Marsh plant species shoot height, weight and diameters for Rowley River tidal creeks associated with long term fertilization experiments, Rowley and Ipswich, MA. The TIDE project aims to simulate eutrophication on a large scale by the addition of NO3- aiming to reach 70μM concentrations from May to September every year during the growing season. This fertilization of the marsh has been going on at Sweeney Creek since the 2004 growing season through 2012 and at Clubhead Creek in 2005 and from 2009 till 2019.
At the end of every season a relative estimate is taken in order to better understand the productivity of the system in various species. Four of the main salt marsh plant species were focused on, Spartina alterniflora (tall and short forms) , Distichlis spicata, and Spartina patens. Along each branch 25 plants are randomly collected on transects that run perpendicularly from the creek bank, either 3 and 4 transects were utilized dependent on the year. The data set includes production values of shoot height, shoot mass, shoot specific mass, and shoot diameter (all described below) for August (end of growing season) from 2004 to 2019.
TSA- Spartina alterniflora (tall form)
SSA- Spartina alterniflora (short form)
DS- Distichlis spicata
SP- Spartina patens
Reference creeks are West and Nelson
Nutrient Enriched creeks are Sweeney and Clubhead. Sweeney has been fertilized every summer from 2004-2012 Clubhead had been fertilized in 2005 and then from 2009-2012.
Shoot height- length of shoot from base to tip including all leaves and flowers measure in centimeters(cm)
Shoot mass- dry massof shoot measured in grams (g)
Shoot specific mass- dry weight of shoot (g) per centimer of shoot length (cm)
Shoot diameter- width of widest part of the stem (mm)
All creeks have 2 branches (left and right) determined by remaining at confluence of branches and facing upland areas.
Plant transects run perpendicular to creeks at various points with a front pole at the creek bank and a back pole an the high marsh. Transects are in the order of 1, 2, 4, 3 or blue, green, red, yellow from confluence of branch.
*-Shoot diameter measurements are listed for TSA stems 2008-2012 and for SSA 2008
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