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Effects of Elevated [CO2] and N Fertilization on Interspecific Interactions in Temperate Grassland Model Ecosystems

  • A. Lüscher
  • U. Aeschlimann
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 187)

19.5 Conclusions

Elevated [CO2] and N fertilization influenced markedly yield, species proportion and interspecific interactions in temperate grassland. These changes may significantly affect amount and quality of forage and ecosystem functioning.
  • Interspecific differences in the response to e[CO2] were stronger in the mixed sward (−2 % for L. perenne and +65 % for T. repens) than in the pure swards (+13 % for L. perenne and +19 % for T. repens), demonstrating that e[CO2] does affect not only the yield, but also the interspecific interactions and the species composition of mixed plant communities. Thus, studying the ecosystem response to e[CO2] needs experiments with mixed plant communities.

  • RY and RNY <0.5 for T. repens provides evidence that T. repens was adversely affected from competition with the grass, while the grass competed more successfully for resources (RY >0.5) or even clearly gained from synergistic effects (RY >1.0).

  • The extreme resource complementarity (RNYT of up to 1.9) at low N and the loss of resource complementarity (RYT and RNYT close to 1.0) at high N demonstrate that mineral N availability was the most important limiting factor for plant growth and interspecific interactions in the low N treatment of the Swiss FACE experiment. Thus, this FACE experiment with grasses and legumes provides a good tool to study effects of e[CO2] on the N cycle of grassland ecosystems under strongly limiting and non-limiting N availability.

Keywords

White Clover Relative Yield Perennial Ryegrass Interspecific Interaction Lolium Perenne 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Lüscher
    • 1
  • U. Aeschlimann
    • 2
  1. 1.Agroscope FAL ReckenholzZurichSwitzerland
  2. 2.Institute of Plant ScienceSwiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH)ZürichSwitzerlan

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