Ecological - Second Order
Sagebrush is considered to be an obligate vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal plant. Some studies have shown that burning lowers the mycorrhizal inoculum potential (MIP) of the soil (Klopatek and others 1988, 1990; Wicklow-Howard 1989). If this happens, then sagebrush may take longer to reestablish after fire. A study was performed to investigate the relationship of vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizae (V AM), Wyoming big sagebrush (Artemesia tridentata Nutt. var. wyomingensis [Beetle and Young]) and burned vs. unburned soils. The purpose of the study was to: 1. Investigate whether planting mycorrhizal inoculated sagebrush seedlings in burned soils would enhance reestablishment. 2. Monitor the mycorrhizal inoculum potential (MIP) of soils before and after a fire. 3. Compare mycorrhizal root colonization in wild sagebrush found growing in burned soil with that of wild sagebrush growing in unburned soil.