Great Basin Naturalist Memoirs


New Artemisia seedlings are not established each year. Many that are established fail to survive because of unfavorable rainfall in succeeding years. A total of 184 young plants was examined for the number of annual growth rings to ascertain the year of establishment after all vegetation had been killed near the time of a nuclear test event in 1965. The three most important recent years for establishment and survival of new seedlings (as of 1976 and based on a sample of 184 plants) were 1966 (9 percent), 1969 (29 percent), and 1973 (36 percent). A total of 2 percent was established in the other years from 1965 to 1976. These three years were also the years with high rainfall input during preceding winter and spring months. If old plants are killed, seeds germinate with mud, lower input of precipitation. Many seedlings germinated in 1968 at a site where old ones had been burned off even though the rainfall was not favorable. Plants of a given age varied greatly in size according to their competition. Seedlings germinating in old stands grew little in comparison with those germinating in areas where old plants had been killed. One exception was an area where intense competition occurred due to large numbers of new plants, resulting in growth restriction on all plants.