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School of Environment and Natural Resources


Autumn 2013 SENR Seminar Series

Nov 21, 2013, 4:00pm - 5:30pm


The SENR Seminar Series welcomes Dr. Joanne Rebbeck, Research Ecologist, USDA Forest Service Northern Research Station, who will present What is the Urban Invasive Tree, Ailanthus, Doing in Our Forests?

Ailanthus altissima (tree-of-heaven, Chinese sumac, stink tree), a nonnative invasive tree has been present in North American landscapes for over three hundred years, and is common throughout much of the Eastern United States. It is most often abundant in urban areas and open sites such as roadsides but it can invade disturbed forests. A single female tree can produce over 350,000 seeds annually. Ailanthus can produce dense thickets of stems excluding native vegetation. Anecdotal evidence suggests that fire might facilitate its spread, but the relationship between fire and Ailanthus is poorly understood. Very little is known about the direct and immediate effects of fire on this highly invasive tree. Rebbeck is quantifying the direct effects of prescribed fire on the demography of Ailanthus populations as well as how the distribution and abundance of Ailanthus is related to recent fires, harvesting activity, seed sources, and other forest landscape and stand characteristics.

The SENR Seminar begins at 4:10 p.m in 103 Kottman Hall with a video link to 123 Williams Hall on the Wooster campus.