, Volume 50, Issue 1, pp 3–22 | Cite as

A phytosociological analysis of woody species in forest communities of a part of Kumaun Himalaya

  • A. K. Saxena
  • J. S. Singh


This paper reports on a detailed phytosociological analysis of forests in the NW catchment of the Gola River in Kumaun Himalaya, 29°19′–29°27′N and 79°32′–79°42′E. Fourteen sites and 56 stands at elevations ranging from 1200 to 2523 m and covering the following five forest types were investigated: Pinus roxburghii, mixed, Quercus leucotrichophora, Q. lanuginosa, and Q. floribunda. The basal cover of the forests differed according to slope position and aspect. The three oak forests had more basal cover than the other two, and Q. lanuginosa had the most. The performance of individual tree and shrub species and the number of saplings and seedlings differed according to slope position and aspect. The mixed forest had the greatest tree diversity, and among the others diversity increased with increasing basal cover. The diversity of trees, saplings, and herb layer was greatest on aspects with intermediate temperature and moisture conditions; whereas that of shrubs and seedlings increased towards the cooler (and wetter) and warmer (and drier) exposures. There was a positive relation between the diversity of shrubs plus seedlings and trees plus saplings in P. roxburghii and mixed forests; whereas this relationship was inverse in the three oak forests. In general, the dominance-diversity curves for the tree layer followed a geometric series conforming to the niche pre-emption situation in communities of low diversity. Among the forests, the regeneration was best in Q. lanuginosa and worst in Q. leucotrichophora.


Diversity Himalayan forests Mixed forest Phytosociology Pinus roxburghil forest Quercus floribunda forest Quercus lanuginosa forest Quercus leucotrichophora forest 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Bandhu, D., 1970. A study of the productive structure of northern tropical dry deciduous forest near Varanasi. I. Stand structure and nonphotosynthetic biomass. Trop. Ecol. 11(1): 90–104.Google Scholar
  2. Braun, E. L., 1950. The ecology of the forests of eastern North America, their development, composition, and distribution. Deciduous Forests of Eastern North America, McGraw-Hill Blakiston, New York.Google Scholar
  3. Champion, H. G. & Seth, S. K., 1968. A revised survey of the forest types of India. Government of India Publ., Delhi. 404 pp.Google Scholar
  4. Connell, J. H. & Orias, E., 1964. The ocological regulation of species diversity. Amer. Natur. 48: 399–414.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cooke, G. D., 1967. The pattern of autotrophic succession in laboratory microcosme. Bioscience 17: 717–721.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cottam, G., 1949. The phytosociology of an oak wood in south western Wisconsin. Ecology 30: 271–287.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Curtis, J. T., 1959. The vegetation of Wisconsin. Univ. Wisconsin Press, Madison. 657 pp.Google Scholar
  8. Curtis, J. T. & McIntosh, R. P., 1950. The interrelations of certain analytic and synthetic phytosociological characters. Ecology 31: 434–455.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Curtis, J. T. & Cottam, G., 1956. Plant ecology work book. Laboratory field reference manual. Burgess Publ. Co., Minnesota. 193 pp.Google Scholar
  10. Dabel, C. V. & Day, F. P., 1977. Structural comparisons of four plants communities in the Great Dismal Swamp, Virginia. Bull. Torrey Bot. Club. 104: 352–360.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Duvigneaud, P. & Denaeyer De-Smet, S., 1970. Biological cycling of minerals in temperate deciduous forests. In: D. E., Reichle (ed.) Analysis of temperate forest ecosystems. Springer-Verlag, New York, pp. 199–225.Google Scholar
  12. Dwivedi, B. N. & Mathur, R. S., 1978. Working plane for the Naini Tal Forest Division, Kumaun Circle, Uttar Pradesh, 1978–1979 to 1987–1988. Naini Tal Working Plans Circle, U.P. 521 pp.Google Scholar
  13. Fischer, A. G., 1960. Latitudinal variation in organic diversity. Evolution. 14: 64–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Gupta, R. K. & Singh, J. S., 1962. Succession of vegetation types in the Tons Valley of the Garhwal Himalayas. Indian For. 88(4): 290–295.Google Scholar
  15. Jaccard, P., 1912. The distribution of the flora in the alpine zone. New Phytol. 11: 37–50.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Johnson, W. C., Burgess, R. L. & Keammerer, W. R., 1976. Forest over storey vegetation and environment on the Missouri river flood plain in North Dakota. Ecol. Monogr. 46: 59–84.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Kartawinata, K., 1978. A note on a Kerangas (heath) forest at Sebulu, East Kalimantan. Reinwarditia 9 (In press).Google Scholar
  18. Kenoyer, L. A., 1921. Forest formation and succession of the Sattal valley, Kumaun Himalayas. J. Indian bot. Soc. 2: 236–256.Google Scholar
  19. Kershaw, K. R., 1973. Quantitative and dynamic plant ecology. Edward Arnold Ltd., London. 308 pp.Google Scholar
  20. Killingbeck, K. T. & Wali, M. K., 1978. Analysis of a North Dakota gallery forest: nutrient, trace element and productivity relations. Oikos 30: 29–60.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Knight, D. H., 1975. A phytosociological analysis of species-rich tropical forest on Barro Colorado Island. Panama. Ecol. Monogr. 45: 259–284.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Loucks, O. L., 1970. Evolution of diversity, efficiency, and community stability. Am. Zoologist 10: 17–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Margalef, R., 1968. Perspectives in ecological theory. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.Google Scholar
  24. Misra, R., 1968. Ecology workbook. Oxford and IBH Publ. Co. Calcutta. 244 pp.Google Scholar
  25. Monk, C. D., 1967. Tree species diversity in the castern deciduous forest with particular reference to north central Florida. Amer. Natur. 101: 173–187.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Moral, R.del, 1972. Diversity patterns in forest vegetation of the Wenatchce Mountains, Washington. Bull. Torrey Bot. Club 99: 57–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Odum, E. P., 1969. The strategy of ecosystem development. Science 164: 262–270.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Odum, E. B., 1971. Fundamentals of Ecology. W. B. Saunders Co., Philadelphia. 574 pp.Google Scholar
  29. Odum, H. T. & Pinkerton, R. C., 1955. Times speed regulator. The optimum efficiency for maximum power output in physical and biological systems. Ame. Sci. 49: 331–343.Google Scholar
  30. Osmaston, A. E., 1926. A forest flora for Kumaon. Intern. Book Distributors, Dehra Dun. 605 pp.Google Scholar
  31. Phillips, E. A., 1959. Methods of vegetation study. Henry Holt & Co. Inc. 107 pp.Google Scholar
  32. Preston, F. W., 1948. The commonness, and rarity of species. Ecology 29: 254–283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Puri, G. S., 1960. Indian forest ecology. I. Oxford Book and Stat. Co., New Delhi: 318 pp.Google Scholar
  34. Raina, B. N. & Dungrakoti, B. D., 1975. Geology of the area between Naini Tal and Champawat, Kumaun Himalaya, Uttar Pradesh. In: A. G., Jhingran & P. K., Verma (eds.) Himalayan Geology, 5, Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, Delhi. pp. 1–27.Google Scholar
  35. Reiners, W. A., 1967. Relationships between vegetational strata in the pine barrens of central Long Island, New York. Bull. Torrey Bot. Club 94: 87–99.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Reiners, W. A., 1972. Structure and energetics of three Minnesota forests. Ecol. Monogr. 42: 71–94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Risser, P. G. & Rice, E. L., 1971. Diversity in tree species in Oklahoma upland forests. Ecology 52: 876–880.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Rochow, J. J., 1972. A vegetational description of a mid-Missouri forest using gradient analysis techniques. Am. Midl. Nat. 87: 377–396.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Saxena, A. K. & Singh, J. S., 1980. Analysis of forest-grazingland vegetation in parts of Kumaun Himalaya. Indian J. Range Mgmt. 1(1): 13–32.Google Scholar
  40. Shannon, C. E. & Wiener, W., 1963. The mathematical theory of communication. Univ. Illinois Press, Urbana.Google Scholar
  41. Simpson, E. H., 1949. Measurement of diversity. Nature 163: 688.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Simpson, G. G., 1964. Species diversity of North American recent mammals. Syst. Zool. 13: 57–73.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Singh, K. P. & Misra, R., 1978. MAB report on structure and functioning of natural, modified and silvicultural ecosystems of eastern Uttar Pradesh. Banaras Hindu University. 161 pp.Google Scholar
  44. Singh, R. P., 1974. A study of primary productivity and nutrient cycling in Chakia forest, Varanasi. Ph. D. Thesis, B.H.U., Varanasi. 179 pp.Google Scholar
  45. Smith, R. L., 1974. Ecology and field biology. Harper & Row Publ. New York 850 pp.Google Scholar
  46. Terborgh, J., 1973. On the notion of favourableness in plant ecology. Amer. Natur. 107: 481–501.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Troup, R. S., 1921. The silviculture of Indian Trees. I–III. Clarendon Press, Oxford 1195 pp.Google Scholar
  48. Vyas, L. N., Garg, R. K. & Vyas, N. L., 1976. Litter production and nutrient release in deciduous forest of Bansi, Udaipur, India. Flora, Bd. 165: 103–111.Google Scholar
  49. Whittaker, R. H., 1956. Vegetation of the Great Smoky Mountains. Ecol. Monogr. 26: 1–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Whittaker, R. H., 1965. Dominance and diversity in land plant communities. Science 147: 250–260.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  51. Whittaker, R. H., 1969. Evolution of diversity in plant communities. In: G. M. Woodwell & H. H. Smith (eds.) Diversity and stability in ecological systems. Brookhaven Sym. Biol. 22: 178–196.Google Scholar
  52. Whittaker, R. H., 1972. Evolution and measurement of species diversity. Taxon 21: 213–251.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Whittaker, R. H., 1975. Communities and ecosystems. 2nd ed. Macmillan Publ. Co., New York. 385 pp.Google Scholar
  54. Whittaker, R. H. & Niering, W. A., 1965. Vegetation of the Santa Catalina Mountains. II. A gradient analysis of the south slope. Ecology 46: 429–452.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Whittaker, R. H. & Niering, W. A., 1975. Vegetation of the Santa Catalina Mountains, Arizona. V. Biomass, production, and diversity along the elevation gradient. Ecology 56: 771–790.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Whittaker, R. H. & Woodwell, G. M., 1969. Structure, production and diversity of the oak-pine forest at Brookhaven, New York. J. Ecol. 57: 155–174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Whitford, P. B., 1949. Distribution of woodland plants in relation to succession and clonal growth. Ecology 30: 199–208.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Wikum, D. A. & Wali, M. K., 1974. Analysis of a North Dakota Gallery forest: vegetation in relation to topographic and soil gradients. Ecol. Monogr. 44: 441–464.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Zobel, D. B., McKee, A., Hawk, G. M. & Dyrness, C. T., 1976. Relationship of environment to composition, structure, and diversity of forest communities of the central western Cascades of Oregon. Ecol. Monogr. 46: 135–156.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Dr W. Junk Publishers 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. K. Saxena
    • 1
  • J. S. Singh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BotanyKumaun UniversityNainiIndia

Personalised recommendations