Journal of Plant Biology

, Volume 62, Issue 2, pp 103–108 | Cite as

Changes in Reproductive Strategy of an Early Successional Species Penthorum chinense in Response to Nutrient and Moisture Levels

  • Yun Young Yang
  • Jae Geun KimEmail author
Original Article


Variation in resource allocation to clonal growth versus sexual reproduction suggests that plants have different adaptive strategies in response to environmental conditions such as nutrient availability and soil moisture. Seeds of P. chinense might play an important role in expanding its established populations. We hypothesize that an early successional perennial plant Penthorum chinense Pursh with many seeds and small rhizomes does not increase its allocation to rhizome propagules and/or decrease its allocation to seeds under sufficient nutrient content or moisture conditions, unlike many other perennials. We performed mesocosm experiments to understand how P. chinense could alter resource allocation to rhizomes and seeds under experimental manipulation of water and nutrient availability. Like many perennials, P. chinense contained more rhizome dry mass and rhizome mass fraction under favorable nutrient content condition than with relatively low nutrient levels. However, P. chinense did not decrease its allocation to seeds under sufficient nutrient condition. It did not change its allocation to rhizome propagules or seeds under high moisture level either, unlike other perennials. These results suggest that both rhizomes and seeds of P. chinense might be important for expanding its established populations.


Niche Phenotypic plasticity Plant development and life-history traits Reproductive allocation Tolerance 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Abrahamson WG (1979) Patterns of resource allocation in wildflower populations of fields and woods. Am J Bot 66:71–79CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Baker HG (1974) The evolution of weeds. Annu Rev Ecol Syst 5:1–24CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bai W, Sun X, Wang Z, Li L (2009) Nitrogen addition and rhizome severing modify clonal growth and reproductive modes of Leymus chinensis population. Plant Ecol 205:13–21CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Boedeltje G, Ozinga WA, Prinzing A (2008) The trade-off between vegetative and generative reproduction among angiosperms influences regional hydrochorous propagule pressure. Global Ecol Biogeogr 17:50–58Google Scholar
  5. Choo YH, Nam JM, Kim JH, Kim JG (2015) Advantages of amphicarpy of Persicaria thunbergii in the early life history. Aquat Bot 121:33–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Damman H, Cain ML (1998) Population growth and viability analyses of the clonal woodland herb, Asarum canadense. J Ecol 86:13–26CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Eriksson O (1985) Reproduction and clonal growth in Potentilla anserina L. (Rosaceae): the relation between growth form and dry weight allocation. Oecologia 66:378–380CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Gehring J.L, Linhart YB (1993) Sexual dimorphisms and response to low resources in the dioecious plant Silene latifolia (Caryophyllaceae). Int J Plant Sci 154:152–162CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Grant V (1981) Plant speciation, 2nd Ed, New York, Columbia University Press, 432pGoogle Scholar
  10. Hutchings MJ, Mogie M (1990) The spatial structure of clonal plants: control and consequences. In: Clonal growth in plants: regulation and function (van Groenedael J, de Kroon H, eds) The Hague, SPB, pp 57–78Google Scholar
  11. Ikeda H, Itoh K (2001) Germination and water dispersal of seeds from a threatened plant species Penthorum chinense. Ecol Res 16:99–106CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kang HK, Ohkuro T, Ide M (2003) Vegetation structure and environmental characteristics of native habitats for a vulnerable plant species Penthorum chinense–a focus on the southern part in Ibaraki, Japan. J Korean Inst Landsc Archit 31:83–93Google Scholar
  13. Kaydan D, Yagmur M (2008) Germination, seedling growth and relative water content of shoot in different seed sizes of triticale under osmotic stress of water and NaCl. Afr J Biotechnol 7:2862–2868Google Scholar
  14. Khurana E, Singh JS (2004) Germination and seedling growth of five tree species from tropical dry forest in relation to water stress: impact of seed size. J Trop Ecol 20:385–396CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kimura Y, Terazaki F, Ohno K, Tanahasi A (2000) Possibility of restoration of Penthorum chinense Pursh by using soil seed bank. Jpn J Conserv Ecol 5:197–204Google Scholar
  16. Kiviniemi K (2002) Population dynamics of Agrimonia eupatoria and Geum rivale, two perennial grassland species. Plant Ecol 159:153–169CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Klimes L, Klimesova J, Hendriks R, van Groenendael J (1997) Clonal plant architecture: a comparative analysis of form and function. In: The Ecology and Evolution of Clonal Plants. Backhuys Publishers, Leiden, pp 1–29Google Scholar
  18. Leishman MR, Westoby M (1994) The role of seed size in seedling establishment in dry soil conditions–experimental evidence from semi-arid species. J Ecol 82:249–258CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Li BO, Shibuya T, Yogo Y, Hara T, Yokozawa M (2001) Interclonal differences, plasticity and trade-offs of life history traits of Cyperus esculentus in relation to water availability. Plant Spec Biol 16:193–207CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Liu F, Wu WY, Wan T, Wang QF, Cheng Y, Li W (2013) Temporal variation of resource allocation between sexual and asexual structures in response to nutrient and water stress in a floatingleaved plant. J Plant Ecol 6:499–505CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Loehle C (1987) Partitioning of reproductive effort in clonal plants: a benefitcost model. Oikos 49:199–208CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Mal TK, Lovett-Doust J (2005) Phenotypic plasticity in vegetative and reproductive traits in an invasive weed, Lythrum salicaria (Lythraceae), in response to soil moisture. Am J Bot 92:819–825CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Marino PC, Eisenberg RM, Cornell HV (1997) Influence of sunlight and soil nutrients on clonal growth and sexual reproduction of the understory perennial herb Sanguinaria canadensis L. J Torrey Bot Soc 124:219–227CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Nicholls AM (2011) Size-dependent analysis of allocation to sexual and clonal reproduction in Penthorum sedoides under contrasting nutrient levels. Int J Plant Sci 172:1077–1086CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Obeso JR (2002) The costs of reproduction in plants. New Phytol 155:321–348CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Ogden J (1974) The reproductive strategy of higher plants: II. The reproductive strategy of Tussilago Farfara L. J Ecol 62:291–324Google Scholar
  27. Philbrick CT, Les DH (1996) Evolution of aquatic angiosperm reproductive systems. What is the balance between sexual and asexual reproduction in aquatic angiosperms? Bioscience 46:813–826Google Scholar
  28. Pluess AR, Stocklin J (2005) The importance of population origin and environment on clonal and sexual reproduction in the alpine plant Geum reptans. Funct Ecol 19:228–237CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Radosevich SR, Holt JS, Ghersa CM (1996) Weeds Ecology: Implications for Management, 2nd ed, John Wiley and Sons, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  30. Ronsheim ML (1996) Evidence against a frequency-dependent advantage for sexual reproduction in Allium vineale. Am Nat 147:718–734CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Ronsheim ML, Bever JD (2000) Genetic variation and evolutionary trade-offs for sexual and asexual reproductive modes in Allium vineale (Liliaceae). Am J Bot 87:1769–1777CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Sarukhan J (1974) Studies on plant demography: Ranunculus repens L., R. bulbosus L. and R. acris L. 2. Reproductive strategies and seed population dynamics. J Ecol 62:151–177Google Scholar
  33. Shipley B, Keddy PA (1988) The relationship between relative growth rate and sensitivity to nutrient stress in twenty-eight species of emergent macrophytes. J Ecol 76:1101–1110CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Silander JA (1985) Microevolution in clonal plants. In: Population Biology and Evolution of Clonal Organisms. Yale University Press, London, pp 107–152Google Scholar
  35. Thomas AG, Dale HM (1975) The role of seed reproduction in the dynamics of established populations of Hieracium floribundum and a comparison with that of vegetative reproduction. Can J Botany 53:3022–3031CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Turner CE (1988) Ecology of invasions by weeds. In: Weed Management in Agroecosystem. Ecological Approaches CRC Press, Florida, pp 41–55Google Scholar
  37. van Andel J, Vera F (1977) Reproductive allocation in Senecio sylvaticus and Chamaenerion angustifolium in relation to mineral nutrition. J Ecol 65:747–758CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. van Kleunen M, Fischer M, Schmid B (2002) Experimental lifehistory evolution: selection on the allocation to sexual reproduction and its plasticity in a clonal plant. Evolution 56:2168–2177CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Wang Z, Xu A, Zhu T (2008) Plasticity in bud demography of a rhizomatous clonal plant Leymus chinensis L. in response to soil water status. J Plant Biol 51:102–107CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Wulff RD (1986) Seed size variation in Desmodium Paniculatum: II. Effects on seedling growth and physiological performance. J Ecol 74:99–114Google Scholar
  41. Yang YY, Kim JG (2016) The optimal balance between sexual and asexual reproduction in variable environments: a systematic review. J Ecol Environ 40:12CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Yang YY, Kim JG (2017) The life history strategy of Penthorum chinense: implication for the restoration of early successional species. Flora 233:109–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Yonemura S (2000) Preliminary study on restoration of the vulnerable plant species Penthorum chinense. J Jpn Soc Reveget Tech 25:317–320CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Zangerl AR, Bazzaz FA (1983) Responses of an early and a late successional species of Polygonum to variations in resource availability. Oecologia 56:397–404CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Zhang Y, Zhang D (2007) Asexual and sexual reproductive strategies in clonal plants. Front Biol China 2:256–262CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Korean Society of Plant Biologists 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Program in Environmental EducationSeoul National UniversitySeoulKorea
  2. 2.Department of Biology EducationSeoul National UniversitySeoulKorea
  3. 3.Center for Education ResearchSeoul National UniversitySeoulKorea

Personalised recommendations