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Deschampsia cespitosa - Artemisia lindleyana Marsh
Translated Name: Tufted Hairgrass - Columbia River Wormwood Marsh
Unique Identifier: CEGL003425
Classification Approach: International Vegetation Classification (IVC)
Summary: This association is found only along the shores of the Columbia River in Washington (and very rarely in Oregon) in the western Cascades. It occurs on silty portions of gravel and cobble bars that are seasonally flooded. The association is a codominance of the grass Deschampsia cespitosa and the forb Artemisia lindleyana; the total herbaceous cover is open to semi-open. A foliose lichen, Dermatocarpon sp., covers much of the exposed cobble or gravel.

From Christy (2004): Habitat is cobble beds and silt along the Columbia River at the western end of the Columbia River Gorge. The cobble beds are inundated when Bonneville Dam releases surplus water, usually in spring, and may be 1-2 feet above the summer water levels. Salix lucida ssp. lasiandra and Fraxinus latifolia may be present as seedlings or at shrub height. Salix fluviatilis is the principal species in the shrub layer, but Amorpha fruticosa is rapidly spreading along the riverbanks (Glad and Halse 1993). Deschampsia cespitosa was not recorded from one of the two plots sampled here but was present nearby and is also present in the Oregon site, and so is considered to be the principal species in the herb layer with at least 35% cover. Artemisia lindleyana is present with an average cover of 23%, and Coreopsis tinctoria var. atkinsoniana is a consistent associate but with very low percent cover. The other 14 species in the herb layer are scarce, and over half of them are exotics, but inundation and scouring by winter flows keep their cover low. The cobbles are coated with silt and covered with the lichen Dermatocarpon luridum (= Dermatocarpon fluviatile). Both Artemisia lindleyana and Coreopsis tinctoria var. atkinsoniana are more typical of riparian areas of eastern Oregon and Washington. The association is currently known only from both sides of the river between the Pierce Island-Beacon Rock area and the Sandy River delta, where cobbles and silt predominate. The plots on the Washington side of the river are in good condition, but those on the Oregon side are weedy. More plots are needed to adequately describe this association, but it may be difficult to find remnants in good condition. It is probable that this association extended much further upriver, possibly throughout the Columbia River Gorge and into eastern Oregon, but all these areas are now drowned behind a series of dams. It should be sought in the free-flowing section of the river in the Hanford Reach of Washington.



Classification

Classification Confidence: Low

Vegetation Hierarchy
Class 2 - Shrub & Herb Vegetation
Subclass 2.C - Shrub & Herb Wetland
Formation 2.C.4 - Temperate to Polar Freshwater Marsh, Wet Meadow & Shrubland
Division 2.C.4.Nb - Western North American Temperate & Boreal Freshwater Marsh, Wet Meadow & Shrubland
Macrogroup Vancouverian Lowland Marsh, Wet Meadow & Shrubland
Group Vancouverian Freshwater Wet Meadow & Marsh
Alliance Coastal & Lowland Tufted Hairgrass - Lakeshore Sedge Marsh

This is the revised vegetation hierarchy. For more information see Classification Sources and usnvc.org.

Similar Associations
Unique Identifier Name
CEGL001599 Deschampsia cespitosa Wet Meadow



Related Concepts from Other Classifications

Related Subnational Community Units
These data are subject to substantial ongoing revision and may be out of date for some states.
In the U.S., contact the state Heritage Program for the most complete and up-to-date information at: http://www.natureserve.org/natureserve-network.
Information from programs in other jurisdictions will be posted when they are made available.
Subnation Concept Name Relationship to Standard Confidence Reference
Washington Deschampsia caespitosa - Artemisia lindleyana Wet Meadow Equivalent Certain WNHP unpubl. data 2018


Other Related Concepts
Related Concept Name: Artemisia lindleyana - Deschampsia cespitosa Community Type
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Kunze, L. M. 1994. Preliminary classification of native, low elevation, freshwater wetland vegetation in western Washington. Washington State Department of Natural Resources, Natural Heritage Program. 120 pp.
Related Concept Name: Deschampsia caespitosa - Artemisia lindleyana
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: McCain, C., and J. A. Christy. 2005. Field guide to riparian plant communities in northwestern Oregon. Technical Paper R6-NR-ECOL-TP-01-05. USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Region, Portland. 357 pp.
Related Concept Name: Deschampsia caespitosa - Artemisia lindleyana Association
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Christy, J. A. 2004. Native freshwater wetland plant associations of northwestern Oregon. Oregon Natural Heritage Information Center, Oregon State University, Portland, OR.

Ecological Systems Placement

Ecological Systems Placement
Ecological System Unique ID Ecological System Name
CES200.877 Temperate Pacific Freshwater Emergent Marsh
CES204.869 North Pacific Lowland Riparian Forest and Shrubland
CES204.874 Willamette Valley Wet Prairie


NatureServe Conservation Status
Global Status: G1 (18Oct2002)
Rounded Global Status: G1 - Critically Imperiled
Reasons: This association is limited to a 5-mile stretch of the Columbia River shoreline on the Washington side and one very degraded site on the Oregon side of the river. It occurs on a specific substrate with a specific flooding regime. It has probably declined dramatically from historic extent because of flooding of its former habitat by a large dam and other anthropogenic impacts.

Distribution
Color legend for Distribution Map
United States Distribution: OR, WA
Global Distribution: United States
Global Range: This association is reported only along the Columbia River, downstream of Bonneville Dam. It was formerly more widespread up and down the Columbia River.

U.S. Forest Service Ecoregions
Domain Name: Humid Temperate Domain
Division Name: Marine Regime Mountains
Province Name: Cascade Mixed Forest - Coniferous Forest - Alpine Meadow Province
Province Code: M242 Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Oregon and Washington Coast Ranges Section
Section Code: M242A Occurrence Status: Confident or certain


Vegetation


Vegetation Composition (incomplete)
Species Name Rounded Global Status Growth Form Stratum Charact-
eristic
Dominant Constant
Cover Class %
Con-
stancy
%
Artemisia lindleyana G1 Flowering forb Herb (field)  
 
 
Deschampsia caespitosa G1 Graminoid Herb (field)  
 
 


Environmental Setting

Wetland Indicator: Y


Dynamic Processes


Plot Sampling & Classification Analysis

Plots stored in VegBank


Authors/Contributors
Concept Author(s): C.B. Chappell
Element Description Edition Date: 10Jun2006
Element Description Author(s): C.B. Chappell and Christy (2004)
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 18Oct2002
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author(s): C.B. Chappell

Ecological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).


References
  • Christy, J. A. 2004. Native freshwater wetland plant associations of northwestern Oregon. Oregon Natural Heritage Information Center, Oregon State University, Portland, OR.

  • Christy, J. A., and J. A. Putera. 1993. Lower Columbia River Natural Area Inventory, 1992. Oregon Natural Heritage Program, Portland. 75 pp.

  • Glad, J. B., and R. R. Halse. 1993. Invasion of Amorpha fruticosa L. (Leguminosae) along the Columbia and Snake rivers in Oregon and Washington. Madrono 40:62-63.

  • Kunze, L. M. 1994. Preliminary classification of native, low elevation, freshwater wetland vegetation in western Washington. Washington State Department of Natural Resources, Natural Heritage Program. 120 pp.

  • McCain, C., and J. A. Christy. 2005. Field guide to riparian plant communities in northwestern Oregon. Technical Paper R6-NR-ECOL-TP-01-05. USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Region, Portland. 357 pp.

  • WNHP [Washington Natural Heritage Program]. 2018. Unpublished data files. Washington Natural Heritage Program, Department of Natural Resources, Olympia, WA.

  • Western Ecology Working Group of NatureServe. No date. International Ecological Classification Standard: International Vegetation Classification. Terrestrial Vegetation. NatureServe, Boulder, CO.


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