Great Basin Naturalist


Fifteen widely separated sites within the pinyon-juniper woodlands of the Great Basin were cleared of trees. Understory response was recorded for 2 to 4 years. The array of postharvest plant assemblages were classified into one of four phytosociological groups using discriminant analysis. Pre- and postharvest plant assemblages from the same site appeared in the same phytosociological group, which indicates postharvest response could be predicted from the preharvest plant assemblage. Initial postharvest response appears cyclic in nature, and cycles are controlled by both residual plants and the rapid immigration of shrub species. Perennial plant density generally declined following tree harvest, but the fewer remaining plants produced significantly more cover than in preharvest stands.