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CEC Research | https://doi.org/10.21973/N3RQ24 Fall 2020 1/6 The effects of plant and epiphyte interactions on bark exfoliation in Arbutus menziesii Sheena Cabal1, Gavin Kellerman1, Shannon McKillop-Herr2 1University of California, Los Angeles; 2University of California, Berkeley Bark provides trees with many important functions, such as nutrient transport and protection, yet the Pacific madrone (Arbutus menziesii) regularly exfoliates its bark. The mechanism for this exfoliation is largely unknown, but is possibly due to biotic pressures, such as epiphyte or poison oak (Toxicodendron diversilobum) growth, or abiotic pressures, like solar radiation exposure. In order to test potential drivers of shedding, we surveyed 49 madrones and neighboring oaks at Hastings Natural History Reserve. For each sampled tree, we counted surrounding poison oak stems, poison oak vines, estimated epiphytic cover, and measured total height and bark height of madrones. We found no association between poison ...