Advertisement

Oecologia

, Volume 166, Issue 2, pp 555–563 | Cite as

Direct and interaction-mediated effects of environmental changes on peatland bryophytes

  • Zhao-Jun Bu
  • Håkan RydinEmail author
  • Xu Chen
Community ecology - Original Paper

Abstract

Ecosystem processes of northern peatlands are largely governed by the vitality and species composition in the bryophyte layer, and may be affected by global warming and eutrophication. In a factorial experiment in northeast China, we tested the effects of raised levels of nitrogen (0, 1 and 2 g m−2 year−1), phosphorus (0, 0.1 and 0.2 g m−2 year−1) and temperature (ambient and +3°C) on Polytrichum strictum, Sphagnum magellanicum and S. palustre, to see if the effects could be altered by inter-specific interactions. In all species, growth declined with nitrogen addition and increased with phosphorus addition, but only P. strictum responded to raised temperature with increased production of side-shoots (branching). In Sphagnum, growth and branching changed in the same direction, but in Polytrichum, the two responses were uncoupled: with nitrogen addition there was a decrease in growth (smaller than in Sphagnum) but an increase in branching; with phosphorus addition growth increased but branching was unaffected. There were no two-way interactions among the P, N and T treatments. With increasing temperature, our results indicate that S. palustre should decrease relative to P. strictum (Polytrichum increased its branching and had a negative neighbor effect on S. palustre). With a slight increase in phosphorus availability, the increase in length growth and production of side-shoots in P. strictum and S. magellanicum may give them a competitive superiority over S. palustre. The negative response in Sphagnum to nitrogen could favor the expansion of vascular plants, but P. strictum may endure thanks to its increased branching.

Keywords

Branching Inter-specific interaction Polytrichum Sphagnum Warming 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This study was funded by the Natural Science Foundation of China (contract No. 30700055 and No. 40971036), The National Grand Fundamental Research 973 Program of China (No. 2009CB426305), the Training Fund of NENU’S Scientific Innovation Project (contract No. NENU-STB07002) and the Swedish Research Council Formas. We thank Xiangjun Meng and Gaolin Zhao for open top chamber preparation, Yuxin Jiao and Gaolin Zhao for bryophyte samples preparation, Lihong Jiang, Yuan Tang, Chunquan Wang, Jinbin Xu, Yi Han and Luwu Xie for fertilization, and Zhiwei Xu, Meijuan Zhou and others for the laboratory work. Lennart Norell, Wei Gao and Lei Shi helped us with the statistical analysis. Urban Gunnarsson, Joachim Strengbom and Sebastian Sundberg kindly commented on the manuscript. The experiment complies with all laws of the People’s Republic of China, where it was performed.

References

  1. Aarssen LW, Keogh T (2002) Conundrums of competitive ability in plants: what to measure? Oikos 96:531–542CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Aerts R, Wallén B, Malmer N (1992) Growth-limiting nutrients in Sphagnum-dominated bogs subject to low and high atmospheric nitrogen supply. J Ecol 80:131–140CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Berendse F, van Breemen N, Rydin H, Buttler A, Heijmans M, Hoosbeek MR, Lee JA, Mitchell E, Saarinen T, Vasander H, Wallén B (2001) Raised atmospheric CO2 levels and increased N deposition cause shifts in plant species composition and production in Sphagnum bogs. Global Change Biol 7:591–598CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bragazza L (1997) Sphagnum niche diversification in two oligotrophic mires in the Southern Alps of Italy. Bryologist 100:507–515Google Scholar
  5. Bragazza L, Tahvanainen T, Kutnar L, Rydin H, Limpens J, Hájek M, Grosvernier P, Hájek T, Hájkova P, Hansen I, Iacumin P, Gerdol R (2004) Nutritional constraints in ombrotrophic Sphagnum plants under increasing atmospheric nitrogen deposition in Europe. New Phytol 163:609–616CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Breeuwer A, Heijmans MMPD, Robroek BJM, Berendse F (2008) The effects of temperature on growth and competition between Sphagnum species. Oecologia 156:155–167PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Brooker RW, Maestre FT, Callaway RM, Lortie CL, Cavieres LA, Kunstler G, Liancourt P, Tielbörger K, Travis JMJ, Anthelme F, Armas C, Coll L, Corcket E, Delzon S, Forey E, Kikvidze Z, Olofsson J, Pugnaire F, Quiroz CL, Saccone P, Schiffers K, Seifan M, Touzard B, Michalet R (2008) Facilitation in plant communities: the past, the present and the future. J Ecol 96:18–34CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Bruno JF, Stachowicz JJ, Bertness MD (2003) Inclusion of facilitation into ecological theory. Trends Ecol Evol 18:119–125CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Bu Z, Yang Y, Dai D, Wang X (2005) Age structure and growth pattern of Polytrichum juniperinum populations in a mire of Changbai Mountains. Chin J Appl Ecol 16:44–48Google Scholar
  10. Bubier JL, Moore TR, Bledzki LA (2007) Effects of nutrient addition on vegetation and carbon cycling in an ombrotrophic bog. Global Change Biol 13:1–19CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Callaghan TV, Collins NJ, Callaghan CH (1978) Photosynthesis, growth and reproduction of Hylocomium splendens and Polytrichum commune in Swedish Lapland. Oikos 31:73–88CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Carfrae JA, Sheppard LJ, Raven JA, Leith ID, Crossley A (2007) Potassium and phosphorus additions modify the response of Sphagnum capillifolium growing on a Scottish ombrotrophic bog to enhanced nitrogen deposition. Appl Geochem 22:1111–1121CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Chai X (1990) Peatland science. Geological Publishing House, BeijingGoogle Scholar
  14. Chen X, Bu Z, Wang S, Li H, Zhao H (2009) Niches of seven bryophyte species in Hani Peatland of Changbai Mountains. Chin J Appl Ecol 20:574–578Google Scholar
  15. Dorrepaal E, Aerts R, Cornelissen JHC, Callaghan TV, van Logtestijn RSP (2003) Summer warming and increased winter snow cover affect Sphagnum fuscum growth, structure and production in a sub-arctic bog. Global Change Biol 10:93–104CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Dorrepaal E, Toet S, van Logtestijn R, Swart E, van de Weg M, Callaghan T, Aerts R (2009) Carbon respiration from subsurface peat accelerated by climate warming in the subarctic. Nature 460:616–619CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Duan L, Hao J, Xie S, Zhou Z (2002) Estimating critical loads of sulfur and nitrogen for Chinese soils by steady state method. Environ Sci 23:7–12Google Scholar
  18. Freeman C, Ostle N, Kang HJ (2002) An enzymic ‘latch’ on a global carbon store. Nature 409:149CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gerdol R, Petraglia A, Bragazza L, Iacumin P, Brancaleoni L (2007) Nitrogen deposition interacts with climate in affecting production and decomposition rates in Sphagnum mosses. Global Change Biol 13:1810–1821CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Gerdol R, Bragazza L, Brancaleoni L (2008) Heatwave 2003: high summer temperature, rather than experimental fertilization, affects vegetation and CO2 exchange in an alpine bog. New Phytol 179:142–154PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Granath G, Strengbom J, Breeuwer A, Heijmans MMPD, Berendse F, Rydin H (2009) Photosynthetic performance in Sphagnum transplanted along a latitudinal nitrogen deposition gradient. Oecologia 159:705–715PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Groeneveld EVG, Massé A, Rochefort L (2007) Polytrichum strictum as a nurse-plant in peatland restoration. Restor Ecol 15:709–719CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Grubb PJ (1977) The maintenance of species richness in plant communities: the importance of the regeneration niche. Biol Rev 52:107–145CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Gunnarsson U (2005) Global patterns of Sphagnum productivity. J Bryol 27:267–277CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Gunnarsson U, Rydin H (2000) Nitrogen fertilisation reduces Sphagnum production in Swedish bogs. New Phytol 147:527–537CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Gunnarsson U, Granberg G, Nilsson M (2004) Growth, production and interspecific competition in Sphagnum: effects of temperature, nitrogen and sulphur treatments on a boreal mire. New Phytol 163:349–359CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Güsewell S (2004) N:P ratios in terrestrial plants: variation and functional significance. New Phytol 164:243–266CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Haig ETW (1989) Individual interactions in Sphagnum populations. PhD dissertation, University of LondonGoogle Scholar
  29. Lang H, Zhao K, Chen K (1999) Wetland vegetation in China. Science Press, BeijingGoogle Scholar
  30. Lang SI, Cornelissen JHC, Hölzer A, ter Braak CJF, Ahrens M, Callaghan TV, Aerts R (2009) Determinants of cryptogam composition and diversity in Sphagnum-dominated peatlands: the importance of temporal, spatial and functional scales. J Ecol 97:299–310CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Limpens J, Tomassen HBM, Berendse F (2003) Expansion of Sphagnum fallax in bogs: striking the balance between N and P availability. J Bryol 25:83–90CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Limpens J, Berendse F, Klees H (2004) How phosphorus availability affects the impact of nitrogen deposition on Sphagnum and vascular plants in bogs. Ecosystems 7:793–804CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Mitchell EAD, Buttler A, Grosvernier P, Rydin H, Siegenthaler A, Gobat J-M (2002) Contrasted effects of increased N and CO2 supply on two keystone species in peatland restoration and implications for global change. J Ecol 90:529–533CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Mulligan R, Gignac D (2002) Bryophyte community structure in a boreal poor fen II: interspecific competition among five mosses. Can J Bot 80:330–339CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Paulissen MPCP, Besalú LE, de Bruijn H, van der Ven PJM, Bobbink R (2005) Contrasting effects of ammonium enrichment on fen bryophytes. J Bryol 27:109–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Qiao S (1993) A preliminary study on Hani peat mire in the west part of the Changbai Mountain. Sci Geogr Sin 13:279–286Google Scholar
  37. Rincon E, Grime JP (1989) An analysis of seasonal patterns of bryophyte growth in a natural habitat. J Ecol 77:447–455CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Robroek BJM, Limpens J, Breeuwer A, Crushell PH, Schouten MGC (2007) Interspecific competition between Sphagnum mosses at different water tables. Funct Ecol 21:805–812CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Robroek BJM, Schouten MGC, Limpens J, Berendse F, Poorter H (2009) Interactive effects of water table and precipitation on net CO2 assimilation of three co-occurring Sphagnum mosses differing in distribution above the water table. Global Change Biol 15:680–691CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Rydin H (1985) Effect of water level on desiccation of Sphagnum in relation to surrounding Sphagna. Oikos 45:374–379CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Rydin H (2009) Population and community ecology of bryophytes. In: Shaw AJ, Goffinet B (eds) Bryophyte biology. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp 393–444Google Scholar
  42. Rydin H, Jeglum JK (2006) The biology of peatlands. Oxford University Press, OxfordCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. SAS Institute (2004) SAS OnlineDoc 9.1.3. SAS Institute, Cary, NCGoogle Scholar
  44. Soro A, Sundberg S, Rydin H (1999) Species diversity, niche width and species associations in harvested and undisturbed bogs. J Veg Sci 10:549–560CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Sun Q, Bu Z, Wang S, Meng X (2005) Preliminary study on density dependence of Sphagnum imbricatum population in Hani oligotrophic mire. Wetl Sci 3:116–120Google Scholar
  46. van der Heijden E, Jauhiainen J, Silvola J, Vasander H, Kuiper PJC (2000) Effects of elevated atmospheric CO2 concentration and increased nitrogen deposition on growth and chemical composition of ombrotrophic Sphagnum balticum and oligo-mesotrophic Sphagnum papillosum. J Bryol 22:175–182Google Scholar
  47. Vasander H, Kettunen A (2006) Carbon in boreal peatlands. In: Wieder K, Vitt DH (eds) Boreal peatland ecosystems. Springer, Berlin, pp 165–194CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Verhoeven JTA, Liefveld WM (1997) The ecological significance of organochemical compounds in Sphagnum. Acta Bot Neerl 46:117–130Google Scholar
  49. Vitt DH (1990) Growth and production dynamics of boreal mosses over climatic, chemical and topographic gradients. Bot J Linn Soc 104:35–59CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Vitt DH, Wieder K, Halsey LA, Turetsky M (2003) Response of Sphagnum fuscum to nitrogen deposition: a case study of ombrogenous peatlands in Alberta, Canada. Bryologist 106:235–245CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Weltzin JF, Harth C, Bridgham SD, Pastor J, Vonderharr M (2001) Production and microtopography of bog bryophytes: response to warming and water-table manipulations. Oecologia 128:557–565CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Wyatt R, Derda S (1997) Population biology of the Polytrichaceae. Adv Bryol 6:265–296Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.State Environmental Protection Key Laboratory of Wetland Ecology and Vegetation Restoration, Institute for Peat and Mire ResearchNortheast Normal UniversityChangchunChina
  2. 2.Key Laboratory for Vegetation Ecology, Ministry of Education, Institute of Grassland SciencesNortheast Normal UniversityChangchunChina
  3. 3.Department of Plant Ecology, Evolutionary Biology CentreUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden
  4. 4.Nanjing Institute of Geography and LimnologyChinese Academy of SciencesNanjingChina

Personalised recommendations