Table of Contents Author Guidelines Submit a Manuscript
Journal of Botany
Volume 2011, Article ID 297097, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2011/297097
Research Article

Effect of Small-Scale Variations in Environmental Factors on the Distribution of Woody Species in Tropical Deciduous Forests of Vindhyan Highlands, India

1Ecosystems Analysis Laboratory, Department of Botany, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi 221005, India
2Institute of Environment and Sustainable Development, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi 221005, India

Received 9 July 2011; Accepted 22 September 2011

Academic Editor: Guang Sheng Zhou

Copyright © 2011 R. K. Chaturvedi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The aim of this study is to investigate the changes in the composition of mature, naturally established and unmanaged TDF in response to small-scale variations in environmental factors. All woody species with a minimum circumference of 10 cm at 1.37 m height were surveyed in forty-five 20×50 m plots distributed over 5 sites in the TDF of Vindhyan highlands, India. Cluster analysis identified two distinct groups of plots. Group 1 plots had higher soil moisture content (SMC), clay, organic C, total N, total P, and light attenuation than group 2 plots. A total of 48 native species belonging to 25 families were encountered in the sampled area. High eigenvalues for the first two Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) axes indicated the occurrence of species in distinct groups, and significant correlations of the axes with environmental variables indicated the effect of these variables on species grouping. In conclusion, patchiness in the soil resources needs to be considered in restoration efforts. The results of this study are expected to facilitate the decision regarding choice of species in afforestation programmes for restoring the TDF.