Plant Ecology

, Volume 202, Issue 1, pp 191-194

First online:

Response of Arnica dealbata to climate change, nitrogen deposition, and fire

  • Matthew HurteauAffiliated withDepartment of Biological Sciences, Merriam Powell Center for Environmental Research, Northern Arizona University Email author 
  • , Malcolm NorthAffiliated withUSFS Sierra Nevada Research Center

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Predicted changes in climate and increasing nitrogen deposition are likely to have significant impacts on species that have limited distributions or are already experiencing diminished population size. Arnica dealbata (A. Gray, Asteraceae), a listed sensitive species in Yosemite National Park, is endemic to California and has limited distribution within the park boundaries. The objective of this research was to examine the effects of altered precipitation resulting from climate change, increasing nitrogen deposition resulting from pollution, and prescribed fire on A. dealbata. A. dealbata cover significantly increased with increasing snowpack and prescribed fire. Increasing nitrogen deposition negatively affected cover. Our results suggest Yosemite’s A. dealbata populations can thrive even under a changing climate if prescribed fire is frequently applied coupled with increased moisture availability.


Climate change Mixed-conifer Sierra Nevada