Boreal Highlands Vegetation
The vegetation of the Boreal Highlands Subregion is similar to that of the
Central Mixedwood Subregion. Mixedwood forests of
Aspen and White Spruce are characteristic but with the somewhat moister conditions, greater amounts of
Balsam Poplar and White Spruce are expected. Black Spruce may also occur more frequently in upland sites and
coniferous forests occupy a larger proportion of the landscape.
White Spruce-Aspen mixedwood and Aspen forests contain a diverse understory that may include
Low-bush Cranberry, Prickly Rose, Red-osier Dogwood, Marsh Reed Grass,
Sarsaparilla, Dewberry, Cream-coloured Peavine, Pink Wintergreen and
Twinflower. Both Balsam Poplar and Paper Birch may occur in these forests as well.
Coniferous-dominated, spruce or spruce-fir forests generally have a less diverse understory with greater moss cover especially of the feathermosses.
Jack Pine forests typically occupy dry, sandy upland sites. Typical understory species include
Bearberry, Low Bilberry, Bog Cranberry, Prickly rose and reindeer lichens.
Peatlands are common and extensive throughout the Subregion. Peatland complexes typically contain both nutrient-poor, acidic bog portions, dominated by
Black Spruce, Labrador Tea, and peatmosses and more nutrient-rich fens containing
Tamarack, dwarf birches, sedges, and brown mosses. Patterned peatlands occur in some areas and
permafrost is frequent.