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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Response of a Model Regenerating Longleaf Pine Community to Atmospheric Co2enrichment Growth and Morphology

Authors
item Pritchard, Seth
item Prior, Stephen
item Mitchell, R - JONES ECOLOGICAL RES CTR
item Runion, G - INTERNATIONAL PAPER
item Rogers Jr, Hugo

Submitted to: Ecological Society of America Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: September 1, 1999
Publication Date: September 1, 1999
Citation: Pritchard, S.G., Prior, S.A., Mitchell, R.J., Runion, G.B., and Rogers, H.H. 1999. Response of a model regenerating longleaf pine community to atmospheric CO2 enrichment: Growth and morphology. Supplement to Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America 80:170.

Technical Abstract: Model plant communities of intermediate complexity are useful to determine the influence of rising global CO2 levels on specific processes underlying ecosystem form and function. Therefore, five common associates of natural regenerating longleaf pine communities, representing different plant functional types, were planted in the ground at densities reflective of nature: (1)longleaf pine, (2)wiregrass (C4), (3)sand post oak, (4)rattlebox (C3 perennial herbaceous legume), and (5)butterfly weed. Twelve open top chambers were installed representing both ambient (360 ppm mol mol-1) and elevated CO2 (720 ppm mol mol-1) concentrations. Exposure to elevated CO2 did not significantly alter growth or morphology of oak or wiregrass sampled four months after treatment initiation. Rattlebox plants grown in elevated CO2 had 23% more runners but the area of ground covered by runners was not changed. Although leaf number and area per plant did not change in rattlebox, leaf dry weight per plant was increased suggesting thicker leaves. Longleaf pine exhibited the greatest growth stimulation of all species: 23% greater fascicle number, 25% greater leaf area per needle, 22% more needles per plant, 52% greater leaf area per plant, and 54% greater leaf dry weight per plant 4 months after treatment initiation. Results obtained after 4 months will be compared to data obtained one year later to determine if response patterns will change with increasing duration of exposure to elevated CO2.

Last Modified: 9/22/2014
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