Appropriate Nutrient Economy in Phragmites australis at Different Phases of Estuarine Succession
Journal of Plant Sciences
Volume 2, Issue 4, August 2014, Pages: 120-128
Received: Jul. 2, 2014;
Accepted: Jul. 17, 2014;
Published: Jul. 30, 2014
Views 4511 Downloads 201
Kai Aulio, Department of Biology, University of Turku, FI-201400 Turun yliopisto, Finland; Present address: Lankakatu 3 D 16, FI-20660 Littoinen, Finland
The common reed Phragmites australis (Cav.) Trin ex Steudel – the dominant macrophytic plant species in the Kokemäenjoki River delta, western Finland – showed distinct and appropriate trends in the nutrient economy according to the previously determined successional phases of the vegetation development. The height and weight of individual aboveground shoots (ramets) decreased in the order: Pioneer stage > Mature stage > Regressing stage. The concentrations of the major nutrients nitrogen and phosphorus were determined only partly by amounts of these nutrients in the plants’ rhizospheres. The estuary is eutrophic, and the river water guarantees a continuous supply of nutrients, and thus the levels of nitrogen and phosphorus are high throughout the study area. The levels of nutrients correlated significantly with the contents of organic matter in the rhizospheres of the reed stands. On the basis of the relationships between the major nutrients’ concentrations in the leaf blades, nitrogen appeared to be the growth-limiting nutrients in the pioneer stage of succession in these estuarine habitats. The N/P-ratios in the three stages were as follows: Pioneer stage: 10.75, Mature stage: 13.59, Regressing stage: 14.67. In general, the values below 15 are considered to be nitrogen-limited. The actual levels of N and P in the leaf tissues were, however, high throughout the study. As evaluated by the concept of critical concentration, i.e. the level of a nutrient, which guarantees maximal growth potential, the habitats at all the three successional phases showed adequate level of nutrient availability for the maximal production of Phragmites. At the pioneer stage, where the rhizosphere resources of nutrients were poorest, the common reed showed an appropriate morphological adaptation. In the pioneering stands, the common reed produces considerable amounts of adventitious roots (water roots) on the underwater sections of the culms. In the pioneer stage, the average weight of the water roots was 675 mg/ramet in the fertile (flowering) shoots and 267 mg/ramet in the sterile (non-flowering) shoots, i.e. 2.6–5% of the total weight of the aboveground shoots. In the mature stage, the amount of adventitious roots was minor, but in the regressing stage – where growth enhancement and substantial flowering is essential for the future of the species – the reeds produced more adventitious roots again.
Appropriate Nutrient Economy in Phragmites australis at Different Phases of Estuarine Succession, Journal of Plant Sciences.
Vol. 2, No. 4,
2014, pp. 120-128.
Stott P. 1981. Historical Plant Geography. pp. 151. George Allen & Unwin, London.
Haslam SM. 2010. A Book of Reed. pp. 261. Forrest Text, Swn y Nant.
Eller F and Brix H. 2012. Different genotypes of Phragmites australis show distinct phenotypic plasticity in response to nutrient availability and temperature. Aquatic Botany 103: 89–97.
van der Veen A. 2000. Competition in coastal sand dune succession. Cause or mechanism? pp. 126. Doctoral dissertation. University of Groningen (Rijksuniversiteit Groningen).
Elberse WT and Berendse F. 1993. A comparative study of the growth and morphology of eight grass species from habitats with different nutrient availabilities. Functional Ecology 7(1): 223–229.
Khan FA and Ansari AA. 2005. Eutrophication: An ecological vision. The Botanical Review 71(4): 449–482.
Keddy PA. 2010. Wetland Ecology. Principles and Conservation, Second Edition. pp. 497. Cambridge University Press. Cambridge.
Berendse F and Aerts R. 1987. Nitrogen-use-efficiency: a biologically meaningful definition? Functional Ecology 1(3): 293–296.
Eckstein RL. 1999. Nutrient use strategies of plants of various life-forms in a subarctic environment. Nutrient conservation as an adaptation to infertile habitats. Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Science and Technology 490: 1–32.
Grime JP. 2001. Plant Strategies, Vegetation Processes, and Ecosystem Properties, Second Edition. pp. 417. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester.
Björk S. 1967. Ecologic investigations of Phragmites communis. Studies in theoretic and applied limnology. Folia Limnologica Scandinavica 14: 1–248.
Rodewald-Rudescu L. 1974. Das Schilfrohr Phragmites communis Trinius. Die Binnengewässer 27: 1–302.
Aulio K. 2010. The Kokemäenjoki River: A success story in water conservation. Baltic Cities Environmental Bulletin 2/2010: 7.
Aulio K. 2014a. Strategies in growth of the common reed (Phragmites australis) as related to successional stages in a rapidly varying estuary. Research Journal of Biology 2: 11–17.
Aulio K. 2014b. Allocation to sexual reproduction by the common reed (Phragmites australis) is highly variable in different phases of estuarine succession. Research Journal of Biology 2: 53–59.
Vollenweider RA (Ed.). 1969. A manual on methods for measuring primary production in aquatic environments. pp. 213. IBP Handbook 12. London.
Allen SE (Ed.). 1974. Chemical Analysis of Ecological Materials. pp. 565. Blackwell, Oxford.
Hiscox JD and Israelstam GF. 1979. A method for the extraction of chlorophyll from leaf tissue without maceration. Canadian Journal of Botany 57(12): 1332–1334.
Arnon DI. 1949. Copper enzymes in isolated chloroplasts. Polyphenoloxidases in Beta vulgaris. Plant Physiology 14(1): 1–15.
Sokal RR and Rohlf FJ. 2012. Biometry. Fourth Edition. pp. 937. W.H.Freeman and Company, New York.
Analyse-it Software Ltd. 2008. Analyse-it for Microsoft Exel (version 2.12). http://www.analyse-it.com
Allaby M. (Ed.). 2012. Oxford Dictionary of Plant Sciences. Third Edition. pp. 565. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
McJannet CL, Keddy PA and Pick FR. 1995. Nitrogen and phosphorus tissue concentrations in 41 wetland plants: a comparison across habitats and functional groups. Functional Ecology 9(2): 231–238.
Rickey MA and Anderson RC. 2004. Effects of nitrogen addition on the invasive grass Phragmites australis and a native competitor Spartina pectinata. Journal of Applied Ecology 41(5): 888–896.
Andersen FØ. 1978. Effects of nutrient level on the decomposition of Phragmites communis TRIN. Archiv für Hydrobiologie 84: 42–54.
Andersson B. 2001. Macrophyte development and habitat characteristics in Sweden's large lakes. Ambio 30(8): 503–513.
Verhoeven JTA, Koerselman W and Meuleman AFM. 1996. Nitrogen- or phosphorus-limited growth in herbaceous, wet vegetation: relations with atmospheric inputs and management regimes. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 11(12): 494–497.
Haslam SM. 1971. Community regulation in Phragmites communis Trin. I. Monodominant stands. Journal of Ecology 59(1): 65–73.
Szczepański A. 1978. Ecology of macrophytes in wetlands. Polish Ecological Studies 4: 45–94.
Gerloff GC and Krombholz PH. 1966. Tissue analysis as a measure of nutrient availability for the growth of angiosperm aquatic plants. Limnology and Oceanography 11(4): 529–537.
Haslam S. 1973. Some aspects of the life history and outecology of Phragmites communis Trin. A review. Polskie Archiwum Hydrobiologii 20: 79–100.
 Gregory PJ. 2008. Plant Roots: Growth, Activity and Interactions with the Soil. pp. 328. Blackwell Publishing, Oxford.
 Armstrong J and Armstrong W. 1988. Phragmites australis – A preliminary study of soil-oxidizing sites and internal gas transport pathways. New Phytologist, 108(4): 373–382.
 Stevens KJ and Peterson RL. 2007. Relationships among three pathways for resource acquisition and their contribution to plant performance in the emergent aquatic plant Lythrum salicaria (L.). Plant Biology 9(6): 758–765.
Reale L, Gigante D, Landucci F, Ferranti F and Venanzoni R. 2012. Morphological and histo-anatomical traits reflect die-back in Phragmites australis (Cav.) Steud. Aquatic Botany 103: 122–128.
Colmer TD. 2003. Long-distance transport of gases in plants: a perspective on internal aeration and radial oxygen loss from roots. Plant, Cell and Environment 26(1): 17–36.
Bornkamm R, Raghi-Atri F and Koch M. 1980. Einfluss der Gewässereutrophierung auf Phragmites australis (Cav.)Trin. ex Steudel. Garten und Landschaft 1/80: 15–19.
Marschner H. 1995. Mineral Nutrition of Higher Plants. Second Edition. pp. 889. Academic Press. London.