This data layer contains soil and vegetation data collected by DNR foresters, summer interns, and Ecologcial Classification System (ECS) program staff. The data support native plant community (NPC) mapping and facilitates use of NPC information to prescribe forest management activities. Data in this layer comprise NPC code, date collected, observer name, growth stage, equipment operability rating, soil surface texture and drainage, soil survey map unit and landtype association map unit. Additional data in a related database include: physical site characteristics, soil layer characteristics, vegetation cover and abundance of five life-form strata, lists of plants present in each strata, and cover and abundance of every woody species in two strata. Vegetation data is collected along transects about 80 meters long and 10 meters wide. Soil data and GPS coordinates are collected near the transect midpoint. Transects are placed where features are uniform and representative of the target NPC or stand, rather than in transition zones. After collecting data, the site is classified to NPC using "Field Guides to the Native Plant Communities of Minnesota" version 2.0. In NPC Points there are links to worksheets. For now, these point to the DNR intranet, so please contact Dan Hanson to request a worksheet.