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Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis L.) Extent and Sustainability in Western North Carolina

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DOI: 10.4236/ojf.2012.24026    7,152 Downloads   16,321 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

Bloodroot distribution and abundance were assessed in the Waynesville watershed in Western North Carolina. This high quality site provides a benchmark for bloodroot populations in the region. Summary data from an inventory of nine stands of bloodroot in the watershed are presented. Analysis of inventory data reveals that both petiole height and petiole diameter are negatively associated with overstory tree DBH, suggesting that there is an optimal overstory structure for bloodroot. In the Waynesville watershed, seven out of nine stands have an average tree DBH between 27.38 cm and 36.17 cm. Allometric equations re-lating belowground biomass to bloodroot petiole height and diameter have strong explanatory power, indicating that harvesters could selectively harvest large rhizomes by targeting plants with larger petioles. These results in combination with natural history, field observations and literature provide insights on the sustainability of bloodroot harvest in Southern Appalachia. Wild bloodroot is likely becoming scarce due to loss of favorable sites, such as rich cove forests, as well as harvest pressure.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Furgurson, J. , Cubbage, F. , Sills, E. & Bates, P. (2012). Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis L.) Extent and Sustainability in Western North Carolina. Open Journal of Forestry, 2, 213-218. doi: 10.4236/ojf.2012.24026.

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