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WLCI Fact Sheet 3

What are Plants Doing and When? Using Plant Phenology to Promote Sustainable Natural Resources Management

By Geneva W. Chong and Leslie A. Allen

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (2.2 MB)Abstract

Climate change models for the northern Rocky Mountains predict changes in temperature and water availability that in turn will alter vegetation. Changes include timing of plant life-history events, or phenology, such as green-up, flowering and senescence, and shifts in species composition. Moreover, climate changes may favor different species, such as nonnative, annual grasses over native species. Changes in vegetation could make forage for ungulates, sage-grouse, and livestock available earlier in the growing season, but shifts in species composition and phenology may also result in earlier senescence (die-off or dormancy) and reduced overall forage production.

First posted May 8, 2012

For additional information contact:
Rocky Mountain Area Regional Executive
U.S. Geological Survey
Box 25046, Mail Stop 911
Denver, CO 80225

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Suggested citation:

Chong, G.W., and Allen, L.A., What are plants doing and when? Using plant phenology to facilitate sustainable natural resources management: WLCI Fact Sheet 3, 2 p.

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