Northern Ontario Plant Database
Northern Ontario Vegetation Type (V-type)
Summary: A two-tiered mixedwood stand dominated by trembling aspen and often white birch in the upper canopy, and balsam fir in the subcanopy. Balsam fir also dominates the regeneration. The diverse shrub layer contains a variety of tall and low shrubs, including mountain maple (often abundant), beaked hazel, and showy mountain ash. Bush honeysuckle and Canada fly honeysuckle are the most common low shrubs.
The species-rich herb layer is dominated by wild sarsaparilla, rose twisted-stalk, largeleaf aster, and dwarf raspberry, and contains all of the characteristic boreal forest species. The presence of kidneyleaf violet indicates sites with calcareous soils. The forest floor is covered by broadleaf litter with small patches of feathermoss or woodsy moss.
Soil & Ecosite Types: The Trembling Aspen (White Birch)-Balsam Fir/Mountain Maple Vegetation Type (NW-V6) occurs most commonly on Ecosite Types ES 16 (Hardwood-Fir-Spruce Mixedwood, sandy soil), ES 19 (Hardwood-Fir-Spruce Mixedwood, fresh, sandy- coarse loamy soil), ES 28 (Hardwood-Fir-Spruce Mixedwood, fresh, silty soil), and ES 29 (Hardwood-Fir-Spruce Mixedwood, fresh, fine loamy-clayey soil), on deep, fresh, well-drained, upland mineral soils of various textures (S1, S2, and S3). This vegetation type is most similar to the Trembling Aspen (White Birch) / Mountain Maple V-Type (NW-V8), both of which have abundant quantities of mountain maple in the tall shrub layer, but NW-V6 contains more balsam fir in the canopy and regeneration layers. Site Regions or Site Districts are not listed for this type, although NW-V6 occurs more commonly in the eastern portions of northwestern Ontario.
Note: The percentage of sample plots that contained overstorey tree species is given in square brackets after each scientific name. Other species are listed in order of frequency, according to the NW-FEC manual.
overstorey:Shrubs:balsam fir (Abies balsamea) regeneration:
tall shrubs:Dwarf Shrubs & Herbs:mountain maple (Acer spicatum)low shrubs:
dwarf shrubs:Bryophytes:dwarf raspberry (Rubus pubescens)forbs:
Schreber's feathermoss (Pleurozium schreberi)