequent fire-return intervals at least when compared with upland longleaf and/or shortleaf pine systems of the same region. However, the specific influence and historical importance of fire may vary between examples of this type. The overall fire-return intervals were likely quite low, but many examples may have burned due to proximity to more pyrogenic vegetation. However, Landers (1989) proposed that Pinus taeda habitats did not burn at all.
M. Pyne, S. Landaal, R.E. Evans      Version Date: 28Sep2005

  • Allard, D. J. 1990. Southeastern United States ecological community classification. Interim report, Version 1.2. The Nature Conservancy, Southeast Regional Office, Chapel Hill, NC. 96 pp.
  • ALNHP [Alabama Natural Heritage Program]. 2002. Eufaula National Wildlife Refuge: Natural community and rare plant survey. Alabama Natural Heritage Program, The Nature Conservancy, Montgomery.
  • McWilliams, W. H. 1992. Forest resources of Alabama. Resource Bulletin SO-170. USDA Forest Service, Southern Forest Experiment Station, New Orleans, LA. 78 pp.
  • NatureServe Ecology - Southeastern United States. No date. Unpublished data. NatureServe, Durham, NC.
  • Nordman, C., M. Russo, and L. Smart. 2011. Vegetation types of the Natchez Trace Parkway, based on the U.S. National Vegetation Classification. NatureServe Central Databases (International Ecological Classification Standard: Terrestrial Ecological Classifications). Arlington, VA. Data current as of 11 April 2011. 548 pp.
  • Smith, L. M., compiler. 1996a. Natural plant communities in Louisiana currently recognized by the Louisiana Natural Heritage Program. Unpublished document. Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Natural Heritage Program, Baton Rouge. 2 pp.
  • Southeastern Ecology Working Group of NatureServe. No date. International Ecological Classification Standard: International Vegetation Classification. Terrestrial Vegetation. NatureServe, Durham, NC.
  • Wieland, R. G. 1994b. Mississippi Natural Heritage Program: Ecological communities. Unpublished document. Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, Museum of Natural Science, Natural Heritage Program, Jackson, MS. 7 pp.
  • Wieland, R. G. 2000b. Ecological communities of Mississippi: Mississippi Natural Heritage Program. Unpublished document. Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, Museum of Natural Science, Natural Heritage Program, Jackson, MS. 8 pp.
  • Wieland, Ron G. Unpublished data. Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks, Museum of Natural Science, Natural Heritage Program, Jackson, MS.

USNVC Credits: Detailed Description of the National Vegetation Classification Types

Date Accessed:

To cite a description:
Author(s). publicationYear. Description Title [last revised revisionDate]. United States National Vegetation Classification. Federal Geographic Data Committee, Washington, D.C.

About spatial standards:
The United States Federal Geographic Data Committee (hereafter called the FGDC) is tasked to develop geospatial data standards that will enable sharing of spatial data among producers and users and support the growing National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI), acting under the Office of Management Budget (OMB) Circular A-16 (OMB 1990, 2000) and Executive Order #12906 (Clinton 1994) as amended by Executive Order #13286 (Bush 2003). FGDC subcommittees and working groups, in consultation and cooperation with state, local, tribal, private, academic, and international communities, develop standards for the content, quality, and transferability of geospatial data. FGDC standards are developed through a structured process, integrated with one another to the extent possible, supportable by the current vendor community (but are independent of specific technologies), and publicly available.

About this document
This document contains type descriptions at the Association level of the U.S. National Vegetation Classification. These descriptions were primarily written by NatureServe ecologists in collaboration with Federal Geographic Data Committee Vegetation Subcommittee and a wide variety of state, federal and private partners as a part of the implementation of the National Vegetation Classification. Formation descriptions were written by the Hierarchy Revisions Working Group. The descriptions are based on consultation with natural resource professionals, published literature, and other vegetation classification systems. The Ecological Society of America's Panel on Vegetation Classification is responsible for managing the review and formal adoption of these types into the National Vegetation Classification. Partners involved in the implementation of the USNVC include:

U.S. Government
  • Department of Agriculture (USDA)
  • Department of Commerce (DOC)
  • Department of Defense (DOD)
  • Department of the Interior (USDI)
  • Forest Service (FS) - Chair
  • National Agriculture Statistical Service (NASS)
  • Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
  • National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)
  • U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)
  • U.S. Navy (NAVY)
  • Bureau of Land Management (BLM)
  • Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS)
  • National Park Service (NPS)
  • U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)
  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Non U.S. Government
  • NatureServe (NS)
  • Ecological Society of America (ESA)

Given the dynamic nature of the standard, it is possible a type description is incomplete or in revision at the time of download; therefore, users of the data should track the date of access and read the revisions section of the website to understand the current status of the classification. While USNVC data have undergone substantial review prior to posting, it is possible that some errors or inaccuracies have remained undetected.

For information on the process used to develop these descriptions see:

Faber-Langendoen, D., T. Keeler-Wolf, D. Meidinger, D. Tart, B. Hoagland, C. Josse, G. Navarro, S. Ponomarenko, J.-P. Saucier, A. Weakley, P. Comer. 2014. EcoVeg: A new approach to vegetation description and classification. Ecological Monographs 84:533-561 (erratum 85:473).

Franklin, S., D. Faber-Langendoen, M. Jennings, T. Keeler-Wolf, O. Loucks, A. McKerrow, R.K. Peet, and D. Roberts. 2012. Building the United States National Vegetation Classification. Annali di Botanica 2: 1-9.

Jennings, M. D., D. Faber-Langendoen, O. L. Louckes, R. K. Peet, and D. Roberts. 2009. Standards for associations and alliances of the U.S. National Vegetation Classification. Ecological Monographs 79(2):173-199.

FGDC [Federal Geographic Data Committee]. 2008. Vegetation Classification Standard, FGDC-STD-005, Version 2. Washington, DC., USA. []

For additional information contact:

  • Implementation of the U.S. National Vegetation Classification Standard - Alexa McKerrow (
  • NatureServe's Development of NVC Type Descriptions - Don Faber-Langendoen (don_faber-
  • Ecological Society of America's Review of the Type Descriptions
  • Federal Geographic Data Committee - Vegetation Subcommittee's Activities - Marianne Burke (