TOMPKINS, ROBERT D.* and JASON FARRIS. Belmont Abbey College, Belmont, NC 28012. - An ecological study of Magnolia macrophylla in Gaston Co., NC.
Big-Leaf Magnolia (Magnolia macrophyllaMichaux)has the largest
size simple leaf of any North American tree species. Its range
includes the southeastern United States. In North Carolina it is
predominantly found in Gaston County, located in the western Piedmont
region of the state. Andre Michaux first described this species from a
population site in Gaston County in 1789. This is a preliminary study
of a larger research project to better understand the ecology of
Magnolia macrophylla. This study includes data from six
population sites sampled during the 2000/2001 growing seasons. Initial
data suggest correlations with M. macropylla and more mesic
sites. Fagus grandifolia was the most important component
species in all sites. There is evidence that recent disturbance at
many of these sites is a facor in its establishment and maintenance.
Key words: Andre Michaux, disturbance, Magnolia, mesic, North Carolina, sensitive species