Wastewater in Nature
Basic Measurements (basal area and density) of Woody Plants


One way to look at community composition of the riparian woody plants is to measure basal area (how much volume is taken up by a species for a given area). Basal area is determined by measuring how big around individual plants of a species are and then summing all of the measurements. This is done for each species at both the effluent and control (or natural) sites. A comparison of the basal area of the three dominant trees, Salt Cedar, Goodding Willow, and Fremont Cottonwood. Basal area is greater on the effluent site than the control for all three dominant tree species. Salt cedar makes up nearly 50% of the basal area for all woody species measured.


We also compared the density of the three dominant tree species. These results again indicate that there is greater density found in the effluent site than in the control site for all comparisons, and that salt cedar dominates with over three times as many individuals as Goodding Willow, the next most abundant species.

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Bibliographic details:

  • Article: Measuring Woody Plants
  • Author(s): Roy Marler
  • Publisher: Arizona State University School of Life Sciences Ask A Biologist
  • Site name: ASU - Ask A Biologist
  • Date published: October 8, 2009
  • Date accessed: April 6, 2020
  • Link: https://askabiologist.asu.edu/fr/content/measuring-woody-plants

APA Style

Roy Marler. (2009, October 08). Measuring Woody Plants. ASU - Ask A Biologist. Retrieved April 6, 2020 from https://askabiologist.asu.edu/fr/content/measuring-woody-plants

American Psychological Association. For more info, see http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/10/

Chicago Manual of Style

Roy Marler. "Measuring Woody Plants". ASU - Ask A Biologist. 08 October, 2009. https://askabiologist.asu.edu/fr/content/measuring-woody-plants

MLA 2017 Style

Roy Marler. "Measuring Woody Plants". ASU - Ask A Biologist. 08 Oct 2009. ASU - Ask A Biologist, Web. 6 Apr 2020. https://askabiologist.asu.edu/fr/content/measuring-woody-plants

Modern Language Association, 7th Ed. For more info, see http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/08/
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