Common (Translated Scientific) Name: Box-elder - Singleleaf Ash - Netleaf Hackberry Riparian Woodland Alliance
Colloquial Name: Box-elder - Singleleaf Ash - Netleaf Hackberry Riparian Woodland
Hierarchy Level: Alliance
Type Concept: This alliance consists of riparian woodlands dominated by Acer negundo, Fraxinus anomala, and/or Celtis laevigata var. reticulata. Common associates include Alnus incana, Betula occidentalis, Brickellia grandiflora, Brickellia longifolia, Cornus sericea, Quercus gambelii, Rhus trilobata, and others. Cottonwoods and willows are usually not present and, if present, are in very low abundance. It is found adjacent to streams and rivers, seeps and springs, near the base of colluvial slopes, and on alluvial terraces or in slickrock canyons, and occurs on the Colorado Plateau and south into Arizona and New Mexico.
Diagnostic Characteristics: No Data Available
Rationale for Nominal Species or Physiognomic Features:
Classification Comments: No Data Available
Similar NVC Types:
Physiognomy and Structure: These are broad-leaved deciduous woodlands typically with the canopy 10-20 m tall, with a sparse shrub layer and dense to sparse herbaceous layer.
Floristics: Stands are dominated by Fraxinus anomala, Acer negundo, and/or Celtis laevigata var. reticulata, usually in monotypic stands but occasionally can be seen together. Other trees present may include Juniperus osteosperma, Pinus edulis, or Pseudotsuga menziesii. Associated tall shrubs include Amelanchier alnifolia, Betula occidentalis, Forestiera pubescens, Quercus gambelii, Rhus trilobata, and Salix exigua. Short shrubs contribute low cover and include Ephedra viridis, Ericameria nauseosa, Holodiscus dumosus, Rhus trilobata, Symphoricarpos rotundifolius, and the vines Clematis ligusticifolia and Vitis arizonica. The herbaceous layer may have Elymus glaucus, Equisetum arvense, Equisetum hyemale, Maianthemum stellatum, Mentha arvensis, and Phalaris arundinacea. Exotic graminoids such as Poa pratensis or Agrostis stolonifera can be abundant.
Dynamics: With scouring floods, Acer negundo may survive only if it grows on upper colluvial slopes. This may provide a seed source for regeneration after flooding and deposition. Female trees of the dioecious Acer negundo are better adapted to growing along the channel edge and are recommended over male trees for restoration of disturbed streambanks. Acer negundo is not rhizomatous, but has strong roots that provide streambank stability.
Environmental Description: This vegetation is restricted to mesic sites, such as near seeps, springs and ephemeral stream channels, on immediate riverbanks, within 2 m of the active channel, or streambanks immediately below perennial or seasonal springs or on lower colluvial slopes where additional soil moisture is available. Sites are flat to gently sloping and may have any aspect. Substrates are nearly always derived from colluvium but often have been transported or redistributed by water to form alluvial deposits. Soils are shallow to deep and well-drained to rapidly drained. Soil texture varies widely and can be coarse-loamy to fine-loamy and generally has large amounts of gravel and cobble. The water table is seasonally within 1 m of the surface.
Geographic Range: This alliance ranges from Idaho to Montana south through Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico.
Nations: CA, US
States/Provinces: AZ, CO, ID, MT, NM, NV, UT
|US Forest Service Ecoregions (1994/1995)|
Confidence Level: Moderate
Confidence Level Comments:
Concept Author(s): G. Kittel, in Faber-Langendoen et al. (2013)
Author of Description: G. Kittel
Version Date: 26Sep2014
- Faber-Langendoen, D., J. Drake, M. Hall, G. Kittel, S. Menard, C. Nordman, M. Pyne, M. Reid, M. Russo, K. Schulz, L. Sneddon, K. Snow, and J. Teague. 2013-2019b. Screening alliances for induction into the U.S. National Vegetation Classification: Part 1 - Alliance concept review. NatureServe, Arlington, VA.
- Kittel, G. M., and N. D. Lederer. 1993. A preliminary classification of the riparian vegetation of the Yampa and San Miguel/Dolores river basins. Unpublished report prepared for Colorado Department of Health and the Environmental Protection Agency by The Nature Conservancy, Colorado Field Office, Boulder.
- Kittel, G., E. Van Wie, M. Damm, R. Rondeau, S. Kettler, and J. Sanderson. 1999a. A classification of the riparian plant associations of the Rio Grande and Closed Basin watersheds, Colorado. Unpublished report prepared by the Colorado Natural Heritage Program, Colorado State University, Fort Collins.
- Kittel, G., R. Rondeau, N. Lederer, and D. Randolph. 1994. A classification of the riparian vegetation of the White and Colorado River basins, Colorado. Final report submitted to Colorado Department of Natural Resources and the Environmental Protection Agency. Colorado Natural Heritage Program, Boulder. 166 pp.
- Padgett, W. G., A. P. Youngblood, and A. H. Winward. 1989. Riparian community type classification of Utah and southeastern Idaho. Research Paper R4-ECOL-89-0. USDA Forest Service, Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, Ogden, UT.
- Welsh, S. L., N. D. Atwood, S. Goodrich, and L. C. Higgins, editors. 1987. A Utah flora. Great Basin Naturalist Memoirs 9. Provo, UT. 894 pp.