Abstract for CNVC00112


Picea mariana / Vaccinium vitis-idaea / Sphagnum spp.

Black Spruce / Lingonberry / Peat Mosses
Épinette noire / Airelle rouge / Sphaignes

CNVC00112 is a boreal wetland coniferous woodland Association that ranges from British Columbia to Ontario. It has an open tree layer of stunted (usually〈 10m height), narrow-crowned black spruce (Picea mariana). The understory is species poor, with a preponderance of ericaceous species. The well-developed to dense shrub layer comprises abundant common Labrador tea (Rhododendron groenlandicum) and black spruce of various ages. The herb layer is moderately developed; lingonberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea), cloudberry (Rubus chamaemorus), and small cranberry (V. oxycoccos) are common. The moss layer is continuous and dominated by peat mosses (Sphagnum spp.), but red-stemmed feathermoss (Pleurozium schreberi) and reindeer lichens (Cladina spp.) are common on dry microsites (e.g., peat hummocks). CNVC00112 occurs on wet, acidic, nutrient-poor sites in a region with a subhumid boreal climate. Substrates are usually deep (> 40 cm) organic soils formed from slowly decomposing Sphagnum and other mosses. Although fire can occasionally occur, this is typically a stable condition that is maintained by a persistently high water table and poor nutrient conditions; local hydrology is the main driver of vegetation dynamics. Three subassociations are recognized: typic, Gaultheria hispidula and Chamaedaphne calyculata.