Distribution of spore-positive and spore-negative nodules ofMyrica gale in Maine, USA
The distribution of spore-positive and spore-negative root nodules ofMyrica gale L. was investigated at 34 sites throughout Maine. the sites represented a wide range of environmental conditions, including soils from organic to sand, soil pH from 3.1 to 6.4, elevations from 3 to 529 m, and average number of frost-free days per year from 80 to 162. Habitats included peatlands, streamsides and lakeshores.
Spore(−) nodules dominated with 61% of the nodules examined sp(−) and 39% sp(+). Two sites were 100% sp(+), 7 sites were 100% sp(−) and the remaining 25 sites had varying proportions of both types. Overall, sp(+) and mixed sites dominated in the southern interior and coastal regions, areas with lower elevations and longer growing seasons. Spore(−) sites were located primarily in northern and western Maine, areas with higher elevations and shorter growing seasons. In all habitats occurrence of spore(+) modules was positively correlated with the average number of frost-free days per year (r=0.57 for peatlands, r=0.71 for lakeshores and streamsides). In addition, at the 21 lakeshore and streamside sites occurrence of sp(+) nodules was also positively correlated with percent organic matter in the soil (r=0.56) and negatively correlated with pH (r=−0.60). Within mixed sites sp(+) and sp(−) nodules were distribated randomly and were often closely intermingled.
Key wordsactinorhizal plants Frankia Myrica gale nitrogen fixation root nodules spore-negative spore-positive
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