Northern Ontario Plant Database
Northern Ontario Vegetation Type (V-type)
Summary: A wet, black spruce stand with black spruce dominant in the overstorey (21-40% cover) and understorey (11-20% cover). Larch occurs frequently in the overstorey, but not consistently, providing 11-20% cover. Compared to vegetation type NE-V23 (Black Spruce-Labrador Tea-Speckled Alder-Stairstep Moss), this V-type is slightly wetter and contains more peatmoss than feathermoss species.
The tall shrub layer is dominated by speckled alder (11-20% cover), with Labrador tea (2-5% cover) the most common low shrub species. A variety of other ericaceous shrubs, including leatherleaf and blueberries, may occur, along with alderleaf buckthorn, red osier dogwood, and currants.
The herb layer is species-rich, with sedges (6-10% cover) and creeping snowberry, dwarf raspberry, threeleaf false Solomon's seal, and naked mitrewort occurring consistently with 2-5% cover, along with the characteristic boreal forest species. Grasses, such as Canada bluejoint and nodding woodreed provided 2-5% cover in 1/3 to 2/3 of sample plots. Several other herbaceous species, such as small cranberry and woodland horsetail occur with up to 1% cover.
The forest floor is carpeted with a combination of Sphagnum and feathermoss species, including the common green peatmoss (21-40% cover), Schreber's feathermoss and stairstep moss (each 11-20% cover), northern peatmoss (6-10% cover), and shaggy and plume mosses (2-5% cover). Hummocks with midway peatmoss (11-20% cover), and common brown peatmoss (2-5% cover) occurred in 1/3 to 2/3 of sample plots. Between hummocks, the hollows may contain water and narrowleaf peatmoss (6-10% cover).
Soil and Ecosite Types: The Black Spruce-Larch-Speckled Alder-Stairstep Moss Vegetation Type (NE-V25) is found on wet, shallow (S16) to deep organic soils (S17, S18, S19). This vegetation type occurs most frequently on ecosite type ES 13p (Black Spruce-Larch-Speckled Alder-Organic Soil-Species Poor), may occur on ecosite types ES 9p (Black Spruce-Larch-Moist Soil-species poor), ES 12 (Black Spruce-Larch-Labrador Tea-Organic Soil), ES 13r (White Cedar-Black Spruce-Organic Soil-Species Rich), and ES 14 (Black Spruce-Leatherleaf-Organic Soil).
tall shrubsDwarf Shrubs & Herbs:
dwarf shrubsFerns and Fern Allies:
Lichens:common green peatmoss (Sphagnum girgensohnii)
Note: Species listed above are taken from the Vegetation type description and the Species Percentage Cover by Vegetation Type Tables (pg. D 34). Species are listed in order of most cover and abundance.gray reindeer lichen (Cladina rangiferina)