The multi-stem clump structure of a coastal dwarf forest dominated by Litsea japonica Juss, was investigated in order to clarify the sprouting characteristics and self-maintenance of clumps by stem alternation. The size and age distribution of multi-stem clumps were analyzed using cumulative relative frequency curves. L. japonica had a large number of stems and an even height distribution or young age-biased distribution of stems within a clump. These results indicated the sequential flushing of sprouts at high frequency. Height distribution within a clump of L. japonica was relatively even compared to other species. This clump structure suggested the stable self-maintenance of individuals in all ranges of size and age without disturbances. It originated specific sprouting characteristics as a response to the severe stress of salty wind. Ardisia sieboldii Miq. had few stems within a clump. Although the stem height distribution of large individuals tended to be even, most clumps had a large size-biased distribution of stem height which indicated simultaneous sprouting. From this structure, sprouts of this species were thought to be of less significance in the stable self-maintenance of individuals than L. Japonica.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics