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Forty-Eight Years of Canopy Change in a Hardwood-Hemlock Forest in New York City

James L. Rudnicky and Mark J. McDonnell
Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club
Vol. 116, No. 1 (Jan. - Mar., 1989), pp. 52-64
Published by: Torrey Botanical Society
DOI: 10.2307/2997109
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2997109
Page Count: 13
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Forty-Eight Years of Canopy Change in a Hardwood-Hemlock Forest in New York City
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Abstract

In the mid-1930's, all trees (≥15 cm dbh) in a 16-ha forest on the grounds of The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, New York, were identified, measured and mapped. In 1985 the forest was resampled and the change in canopy structure and composition determined. Clustering and ordination techniques indicate that approximately 70% of the forest in the 1930's was composed of two vegetation types: a Hemlock Type and an Oak Type. In 1985 these two cover types comprised about one-third of the forest. Although Tsuga canadensis (L.) Carr. and Quercus borealis Michx. are still the most important species in the forest, a Maple/Birch/Cherry Type covers the greatest area. Several lines of evidence suggest that hurricanes, arson, human trampling and vandalism have contributed to these changes in canopy composition

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