Common (Translated Scientific) Name: California Sycamore - California Live Oak - Southern California Walnut Riparian Woodland Alliance
Colloquial Name: Californian Sycamore - Live Oak - Walnut Riparian Woodland
Hierarchy Level: Alliance
Type Concept: This alliance consists of riparian woodlands dominated by Platanus racemosa and/or Quercus agrifolia. Other trees present may include Alnus rhombifolia, Juglans californica, Populus fremontii, Salix exigua, Salix gooddingii, Salix laevigata, Salix lasiolepis, Salix lutea, and Umbellularia californica. Shrubs can be uncommon to frequent and may include Baccharis salicifolia and Toxicodendron diversilobum. The ground layer is grassy and may include Avena barbata and/or Bromus hordeaceus. This alliance is not to be confused with upland stands of Quercus agrifolia, and must have wetland understory indicators to belong to this riparian alliance. It is found in California and possibly Baja California in gullies, intermittent streams, springs, seeps, streambanks and terraces adjacent to floodplains subject to flooding and seasonal saturation.
Diagnostic Characteristics: Platanus racemosa and/or Quercus agrifolia with >30% relative cover.
Rationale for Nominal Species or Physiognomic Features:
Classification Comments: This alliance ocurs in draws/ canyons, riparian settings.
Similar NVC Types:
Physiognomy and Structure: This temporarily flooded, cold-deciduous woodland forms an open canopy less than 35 m in height. A subcanopy may be present. Shrubs are infrequent to common. The herbaceous layer is dominated by graminoids.
Floristics: Platanus racemosa and/or Quercus agrifolia are the dominant species in the widely spaced tree canopy of this California riparian woodland. Other trees present may include Alnus rhombifolia, Populus fremontii, Quercus agrifolia, Quercus lobata, Salix gooddingii, Salix laevigata, Salix lasiolepis, Salix lutea, and Umbellularia californica. Shrubs can be uncommon to frequent and may include Baccharis salicifolia and Toxicodendron diversilobum. The ground layer is grassy and may include Avena barbata and/or Bromus hordeaceus.
Dynamics: This alliance grows in areas with permanent soil moisture at depth. Dominant tree species are well-adapted to periodic, high-intensity flooding.
Environmental Description: This riparian woodland of northern, central, and southern California occurs where soils are permanently saturated at depth with freshwater. Stands are found in gullies, depositional deposits along intermittent streams, springs, seeps, stream- and riverbanks, and terraces adjacent to floodplains subject to high-intensity flooding. Soils are alluvial, rocky or cobbly. This alliance grows in areas which typically receive the bulk of their yearly precipitation between November and April, leading to higher streamflows and intermittent flooding. Stands are found from sea level to 2400 m elevation.
Geographic Range: This formerly widespread riparian alliance is still found in scattered stands along California's central and southern Coast Ranges, the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, the montane Peninsular and Transverse ranges, and the western Mojave and Colorado deserts. It is likely to also occur in scattered localities in northern Mexico.
Nations: MX?, US
States/Provinces: CA, MXBC?
|US Forest Service Ecoregions (1994/1995)|
Confidence Level: Moderate
Confidence Level Comments:
Synonomy: ? Platanus racemosa (California sycamore woodlands) Alliance (Sawyer et al. 2009) [61.310.00]
> Platanus racemosa Alliance (California sycamore woodlands) (Buck-Diaz et al. 2012)
>< Quercus agrifolia (Coast live oak woodland) Alliance (Sawyer et al. 2009) [71.060.00]
> Quercus agrifolia Alliance (Coast live oak woodland) (Buck-Diaz et al. 2012)
> Umbellularia californica (California bay forest) Alliance (Sawyer et al. 2009) [74.100.00]
? Central Coast Live Oak Riparian Forest (#61220) (Holland 1986b)
? Coast Live Oak Forest (Cheatham and Haller 1975)
? Coast Live Oak Woodland (#71160) (Holland 1986b)
>< Northern Riparian Woodland (Cheatham and Haller 1975)
? Southern Coast Live Oak Riparian Forest (#61310) (Holland 1986b)
? Sycamore Alluvial Woodland (#62100) (Holland 1986b)
Concept Author(s): G. Kittel, in Faber-Langendoen et al. (2013)
Author of Description: G. Kittel
Version Date: 26Sep2014
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