Oct 2, 2015

Plant responses to climatic extremes: within-species variation equals among-species variation

Global Change Biology
Andrey V MalyshevJuergen Kreyling

Abstract

Within-species and among-species differences in growth responses to a changing climate have been well documented, yet the relative magnitude of within-species vs. among-species variation has remained largely unexplored. This missing comparison impedes our ability to make general predictions of biodiversity change and to project future species distributions using models. We present a direct comparison of among- versus within-species variation in response to three of the main stresses anticipated with climate change: drought, warming, and frost. Two earlier experiments had experimentally induced (i) summer drought and (ii) spring frost for four common European grass species and their ecotypes from across Europe. To supplement existing data, a third experiment was carried out, to compare variation among species from different functional groups to within-species variation. Here, we simulated (iii) winter warming plus frost for four grasses, two nonleguminous, and two leguminous forbs, in addition to eleven European ecotypes of the widespread grass Arrhenatherum elatius. For each experiment, we measured: (i) C/N ratio and biomass, (ii) chlorophyll content and biomass, and (iii) plant greenness, root (15) N uptake, and live and dead ...Continue Reading

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References

Mentioned in this Paper

Vitreous Carbon
Uptake
Plant bulb
Nitrogen
Plant Development
Documented
Biodiversity
Arrhenatherum elatius antigen
Widespread
Species

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