WorldWideScience

Sample records for banderita bouteloua curtipendula

  1. Tolerancia a la salinidad del pasto Banderita [Bouteluoa curtipendula (Michx. Torr.] en la etapa de germinación en dos regímenes de temperaturas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Lucía González Romero

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available El pasto Banderita es un forraje nativo de México, con gran potencial socio-económico para la ganadería extensiva; sin embargo, la información sobre su tolerancia a la salinidad es escasa. Para evaluar el efecto de diferentes sales y concentraciones sobre su germinación, se utilizaron cariópsides de reciente cosecha. Las salinidades sulfático-sódica y NaHCO3 de pH alcalino, registraron el menor porcentaje de germinación, en las sales: clorhídrica y CaCl2.2H2O con pH ácido, el mayor valor. El efecto de sales combinadas fue benéfico para la germinación; ésta es inversamente proporcional al incremento de solución salina. Un incremento de temperatura favoreció la germinación, disminuyó la toxicidad de los cloruros y permitió que las semillas soportaran mayores concentraciones de salinidad.

  2. Tolerancia a la salinidad del pasto Banderita [Bouteluoa curtipendula (Michx. Torr.] en la etapa de germinación en dos regímenes de temperaturas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Lucía González Romero

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available El pasto Banderita es un forraje nativo de México, con gran potencial socio-económico para la ganadería extensiva; sin embargo, la información sobre su tolerancia a la salinidad es escasa. Para evaluar el efecto de diferentes sales y concentraciones sobre su germinación, se utilizaron cariópsides de reciente cosecha. Las salinidades sulfático-sódica y NaHCO3 de pH alcalino, registraron el menor porcentaje de germinación, en las sales: clorhídrica y CaCl2.2H2O con pH ácido, el mayor valor. El efecto de sales combinadas fue benéfico para la germinación; ésta es inversamente proporcional al incremento de solución salina. Un incremento de temperatura favoreció la germinación, disminuyó la toxicidad de los cloruros y permitió que las semillas soportaran mayores concentraciones de salinidad.

  3. Efecto de la composición de una mezcla de hidrocarburos en la respuesta fenotípica y la acumulación de azúcares por Bouteloua curtipendula Michx. Torr. en cultivos in vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marianela Orozco-Soto

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Bouteloua curtipendulaMichx Torr. es un pasto originario de México con gran capacidad de adaptación a condiciones climáticas adversas, ha sido reportado con potencial para fitorremediar suelos contaminados con hidrocarburos (HC. En el presente estudio, se hicieron cultivos in vitro de B. curtipendula con una concentración de 1 500 mg HC·L-1 de medio de cultivo, y distintas mezclas de fenantreno (PHE, pireno (PYR y hexadecano (HXD. En todos los casos, tanto la longitud de brotes y raíces, así como la producción de biomasa disminuyeron signifi cativamente con respecto al control. El 100% de las semillas germinaron en el medio sin HC, mientras que en las mezclas con mayor proporción de HDX (1 100 mg HC·L-1 germinó alrededor del 75% de las semillas. La mayor acumulación de azúcares totales en el medio de cultivo, después de 35 días (40 mg de azúcares totales acumulados en el medio·mg-1 de raíz seca, equivalentes a 200 mg de azúcares totales·tubo se registró en la mezcla con menor concentración de HXD; por otro lado, en los cultivos donde no se adicionó HC se observó un consumo en los azúcares totales (225.7 ± 3 mg azúcares totales·tubo. Los resultados obtenidos sugieren que una mayor proporción de HXD en las mezclas incrementa el efecto tóxico a las plantas. Aunque hay estudios en donde se han cuantificado los azúcares exudados por las raíces, en nuestro conocimiento éste es el primer reporte de cultivos in vitro en donde se observa la producción de azúcares como respuesta de un pasto al estrés por HC.

  4. MORFOLOGÍA Y MORFOMETRÍA DE DOS ESPECIES DE BANDERITAS (ORCHIDACEAE: MASDEVALLIA EN COLOMBIA Morphology and Morphometry of Two Banderitas Species (Orchidaceae: Masdevallia in Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MÓNICA ADRIANA CUERVO MARTÍNEZ

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Masdevallia coccinea y Masdevallia ignea (Orchidaceae conocidas como "banderitas", son orquídeas ornamentales muy apreciadas por cultivadores aficionados y coleccionistas. En Colombia, la presión de colecta sobre estas especies ha sido enorme y pocas poblaciones naturales sobreviven en los departamentos de Boyacá (Arcabuco, Páramo de Berlín, Duitama y Santander (entre Málaga y Bucaramanga, estas poblaciones son reducidas y de difícil acceso; razón por la cual se encuentran en el apéndice II de CITES. Poco se sabe sobre su biología reproductiva, sistema reproductivo y polinización y parte de lo que consta en la literatura es incompleto. En este marco el objetivo general del trabajo fue estudiar la morfología y morfometría floral de M. coccinea y M. ignea en condiciones de semicultivo al aire libre en la finca Villa Rosa ubicada en el municipio de Guasca, Cundinamarca, para lo cual se realizó fotografía digital, pruebas histoquímicas, morfometría y Microscopía Electrónica de Barrido. Los resultados principales de la morfometría mostraron que los sépalos dorsal y lateral fueron más largos en M. coccinea (X= 53,0 mm σ = 7,4 mm y X = 44,4 mm y σ = 8,3 mm en comparación a M. ignea (X = 34 mm σ = 7,7 mm y X = 31,5 mm y σ = 6,1 mm, pero las coloraciones de las partes florales de esta última fueron más intensas y su labelo fue más largo (X = 7,1 mm y σ = 0,6 mm. En las dos especies el labelo estuvo articulado a la columna y no se encontró presencia de glándulas con estructuras secretoras como nectarios ni osmóforos.Masdevallia coccinea and the Masdevallia ignea "banderitas" are ornamental orchids which are very prized by amateur farmers and collectors. In Colombia, the harvest pressure on these species has been enormous and few natural populations survive in the departments of Boyacá (Arcabuco of Berlin Páramo, Duitama and Santander (between Málaga and Bucaramanga, in which these populations are reduced and of

  5. A cryptic microbial community persists within micropropagated Bouteloua eriopoda (Torr.) Torr. cultures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higher plants are ubiquitously colonized with fungal endophytes, which often lack readily detectable structures. This study examines the diverse endophyte population within a single line of micropropagated Bouteloua eriopoda (Torr.) Torr., using microscopy and comparison of internal spacer (ITS) ge...

  6. Local climate and cultivation, but not ploidy, predict functional trait variation in Bouteloua gracilis (Poaceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butterfield, Bradley J.; Wood, Troy E.

    2015-01-01

    Efforts to improve the diversity of seed 18 resources for important restoration species has become a high priority for land managers in many parts of the world. Relationships between functional trait values and the environment from which seed sources are collected can provide important insights into patterns of local adaptation and guidelines for seed transfer. However, little is known about which functional traits exhibit genetic differentiation across populations of restoration species and thus may contribute to local adaptation. Here, we report the results of a common garden experiment aimed at assessing genetic (including ploidy level) and environmental regulation of several functional traits among populations of Bouteloua gracilis, a dominant C4 grass and the most highly utilized restoration species across much of the Colorado Plateau. We found that leaf size and specific leaf area (SLA) varied significantly among populations, and were strongly correlated with the source population environment from which seeds were collected. However, variation in ploidy level had no significant effect on functional traits. Leaves of plants grown from commercial seed releases were significantly larger and had lower SLA than those from natural populations, a result that is concordant with the overall relation between climate and these two functional traits. We suggest that the patterns of functional trait variation shown here may extend to other grass species in the western USA, and may serve as useful proxies for more extensive genecology research. Furthermore, we argue that care should be taken to develop commercial seed lines with functional trait values that match those of natural populations occupying climates similar to target restoration sites.

  7. Shifting fungal endophyte communities colonize Bouteloua gracilis: effect of host tissue and geographical distribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrera, José; Khidir, Hana H; Eudy, Douglas M; Porras-Alfaro, Andrea; Natvig, Donald O; Sinsabaugh, Robert L

    2010-01-01

    Communities of root-associated fungi (RAF) commonly have been studied under the auspices of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) or ectomycorrhizal fungi. However many studies now indicate that other groups of endophytic RAF, including dark septate endophytes (DSE) are more abundant in some plants and environments. The common forage grass, Bouteloua gracilis, was used as a model to examine whether RAF also colonize different organs within the same plant and to compare RAF communities from sites across North America, spanning the latitudinal range of B. gracilis (from Canada to Mexico). We compared the RAF communities of organs within individual plants at one site and within plant roots among six sites. With the possible exception of one group related to genus Paraphaeosphaeria there was little evidence that RAF colonized vertically beyond the crowns. Furthermore, although there was some variation in the constitution of rare members of the RAF communities, several taxonomically related groups dominated the RAF community at all sites. These dominant taxa included members in the Pleosporales (related to the DSE, Paraphaeosphaeria spp.), Agaricales (related to Moniliophthora spp., or Campanella spp.) and Hypocreales (related to Fusarium spp.). AMF were notable by their near absence. Similar phylotypes from the dominant groups clustered around adjacent sites so that similarity of the RAF communities was negatively correlated to site inter-distance and the RAF communities appeared to group by country. These results increase the possibility that at least some of these common and widely distributed core members of the RAF community form important, intimate and long lasting relationships with grasses.

  8. Atypical morphology of dark septate fungal root endophytes of Bouteloua in arid southwestern USA rangelands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrow, J R

    2003-10-01

    Native grasses of semi-arid rangelands of the southwestern USA are more extensively colonized by dark septate endophytes (DSE) than by traditional mycorrhizal fungi. Roots of dominant grasses ( Bouteloua sp.) native to arid southwestern USA rangelands were prepared and stained using stains specific for fungi (trypan blue) and for lipids (sudan IV). This revealed extensive internal colonization of physiologically active roots by atypical fungal structures that appear to function as protoplasts, without a distinguishable wall or with very thin hyaline walls that escape detection by methods staining specifically for fungal chitin. These structures were presumed to be active fungal stages that progressed to form stained or melanized septate hyphae and microsclerotia characteristic of DSE fungi within dormant roots. The most conspicuous characteristic of these fungi were the unique associations that formed within sieve elements and the accumulation of massive quantities of lipids. This interface suggests a biologically significant location for carbon transfer between the plant and fungus. The continuous intimate association with all sieve elements, cortical and epidermal cells as well as external extension on the root surface and into the soil indicates that they are systemic and considerably more prevalent than previously thought. A fungal network associated with a mucilaginous complex observed on the root surface and its potential role in root function in dry soil is discussed. It is suggested that those fungi that non-pathogenically and totally colonize plant cells be classed as systemic endophytic fungi (SEF). This would refine the broad designation of DSE fungi. The potential mutualistic benefit of SEF for native plants in arid ecosystems based on the extent of lipid accumulation and its apparent distribution is discussed.

  9. Métodos de establecimiento de pasturas en zonas áridas de México utilizando semillas crudas o cariópsides

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrián Raymundo Quero-Carrillo

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available En 2 sitios del Desierto Chihuahuense, México, se evaluó el establecimiento en secano de las gramíneas nativas Banderita (Bouteloua curtipendula y Navajita (B. gracilis y las introducidas Buffel (Cenchrus ciliaris y Rhodes (Chloris gayana, utilizando cariópsides y/o semillas crudas (semilla limpia con brácteas y aristas y cuatro métodos de tapado. Los sitios de siembra fueron Atotonilco El Grande, Hidalgo y Salinas Hidalgo, San Luis Potosí. Las siembras se hicieron a voleo a razón de 1,000 cariópsides y/o semillas crudas viables/m2. Los métodos de tapado fueron: paso de rastra con ramas; rodillo; rastra con ramas + rodillo; y sin tapado (testigo. Las variables de respuesta incluyeron número de plantas emergidas y de plantas establecidas, diámetro de corona, altura de planta y número de tallos por planta. Se utilizó un diseño completamente al azar con arreglo factorial 2 x 2 x 4 con 3 repeticiones. No se observaron diferencias entre sitios y se establecieron, en promedio, 2 plantas/m2. Con las especies nativas (Banderita y Navajita se obtuvo mayor cantidad de plantas emergidas y establecidas cuando la siembra se hizo con semillas crudas, mientras que en introducidas no se encontró diferencia entre siembra con semilla cruda y siembra con cariópsides. Cuando se utilizó el método de tapado y apisonado del suelo se observaron mayor diámetro de corona y altura de planta. El mayor número de plantas establecidas se obtuvo en pasturas de Navajita y Rhodes. En las especies nativas la eliminación de brácteas accesorias en las semillas no se tradujo en mejor establecimiento, mientras que en las gramíneas introducidas esta práctica sí mejoró el establecimiento. En ambos grupos de especies el apisonado mejoró el establecimiento.Palabras clave: Densidad de siembra, gramíneas introducidas, gramíneas nativas, suelo apisonado, tapado de semilla.DOI: 10.17138/TGFT(429-37  

  10. Water quality of runoff from revegetated mine spoil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Trouart, J.E.; Knight, R.W.

    1985-03-01

    Permanent vegetation plots were established on mixed overburden and topsoiled overburden on a lignite test pit in eastern Texas in 1982. Vegetative treatments included two grass-legume treatments (switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) - sideoats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula) - subterranean clover (Trifolium subterranean) and little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium) - sideoats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula) - Illinois bundleflower (Desmanthus illinoiensis)) and three monocultures (Coastal bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon), bahia grass (Paspalum notatum) and yellow Indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans)). Water was applied to the 0.5 m/sup 2/ plots using a sprinkler-type rainfall simulator and quality of runoff was determined for each plot. Parameters analyzed included: settleable solids, total filterable solids, sediment production, infiltration rate, nitrites, nitrates, total iron and total manganese. Topsoiling significantly increased infiltration and significantly decreased filterable sediments, sediment production and settleable solids. The hydrologic qualities of the switchgrass-sideoats grama-subterranean clover mixture coincided closely with those of the Coastal bermudagrass monoculture. 11 references.

  11. The Indian Hill Petroglyph Site, 14EW1, Kanopolis Lake: Development of Alternative Mitigation Plans

    Science.gov (United States)

    1980-01-01

    virgatum), side-oats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula), and Indian grass (Sorghastrum nutans) ( Hitchcock 1950: 2-3). Also present in the area are sand...Army Corps of Engineers, Kansas City District. Hitchcock , A. S. 1950 Manual of the Grasses of the United States, 2nd Edition. Washington...United States Government Printing Office. Horr, David and Johnson, Alfred E. 1957 Petroglyphs of Central Kansas. Paper on file at the Museum

  12. Effects of vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizae on survival and growth of perennial grasses in lignite overburden in Texas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Call, C.A.; Davies, F.T.

    1988-12-01

    Seedlings of sideoats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula), Indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans), and kleingrass (Panicum coloratum) were inoculated with vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal (VAM) fungi (Glomus fasciculatum and Gigaspora margarita) in a containerized system and transplanted into lignite overburden in the Post Oak Savannah region of Texas, U.S.A. After three growing seasons without cultural inputs, plants inoculated with VAM fungi had greater survival percentages, basal diameters, and above-ground biomass than noninoculated plants. Inoculated plants had higher levels of nitrogen and phosphorus in above-ground biomass than noninoculated plants. Root colonization percentages of inoculated plants remained fairly stable while noninoculated plants showed low levels of colonization over the 3-year study period. Vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizae enhanced the survival and growth of the 3 grass species by making effective use of limited resources in the lignite overburden. 31 refs., 3 tabs.

  13. Utilizing the trophic interactions of nematodes as indicators of changes in soil biota associated with loss of Bouteloua eriopoda grasslands

    Science.gov (United States)

    A theoretical framework of desertification has been developed within the Jornada Basin LTER that involves the rate of change and magnitude of wind and water erosion affected by spatial variation in the distribution of gap size changes from high connectivity of vegetated patches in grasslands to low ...

  14. Characteristics of a ringtail (Bassariscus astutus) population in Trans Pecos, Texas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ackerson, B.K.; Harveson, L.A.

    2006-01-01

    Despite the common occurrence of ringtails (Bassariscus astutus) few studies have been conducted to assess population characteristics. The objectives of this study were to determine (1) habitat selection, (2) home range, (3) denning characteristics, and (4) food habits of ringtails in the Trans Pecos region of west Texas. Seventeen ringtails were captured between November 1999 and January 2001 using Havahart live box traps. Second- and third-order habitat selection was determined for a ringtail population using range sites, slope, elevation, and vegetation communities. Diets were determined from volumetric scat analysis. The mean summer and winter range sizes (100% Minimum Convex Polygon [MCP]) for ringtails (n = 5) were 0.28 ?? 0.163 km2 and 0.63 ?? 0.219 km2, respectively. Overlap between ringtail ranges averaged 33.3%. Ringtails preferred catclaw (Mimosa biuncifera), persimmon (Diospyros texana), oak (Quercus sp.) bottom and catclaw/goldeneye (Viguiera stenoloba), sideoats (Bouteloua curtipendula) slope communities. Rock dens were used exclusively by ringtails, with 80.6% of dens found on slopes between 30-60%. Plant (seeds and miscellaneous vegetation) and animal material were found in 74.6 and 86.6% of scats, respectively. Findings suggest that ringtails in Trans Pecos, Texas, are an important component of the ecosystem and that management practices should conserve canyon habitats and adjacent slopes for ringtails.

  15. Grass and forb species for revegetation of mixed soil-lignite overburden in East Central Texas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Skousen, J.G.; Call, C.A. (West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV (USA). Division of Plant and Soil Sciences)

    Ten grasses and seven forbs were seeded into mixed soil-lignite overburden in the Post Oak Savannah region of Texas and monitored for establishment and growth over a 3-year period without fertilization. Buffelgrass (Cenchrus ciliaris), green sprangletop (Leptochloa dubia), switchgrass (Panicum virgatum), and kleingrass (P. coloratum) developed monotypic stands with sufficent density, aerial cover, and aboveground biomass to stabilize the mixed soil-lignite overburden surface by the end of the first growing season. Plant mortality eliminated buffelgrass and green sprangletop stands by the end of the third growing season. Indiangrass (Sorghastrum nutans) developed a satisfactory stand by the end of the third growing season, while Oldworld bluestem (Bothriochloa X Dicanthium), yellow bluestem (Bothriochloa ischaemum), and sideoats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula) established at a slower rate. Cover and biomass measurements from an adjacent, unfertilized stand of Coastal bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon) were compared with those of seeded grasses throughout the study. Partidge pea (Cassia fasciculata) established rapidly and had the greatest cover and biomass of all seeded forbs by the end of the first growing season. Sericea lespedeza (Lespedeza cuneata), Illinois bundleflower (Desmanthus illinoensis), and western indigo (Indigofera miniata) developed adequate stands for surface stabilization by the end of the third growing season, while faseanil indigo (Indigofera suffruticosa), virgata lespedeza (Lespedeza virgata), and awnless bushsunflower (Simsia calva) showed slower establishment. 27 refs., 3 tabs.

  16. Soil Respiration Responses to Variation in Temperature Treatment and Vegetation Type

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, S.; Pavao-zuckerman, M.

    2013-12-01

    Complex linkages exist between terrestrial vegetation, soil moisture, soil organic matter (SOM), local climate, and soil microorganisms. Thus, large-scale changes in vegetation, such as the woody plant encroachment observed in many historically semiarid and arid grasslands worldwide, could potentially alter the flux of carbon from soil reserves to the atmosphere. Mathematical models that attempt to project the long-term impact of vegetative shifts on soil fluxes largely rely on assumptions such as first-order donor control rather than incorporate the biological aspects of soil respiration such as microbial activity. To examine the impact of vegetation type on soil physicochemical properties and soil microbial respiration and provide experimental data to refine existing predictive models, we compared soil (ground basalt from northern Arizona) in mesocosms established with no vegetation, velvet mesquites (Prosopis velutina; woody shrub), or sideoats gramas (Bouteloua curtipendula; grass) for 2 years, The temperature sensitivity of soil respiration was examined by incubating soil (0-10 and 10-30 cm depth fractions) from each vegetation treatment at 10, 20, 30, and 40 °C for 24 hours. Vegetated soils contained more SOM (~0.1% for mesquite and grass mesocosms) than non-vegetated soils (~0.02%). Respiration rates were generally highest from grass-established soils, intermediate from mesquite-established soils, and lowest from non-vegetated soils. Respiration rates of samples incubated without the addition of substrate peaked at approximately 30 °C, whereas respiration rates of samples incubated with dextrose were highest at 40 °C. Further, the respiration assays suggest that while respiration rates are overall higher in grass-established soils, mesquite-established soils are more temperature sensitive which may have significant implications in the context of global warming and current fire management practices.

  17. Ontogenesis and nutritive value of warm-season perennial bunch grasses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert D. Ziehr

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the dynamics of nutritive values in warm-season perennial bunch grasses with change in ontogenesis is essential to managing their use as forage for livestock or cellulosic bioenergy feedstock. Accumulated growth (not previously harvested of Alamo lowland and accession 9065018 upland switch grass (Panicum virgatum, Lometa Indian grass (Sorghastrum nutans, Earl big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii, San Marcos eastern gama grass (Tripsacum dactyloides and Haskell sideoats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula , all native to the southern Great Plains of North America, as well as Selection 75 Klein grass (Panicum coloratum, originating in southern Africa but selected in North America, was harvested every 28 d for 3 yr, commencing 1 yr after establishment. Growth stage, crude protein (CP and in vitro dry matter disappearance (IVDMD over 48 h were evaluated at each date. Some entries, such as Haskell, San Marcos and Selection 75, initiated reproductive growth earlier in the growing season and had higher nutritive value [up to 119 g CP/kg dry matter (DM and 630 g IVDMD/kg DM] at seed set than those reproducing later in the season. Nutritive value of San Marcos and Selection 75 responded to autumn rainfall with resurging nutritive value (over 100 g CP/kg DM and over 600 g IVDMD/kg DM, whereas others did not. These nuances in nutritive value may be useful in manipulating species composition and season of utilization for grazing bunch grasses, especially when incorporated into opportunistic harvests of bioenergy feedstock. Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE

  18. Radiation use efficiency and leaf CO{sub 2} exchange for diverse C{sub 4} grasses

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kiniry, J.R.; Tischler, C.R. [USDA, Agricultural Research Service, Temple, TX (United States); Van Esbroeck, G.A. [North Carolina State University, Raleigh (United States). Dept. of Crop Science

    1999-08-01

    Biomass accumulation of different grass species can be quantified by leaf area index (LAI) development, the Beer-Lambert light interception function, and a species-specific radiation-use efficiency (RUE). The object of this field study was to compare RUE values and leaf CO{sub 2} exchange rates (CER) for four C{sub 4} grasses. Biomass, LAI and fraction of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) intercepted were measured during three growing seasons. CER was measured on several dates and at several positions in the canopies. Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) had the greatest RUE whereas sideoats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula (Michaux) Torrey) had the lowest. Big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii Vitman) and eastern gamagrass (Tripsacum dactyloides (L.) L.) values were intermediate. The two species with the greatest differences in RUE, switch grass and sideoats grama, had similar relative amounts partitioned to roots. Likewise differences among species in the accumulation of soil carbon showed trends similar to total shoot biomass production. The light extinction coefficients ({kappa}) of switchgrass, big bluestem, and eastern gamagrass were smaller than for sideoats grama, implying that light was more effectively scattered down into the leaf canopy of the first three grasses. Whole canopy CER values were calculated with a stratified canopy approach, using LAI values, the Beer-Lambert formula with appropriate extinction coefficients, and CER light response curves. Differences among species in RUE were similar to these values for estimated whole-canopy CER divided by the fraction of light that was intercepted. High lAI along with low {kappa} contributed to higher RUE in switchgrass, in spite of lower values for single-leaf CER.

  19. Effect of woody and herbaceous plants on chemical weathering of basalt material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark, N.; Dontsova, K.; Barron-Gafford, G. A.

    2011-12-01

    Worldwide, semi-arid landscapes are transitioning from shallow-rooted grasslands to mixed vegetation savannas composed of deeper-rooted shrubs. These contrasting growth forms differentially drive below-ground processes because they occupy different soil horizons, are differentially stressed by periods of drought, and unequally stimulate soil weathering. Our study aims to determine the effect of woody and herbaceous plants on weathering of granular basalt serving as a model for soil. We established pots with velvet mesquite (Prosopis veluntina), sideoats grama (Bouteloua curtipendula), and bare-soil pots within two temperature treatments in University of Arizona Biosphere 2. The Desert biome served as the ambient temperature treatment, while the Savanna biome was maintained 4°C warmer to simulate projected air temperatures if climate change continues unabated. Rhizon water samplers were installed at a depth of one inch from the soil surface to monitor root zone exudates (total dissolved carbon and nitrogen), dissolved inorganic carbon, and lithogenic elements resulting from basalt weathering. Soil leachates were collected through the course of the experiment. The anion content of the leachates was determined using the ICS-5000 Reagent-Free ion chromatography system. Dissolved carbon and nitrogen were analyzed by combustion using the Shimadzu TOC-VCSH with TN module. Metals and metalloids were measured using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Irrigation of the pots was varied in time to simulate periods of drought and determine the effect of stress on root exudation. Leachates from all treatments displayed higher pH and electrical conductivity than water used for irrigation indicating weathering. On average, leachates from the potted grasses displayed higher pH and electrical conductivity than mesquites. This agreed with higher concentrations of organic carbon, a measure of root exudation, and inorganic carbon, measure of soil respiration. Both organic

  20. Cultural Resources Survey for the Lake Darling-Souris River Project, North Dakota (1982).

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-26

    Bouteloua gracilis), prairie cordgrass (Spartina pectinata) and sedges ( Carex ssp.). Other bottom areas may be converted to wild hay and used as. pasture...Fraxinus pennsyivanica. Major grasses in the meadows include Carex spp, and Bouteloua gracilis. Formerly bison, deer, elk, antelope, moose, and a wide

  1. Final Oahe Dam/Lake Oahe Master Plan Missouri River, South Dakota and North Dakota

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-01

    of shoreline, more shoreline than the State of California . At its maximum operating pool elevation of 1620 feet m.s.l., the storage capacity of...by buffalograss (Bouteloua dactyloides), grama (Bouteloua spp.), wheatgrass (Agropyron spp.), needlegrass (Stipa spp.), and wildflowers such as...American woodcock (Scolopax minor), California gull (Larus californicus), black tern (Chlidonias niger), barn owl (Tyto alba), burrowing owl, long

  2. Using hydrogel filled, embedded tubes to sustain grass transplants for arid land restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grass restoration on remote arid rangelands may require irrigation to stimulate seedling establishment. However, irrigation on undeveloped sites is costly. In this study, the survival, growth, and development of Bouteloua eriopoda seedlings irrigated with either starch- or acrylic-based hydrogels c...

  3. Patchiness in wind erosion-deposition patterns in response to a recent state change reversal in the Chihuahuan Desert

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shifts from shrub-dominated states to grasslands are believed to be irreversible as a result of positive feedbacks between woody plants and soil properties. In the Chihuahuan Desert, mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa) expansion into black grama (Bouteloua eriopoda) grasslands is maintained by wind redis...

  4. Relationships Between Visual Obstruction and Aboveground Biomass in Shortgrass Steppe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Visual obstruction is increasingly used by management agencies for decision-making and monitoring of remaining residue levels. Applicability of this technique for shortgrass steppe may be limited, however, given the dominance of short-statured vegetation such as blue grama [Bouteloua gracilis (Will...

  5. Ecophysiological responses of Chihuahuan desert grasses to fire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    To better understand the effects of fire in the Chihuahuan desert, gas exchange characteristics of two dominant grass species, Bouteloua eriopoda and Aristida purpurea, and soil nitrogen availability were studied in response to prescribed fire at the Jornada Experimental Range in southern New Mexico...

  6. Soil-vegetation-climate interactions in arid landscapes: Effects of the North American monsoon on grass recruitment

    Science.gov (United States)

    We used a daily time step, multi-layer simulation model of soil water dynamics to integrate effects of soils, vegetation, and climate on the recruitment of Bouteloua eriopoda (black grama), the historically dominant grass in the Chihuahuan Desert. We simulated landscapes at the Jornada ARS-LTER site...

  7. Archaeological Investigations at the North Cove, Site Harlan County Lake, Harlan County, Nebraska: An Interdisciplinary Approach. Phase 2

    Science.gov (United States)

    1989-01-01

    Grass Family) Panicum vircgatuiu switchgrass Bouteloua Qracilis blue grama Buchloe dactyloides buffalo grass Cyperaceae ( Sedge Family) Carex brev1ior...edge. Paleobotanical data (Fredlund, this volume) indicate the presence of wet-spot species such as alder, sedge , cattail, and arrowhead. Spruce...fescue sedge Eleocharis acicularis spike sedge Onacjraceae (Evening Primrose Family) Qenothera biennis evening primrose Rosaceae (Rose Family) Rosa

  8. 荒漠-草原生态交错区植物对温度变化的动态响应--以美国新墨西哥州Sevilleta生态交错区为例%Response of vegetation in desert-grassland biome transitional zone to temperature change: a case study at Sevilleta in central New Mexico, USA

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘钦普; 林振山

    2006-01-01

    美国新墨西哥州中部的Sevilleta荒漠-草原生态交错区是监测全球气候变化和人类活动对生物影响的重要区域之一.本文以Sevilleta荒漠-草原生态交错区为例,利用气象资料和物候观测数据,通过回归和相关分析,研究在当前全球气候变暖的条件下,温度变化对交错群落的影响.研究结果表明,最近10年(1989~1998)该区域的温度变化具有反向不对称性:夏秋季节最高气温升高很明显,冬春季节最低气温降低较明显,而年平均最高气温升高较明显,平均最低气温和平均气温变化不明显.本区荒漠/草原过渡群落的两种优势物种 Bouteloua eripoda和Bouteloua gracili对温度的变化表现出不同的动态响应.第二优势种Bouteloua gracilis的盖度随着冬春最低气温的降低呈现明显的下降趋势.第一优势种Bouteloua eripoda的盖度与冬春最低气温之间没有明显的相关性.温度的变化对群落的结构目前还没有产生明显的影响.

  9. Assessing vegetation structure and ANPP dynamics in a grassland-shrubland Chihuahuan ecotone using NDVI-rainfall relationships.

    OpenAIRE

    Moreno-de las Heras, M.; Diaz-Sierra, R.; Turnbull, L.; Wainwright, J.

    2015-01-01

    Climate change and the widespread alteration of natural habitats are major drivers of vegetation change in drylands. A classic case of vegetation change is the shrub-encroachment process that has been taking place over the last 150 years in the Chihuahuan Desert, where large areas of grasslands dominated by perennial grass species (black grama, Bouteloua eriopoda, and blue grama, B. gracilis) have transitioned to shrublands dominated by woody species (creosotebush, Larrea tride...

  10. 气候变暖与荒漠-草原过渡带植物动态响应灰色分析--以美国新墨西哥州Sevilleta生态过渡带为例%Gray analysis on responses of desert/grassland biome transition zone to global warming-A case of the desert/grassland biome transition zone in New Mexico

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    刘钦普; 林振山

    2005-01-01

    在当前全球气候变暖的形势下,地表生态系统表现出不同的响应.干旱-半干旱地区的生态过渡带的生物反应更为敏感.美国新墨西哥州中部的荒漠-草原生态过渡带是监测全球气候变化和人类活动对生物影响的重要区域之一.本文以Sevilleta荒漠-草原生态过渡带为例,运用灰色系统分析方法,研究在当前全球气候变暖的条件下,1989~1998年10年间该生态过渡带的两种共存的植物优势种(Bouteloua eripoda)和(Bouteloua gracilis)历年的种群密度、组合形式和变化趋势,分析引起这些变化的主要气候因子.结果表明,Sevilleta生态过渡带中来自荒漠草原的优势物种Bouteloua eripoda的密度有上升的趋势,来自大草原的优势物种Bouteloua gracilis的密度有下降的趋势,它们的密度比大于1且有上升的趋势;在影响种群密度变化的降水、最高温度、最低温度、湿度的4个气候因子中,温度因子起着重要的作用.由此可以认为,随着气候的变暖,本区来自荒漠地区的优势植物种在荒漠-草原群落过渡带中将逐渐处于强优势地位,生态过渡带将有可能被荒漠草原所替代.

  11. Application of wood chips for soil mulching in the cultivation of ornamental grasses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henschke Monika

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available A mulch is a layer of material applied to the surface of the soil. Mulching plays an important role in the maintenance of green spaces. Organic materials are still sought for the preparation of mulches. Recently interest in wood chips has grown. The aim of the study was to determine the effect of mulching with pine and birch chips on the contents of phenolic compounds in the soil, as well as on the growth and flowering of ornamental grasses – Bouteloua gracilis (Kunth. Lag. ex Griffiths, Panicum virgatum L. and Pennisetum alopecuroides L. The content of phenolic compounds in the soil steadily increased from spring to autumn. Mulching led to a substantial increase in the level of phenolic compounds. In the first year of cultivation more phenolic compounds were released by chips of pine than birch, while in the second year this difference did not occur. Mulching had a negative impact on the growth and flowering of ornamental grasses, especially in the first year of cultivation. Ornamental grass sensitivity to the substances released from mulches decreased with the age of the plants and was dependent on the species – Bouteloua gracilis was found to be particularly sensitive.

  12. Shrub invasion decreases diversity and alters community stability in northern Chihuahuan Desert plant communities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Selene Báez

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Global climate change is rapidly altering species range distributions and interactions within communities. As ranges expand, invading species change interactions in communities which may reduce stability, a mechanism known to affect biodiversity. In aridland ecosystems worldwide, the range of native shrubs is expanding as they invade and replace native grassland vegetation with significant consequences for biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. METHODOLOGY: We used two long-term data sets to determine the effects of shrub encroachment by Larrea tridentata on subdominant community composition and stability in formerly native perennial grassland dominated by Bouteloua eriopoda in New Mexico, USA. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Our results indicated that Larrea invasion decreased species richness during the last 100 years. We also found that over shorter temporal scales species-poor subdominant communities in areas invaded by Larrea were less stable (more variable in time compared to species rich communities in grass-dominated vegetation. Compositional stability increased as cover of Bouteloua increased and decreased as cover of Larrea increased. SIGNIFICANCE: Changes in community stability due to altered interspecific interactions may be one mechanism by which biodiversity declines in grasslands following shrub invasion. As global warming increases, shrub encroachment into native grasslands worldwide will continue to alter species interactions and community stability both of which may lead to a decline in biodiversity.

  13. Using transplants to measure accumulation rates of epiphytic bryophytes in forests of western Oregon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosso, A.L.; Muir, Patricia S.; Rambo, T.

    2001-01-01

    We sought a simple and effective transplant method that could be used to measure biomass accumulation rates of epiphytic bryophytes. Trials were carried out in the Pseudotsuga menziesii-dominated forests of western Oregon. We tested multiple transplant methods over a 13-month period while comparing accumulation rates of Antitrichia curtipendula (Hedw.) Brid. and Isothecium myosuroides Brid. among an old-growth stand, a young stand, and a recent clearcut. In our study area, Antitrichia is considered to be an old-growth associate while Isothecium is a more ubiquitous species. Methods tested included containment in net bags, containment in hairnets, and directly tying mats to substrates. Three sizes of transplants were tested with both natural and inert artificial substrates. Transplants of approximately five g enclosed in plastic net bags and tied to either natural or artificial substrates worked well for our purposes. Only minor differences were found in mean accumulation rates between the old growth and young stand, though variation in accumulation rates was higher in the old growth. Neither species appeared capable of surviving in the clearcut. Antitrichia accumulated biomass 60% faster in the canopy than in the understory on average. Antitrichia also accumulated at a faster rate than Isothecium, with mean 13-month biomass increases of 11.8 and 3.7% respectively for 5 g transplants in the understory. Our results suggest that Antitrichia's association with old growth may be due more to dispersal or establishment limitations than to a decreased ability to grow in young stands.

  14. Understanding the erosion of semi-arid landscapes subject to vegetation change: a combined approach using monitoring, isotope and {sup 1}4c analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brazier, R. E.; Turbull, L.; Bol, R.; Dixon, L.; Wainwright, J.

    2009-07-01

    The degradation of grasslands is a common problem across semi-arid areas worldwide.over the last 150 years much of the south-Western USA has experienced significant land degradation, with desert grasslands becoming dominated by shrubs and concurrent changes in runoff and erosion which are thought to propagate further the process of degradation. Field-based experiments were carried out to determine how runoff and erosion vary at stages over a transition from a black grama (Bouteloua eriopoda) grassland to creosote bush (Larrea tridentata) shrub land at the Sevilleta NWR LTER site in New Mexico. {delta}{sup 1}3 C and {delta}{sup 1}5 N analyses were carried out to investigate the age and potential provenance of eroded sediment. (Author) 4 refs.

  15. Differential nutrient uptake responses to CO{sub 2} enrichment in three desert species

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    BassiriRad, H.; Tremmel, D.C. [Duke Univ., Durham, NC (United States)]|[Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH (United States)] [and others

    1995-09-01

    Differences in species capacity to absorb nutrients may be a crucial factor determining species and ecosystem responses to CO{sub 2} enrichment. In a phytotron study, we examined responses of three dominant species from the Chihuahuan Desert-Prosopis glandolusa and Larrea tridentata (C{sub 3} shrubs) and Bouteloua gracilis (a C{sub 4} perennial grass)-to a doubling of atmospheric CO{sub 2}, with special emphasis on rates of root NO and PO, uptake. Seedlings were grown in pots at CO{sub 2} partial pressure of either 35 or 70 pa. Rates of root NO{sup {minus}}{sub 3} and PO{sup 3{minus}}{sub 4} uptake were determined on three month old individual seedlings or tussocks using depletion rates of these ions from {1/4} strength Hoagland solutions over a 4h period. Root uptake rates of both NO{sup {minus}}{sub 3} and PO{sup 3{minus}}{sub 4} more than doubled in response to CO{sub 2} enrichment in Bouteloua but did not significantly respond in Prosopis. High CO{sub 2} also did not significantly affect rate of PO{sup 3{minus}}{sub 4} uptake in Larrea but inhibited NO{sup {minus}}{sub 3} uptake rate. Biomass increased an average of 36% in the shrubs and 25% in the grass. A positive biomass response to CO{sub 2} in C{sub 4} species has been observed in several other studies but the potential mechanism for such an enhancement is still nuclear. Our data suggests that such an enhancement may result from improved root nutrient uptake capacity.

  16. Establishment and performance of an experimental green roof under extreme climatic conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Klein, Petra M., E-mail: pkklein@ou.edu [School of Meteorology, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK (United States); Coffman, Reid, E-mail: rcoffma4@kent.edu [College of Architecture and Environmental Design, Kent State University, Kent, OH (United States)

    2015-04-15

    Green roofs alter the surface energy balance and can help in mitigating urban heat islands. However, the cooling of green roofs due to evapotranspiration strongly depends on the climatic conditions, and vegetation type and density. In the Southern Central Plains of the United States, extreme weather events, such as high winds, heat waves and drought conditions pose challenges for successful implementation of green roofs, and likely alter their standard performance. The National Weather Center Experimental Green Roof, an interdisciplinary research site established in 2010 in Norman, OK, aimed to investigate the ecological performance and surface energy balance of green roof systems. Starting in May 2010, 26 months of vegetation studies were conducted and the radiation balance, air temperature, relative humidity, and buoyancy fluxes were monitored at two meteorological stations during April–October 2011. The establishment of a vegetative community trended towards prairie plant dominance. High mortality of succulents and low germination of grasses and herbaceous plants contributed to low vegetative coverage. In this condition succulent diversity declined. Bouteloua gracilis and Delosperma cooperi showed typological dominance in harsh climatic conditions, while Sedum species experienced high mortality. The plant community diversified through volunteers such as Euphorbia maculate and Portulaca maculate. Net radiation measured at a green-roof meteorological station was higher than at a control station over the original, light-colored roofing material. These findings indicate that the albedo of the green roof was lower than the albedo of the original roofing material. The low vegetative coverage during the heat and drought conditions in 2011, which resulted in the dark substrate used in the green roof containers being exposed, likely contributed to the low albedo values. Nevertheless, air temperatures and buoyancy fluxes were often lower over the green roof indicating

  17. Scale-dependent feedbacks between patch size and plant reproduction in desert grassland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svejcar, Lauren N.; Bestelmeyer, Brandon T.; Duniway, Michael C.; James, Darren K.

    2015-01-01

    Theoretical models suggest that scale-dependent feedbacks between plant reproductive success and plant patch size govern transitions from highly to sparsely vegetated states in drylands, yet there is scant empirical evidence for these mechanisms. Scale-dependent feedback models suggest that an optimal patch size exists for growth and reproduction of plants and that a threshold patch organization exists below which positive feedbacks between vegetation and resources can break down, leading to critical transitions. We examined the relationship between patch size and plant reproduction using an experiment in a Chihuahuan Desert grassland. We tested the hypothesis that reproductive effort and success of a dominant grass (Bouteloua eriopoda) would vary predictably with patch size. We found that focal plants in medium-sized patches featured higher rates of grass reproductive success than when plants occupied either large patch interiors or small patches. These patterns support the existence of scale-dependent feedbacks in Chihuahuan Desert grasslands and indicate an optimal patch size for reproductive effort and success in B. eriopoda. We discuss the implications of these results for detecting ecological thresholds in desert grasslands.

  18. A reliable method for spectrophotometric determination of glycine betaine in cell suspension and other systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valadez-Bustos, Ma Guadalupe; Aguado-Santacruz, Gerardo Armando; Tiessen-Favier, Axel; Robledo-Paz, Alejandrina; Muñoz-Orozco, Abel; Rascón-Cruz, Quintin; Santacruz-Varela, Amalio

    2016-04-01

    Glycine betaine is a quaternary ammonium compound that accumulates in a large variety of species in response to different types of stress. Glycine betaine counteracts adverse effects caused by abiotic factors, preventing the denaturation and inactivation of proteins. Thus, its determination is important, particularly for scientists focused on relating structural, biochemical, physiological, and/or molecular responses to plant water status. In the current work, we optimized the periodide technique for the determination of glycine betaine levels. This modification permitted large numbers of samples taken from a chlorophyllic cell line of the grass Bouteloua gracilis to be analyzed. Growth kinetics were assessed using the chlorophyllic suspension to determine glycine betaine levels in control (no stress) cells and cells osmotically stressed with 14 or 21% polyethylene glycol 8000. After glycine extraction, different wavelengths and reading times were evaluated in a spectrophotometer to determine the optimal quantification conditions for this osmolyte. Optimal results were obtained when readings were taken at a wavelength of 290 nm at 48 h after dissolving glycine betaine crystals in dichloroethane. We expect this modification to provide a simple, rapid, reliable, and cheap method for glycine betaine determination in plant samples and cell suspension cultures.

  19. Establishment of Native Grasses with Biosolids on Abandoned Croplands in Chihuahua, Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Jurado-Guerra

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The objective of the work was to evaluate establishment and forage production of native grasses with application of biosolids, a byproduct of waste-water treatment, at an abandoned field, in Ejido Nuevo Delicias, Chihuahua, Mexico. Four biosolids rates from 0 (control to 30 dry Mg ha−1 and two methods of application, surface applied (BioSur and soil incorporated (BioInc, were evaluated. Seedbed preparation included plowing and harrowing before rainfall. Field plots of 5 × 5 m were manually sown with a mix of blue grama (Bouteloua gracilis (50% and green sprangletop (Leptochloa dubia (50% in early August 2005. Experimental design was a randomized block with a split plot arrangement. Grass density, height, and forage production were estimated for three years. Data were analyzed with mixed linear models and repeated measures. Green sprangletop density increased under all biosolids rates regardless of method of application, while blue grama density slightly decreased. Biosolids were more beneficial for green sprangletop height than for blue grama height. Blue grama forage production slightly increased, while green sprangletop forage production increased the most at 10 Mg ha−1 biosolids rate under BioSur method. It was concluded that BioSur application at 10 and 20 Mg ha−1 rates had positive effects on the establishment and forage production of native grasses, especially green sprangletop.

  20. Cervus elaphus Foraging Impacts on Plants and Soils at an Ungrazed Desert Grass/Shrubland in Northwestern New Mexico, USA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louis C. Bender

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available We evaluated Cervus elaphus herbivory and trampling impacts on plants and soils on Chaco Culture National Historical Park (Chaco, a desert grass/shrubland in northwestern New Mexico, USA, most (63% of which has been protected from grazing by domestic livestock since 1948. We conducted grazing, browse, and water infiltration surveys in areas which received different amounts of C. elaphus use (use and control, 2004–2007. Browse utilization was <32% on monitored species and Odocoileus hemionus use accounted for the majority of browsing. Live plant cover was greater on areas receiving more C. elaphus use, and no grass species were used above recommended levels. Stubble heights of Bouteloua spp. were positively related to relative C. elaphus use on some areas, suggesting possible stimulation of grassland productivity by C. elaphus grazing. Water infiltration rates either did not differ among use or control sites or were faster in use sites, indicating no impacts of C. elaphus use on soil compaction. At current C. elaphus densities (0.2–0.4/km2, negative impacts to plants and soils were not seen on Chaco, and some evidence suggests that light grazing is optimizing desert grasslands of Chaco.

  1. Prospects for optimizing soil microbial functioning to improve plant nutrient uptake and soil carbon sequestration under elevated CO2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nie, M.; Pendall, E. G.

    2013-12-01

    Potential to mitigate climate change through increasing plant productivity and its carbon (C) input to soil may be limited by soil nitrogen (N) availability. Using a novel 13C-CO2 and 15N-soil dual labeling method, we investigated whether plant growth-promoting bacteria would interact with atmospheric CO2 concentration to alter plant productivity and soil C storage. We grew Bouteloua gracilis under ambient (380 ppm) or elevated CO2 (700 ppm) in climate-controlled chambers, and plant individuals were grown with or without Pseudomonas fluorescens inoculum, which can produce N catabolic enzymes. We observed that both eCO2 and P. fluorescens increased plant productivity and its C allocation to soil. P. fluorescens relative to eCO2 enhanced plant N uptake from soil organic matter, which highly correlated with soil N enzyme activities and rhizosphere exudate C. More importantly, P. fluorescens increased microbial biomass and deceased specific microbial respiration in comparison with eCO2. These results indicate that application of plant growth-promoting bacteria can increase microbial C utilization efficiency with subsequent N mineralization from soil organic matter, and may improve plant N availability and soil C sequestration. Together, our findings highlight the potential of plant growth-promoting bacteria for global change mitigation by terrestrial ecosystems.

  2. Microbial response to drought in a Texas highplains shortgrass prairie.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thayer, D W

    1974-10-01

    The population of the microbial flora of a mixed blue gramma grass (Bouteloua gracilis H. B. K.) and prickly pear (Opuntia polyacantha Haw.) prairie near Amarillo, Texas, was studied during 1971 after a severe drought. Bacteria, fungi, and algae were estimated by plate count and terminal dilution procedures. Rates of grass and paper decomposition were determined. The microbial flora of soil associated with bovine-grazed grass did not differ significantly from the flora associated with ungrazed grass, either qualitatively or quantitatively. During drought, a greater number of fungi were found in soil associated with prickly pear than in that associated with blue gramma grass. The microbial biomass decreased one full log between the surface and a depth of 50 cm, and the percentage of anaerobes increased with depth. The maximum numbers of fungi and algae detected were 8 x 10 and 6 x 10/g respectively. A linear relationship existed between the microbial biomass and soil moisture. The maximum number of aerobic, heterotrophic bacteria detected was 1.5 x 10 viable cells per g of soil.

  3. Conservation and yield aspects of old European aspen Populus tremula L. in Swedish forestry

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hazell, Per [Swedish Univ. of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala (Sweden). Dept. of Forest Management and Products

    1999-06-01

    Biodiversity issues are becoming integrated parts of Swedish forest management. In this context, the amount and distribution of broadleaved species, including aspen, are important. This thesis summarises results of two studies in which species from the rich epiphytic flora on aspen were used to evaluate important features of aspens, and two studies relating these features to production losses due to retention of aspen. The presence and abundance of four epiphytic, bark-living bryophytes in relation to stand and host-tree characteristics, were investigated in four mixed forest stands in central Sweden. There was no general and consistent relation between aspen density and bryophyte presence. Large diameter and rough bark of the aspen host, together with site factors and stand density around the host, were important. On 35 clearfelled areas, the bryophyte Antitrichia curtipendula (Hedw.) Brid. and the lichen Lobaria pulmonaria (L.) Hoffm., species considered sensitive to clearfelling, were transplanted on retained aspen stems. As a reference, transplants were made on aspens in adjacent old stands. After two years the bryophyte showed its highest vitality in the forest, but was also vigorous on the north side of retained trees. The lichen thrived best on the clearfelled areas, on the north side of trees retained in groups. For conservation purposes, aspen are best retained in groups. Qualitative and quantitative aspects of retained large aspens (diameter 49.6{+-}7.0 cm and height 29.4{+-}1.0 m) were studied in a 110-year-old aspen stand. Twelve trees were destructively analysed to establish allometric equations relating stem, bark and branch biomass and current annual stem increment (CAI{sub s}) to diameter at breast height. Biomass of the mean tree was 1172 kg, of which 80% was stemwood. CAI{sub s} was 1.5% of total stem biomass. Finally, the yield of a 44-year-old Norway spruce stand under an aspen overstorey was compared with that of pure Norway spruce, estimated

  4. Composición y abundancia del banco de semillas en una región semiárida del trópico mexicano: patrones de variación espacial y temporal Composition and abundance of the seed bank in a semiaridregion in tropical Mexico: spatial and temporal patterns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriana Cano-Salgado

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Se estudió la estructura del banco de semillas en el valle semiárido de Zapotitlán, Puebla. El registro de la composición y abundancia del banco de semillas se realizó en 2 tipos de vegetación (tetechera y matorral espinoso en los microhábitats (bajo arbustos, espacio abierto y basureros de la hormiga granívora Pogonomyrmex barbatus. Las semillas se recolectaron en las épocas de secas, lluvias y finales de lluvias durante 2 años. No se encontraron diferencias en la densidad de semillas entre las épocas y años, pero sí hubo diferencias entre los microhábitats evaluados. El microhábitat del hormiguero presentó la mayor abundancia de semillas, lo que resalta la importancia de las hormigas en la conformación espacial de la estructura de las comunidades en estos ecosistemas. Se registraron semillas de 38 especies de plantas. La densidad promedio varió de 23 800 a 28 000 semillas m-2, concordando con otros registros de regiones semiáridas y áridas. Las especies más frecuentes fueron las anuales Eragrostis mexicana, Bouteloua barbata, Kallstroemia rosei y Portulaca pilosa. Los resultados muestran que la heterogeneidad de sitios y de microhábitats en esta zona es alta. Es necesaria la realización de más estudios sobre patrones espacio-temporales en los bancos de semillas y su relación con la vegetación en pie en zonas áridas y semiáridas en México.The seed bank structure in the semiarid valley of Zapotitlán, Puebla was studied. The record of the composition and abundance of the seed bank was conducted in 2 types of vegetation (tetechera and thorny scrub in the microhabitats (under shrubs, open space and refuse- dumps of granivorous ants Pogonomyrmex barbatus. Seed collection was carried out in dry, rainy and late rainy seasons for 2 years. There were no differences in seed density between seasons and years, but there were differences between microhabitats evaluated. The microhabitat of the ant refuse-dumps had the highest

  5. Collection of endmembers and their separability for spectral unmixing in rangeland applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rolfson, David

    Rangelands are an important resource to Alberta. Due to their size, mapping rangeland features is difficult. However, the use of aerial and satellite data for mapping has increased the area that can be studied at one time. The recent success in applying hyperspectral data to vegetation mapping has shown promise in rangeland classification. However, classification mapping of hyperspectral data requires existing data for input into classification algorithms. The research reported in this thesis focused on acquiring a seasonal inventory of in-situ reflectance spectra of rangeland plant species (endmembers) and comparing them to evaluate their separability as an indicator of their suitability for hyperspectral image classification analysis. The goals of this research also included determining the separability of species endmembers at different times of the growing season. In 2008, reflectance spectra were collected for three shrub species ( Artemisia cana, Symphoricarpos occidentalis, and Rosa acicularis ), five rangeland grass species native to southern Alberta ( Koeleria gracilis, Stipa comata, Bouteloua gracilis, Agropyron smithii, Festuca idahoensis) and one invasive grass species (Agropyron cristatum ). A spectral library, built using the SPECCHIO spectral database software, was populated using these spectroradiometric measurements with a focus on vegetation spectra. Average endmembers of plant spectra acquired during the peak of sample greenness were compared using three separability measures -- normalized Euclidean distance (NED), correlation separability measure (CSM) and Modified Spectral Angle Mapper (MSAM) -- to establish the degree to which the species were separable. Results were normalized to values between 0 and 1 and values above the established thresholds indicate that the species were not separable. The endmembers for Agropyron cristatum, Agropyron smithii, and Rosa acicularis were not separable using CSM (threshold = 0.992) or MSAM (threshold = 0

  6. a Radiative Transfer Equation/phase Function Approach to Vegetation Canopy Reflectance Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randolph, Marion Herbert

    Vegetation canopy reflectance models currently in use differ considerably in their treatment of the radiation scattering problem, and it is this fundamental difference which stimulated this investigation of the radiative transfer equation/phase function approach. The primary objective of this thesis is the development of vegetation canopy phase functions which describe the probability of radiation scattering within a canopy in terms of its biological and physical characteristics. In this thesis a technique based upon quadrature formulae is used to numerically generate a variety of vegetation canopy phase functions. Based upon leaf inclination distribution functions, phase functions are generated for plagiophile, extremophile, erectophile, spherical, planophile, blue grama (Bouteloua gracilis), and soybean canopies. The vegetation canopy phase functions generated are symmetric with respect to the incident and exitant angles, and hence satisfy the principle of reciprocity. The remaining terms in the radiative transfer equation are also derived in terms of canopy geometry and optical properties to complete the development of the radiative transfer equation/phase function description for vegetation canopy reflectance modeling. In order to test the radiative transfer equation/phase function approach the iterative discrete ordinates method for solving the radiative transfer equation is implemented. In comparison with field data, the approach tends to underestimate the visible reflectance and overestimate infrared reflectance. The approach does compare well, however, with other extant canopy reflectance models; for example, it agrees to within ten to fifteen percent of the Suits model (Suits, 1972). Sensitivity analysis indicates that canopy geometry may influence reflectance as much as 100 percent for a given wavelength. Optical thickness produces little change in reflectance after a depth of 2.5 (Leaf area index of 4.0) is reached, and reflectance generally increases

  7. Regional signatures of plant response to drought and elevated temperature across a desert ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munson, Seth M; Muldavin, Esteban H; Belnap, Jayne; Peters, Debra P C; Anderson, John P; Reiser, M Hildegard; Gallo, Kirsten; Melgoza-Castillo, Alicia; Herrick, Jeffrey E; Christiansen, Tim A

    2013-09-01

    The performance of many desert plant species in North America may decline with the warmer and drier conditions predicted by climate change models, thereby accelerating land degradation and reducing ecosystem productivity. We paired repeat measurements of plant canopy cover with climate at multiple sites across the Chihuahuan Desert over the last century to determine which plant species and functional types may be the most sensitive to climate change. We found that the dominant perennial grass, Bouteloua eriopoda, and species richness had nonlinear responses to summer precipitation, decreasing more in dry summers than increasing with wet summers. Dominant shrub species responded differently to the seasonality of precipitation and drought, but winter precipitation best explained changes in the cover of woody vegetation in upland grasslands and may contribute to woody-plant encroachment that is widespread throughout the southwestern United States and northern Mexico. Temperature explained additional variability of changes in cover of dominant and subdominant plant species. Using a novel empirically based approach we identified "climate pivot points" that were indicative of shifts from increasing to decreasing plant cover over a range of climatic conditions. Reductions in cover of annual and several perennial plant species, in addition to declines in species richness below the long-term summer precipitation mean across plant communities, indicate a decrease in the productivity for all but the most drought-tolerant perennial grasses and shrubs in the Chihuahuan Desert. Overall, our regional synthesis of long-term data provides a robust foundation for forecasting future shifts in the composition and structure of plant assemblages in the largest North American warm desert.

  8. A test of catastrophic transition mechanisms in the Chihuahuan Desert Grassland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svejcar, L.; Bestelmeyer, B.; Duniway, M.

    2012-12-01

    Dryland ecosystems are known to undergo transitions from grassland or savanna states to shrub-dominated and/or eroded states with persistent loss of herbaceous vegetation. Theoretical models for predicting critical thresholds between states have been examined in drylands to search for early warning indicators, yet there is scant empirical evidence for the mechanisms. The models postulate that larger patches are favorable environments for plant growth in arid ecosystems due to short-range facilitation. The breakdown of large patches is thought to trigger catastrophic transitions. We tested assumptions underpinning these models using an experiment in black grama grassland (Bouteloua eriopoda Torr.) of the Chihuahuan Desert in which variable grazing intensities produced a wide range of patch sizes in plots with differing mesquite shrub (Prosopis glandulosa Torr.) densities. We tested the hypothesis that growth, reproductive capability, and reproductive success of black grama plants would be greater in larger plant patches than in smaller patches. From 2010-2012 we measured numbers of stolons, ramets, rooted ramets and young individual plants associated with focal black grama plants and fixed areas within each patch. We found that the largest patches did not always feature the highest rates of grass reproduction across years, suggesting that patch size does not consistently indicate the patch persistence mechanisms proposed in catastrophic transition models. Other factors, such as resource competition within patches, may play important roles in black grama grasslands. When assessing rangeland conditions in the Chihuahuan desert grasslands, theoretical models of critical thresholds and early warning indicators should be applied with caution.

  9. Root development during soil genesis: effects of root-root interactions, mycorrhizae, and substrate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salinas, A.; Zaharescu, D. G.

    2015-12-01

    A major driver of soil formation is the colonization and transformation of rock by plants and associated microbiota. In turn, substrate chemical composition can also influence the capacity for plant colonization and development. In order to better define these relationships, a mesocosm study was set up to analyze the effect mycorrhizal fungi, plant density and rock have on root development, and to determine the effect of root morphology on weathering and soil formation. We hypothesized that plant-plant and plant-fungi interactions have a stronger influence on root architecture and rock weathering than the substrate composition alone. Buffalo grass (Bouteloua dactyloides) was grown in a controlled environment in columns filled with either granular granite, schist, rhyolite or basalt. Each substrate was given two different treatments, including grass-microbes and grass-microbes-mycorrhizae and incubated for 120, 240, and 480 days. Columns were then extracted and analyzed for root morphology, fine fraction, and pore water major element content. Preliminary results showed that plants produced more biomass in rhyolite, followed by schist, basalt, and granite, indicating that substrate composition is an important driver of root development. In support of our hypothesis, mycorrhizae was a strong driver of root development by stimulating length growth, biomass production, and branching. However, average root length and branching also appeared to decrease in response to high plant density, though this trend was only present among roots with mycorrhizal fungi. Interestingly, fine fraction production was negatively correlated with average root thickness and volume. There is also slight evidence indicating that fine fraction production is more related to substrate composition than root morphology, though this data needs to be further analyzed. Our hope is that the results of this study can one day be applied to agricultural research in order to promote the production of crops

  10. Competitive effects of introduced annual weeds on some native and reclamation species in the Powder River Basin, Wyoming

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Allen, E.B.; Knight, D.H.

    1980-01-01

    Four experiments were conducted to examine the competitive effects of introduced annual weeds on certain native and reclamation species. The first experiment was initiated by discing three sites in the Powder River Basin, Wyoming, at three distances from introduced weed seed sources. Introduced weed colonization was greatest when a seed source was located nearby. Higher weed cover resulted in reductions of percent cover, density, and richness of the native species. The second experiment was conducted in the greenhouse and was designed to determine if there are changes in response of S. kali and the native grasses Agropyron smithii and Bouteloua gracilis to competition and water regime. Both grass species had lower biomass and higher stomatal resistance when growing in mixed culture with S. kali than in pure culture in the dry regime, but there were no significant differences in the wet regime. In general, the difference in plant response between mixed and pure cultures was more pronounced in the dry than in the wet regime. The third study was a greenhouse experiment on germination and competition of S. kali (a C/sub 4/ species) with native species Lepidium densiflorum (C/sub 3/), Chenopodium pratericola (C/sub 3/), A. smithii (C/sub 3/), and B. gracilis (C/sub 4/) under May, June, and July temperature regimes. Salsola kali germinated equally well in all three regimes, but the other C/sub 4/ species had highest germination in the July regime and the C/sub 3/ species in the May and June regimes. The fourth study was designed to examine the effect of weed colonization on the success of mine reclamation. Little effect was observed, but colonization by introduced annuals was very low. (ERB)

  11. Germination sensitivities to water potential among co-existing C3 and C4 grasses of cool semi-arid prairie grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mollard, F P O; Naeth, M A

    2015-03-01

    An untested theory states that C4 grass seeds could germinate under lower water potentials (Ψ) than C3 grass seeds. We used hydrotime modelling to study seed water relations of C4 and C3 Canadian prairie grasses to address Ψ divergent sensitivities and germination strategies along a risk-spreading continuum of responses to limited water. C4 grasses were Bouteloua gracilis, Calamovilfa longifolia and Schizachyrium scoparium; C3 grasses were Bromus carinatus, Elymus trachycaulus, Festuca hallii and Koeleria macrantha. Hydrotime parameters were obtained after incubation of non-dormant seeds under different Ψ PEG 6000 solutions. A t-test between C3 and C4 grasses did not find statistical differences in population mean base Ψ (Ψb (50)). We found idiosyncratic responses of C4 grasses along the risk-spreading continuum. B. gracilis showed a risk-taker strategy of a species able to quickly germinate in a dry soil due to its low Ψb (50) and hydrotime (θH ). The high Ψb (50) of S. scoparium indicates it follows the risk-averse strategy so it can only germinate in wet soils. C. longifolia showed an intermediate strategy: the lowest Ψb (50) yet the highest θH . K. macrantha, a C3 grass which thrives in dry habitats, had the highest Ψb (50), suggesting a risk-averse strategy for a C3 species. Other C3 species showed intermediate germination patterns in response to Ψ relative to C4 species. Our results indicate that grasses display germination sensitivities to Ψ across the risk-spreading continuum of responses. Thus seed water relations may be poor predictors to explain differential recruitment and distribution of C3 and C4 grasses in the Canadian prairies.

  12. Characterizing the changes in biopolymer composition in roots of photosynthetically divergent grasses exposed to future climates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suseela, V.; Tharayil, N.; Pendall, E.

    2014-12-01

    A majority of carbon in soil is derived from plant roots, yet roots remain remarkably less explored. Root tissues are abundant in heteropolymers such as suberin, lignin and tannins which are energetically demanding to depolymerize, thus facilitating the accrual of carbon in soil. Most biopolymers are operationally/functionally defined and their function is regulated by the identity of monomers and the linkages connecting these monomers. The structural chemistry of these biopolymers could vary with the environmental conditions experienced during their formative stage thus altering the potential for soil carbon sequestration. We examined the biopolymer composition in the roots of a C3 (Hesperostipa comata) and a C4 (Bouteloua gracilis) grass species exposed to a factorial combination of warming and elevated CO2 at the Prairie Heating and CO2 Enrichment (PHACE) experiment, Wyoming, USA. The grass roots were subjected to a sequential solvent extraction and base hydrolysis to delineate various operational fractions within the polydisperse matrix. The extracted fractions were analyzed using various chromatography mass spectrometry platforms. Warming and elevated CO2 increased the total suberin content and the amount of ω-hydroxy acids in C4 grass species while in C3 species there was a trend of increasing concentration of α,ω-dioic acids in roots exposed to elevated CO2 compared to ambient CO2 treatment. Our results highlight the effect of warming and elevated CO2 on the chemical composition of heteropolymers in roots that may potentially alter root function and rate of decomposition leading to changes in soil carbon in a future warmer world.

  13. Response of organic and inorganic carbon and nitrogen to long-term grazing of the shortgrass steppe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reeder, Jean D; Schuman, Gerald E; Morgan, Jack A; Lecain, Daniel R

    2004-04-01

    We investigated the influence of long-term (56 years) grazing on organic and inorganic carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) contents of the plant-soil system (to 90 cm depth) in shortgrass steppe of northeastern Colorado. Grazing treatments included continuous season-long (May-October) grazing by yearling heifers at heavy (60-75% utilization) and light (20-35% utilization) stocking rates, and nongrazed exclosures. The heavy stocking rate resulted in a plant community that was dominated (75% of biomass production) by the C4 grass blue grama (Bouteloua gracilis), whereas excluding livestock grazing increased the production of C3 grasses and prickly pear cactus (Opuntia polycantha). Soil organic C (SOC) and organic N were not significantly different between the light grazing and nongrazed treatments, whereas the heavy grazing treatment was 7.5 Mg ha(-1) higher in SOC than the nongrazed treatment. Lower ratios of net mineralized N to total organic N in both grazed compared to nongrazed treatments suggest that long-term grazing decreased the readily mineralizable fraction of soil organic matter. Heavy grazing affected soil inorganic C (SIC) more than the SOC. The heavy grazing treatment was 23.8 Mg ha(-1) higher in total soil C (0-90 cm) than the nongrazed treatment, with 68% (16.3 Mg ha(-1)) attributable to higher SIC, and 32% (7.5 Mg ha(-1)) to higher SOC. These results emphasize the importance in semiarid and arid ecosystems of including inorganic C in assessments of the mass and distribution of plant-soil C and in evaluations of the impacts of grazing management on C sequestration.

  14. Effects of VA mycorrhiza formation on plant nitrogen uptake and rhizosphere bacteria

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ames, R.N.

    1983-01-01

    Mycorrhizal and nonmycorrhizal sorghum plants were grown in pots at three levels of fertilizer nitrogen ((NH/sub 4/)/sub 2/SO/sub 4/) which had been enriched with /sup 15/N. Root colonization by Glomus mosseae did not affect plant growth or total N uptake, but significant reductions in mycorrhizal plant /sup 15/N:/sup 14/N ratios and increased 'A' values were found. This suggested that mycorrhizal plants had access to an N source which was less available to nonmycorrhizal plants. In two additional experiments, mycorrhizal and nonmycorrhizal celery plants were grown in pots which allowed VAM fungal hyphae, but not roots, to have direct access to /sup 15/N-enriched organic or inorganic N sources. Root dry weight was significantly reduced in mycorrhizal plants. Mycorrhizal plants had significantly greater shoot and root /sup 15/N content than nonmycorrhizal plants. Number and length of VAM fungal hyphae crossing into the area of /sup 15/N placement were positively correlated with mycorrhizal plant /sup 15/N content in the inorganic-N but not organic-N treatment. In a fourth experiment, the effect of G. mosseae on the rhizosphere populations of five bacterial isolates associated with blue grama (Bouteloua gracilis) was examined. No significant differences in bacterial populations were found in nonrhizosphere soil samples from pots of mycorrhizal and nonmycorrhizal plants. One bacterial isolate was significantly increased in number, while a different isolate and total bacterial populations were significantly reduced by the presence of the mycorrhizal fungus. The results suggest that root colonization by VAM fungi can alter rhizosphere bacterial populations.

  15. Establishment and performance of an experimental green roof under extreme climatic conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Petra M; Coffman, Reid

    2015-04-15

    Green roofs alter the surface energy balance and can help in mitigating urban heat islands. However, the cooling of green roofs due to evapotranspiration strongly depends on the climatic conditions, and vegetation type and density. In the Southern Central Plains of the United States, extreme weather events, such as high winds, heat waves and drought conditions pose challenges for successful implementation of green roofs, and likely alter their standard performance. The National Weather Center Experimental Green Roof, an interdisciplinary research site established in 2010 in Norman, OK, aimed to investigate the ecological performance and surface energy balance of green roof systems. Starting in May 2010, 26 months of vegetation studies were conducted and the radiation balance, air temperature, relative humidity, and buoyancy fluxes were monitored at two meteorological stations during April-October 2011. The establishment of a vegetative community trended towards prairie plant dominance. High mortality of succulents and low germination of grasses and herbaceous plants contributed to low vegetative coverage. In this condition succulent diversity declined. Bouteloua gracilis and Delosperma cooperi showed typological dominance in harsh climatic conditions, while Sedum species experienced high mortality. The plant community diversified through volunteers such as Euphorbia maculate and Portulaca maculate. Net radiation measured at a green-roof meteorological station was higher than at a control station over the original, light-colored roofing material. These findings indicate that the albedo of the green roof was lower than the albedo of the original roofing material. The low vegetative coverage during the heat and drought conditions in 2011, which resulted in the dark substrate used in the green roof containers being exposed, likely contributed to the low albedo values. Nevertheless, air temperatures and buoyancy fluxes were often lower over the green roof indicating

  16. Effects of experimental rainfall manipulations on Chihuahuan Desert grassland and shrubland plant communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Báez, Selene; Collins, Scott L; Pockman, William T; Johnson, Jennifer E; Small, Eric E

    2013-08-01

    Aridland ecosystems are predicted to be responsive to both increases and decreases in precipitation. In addition, chronic droughts may contribute to encroachment of native C3 shrubs into C4-dominated grasslands. We conducted a long-term rainfall manipulation experiment in native grassland, shrubland and the grass-shrub ecotone in the northern Chihuahuan Desert, USA. We evaluated the effects of 5 years of experimental drought and 4 years of water addition on plant community structure and dynamics. We assessed the effects of altered rainfall regimes on the abundance of dominant species as well as on species richness and subdominant grasses, forbs and shrubs. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling and MANOVA were used to quantify changes in species composition in response to chronic addition or reduction of rainfall. We found that drought consistently and strongly decreased cover of Bouteloua eriopoda, the dominant C4 grass in this system, whereas water addition slightly increased cover, with little variation between years. In contrast, neither chronic drought nor increased rainfall had consistent effects on the cover of Larrea tridentata, the dominant C3 shrub. Species richness declined in shrub-dominated vegetation in response to drought whereas richness increased or was unaffected by water addition or drought in mixed- and grass-dominated vegetation. Cover of subdominant shrubs, grasses and forbs changed significantly over time, primarily in response to interannual rainfall variability more so than to our experimental rainfall treatments. Nevertheless, drought and water addition shifted the species composition of plant communities in all three vegetation types. Overall, we found that B. eriopoda responded strongly to drought and less so to irrigation, whereas L. tridentata showed limited response to either treatment. The strong decline in grass cover and the resistance of shrub cover to rainfall reduction suggest that chronic drought may be a key factor promoting shrub

  17. Aboveground net primary production dynamics in a northern Chihuahuan Desert ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muldavin, Esteban H; Moore, Douglas I; Collins, Scott L; Wetherill, Karen R; Lightfoot, David C

    2008-02-01

    Aboveground net primary production (ANPP) dynamics are a key element in the understanding of ecosystem processes. For semiarid environments, the pulse-reserve framework links ANPP to variable and unpredictable precipitation events contingent on surficial hydrology, soil moisture dynamics, biodiversity structure, trophic dynamics, and landscape context. Consequently, ANPP may be decoupled periodically from processes such as decomposition and may be subjected to complex feedbacks and thresholds at broader scales. As currently formulated, the pulse-reserve framework may not encompass the breadth of ANPP response to seasonal patterns of precipitation and heat inputs. Accordingly, we examined a 6-year (1999-2004), seasonal record of ANPP with respect to precipitation, soil moisture dynamics, and functional groups in a black grama (Bouteloua eriopoda) grassland and a creosotebush (Larrea tridentata) shrubland in the northern Chihuahuan Desert. Annual ANPP was similar in the grassland (51.1 g/m(2)) and shrubland (59.2 g/m(2)) and positively correlated with annual precipitation. ANPP differed among communities with respect to life forms and functional groups and responses to abiotic drivers. In keeping with the pulse-reserve model, ANPP in black grama grassland was dominated by warm-season C(4) grasses and subshrubs that responded to large, transient summer storms and associated soil moisture in the upper 30 cm. In contrast, ANPP in creosotebush shrubland occasionally responded to summer moisture, but the predominant pattern was slower, non-pulsed growth of cool-season C(3) shrubs during spring, in response to winter soil moisture accumulation and the breaking of cold dormancy. Overall, production in this Chihuahuan Desert ecosystem reflected a mix of warm-temperate arid land pulse dynamics during the summer monsoon and non-pulsed dynamics in spring driven by winter soil moisture accumulation similar to that of cool-temperate regions.

  18. Bridging Estimates of Greenness in an Arid Grassland Using Field Observations, Phenocams, and Time Series Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Browning, D. M.; Tweedie, C. E.; Rango, A.

    2013-12-01

    Spatially extensive grasslands and savannas in arid and semi-arid ecosystems (i.e., rangelands) require cost-effective, accurate, and consistent approaches for monitoring plant phenology. Remotely sensed imagery offers these capabilities; however contributions of exposed soil due to modest vegetation cover, susceptibility of vegetation to drought, and lack of robust scaling relationships challenge biophysical retrievals using moderate- and coarse-resolution satellite imagery. To evaluate methods for characterizing plant phenology of common rangeland species and to link field measurements to remotely sensed metrics of land surface phenology, we devised a hierarchical study spanning multiple spatial scales. We collect data using weekly standardized field observations on focal plants, daily phenocam estimates of vegetation greenness, and very high spatial resolution imagery from an Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) throughout the growing season. Field observations of phenological condition and vegetation cover serve to verify phenocam greenness indices along with indices derived from time series UAS imagery. UAS imagery is classified using object-oriented image analysis to identify species-specific image objects for which greenness indices are derived. Species-specific image objects facilitate comparisons with phenocam greenness indices and scaling spectral responses to footprints of Landsat and MODIS pixels. Phenocam greenness curves indicated rapid canopy development for the widespread deciduous shrub Prosopis glandulosa over 14 (in April 2012) to 16 (in May 2013) days. The modest peak in greenness for the dominant perennial grass Bouteloua eriopoda occurred in October 2012 following peak summer rainfall. Weekly field estimates of canopy development closely coincided with daily patterns in initial growth and senescence for both species. Field observations improve the precision of the timing of phenophase transitions relative to inflection points calculated from phenocam

  19. Elevated CO2 and arbuscular mycorrhizal abundance interact to regulate soil C decomposition in the rhizosphere of a C3 (but not a C4) grass

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrillo, Y.; Pendall, E. G.; Dijkstra, F. A.

    2013-12-01

    There is increased recognition of the importance of the plant rhizosphere in mediating impacts of climate change on ecosystem-scale C cycling. Future elevated atmospheric CO2 conditions are likely to alter soil C storage with potential further impacts on atmospheric CO2. Effects of elevated CO2 on soil C storage may be direct via plant C inputs to soil. However, more indirect effects via root associated organisms may also play a role. Arbuscular mycorrhizal abundance is known to respond to elevated CO2 conditions. Moreover, although they have mostly been studied in the context of their function in plant nutrient acquisition, their role on soil C cycling is starting to become evident. We investigated the interactive effects of elevated CO2 and arbuscular mycorrhizal abundance on microbial decomposition of rhizosphere soil C. We grew two temperate native grasses (Pascopyrum smithii, a C3 and Bouteloua gracilis a C4) from seed in their native soil, under 13C labeled ambient and elevated CO2 atmospheres. This approach enabled us to assess incorporation of plant-derived and native soil organic matter C into microbes, dissolved organic C and respiration via isotopic partitioning. To manipulate mycorrhizal abundance, soils were steamed and later re-inoculated with fresh soil suspension that either had (-AM) or had not (+AM) been passed through a 15-μm mesh to remove mycorrhizal propagules. Microbial communities were assessed with phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA). Elevated CO2 increased the biomass of both species but only the C3 species was responsive to the AM treatments. Reduced abundance of mycorrhizae led to a decrease in P. smithii biomass and to changes in soil organic matter decomposition. The effect of elevated CO2 on decomposition of P. smitthi rhyzosphere soil C was dependent on mycorrhizal abundance so that while under -AM elevated CO2 did not impact soil C decomposition, under +AM elevated CO2 significantly decreased it. Consistent with this, PLFA profiles

  20. Vegetation change in dryland environments: understanding changes in fluvial fluxes via changes in hydrological connectivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puttock, A.; Brazier, R. E.; Dungait, J. A. J.; Bol, R.; Macleod, C. J. A.

    2012-04-01

    Dryland environments are estimated to cover around 40% of the global land surface (Okin et al, 2009) and are home to approximately 2.5 billion people (Reynolds et al. 2007). Many of these areas have recently experienced extensive land degradation. One such area and the focus of this project is the semi-arid US Southwest, where degradation over the past 150 years has been characterised by the invasion of woody vegetation into grasslands. The transition from grass to woody vegetation results in a change in ecosystem structure and function (Turnbull et al, 2008). Structural change is typically characterised by an increased heterogeneity of soil and vegetation resources, associated with reduced vegetation coverage. Functional change is characterised by an increased vulnerability to soil erosion and the potential loss of key nutrients to adjacent fluvial systems. Such loss of resources may impact heavily upon the amount of carbon that is sequestered by these environments and the amount of carbon that is lost as the land becomes more degraded. Therefore, understanding these vegetation transitions is significant for sustainable land use and global biogeochemical cycling. Connectivity is a key concept in understanding the hydrological response to this vegetation change, with reduced vegetation coverage in woody environments being associated with longer and more connected overland flow pathways. This increase in hydrological connectivity results in an accentuated rainfall-runoff response and increased fluvial fluxes of eroded sediment and associated soil organic carbon and other nutrients. This project uses an ecohydrological approach, characterising ecological structure and monitoring natural rainfall-runoff events over bounded plots with different vegetation covering the transitions from C4 pure-grass (Bouteloua eriopoda) to C3 creosote (Larrea tridentate) shrubland and C3 piñon-juniper (Pinus edulis-Juniperus monosperma) mixed stand woodland. Data collected quantifies

  1. Mutually supportive use of stable isotope and gas chromatography techniques to understand ecohydrological interactions in dryland environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puttock, A.; Brazier, R. E.; Dungait, J. A. J.; Bol, R.; Dixon, E. R.; Macleod, C. J. A.

    2012-04-01

    Many drylands globally are experiencing extensive vegetation change. In the semi-arid Southwestern United States, this change is characterised by the encroachment of woody vegetation into environments previously dominated by grassland (Van Auken. 2009). The transition from grass to woody vegetation results in a change in ecosystem structure and function (Turnbull et al. 2008). Structural change is typically characterised by an increased heterogeneity of soil and vegetation resources, associated with reduced vegetation coverage and an increased vulnerability to soil erosion and the potential loss of key nutrients to adjacent fluvial systems. This project uses an ecohydrological approach, monitoring natural rainfall-runoff events and resulting water and sediment fluxes over six bounded plots with different vegetation coverage at the Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico, USA. The experiment takes advantage of a shift in the photosynthetic pathway of dominant vegetation from C3 piñon-juniper (Pinus edulis-Juniperus monosperma) mixed stand through a C4 pure-grass (Bouteloua eriopoda) to C3 shrub (Larrea tridentate). This allows for the utilisation of natural abundance tracing techniques, specifically stable 13C isotope and gas chromatography lipid biomarker analyses. Results collected during the 2010 and 2011 monsoon seasons will be presented, using biogeochemical signatures, to trace and partition fluvial soil organic matter and carbon fluxes during runoff generating rainfall events. Results show that biogeochemical signatures specific to individual plant species can be used to define the provenance of carbon, quantifying whether more Pinus edulis-Juniperus monosperma derived carbon is mobilised from the upland plots, or whether more Larrea tridentata carbon is lost when compared to bouteloa eripoda losses in the lowlands. Results also show that biogeochemical signatures vary with event characteristics, raising the possibility of using these tracing

  2. Assessing vegetation structure and ANPP dynamics in a grassland-shrubland Chihuahuan ecotone using NDVI-rainfall relationships

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno-de las Heras, M.; Diaz-Sierra, R.; Turnbull, L.; Wainwright, J.

    2015-01-01

    Climate change and the widespread alteration of natural habitats are major drivers of vegetation change in drylands. A classic case of vegetation change is the shrub-encroachment process that has been taking place over the last 150 years in the Chihuahuan Desert, where large areas of grasslands dominated by perennial grass species (black grama, Bouteloua eriopoda, and blue grama, B. gracilis) have transitioned to shrublands dominated by woody species (creosotebush, Larrea tridentata, and mesquite, Prosopis glandulosa), accompanied by accelerated water and wind erosion. Multiple mechanisms drive the shrub-encroachment process, including exogenous triggering factors such as precipitation variations and land-use change, and endogenous amplifying mechanisms brought about by soil erosion-vegetation feedbacks. In this study, simulations of plant biomass dynamics with a simple modelling framework indicate that herbaceous (grasses and forbs) and shrub vegetation in drylands have different responses to antecedent precipitation due to functional differences in plant growth and water-use patterns, and therefore shrub encroachment may be reflected in the analysis of landscape-scale vegetation-rainfall relationships. We analyze the structure and dynamics of vegetation at an 18 km2 grassland-shrubland ecotone in the northern edge of the Chihuahuan Desert (McKenzie Flats, Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, NM, USA) by investigating the relationship between decade-scale (2000-2013) records of medium-resolution remote sensing of vegetation greenness (MODIS NDVI) and precipitation. Spatial evaluation of NDVI-rainfall relationship at the studied ecotone indicates that herbaceous vegetation shows quick growth pulses associated with short-term (previous 2 months) precipitation, while shrubs show a slow response to medium-term (previous 5 months) precipitation. We use these relationships to (a) classify landscape types as a function of the spatial distribution of dominant vegetation

  3. Developing an Understanding of Vegetation Change and Fluvial Carbon Fluxes in Semi-Arid Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puttock, A.; Brazier, R. E.; Dungait, J. A. J.; Bol, R.; Macleod, C. J. A.

    2012-04-01

    Dryland environments are estimated to cover around 40% of the global land surface (Okin et al, 2009) and are home to approximately 2.5 billion people (Reynolds et al. 2007). Many of these areas have recently experienced extensive land degradation. One such area and the focus of this project is the semi-arid US Southwest, where degradation over the past 150 years has been characterised by the invasion of woody vegetation into grasslands. Transition from grass to woody vegetation results in a change in ecosystem structure and function (Turnbull et al, 2008). Structural change is typically characterised by an increased heterogeneity of soil and vegetation resources, associated with reduced vegetation coverage and an increased vulnerability to soil erosion and the potential loss of key nutrients to adjacent fluvial systems. Such loss of resources may impact heavily upon the amount of carbon that is sequestered by these environments and the amount of carbon that is lost as the land becomes more degraded. Therefore, understanding these vegetation transitions is significant for sustainable land use and global biogeochemical cycling. This project uses an ecohydrological approach, monitoring natural rainfall-runoff events over six bounded plots with different vegetation coverage. The experiment takes advantage of a natural abundance stable 13C isotope shift from C3 piñon-juniper (Pinus edulis-Juniperus monosperma) mixed stand through a C4 pure-grass (Bouteloua eriopoda) to C3 shrub (Larrea tridentata). Data collected quantify fluvial fluxes of sediment and associated soil organic matter and carbon that is lost from across the grass-to-shrub and grass-to-woodland transition (where change in space is taken to indicate a similar change through time). Results collected during the 2010 and 2011 monsoon seasons will be presented, illustrating that soil and carbon losses are greater as the ecosystem becomes more dominated by woody plants. Additionally this project utilises novel

  4. Dynamics and Resilience of Desert Ecosystems under Changing Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stewart, J.; Wainwright, J.; Parsons, A. J.; Okin, G. S.; Bestelmeyer, B.; Fredrickson, E. L.; Schlesinger, W. H.

    2008-12-01

    Ecological models have been used to probe the causes of spatial complexity and predict specific responses of desert ecosystems. However, many models have been limited in their focus: models of dynamics have been developed with no consideration of the inherent patchiness or patterns in the vegetation, or else models have been developed to generate patterns with no consideration of the dynamics. Models that attempt to address both pattern and dynamics have been qualitative and descriptive. Furthermore, if, as is commonly believed, both dynamics and patterns/patchiness are a function of resource (specifically water) limitation, then there has been little integration of this relationship into such models. Consequently, these models have limited utility for understanding resilience of desert ecosystems. Here we present an integrated approach to the observed patchiness and dynamics in desert vegetation that is based on a sound process-based understanding and is formulated to accommodate previous conceptual models within an overarching framework. This framework is implemented as a mathematical model. Our contribution represents an advance over previous work in that we propose a general model framework for the analysis of ecosystem change in deserts that explicitly considers spatial interactions among multiple vegetation types and multiple resources, and predict specific responses to a variety of endogenous and exogenous disturbances. We present an application of this model to investigate conditions the conditions that would result in observed desert vegetation patterns in south-western desert systems of North America. In particular, we investigate the encroachment of shrubs (Larrea tridentata) into formerly pure stands of grass (Bouteloua eriopoda). We present the results of simulations that rest on rainfall data that was reconstructed for the Jornada Basin Long-Term Ecological Research site in southern New Mexico, USA based on 300-year tree- ring records. The results

  5. Understanding the erosion of semi-arid landscapes subject to vegetation change: a combined approach using monitoring, isotope and 14C analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brazier, R. E.; Turnbull, L.; Bol, R.; Dixon, L.; Wainwright, J.

    2009-04-01

    The degradation of grasslands is a common problem across semi-arid areas worldwide. Over the last 150 years much of the South-Western USA has experienced significant land degradation, with desert grasslands becoming dominated by shrubs and concurrent changes in runoff and erosion which are thought to propagate further the process of degradation. Field-based experiments were carried out to determine how runoff and erosion vary at stages over a transition from a black grama (Bouteloua eriopoda) grassland to creosotebush (Larrea tridentata) shrubland at the Sevilleta NWR LTER site in New Mexico. 14C and δ13C analyses were carried out to investigate the age and potential provenance of eroded sediment. Results show an overall increase in runoff and erosion over the transition from grassland to shrubland, associated with an increase in connectivity of bare, runoff-generating areas, although these increases do not appear to follow a linear trajectory. Erosion rates increased over the transition from grassland to shrubland, related in part to changes in runoff characteristics and the increased capacity of the runoff to detach, entrain and transport sediment. Over all plots fine material was preferentially eroded which has potential implications for nutrient cycling since nutrients tend to be associated with fine sediment. There are significant differences in the isotopic signatures of eroded sediment between the grass- and shrub-dominated plots. The positive correlation between event runoff and δ13C signatures of eroded sediment that is consistent over plots 1, 3 and 4 suggests that the δ13C signatures can be used to distinguish between changes in erosion dynamics over events of different magnitudes and over different vegetation types. 14C analysis of sediment revealed that sediment eroded from all plots is considerably younger than the surface soils over all plots, which is likely to indicate that eroded sediments tend to source form very near surface areas that are

  6. Biophysical drivers of net ecosystem exchange in shrublands of the northern Chihuahuan Desert

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaimes, A.; Laney, C.; Tweedie, C. E.

    2013-12-01

    In the northern Chihuahuan Desert, large areas of southern New Mexico that were formerly dominated by perennial grasses, including black grama (Bouteloua eriopa) and mesa dropseed (Sporobolus flexus) have been replaced by desert shrubland species, in particular creosote bush (Larrea tridentata) and honey mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa). Recent studies suggest that these changes in land cover have the ability to modify near surface microclimate such as soil water holding capacity, albedo, carbon dioxide sequestration, and increases in local air temperature, respiration, sensible heat and evapotranspiration. Despite the recognized importance of the consequences of land cover change in the ecosystem, the rates and tipping points at which these changes occur are not well understood. This knowledge is key to improve predictions in regional and global models, as the region is expected to go through an imminent transition from warm to warmer climate in this century. This study analyze three years of data (2010-2012) from our multi sensor platform situated on the USDA ARS Jornada Experimental Range (JER), about 25 km northeast of Las Cruces, New Mexico, USA. A robust data set that combines high frequency micrometeorological data, plot phenology estimates and spectral indices was used. A combination of statistical analyses based on clustering methods (self-organizing maps) and simple nonparametric regression techniques (regression trees) were used to identify factors controlling fluxes and likely biophysical thresholds and tipping points indicative of different functional system states. Both analyses were implemented through the use of Neural Network Toolbox and Statistics toolbox within MATLAB 7.0. During the period of study the shrubland acted as a carbon sink ranging between -105 to -134 gCO2 m-2 y-1. The largest variation between years in the annual estimated fluxes was the slight decrease of total annual net ecosystem exchange during 2011 (-105 g m-2 s-1) in comparison

  7. Efficient breakdown of lignocellulose using mixed-microbe populations for bioethanol production.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Murton, Jaclyn K.; Ricken, James Bryce; Powell, Amy Jo

    2009-11-01

    (DoE) Joint Genome Institute (JGI) to perform metatranscriptomic functional profiling of eukaryotic microbial communities of blue grama grass (Bouteloua gracilis) rhizosphere (RHZ) soils and (2) isolated and provided initial genotypic and phenotypic characterization data for thermophilic fungi. Our preliminary results show that many strains in our collection of thermophilic fungi frequently outperform industry standards in key assays; we also demonstrated that this collection is taxonomically diverse and phenotypically compelling. The studies summarized here are being performed in collaboration with University of New Mexico and are based at the Sevilleta LTER research site.

  8. Plant phenological responses to extreme events - A long term perspective from the Chihuahuan Desert

    Science.gov (United States)

    Browning, D. M.; Peters, D. P.; Anderson, J.; Yao, J.

    2011-12-01

    Arid and semi-arid regions of the southwestern USA are especially sensitive to changes in temperature as well as drought frequency and intensity. Timing of periodic life cycle events (i.e., phenology) is an integrated and salient indicator of plant responses to climate change. We examine an 18-year dataset of monthly observations of plant phenology for two species of perennial grasses and a deciduous shrub (honey mesquite) distributed across three upland grassland sites and three mesquite-dominated sites on the Jornada Basin USDA-LTER in southern New Mexico, USA. Precipitation is highly variable between years and across space. Long-term phenology data collection spanned a multi-year drought (1994-2003) followed by a sequence of years with average to very high rainfall (2004 - 2008). Our objective was to compare and contrast responses to extreme dry and wet cycles in the timing and duration of first leaf and fruit production for two grasses (Bouteloua eriopoda [black grama], Sporobolus flexuosus [mesa dropseed]) with one co-existing shrub that has displaced grasses in this system (Prosopis glandulosa [honey mesquite]). Monthly field observations yield estimates of phenological status and abundance for 18 growing seasons from 1993 to 2010. All three species most commonly initiated new growth prior to onset of the monsoon rains (March or April). Timing of first growth for mesquite was less variable (standard deviation = 0.47) than for black grama (SD = 1.42) and mesa dropseed (SD = 1.22) grasses. Initial growth for grasses was delayed to September in 2006 following twelve months of deficit values for PDSI. The appearance of first fruit for grasses occurred consistently in August or September, although the number of plants producing fruit was highly variable from year to year. The largest numbers of fruit-bearing grasses were observed in late fall 2008 in response to heavy monsoon rains in 2006 and 2008. Mesquite demonstrated remarkable synchrony in the production of

  9. Seasonal Soil Nitrogen Mineralization within an Integrated Crop and Livestock System in Western North Dakota, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landblom, Douglas; Senturklu, Songul; Cihacek, Larry; Pfenning, Lauren; Brevik, Eric C.

    2015-04-01

    pipes were pressed into the soil as enclosures to restrict root access to soil nitrogen. Soil samples were taken as close to 2-week intervals as possible from both inside and outside the enclosures. The crop rotation N values were also compared to triple replicated perennial native grassland plot areas (predominate sp. Western wheatgrass - Pascopyrum smithii, Blue grama - Bouteloua gracilis, Little bluestem - Schizachyrium scoparium, Switchgrass - Panicum virgatum). Trends identified for both NH4-N and NO3-N indicate that the values are relatively similar with respect to seasonal change over time. There was a greater amount of soil nitrogen accumulation inside the enclosures indicating that outside the enclosures roots scavenge nitrogen for plant growth and production. Seasonally, comparing the cropping system crops, NO3-N declined mid-July and then rebounded by mid-August and continued to increase until leveling off in September. Corn NO3-N, however, did not follow this pattern, but increased from early June to the end of June and remained high until the first of September. We will present the results of bulk density data and seasonal N fertility data providing evidence for the impact of previous CC on corn production. Probable explanation for the mid-summer nitrogen decline will be presented and justification for reduced fertilizer application will be discussed.