Interactive effects of mycorrhizae and a root hemiparasite on plant community productivity and diversity

Stein, Claudia; Rissmann, Cornelia; Hempel, Stefan; Renker, Carsten; Buscot, Francois; Prati, Daniel; Auge, Harald (2009). Interactive effects of mycorrhizae and a root hemiparasite on plant community productivity and diversity. Oecologia, 159(1), pp. 191-205. Springer 10.1007/s00442-008-1192-x

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Plant communities can be affected both by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and hemiparasitic plants. However, little is known about the interactive effects of these two biotic factors on the productivity and diversity of plant communities. To address this question, we set up a greenhouse study in which different AMF inocula and a hemiparasitic plant (Rhinanthus minor) were added to experimental grassland communities in a fully factorial design. In addition, single plants of each species in the grassland community were grown with the same treatments to distinguish direct AMF effects from indirect effects via plant competition. We found that AMF changed plant community structure by influencing the plant species differently. At the community level, AMF decreased the productivity by 15-24%, depending on the particular AMF treatment, mainly because two dominant species, Holcus lanatus and Plantago lanceolata, showed a negative mycorrhizal dependency. Concomitantly, plant diversity increased due to AMF inoculation and was highest in the treatment with a combination of two commercial AM strains. AMF had a positive effect on growth of the hemiparasite, and thereby induced a negative impact of the hemiparasite on host plant biomass which was not found in non-inoculated communities. However, the hemiparasite did not increase plant diversity. Our results highlight the importance of interactions with soil microbes for plant community structure and that these indirect effects can vary among AMF treatments. We conclude that mutualistic interactions with AMF, but not antagonistic interactions with a root hemiparasite, promote plant diversity in this grassland community.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS)
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS) > Plant Ecology

UniBE Contributor:

Prati, Daniel

Subjects:

500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)

ISSN:

0029-8549

Publisher:

Springer

Language:

English

Submitter:

Peter Alfred von Ballmoos-Haas

Date Deposited:

15 Aug 2014 08:26

Last Modified:

06 Dec 2014 20:00

Publisher DOI:

10.1007/s00442-008-1192-x

Uncontrolled Keywords:

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, Gigaspora margarita, Glomus intraradices, Rhinanthus minor, Indirect effects

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.53778

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/53778

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