Chin J Plan Ecolo ›› 2006, Vol. 30 ›› Issue (4): 601-609.doi: 10.17521/cjpe.2006.0079

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles


DU Feng;LIANG Zong_Suo;SHAN Lun; CHEN Xiao_Yan   

  1. (Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Ministry of Water Resource, State Key Laboratory of Soil Erosion and Dryland Farming on Loess Plateau, Northwest Sci_Tech University of Agriculture and Forestry, Yangling, Shaanxi 712100, China)
  • Online:2006-07-30 Published:2006-07-30
  • Contact: LIANG Zong_Suo


Background and Aims In hilly Loess region, Artemisia scoparia is always the dominator in the early a bandoned field communities. It may be replaced by Agropyron cristatum or Heteropappus altaicus or Stipa bungeanain next succession stage when no disturbance occurs. In order to study the direction of Artemisia scoparia community succession under different standing conditions, we conducted transplant experiments to test the intraspecfic and interspecfic competition of Artemisia scopariain river terrace and northern mound land and, at the same time, its morphological traits were investigated.
Methods In the experiments, nine species (three coexisting species, five later sere species
and Artemisia scopariaitself were chosen and transplanted as test species, but due to the low survival of two species, only seven species were analyzed to test the relative competition ability to phytometer Artemisia scopariaunder different standing conditions.
Key Results The results show that the individuals tend to be miniaturized, i.e., its
communities are composed mainly of small_sized individuals and competition can change the morphological traits. The unit biomass competition intensity is better than total competition intensity in explaining plants' relative competitive ability when local conditions and plant size are considered. Under the northern mound land and the lowest river terrace, late_successional and perennials species have higher competitative ability than early_successional and annual plants, suggesting that the competition of late_ against early_successional species is one of the driving force to succession. Comparison of the competition between the seven test species and the unit biomass of Artemisia scoparia, the northern mound land ranks the first, lower river terrace the second and the lowest terrace the third, suggesting that intensive competition occurs more severely in poor growing conditions. There is significant difference in the ability of competition be tween the test species and Artemisia scoparia from the lowest river terrace to the northern mound land, suggesting that the ranks of the competition ability may vary depending on standing conditions.
Conclusions As competition is one of the decisive factors in constructing plant community,
the shift or variation of competition ability between coexisting species and sere species may result in different community structure and dynamics, so it changes the direction and pathway of succession under different standing conditions.

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