Quantifying the functional responses of vegetation to drought and oxygen stress in temperate ecosystems.

J.C. Douma, V. Bardin, R.P. Bartholomeus, P.M. van Bodegom

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Our understanding of the generality of plant functional responses to water availability is limited; current field studies use either very rough approximations of water and oxygen availability or only focus on water-stressed ecosystems. Studies that relate species' responses to a surplus of water are limited to controlled experiments. The aim of this study was to investigate how traits are selected along a gradient of soil moisture, ranging from oxygen-stressed to drought-stressed. We tested 15 traits: eight leaf traits, two root traits, two seed traits and three allometry traits and related their community means to process-based measures of drought stress and oxygen stress for 171 plots in the Netherlands. Because the trait values had been taken from a large database, an independent field survey was carried out to validate the relationships thus derived. We show that root porosity and seed floating capacity are mostly strongly related, although still moderately, to oxygen and drought stress (R
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1355-1365
JournalFunctional Ecology
Volume26
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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