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Distinguishing the biomass allocation variance resulting from ontogenetic drift or acclimation to soil texture.

Xie J, Tang L, Wang Z, Xu G, Li Y - PLoS ONE (2012)

Bottom Line: Soil texture also significantly changed the development trajectories of leaf and root traits, but did not change the scaling relationship between basal stem diameter and plant height.The results demonstrated that biomass allocation to metabolically active organs (e.g., roots and leaves) was mainly governed by environmental factors, and that biomass allocation to metabolically non-active organs (e.g., stems) was mainly governed by ontogenetic drift.We concluded that differentiating the causes of development trajectories of plant traits was important to the understanding of plant response to environmental gradients.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: State Key Lab of Desert and Oasis Ecology, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Urumqi, Xinjiang, People's Republic of China.

ABSTRACT
In resource-poor environments, adjustment in plant biomass allocation implies a complex interplay between environmental signals and plant development rather than a delay in plant development alone. To understand how environmental factors influence biomass allocation or the developing phenotype, it is necessary to distinguish the biomass allocations resulting from environmental gradients or ontogenetic drift. Here, we compared the development trajectories of cotton plants (Gossypium herbaceum L.), which were grown in two contrasting soil textures during a 60-d period. Those results distinguished the biomass allocation pattern resulting from ontogenetic drift and the response to soil texture. The soil texture significantly changed the biomass allocation to leaves and roots, but not to stems. Soil texture also significantly changed the development trajectories of leaf and root traits, but did not change the scaling relationship between basal stem diameter and plant height. Results of nested ANOVAs of consecutive plant-size categories in both soil textures showed that soil gradients explained an average of 63.64-70.49% of the variation of biomass allocation to leaves and roots. Ontogenetic drift explained 77.47% of the variation in biomass allocation to stems. The results suggested that the environmental factors governed the biomass allocation to roots and leaves, and ontogenetic drift governed the biomass allocation to stems. The results demonstrated that biomass allocation to metabolically active organs (e.g., roots and leaves) was mainly governed by environmental factors, and that biomass allocation to metabolically non-active organs (e.g., stems) was mainly governed by ontogenetic drift. We concluded that differentiating the causes of development trajectories of plant traits was important to the understanding of plant response to environmental gradients.

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Allometric plots for plant traits.Data for individual slopes and intercepts are given in Table 1. The SMA regression (using SMATR package of R) was used to test the slope and intercept heterogeneity at α = 0.05 (where slopes or intercepts non-heterogeneous, P>0.05) between the two soil textures: (A) Leaf mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.32; Intercepts heterogeneous: leaf mass was higher at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (B) Root mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.056; Intercepts heterogeneous: root mass was lower at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (C) Stem mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.05; Intercepts non-heterogeneous: stem mass was equal at a given plant size between clay and sandy soil treatment (P = 0.49); (D) Leaf area versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.055; Intercepts heterogeneous: leaf area was higher at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (E) Root length versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.054; Intercepts heterogeneous: root length was lower at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); and (F) Diameter of basal stem versus plant height. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.08; Intercepts non-heterogeneous: diameter of basal stem was equal at a given plant height between clay and sandy soil treatment (P = 0.08).
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pone-0041502-g007: Allometric plots for plant traits.Data for individual slopes and intercepts are given in Table 1. The SMA regression (using SMATR package of R) was used to test the slope and intercept heterogeneity at α = 0.05 (where slopes or intercepts non-heterogeneous, P>0.05) between the two soil textures: (A) Leaf mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.32; Intercepts heterogeneous: leaf mass was higher at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (B) Root mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.056; Intercepts heterogeneous: root mass was lower at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (C) Stem mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.05; Intercepts non-heterogeneous: stem mass was equal at a given plant size between clay and sandy soil treatment (P = 0.49); (D) Leaf area versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.055; Intercepts heterogeneous: leaf area was higher at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (E) Root length versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.054; Intercepts heterogeneous: root length was lower at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); and (F) Diameter of basal stem versus plant height. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.08; Intercepts non-heterogeneous: diameter of basal stem was equal at a given plant height between clay and sandy soil treatment (P = 0.08).

Mentions: Results for Standardized major axis (SMA) slopes and intercepts fitted within soil textures, corresponding to Figures 6, 7, and 8. Testing for common slopes (where slopes are equal, P>0.05) and intercept differences (where no differences in intercept, P>0.05). Type is defined in Figure 3. Plant size: M; Diameter of basal stem: D; Plant height: H; Likelihood ratio statistic: LR; Wald statistic: W.


Distinguishing the biomass allocation variance resulting from ontogenetic drift or acclimation to soil texture.

Xie J, Tang L, Wang Z, Xu G, Li Y - PLoS ONE (2012)

Allometric plots for plant traits.Data for individual slopes and intercepts are given in Table 1. The SMA regression (using SMATR package of R) was used to test the slope and intercept heterogeneity at α = 0.05 (where slopes or intercepts non-heterogeneous, P>0.05) between the two soil textures: (A) Leaf mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.32; Intercepts heterogeneous: leaf mass was higher at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (B) Root mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.056; Intercepts heterogeneous: root mass was lower at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (C) Stem mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.05; Intercepts non-heterogeneous: stem mass was equal at a given plant size between clay and sandy soil treatment (P = 0.49); (D) Leaf area versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.055; Intercepts heterogeneous: leaf area was higher at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (E) Root length versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.054; Intercepts heterogeneous: root length was lower at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); and (F) Diameter of basal stem versus plant height. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.08; Intercepts non-heterogeneous: diameter of basal stem was equal at a given plant height between clay and sandy soil treatment (P = 0.08).
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pone-0041502-g007: Allometric plots for plant traits.Data for individual slopes and intercepts are given in Table 1. The SMA regression (using SMATR package of R) was used to test the slope and intercept heterogeneity at α = 0.05 (where slopes or intercepts non-heterogeneous, P>0.05) between the two soil textures: (A) Leaf mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.32; Intercepts heterogeneous: leaf mass was higher at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (B) Root mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.056; Intercepts heterogeneous: root mass was lower at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (C) Stem mass versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.05; Intercepts non-heterogeneous: stem mass was equal at a given plant size between clay and sandy soil treatment (P = 0.49); (D) Leaf area versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.055; Intercepts heterogeneous: leaf area was higher at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); (E) Root length versus plant size. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.054; Intercepts heterogeneous: root length was lower at a given plant size in clay soil treatment (P<0.001); and (F) Diameter of basal stem versus plant height. Slopes non-heterogeneous, P = 0.08; Intercepts non-heterogeneous: diameter of basal stem was equal at a given plant height between clay and sandy soil treatment (P = 0.08).
Mentions: Results for Standardized major axis (SMA) slopes and intercepts fitted within soil textures, corresponding to Figures 6, 7, and 8. Testing for common slopes (where slopes are equal, P>0.05) and intercept differences (where no differences in intercept, P>0.05). Type is defined in Figure 3. Plant size: M; Diameter of basal stem: D; Plant height: H; Likelihood ratio statistic: LR; Wald statistic: W.

Bottom Line: Soil texture also significantly changed the development trajectories of leaf and root traits, but did not change the scaling relationship between basal stem diameter and plant height.The results demonstrated that biomass allocation to metabolically active organs (e.g., roots and leaves) was mainly governed by environmental factors, and that biomass allocation to metabolically non-active organs (e.g., stems) was mainly governed by ontogenetic drift.We concluded that differentiating the causes of development trajectories of plant traits was important to the understanding of plant response to environmental gradients.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: State Key Lab of Desert and Oasis Ecology, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Urumqi, Xinjiang, People's Republic of China.

ABSTRACT
In resource-poor environments, adjustment in plant biomass allocation implies a complex interplay between environmental signals and plant development rather than a delay in plant development alone. To understand how environmental factors influence biomass allocation or the developing phenotype, it is necessary to distinguish the biomass allocations resulting from environmental gradients or ontogenetic drift. Here, we compared the development trajectories of cotton plants (Gossypium herbaceum L.), which were grown in two contrasting soil textures during a 60-d period. Those results distinguished the biomass allocation pattern resulting from ontogenetic drift and the response to soil texture. The soil texture significantly changed the biomass allocation to leaves and roots, but not to stems. Soil texture also significantly changed the development trajectories of leaf and root traits, but did not change the scaling relationship between basal stem diameter and plant height. Results of nested ANOVAs of consecutive plant-size categories in both soil textures showed that soil gradients explained an average of 63.64-70.49% of the variation of biomass allocation to leaves and roots. Ontogenetic drift explained 77.47% of the variation in biomass allocation to stems. The results suggested that the environmental factors governed the biomass allocation to roots and leaves, and ontogenetic drift governed the biomass allocation to stems. The results demonstrated that biomass allocation to metabolically active organs (e.g., roots and leaves) was mainly governed by environmental factors, and that biomass allocation to metabolically non-active organs (e.g., stems) was mainly governed by ontogenetic drift. We concluded that differentiating the causes of development trajectories of plant traits was important to the understanding of plant response to environmental gradients.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus