Our plant phenology program, begun in 2007, monitors the timing of certain developmental stages within the plant community commonly found in moist acidic tussock and dry heath tundra. It is an examination of the development and timing of commonly occurring plant species and how they are affected by a changing climate.
The protocol is based on the ITEX (www.geog.ubc.ca/itex) protocol for the Toolik Snowfence Experiment.
Phenological events of interest are 1) Date snowfree, 2) First leaf evident, 3) First flower bud visible, 4) First flower open, 5) First petal drop, 6) Last petal drop, 7) First seed dispersal, 8) First color change, and 9) Last color change. Observations begin in late May with two observations per week until mid-June. The snowfree date is recorded for the plot in general, after which the field researcher examines the species of interest by scanning the entire plot for the next event. After mid-June, observations are made one time per week until signs of senescence begin, at which time observations resume twice per week. For all other phenological events, the first date on which the event occurs for each species is recorded.
Data accessible from the Arctic Data Center. Please cite the data as follows:
2019. Plant phenology of species in dry heath tundra around Toolik Field Station, Alaska, 2011-2017. Arctic Data Center. doi:10.18739/A25H7BT6B.
2018. Plant phenology of species in moist acidic tundra around Toolik Field Station, Alaska, 2007-2017. Arctic Data Center. doi:10.18739/A2610VR7Z.