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Gewählte Publikation:

Lak, ZA; Sanden, H; Mayer, M; Godbold, DL; Rewald, B.
(2020): Plasticity of Root Traits under Competition for a Nutrient-Rich Patch Depends on Tree Species and Possesses a Large Congruency between Intra- and Interspecific Situations
FORESTS. 2020; 11(5), 528 FullText FullText_BOKU

Belowground competition is an important structuring force in terrestrial plant communities. Uncertainties remain about the plasticity of functional root traits under competition, especially comparing interspecific vs. intraspecific situations. This study addresses the plasticity of fine root traits of competingAcer pseudoplatanusL. andFagus sylvaticaL. seedlings in nutrient-rich soil patches. Seedlings' roots were grown in a competition chamber experiment in which root growth (biomass), morphological and architectural fine roots traits, and potential activities of four extracellular enzymes were analyzed. Competition chambers with one, two conspecific, or two allospecific roots were established, and fertilized to create a nutrient 'hotspot'. Interspecific competition significantly reduced fine root growth inFagusonly, while intraspecific competition had no significant effect on the fine root biomass of either species. Competition reduced root nitrogen concentration and specific root respiration of both species. Potential extracellular enzymatic activities of beta-glucosidase (BG) andN-acetyl-glucosaminidase (NAG) were lower in ectomycorrhizalFagusroots competing withAcer.Acerfine roots had greater diameter and tip densities under intraspecific competition.Fagusroot traits were generally more plastic than those ofAcer, but no differences in trait plasticity were found between competitive situations. Compared toAcer,Fagusroots possessed a greater plasticity of all studied traits but coarse root biomass. However, this high plasticity did not result in directed trait value changes under interspecific competition, butFagusroots grew less and realized lower N concentrations in comparison to competingAcerroots. The plasticity of root traits of both species was thus found to be highly species- but not competitor-specific. By showing that both con- and allospecific roots had similar effects on target root growth and most trait values, our data sheds light on the paradigm that the intensity of intraspecific competition is greater than those of interspecific competition belowground.
Autor*innen der BOKU Wien:
Godbold Douglas L.
Lak Zana Abubakr Ahmed
Mayer Mathias
Rewald Boris
Sanden Hans

Find related publications in this database (Keywords)
Acer pseudoplatanus
competition below ground
extracellular enzymes
Fagus sylvatica
intraspecific and interspecific competition
toot economic spectrum
toot respiration
tree root traits

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