Plant Richness-Biomass Relationships in Restored Northern Great Plains Grasslands USA

Biondini, Mario, E.; Norland, Jack, E.; Grygiel, Carolyn, E.

International Journal of Ecology 2011: 1-13


DOI: 10.1155/2011/856869
Accession: 036699182

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We investigated plant richness-biomass relationships in tall grass (Field 1, 12 years) and mixed grass (Field 2, 5 years) restoration experiments located in the northern Great Plains grasslands (USA). They were organized as randomized factorial experiments with fertilization rates (N or P) and number of species as factors. were as follows: (1) above ground biomass (AGB) increased and year-to-year variability declined with plant species and functional form richness. AGB was higher when the species had various combinations: (a) high relative growth rates, root density, root surface area, N or P uptake rates, and N use efficiency; (b) low root-to-shoot ratio and root plasticity. Biomass stability was positively related to high root surface area in Field 1 and N use efficiency and P uptake rates in Field 2. Invasion of nonseeded species declined with plant species and functional form richness.