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Clonal variation in response to salinity and flooding stress in four marsh macrophytes of the northern gulf of Mexico, USA
HOWARD Rebecca J. ; RAFFERTY Patricia S.
Intraspecific variation in stress tolerance can be an important factor influencing plant population structure in coastal wetland habitats. We studied clones of four species of emergent marsh macrophytes native to the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico in Louisiana, USA, to examine variation in response to salinity and flooding stress under controlled greenhouse conditions. Clones of Distichlis spicata, Phragmites australis, Schoenoplectus californicus, and Schoenoplectus robustus were collected across the coastal zone of Louisiana. After vegetative propagation through at least three generations to remove acclimation to field conditions, four to six clones of each species were selected for use in the experiment. Treatments consisted of three salinity levels and two water depths, and species were assigned to either a brackish marsh (P. australis, S. californicus) or salt marsh (D. spicata, S. robustus) group for treatment application. Treatment effects on plant growth (stem number, total height, and mean height, and aboveground and belowground biomass) were examined, and physicochemical characteristics within treatments (redox potential, and interstitial water pH, salinity, temperature, and nutrients) were monitored. Clonal variation in growth was indicated in all species, and was more pronounced in D. spicata and P. australis than in S. californicus and S. robustus. Distichlis spicata and P. australis clones were assigned to relative categories of low, intermediate, and high
Elsevier Science
ISSN : 0098-8472 CODEN : EEBODM
Environmental and experimental botany A. 2006, vol. 56, n° 3, pp. 301-313 [13 pages] [bibl. : 1 p.1/2]
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