|Title||The effect of fire on gas exchange and aboveground production in Spartina pectinata wetlands|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||1993|
|Authors||Johnson, SR, Knapp, AK|
|Keywords||fire, gas exchange, prairie wetlands, production, Spartina pectinata, tallgrass prairie|
Photosynthetic and growth responses ofSpartina pectinata were compared in annually and biennially burned wetlands in a northeastern Kansas tallgrass prairie. Photosynthetic CO2 uptake was consistently higher inSpartina pectinata in annually burned wetlands, and there was a seasonal difference in maximum photosynthetic rates. Plants in annually burned wetlands reached a maximum photosynthetic rate of 38.2 μmol m−2 s−1 in late spring, while maximum photosynthesis in plants of biennially burned wetlands was 28.6 μmol m−2 s−1 in late summer. Culm density in these wetlands was not affected by fire; however, aboveground biomass production, inflorescence density and plant height at anthesis were significantly greater in annually burned wetlands. These results indicate thatSpartina pectinata may be a fire-dependent species, with post-fire responses similar to the dominant grasses in tallgrass prairie as well as otherSpartina congeners.