Aspen as a fuel break

Figure by Kristin Nesbit

It is well known that aspen functions as a fuel break in wildland fire situations, but it is difficult to find quantitative guidelines for managing aspen with fuel risk reduction as an objective. Former graduate student Kristin Nesbit led a project to survey fire and forest managers about their observations of fire in aspen and published a literature review about aspen-fire relationships. She also collected fuel loading and fuel moisture data across gradients of aspen-conifer dominance and stages of stand development to further our understanding of the factors leading to flammability of aspen. We are also working on spatial analysis of fire severity across a range of aspen forests.

Larissa Yocom
Larissa Yocom
Associate Professor, Fire Ecology and Management

In my research group, we are interested in advancing research about the ecological role of fire, how climate, fire and vegetation are related over time and space, and how management can promote the beneficial aspects of fire and minimize the negative consequences.