Gowen cypress is a fire-adapted, fire-dependent species [13,26]. It has slightly fire-resistant bark and serotinous cones. Its low branching habit makes it susceptible to crown fires [1,26]. The serotinous cones of the California cypress species persist on trees for years [13,28]. Cone opening is erratic and almost negligible except when cones are exposed to extreme heat; then it is rapid and uniform [16,28]. When opened by the heat of a fire, the seeds fall on exposed mineral soil [13,27]. Most seed falls in the first few months following fire . Fires that occur in late summer and fall and are followed by winter rains ensure seed dissemination on bare mineral substrates and moist conditions for germination . Successful cypress reproduction is generally restricted to burned sites . No information was available on fire-free intervals for communities dominated by Gowen cypress. Tecate cypress (Cupressus guadalupenis var. forbesii), however, a cypress found in southern California, has an average interval between fires of 25 years, ranging from 15 to 63 years [1,26]. Cypress trees of southern California generally reach cone-bearing age before another fire occurs .
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