Invasive plant species do not create more negative soil conditions for other plants than natives

Del Fabbro, Corina; Prati, Daniel (2015). Invasive plant species do not create more negative soil conditions for other plants than natives. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics, 17(2), 87 - 95. Elsevier 10.1016/j.ppees.2015.02.002

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Abstract A major task in ecology is to establish the degree of generality of ecological mechanisms. Here we present results from a multi-species experiment that tested whether a set of invasive species altered the soil conditions to the detriment of other species by releasing allelopathic compounds or inducing shifts in soil biota composition, and whether this effect was more pronounced relative to a set of closely related native species. We pre-cultivated soil with 23 exotic invasive, 19 related native and 6 related exotic garden species and used plain soil as a control. To separate allelopathy from effects on the soil biota, we sterilized half of the soil. Then, we compared the effect of soil pre-cultivation and sterilization on germination and growth of four native test species in two experiments. The general effect of soil sterilization was positive. The effect of soil pre-cultivation on test species performance was neutral to positive, and sterilization reduced this positive effect. This indicates general absence of allelopathic compounds and a shift toward a less antagonistic soil biota by cultivation species. In both experiments, pre-cultivation effects did not differ systematically between exotic invasive, exotic garden or native species. Our results do not support the hypothesis that invasive plants generally inhibit the growth of others by releasing allelopathic compounds or accumulating a detrimental soil biota.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

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

UniBE Contributor:

Del Fabbro, Corina and Prati, Daniel

Subjects:

500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)

ISSN:

1433-8319

Publisher:

Elsevier

Language:

English

Submitter:

Peter Alfred von Ballmoos-Haas

Date Deposited:

26 May 2015 13:35

Last Modified:

18 May 2016 17:20

Publisher DOI:

10.1016/j.ppees.2015.02.002

Uncontrolled Keywords:

Allelopathy; Biological invasions; Multi-species experiment; Novel weapons hypothesis; Soil biota

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.68982

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/68982

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