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Table of Content
    Volume 41 Issue 3
    10 March 2017

    The earth forest landforms in Yuanmou dry-hot valley (Photographed by WANG Xue-Mei). Wang et al. studied the interactions between plant and soil microbes taking Dodonaea viscosa as an example. The effects of soil microbes on the stoichiometric characteristics of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus in plants were analyzed, and the results showed the important role of the local soil microbe on plant growth (Pages 311–324 of this issue).

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    Research Articles
    Responses of radial growth to temperature in Larix gmelinii of the Da Hinggan Ling under climate warming
    Yong-Xing CHANG, Zhen-Ju CHEN, Xian-Liang ZHANG, Xue-Ping BAI, Xue-Peng ZHAO, Jun-Xia LI, Xu LU
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  279-289.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2016.0222
    Abstract ( 555 )   HTML ( 7 )   PDF (4684KB) ( 1159 )   Save
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    Aims The Da Hinggan Ling is amongst the areas in China susceptible to climate warming. The objective of this study is to determine the responses of radial growth to temperature variations in Larix gmelinii growing in different parts of the Da Hinggan Ling in the process of climate warming, by using dendrochronological techniques. Methods We collected tree-ring samples from the southern, the middle and the northern parts of the main Da Hinggan Ling, developed site-specific ring-width chronologies, and synthesized tree-ring indices of the southern, the middle and the northern parts of the study area according to the first principal component loading factors for each chronology. The relationships between radial growth in L. gmelinii and temperature variations were determined with correlation analysis, and the differences in the responses of radial growth to temperature variations among various parts were analyzed and compared with principle component analysis. Important findings There were notable discrepancies in the effects of temperature variations on radial growth in L. gmelinii between the southern and the northern parts of the study area (the middle part > the northern part > the southern part). In the southern part, the mean monthly temperature between the previous November and April of the current year had a significant relationship with tree-ring indices (p < 0.05). In the middle part, the mean monthly temperature during March and October of the current year had a significant relationship with tree-ring indices (p < 0.05), and so did the mean monthly temperature during June and August of the previous year (p < 0.05). The mean monthly temperature during April and May of the current year had a highly significant relationship with tree-ring indices in the northern part (p < 0.01). This study suggests that the warmer and drier regional climate condition caused by elevated temperature has resulted in that soil moisture becomes the main factor limiting the radial growth, and the relationship between tree growth and temperature variations signified with aggravated soil drought under climate warming. The productivity in L. gmelinii as reflected by basal area increment experienced a shift response from cold stress to water stress. In addition, the radial growth in L. gmelinii in the Da Hinggan Ling will likely to show a declining trend in the southern and the middle parts, and an increasing trend in the northern part, in response to rapid warming in the coming decades.

    Effluxes of nitrous oxide, methane and carbon dioxide and their responses to increasing nitrogen deposition in the Gurbantünggüt Desert of Xinjiang, China
    Xiao-Bing ZHOU, Yuan-Ming ZHANG, Ye TAO, Lin WU
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  290-300.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2016.0258
    Abstract ( 320 )   HTML ( 1 )   PDF (3302KB) ( 614 )   Save
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    Aims Desert soils play an important role in the exchange of major greenhouse gas (GHG) between atmosphere and soil. However, many uncertainties existed in understanding of desert soil role, especially in efflux evaluation under a changing environment. Methods We conducted plot-based field study in center of the Gurbantünggüt Desert, Xinjiang, and applied six rates of simulated nitrogen (N) deposition on the plots, i.e. 0 (N0), 0.5 (N0.5), 1.0 (N1), 3.0 (N3), 6.0 (N6) and 24.0 (N24) g·m-2·a-1. The exchange rates of N2O, CH4 and CO2 during two growing seasons were measured for two years after N applications. Important findings The average efflux of two growing seasons from control plots (N0) were 4.8 μg·m-2·h-1, -30.5 μg·m-2·h-1 and 46.7 mg·m-2·h-1 for N2O, CH4 and CO2, respectively. The effluxes varied significantly among seasons. N0, N0.5 and N1 showed similar exchange of N2O in spring and summer, which was relatively higher than in autumn, while the rates of N2O in N6 and N24 were controled by time points of N applications. The uptake of CH4 was relatively higher in both spring and summer, and lower in autumn. Emission of CO2 changed minor from spring to summer, and greatly decreased in autumn in the first measured year. In the second year, the emission patterns were changed by rates of N added. N additions generally stimulated the emission of N2O, while the effects varied in different seasons and years. In addition, no obvious trends were found in the emission factor of N2O. The uptake of CH4 was not significantly affected by N additions. N additions did not change CO2 emissions in the first year, while high N significantly reduced the CO2 emissions in spring and summer of the second year, without affected in autumn. Structure equation model analysis on the factors suggested that N2O, CH4 and CO2 were dominantly affected by the N application rates, soil temperature or moisture and plant density, respectively. Over the growing seasons, both the net efflux and the global warming potential caused by N additions were small.

    Responses of soil respiration with biocrust cover to water and temperature in the southeastern edge of Tengger Desert, Northwest China
    Chao GUAN, Peng ZHANG, Xin-Rong LI
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  301-310.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2016.0326
    Abstract ( 291 )   HTML ( 2 )   PDF (3479KB) ( 477 )   Save
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    Aims Soil respiration of the lands covered by biocrusts is an important component in the carbon cycle of arid, semi-arid and dry-subhumid ecosystems (drylands hereafter), and one of the key processes in the carbon cycle of drylands. However, the responses of the rate of soil respiration with biocrusts to water and temperature are uncertain in the investigations of the effects of experimental warming and precipitation patterns on CO2 fluxes in biocrust dominated ecosystems. The objectives of this study were to investigate the relationships of carbon release from the biocrust-soil systems with water and temperature in drylands. Methods Intact soil columns with two types of biocrusts, including moss and algae-lichen crusts, were collected in a natural vegetation area in the southeastern fringe of the Tengger Desert. Open top chambers were used to simulate climate warming, and the soil respiration rate was measured under warming and non-warming treatments using an automated soil respiration system (LI-8150). Important findings Over the whole observational period (from April 2016 to July 2016), soil respiration rates varied from -0.16 to 4.69 μmol·m-2·s-1 for the moss crust-covered soils and from -0.21 to 5.72 μmol·m-2·s-1 for the algae-lichen crust-covered soils, respectively, under different rainfall events (the precipitations between 0.3-30.0 mm). The mean soil respiration rate of the moss crust-covered soils is 1.09 μmol·m-2·s-1, which is higher than that of the algae-lichen crust-covered soils of 0.94 μmol·m-2·s-1. The soil respiration rate of the two types of biocrust-covered soils showed different dynamics and spatial heterogeneities with rainfall events, and were positively correlated with precipitation. The mean soil respiration rate of the biocrust-covered soils without warming was 1.24 μmol·m-2·s-1, significantly higher than that with warming treatments of 0.79 μmol·m-2·s-1 (p < 0.05). By increasing the evaporation of soil moisture, the simulated warming impeded soil respiration. In most cases, soil temperature and soil respiration rate displayed a similar single-peak curve during the diel cycle. Our results show an approximately two hours’ lag between soil temperature at 5 cm depth and the soil respiration rate of the biocrust-covered soils during the diel cycle.

    Effects of microorganism on carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus of Dodonaea viscosa and the soils from different elevations in Yuanmou, Yunnan, China
    Xue-Mei WANG, Bang-Guo YAN, Guang ZHAO, Liang-Tao SHI, Gang-Cai LIU, Hai-Dong FANG
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  311-324.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2016.0267
    Abstract ( 439 )   HTML ( 1 )   PDF (4853KB) ( 621 )   Save
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    Aims Understanding the effects of soil microorganism at different elevations on plant C:N:P stoichiometry can help us to understand the plant-soil interactions in the context of climate change. Our aim was to quantify the independent and interactive effects of soil microbial communities and temperatures on the C, N, and P in the leaves of Dodonaea viscosa—a global widespread species. Methods Rhizosphere soils of D. viscosa were collected from two elevation zones in Yuanmou County, Yunnan Province. A 2 × 3 factorial experiment with six replications was conducted using climate chambers. The leaf C, N and P contents and the soil properties were measured after three months of the treatments. Important findings Compared with the autoclaved treatment, inoculated rhizosphere soils from both high and low elevations had higher nutrient absorption, especially P uptake. Temperature produced no significant effect on leaf C:N:P stoichiometry, but the interactive effect of temperature and microbial treatment appeared significant. For inoculated rhizosphere soils from high elevation, temperature had no significant effect on leaf C:N:P stoichiometry. For inoculated rhizosphere soils from low elevation, leaf N and P contents under low temperature were significantly lower than those with warmer soils. The promoting effect of soil microorganisms on nutrient uptake may be due to the direct effect of beneficial microorganisms (e.g., mycorrhizal fungi), but not through the alteration of nutrient cycling process. Because D. viscosa in the inoculated rhizosphere soils absorbed more N and P from the soil than those in autoclaved soil, the available N and P in inoculated rhizosphere soils were lower than those in autoclaved soils. As predicted future temperature will be lower in the studied region, the growth of D. viscosa may be negatively affected through plant-microbe feedbacks.

    Effects of different nitrogen:phosphorus levels on the growth and ecological stoichiometry of Glycyrrhiza uralensis
    Ju-Ying HUANG, Hai-Long YU, Li-Li WANG, Kai-Bo MA, Yang-Mei KANG, Ya-Xian DU
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  325-336.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2016.0230
    Abstract ( 325 )   HTML ( 5 )   PDF (3552KB) ( 669 )   Save
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    Aims The increase in atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition has accelerated N cycling of ecosystems, probably resulting in increases in phosphorus (P) demand of ecosystems. Studies on the effects of artificial N:P treatment on the growth and carbon (C), N, P ecological stoichiometry of desert steppe species could provide not only a new insight into the forecasting of how the interaction between soils and plants responses to long-term atmospheric N deposition increase, but also a scientific guidance for sustainable management of grassland in northern China under global climate change. Methods Based on a pot-cultured experiment conducted for Glycyrrhiza uralensis (an N-fixing species) during 2013 to 2014, we studied the effects of different N:P supply ratios (all pots were treated with the same amount of N but with different amounts of P) on aboveground biomass, root biomass, root/shoot ratio, and C:N:P ecological stoichiometry both in G. uralensis (leaves and roots) and in soils. Additionally, through the correlation analyses between biomass and C:N:P ecological stoichiometry in leaves, roots, and soils, we compared the differences among the C:N:P ecological stoichiometry of the three pools, and discussed the indication of C:N:P ecological stoichiometry in soils for the growth and nutrient uptake of G. uralensis. Important findings The results showed that, reducing N:P decreased C:P and N:P ratios both in G. uralensis (leaves and roots) and in soils but increased aboveground biomass and root biomass of G. uralensis, indicating that low to moderate P addition increased P availability of soils and P uptake of G. uralensis. However, excessive low N:P (high P addition) led to great decreases in soil C:P and N:P ratios, thus hindering N uptake and the growth of G. uralensis. C:N:P ratios in the two pools of G. uralensis (especially in leaves) had close correlations with soil C:N:P ratio, indicating that the change in soil C:N:P ratio would have a direct influence on plants. Our results suggest that, through regulating C:N:P ratio in leaves and soils, appropriate amounts of P addition could balance soil P supply and plant P demand and compensate the opposite influences of long-term atmospheric N deposition increase on the structure of desert steppe.

    Application and comparison of remote sensing GPP models with multi-site data in China
    Ke-Qing WANG, He-Song WANG, Osbert Jianxin SUN
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  337-347.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2016.0182
    Abstract ( 401 )   HTML ( 3 )   PDF (4048KB) ( 675 )   Save
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    Aims Estimation of gross primary productivity (GPP) of vegetation at the global and regional scales is important for understanding the carbon cycle of terrestrial ecosystems. Due to the heterogeneous nature of land surface, measurements at the site level cannot be directly up-scaled to the regional scale. Remote sensing has been widely used as a tool for up-saling GPP by integrating the land surface observations with spatial vegetation patterns. Although there have been many models based on light use efficiency and remote sensing data for simulating terrestrial ecosystem GPP, those models depend much on meteorological data; use of different sources of meteorological datasets often results in divergent outputs, leading to uncertainties in the simulation results. In this study, we examines the feasibility of using two GPP models driven by remote sensing data for estimating regional GPP across different vegetation types. Methods Two GPP models were tested in this study, including the Temperature and Greenness Model (TG) and the Vegetation Index Model (VI), based on remote sensing data and flux data from the China flux network (ChinaFLUX) for different vegatation types for the period 2003-2005. The study sites consist of eight ecological stations located in Xilingol (grassland), Changbaishan (mixed broadleaf-conifer forest), Haibei (shrubland), Yucheng (cropland), Damxung (alpine meadow), Qianyanzhou (evergreen needle-leaved forest), Dinghushan (evergreen broad-leaved forest), and Xishuangbanna (evergreen broad-leaved forest), respectively. Important findings All the remote sensing parameters employed by the TG and VI models had good relationships with the observed GPP, with the values of coefficient of determination, R2, exceeding 0.67 for majority of the study sites. However, the root mean square errors (RMSEs) varied greatly among the study sites: the RMSE of TG ranged from 0.29 to 6.40 g·m-2·d-1, and that of VI ranged from 0.31 to 7.09 g·m-2·d-1, respectively. The photosynthetic conversion coefficients m and a can be up-scaled to a regional scale based on their relationships with the annual average nighttime land surface temperature (LST), with 79% variations in m and 58% of variations in a being explainable in the up-scaling. The correlations between the simulated outputs of both TG and VI and the measured values were mostly high, with the values of correlation coefficient, r, ranging from 0.06 in the TG model and 0.13 in the VI model at the Xishuangbanna site, to 0.94 in the TG model and 0.89 in the VI model at the Haibei site. In general, the TG model performed better than the VI model, especially at sites with high elevation and that are mainly limited by temperature. Both models had potential to be applied at a regional scale in China.

    Shrub encroachment effect on the evapotranspiration and its component—A numerical simulation study of a shrub encroachment grassland in Nei Mongol, China
    Qi-Dan WANG, Wen-Xin YANG, Jie-Yu HUANG, Kun XU, Pei WANG
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  348-358.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2016.0236
    Abstract ( 510 )   HTML ( 4 )   PDF (3372KB) ( 562 )   Save
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    Aims Shrub encroachment is a common global change phenomenon occurring in arid and semi-arid regions. Due to the difficulty of partitioning evapotranspiration into shrub plants, grass plants and soil in the field, there are few studies focusing on shrub encroachment effect on the evapotranspiration and its component in China. This study aims to illustrate shrub encroachment effect on evapotranspiration by the numerical modeling method. Methods A two-source model was applied and calibrated with the measured evapotranspiration (ET) by the Bowen ratio system to simulate evapotranspiration and its component in a shrub encroachment grassland in Nei Mongol, China. Based on the calibrated model and previous shrub encroachment investigation, we set three scenarios of shrub encroachment characterized by relative shrub coverage of 5%, 15% and 30%, respectively, and quantified their effects caused by shrub encroachment through localized and calibrated two-source model.Important findings The two-source model can well reconstruct the evapotranspiration characteristics of a shrub encroachment grassland. Sensitivity analysis of the model shows that errors for the input variables and parameters have small influence on the result of partitioning evapotranspiration. The result shows that shrub encroachment has relatively small influence on the total amount of ET, but it has clear influence on the proportion of the components of evapotranspiration (E/ET). With shrub coverage increasing from 5% to 15% and then 30%, the evapotranspiration decreased from 182.97 to 180.38 and 176.72 W·m-2, decreasing amplitude values of 0.34% and 0.44%, respectively. On average, E/ET rises from 52.9% to 53.9% and 55.5%, increasing amplitude values to 2.04% and 3.25%. Data analysis indicates that shrub encroachment results in smaller soil moisture changes, but clear changes of ecosystem structure (decreasing ecosystem leaf area index while increasing vegetation height) which lead to the decrease of transpiration fraction through decreasing canopy conductance. The research highlights that, with the shrub encroachment, more water will be consumed as soil evaporation which is often regarded as invalid part of evapotranspiration and thus resulting in the decrease of water use efficiency.

    Phenotypic plasticity and genetic differentiation of quantitative traits in genotypes of Leymus chinensis
    Xue YANG, Jun-Fang SHEN, Nian-Xi ZHAO, Yu-Bao GAO
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  359-368.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2015.0257
    Abstract ( 390 )   HTML ( 1 )   PDF (2815KB) ( 707 )   Save
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    Aims Adaptation mechanisms of plants to environment can be classified as genetic differentiation and phenotypic plasticity (environmental modification). The strategy and mechanism of plant adaptation is a hot topic in the field of evolutionary ecology. Leymus chinensis is one of constructive species in the Nei Mongol grassland. Particularly, Leymus chinensis is a rhizomatous and clonally reproductive grass, a genotype that can play an important role in the community. In this study, we aimed to (1) investigate the phenotypic plasticity of L. chinensis under different conditions, and (2) test the genetic differentiation and reaction norms (the relationship between the environment and the phenotype of an individual or a group of individuals) under four environmental conditions among different genotypes of L. chinensis. Methods Ten genotypes of L. chinensis were randomly selected. Under the control condition, we studied the effects of genotype, defoliation, drought and their interactions on 11 quantitative traits of growth (8 traits including photochemical efficiency of photosystem II, maximum net photosynthetic rate, transpiration rate, specific leaf area, relative growth rate, the number of tillers increased, aboveground and underground biomass growth), defense (total phenol concentration of leaf) and tolerance (non-structural carbohydrate content of root, root/shoot ratio) of L. chinensis. We studied the phenotypic plasticity, genetic differentiation and reaction norms mainly through tested the effect of environment and genotype on these traits. Important findings First, all 11 traits showed obvious phenotypic plasticity (i.e., significant effect of drought, defoliation and their interactions). The expression of 10 genotypes of L. chinensis was divergent under different environmental conditions. Interactions of genotype and environment significantly affected the maximum net photosynthetic rate, transpiration rate, specific leaf area, relative growth rate, total phenolic concentration of leaf, and total non-structural carbohydrate content of root. This indicated that the phenotypic plasticity of these five traits exhibited genetic differentiation. Second, the increase of number of tillers, belowground biomass and non-structural carbohydrate content of root did not show genetic differentiation under the same condition. The other eight traits showed significantly genetic differentiation, and the heritabilities (H2) of six traits related to growth were higher than 0.5. The leaf total phenol concentration and root/shoot ratio showed genetically differentiation only under the drought and defoliation condition, with the heritabilities being 0.145 and 0.201, respectively. These results explained why L. chinensis widely distributed in the Nei Mongol grassland, and provided genetic and environmental basis for related application and species conservation in this grassland ecosystem.

    Circadian rhythm of root pressure in popular and its driving factors
    Jian-Rong GUO, Xian-Chong WAN
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  369-377.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2016.0098
    Abstract ( 362 )   HTML ( 3 )   PDF (2580KB) ( 615 )   Save
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    Aims Our main purposes were to investigate root pressure and its circadian rhythm of excised roots in ‘84K’ popular (Populus alba × P. glandulosa) cultured in soil and solution, to explore the influencing factors and their relationships with root pressure systematically and to understand the generation and rhythm regulation of root pressure. Methods We investigated the root pressure of excised roots in ‘84K’ popular using the method of digital pressure transducer. The diurnal rhythm of excised roots was conducted through different experimental treatments including sampling in different time, defoliation and girdling, together with ambient condition like soil temperature, differential or consistant temperature during day and night. Then we discussed the effects of root respiration and hydraulic conductivity on root pressure by further using chemical inhibitor. Furthermore, diurnal variation of osmotic potential and ions content as well as soluble sugar content of exudation was determined in order to explore their relationships with root pressure rhythm. Important findings Root pressure of excised roots in popular had diurnal rhythm which was higher during daytime and lower overnight. It reached its peak value in the morning to noon and valley value at 20:00. Root pressure of excised roots sampled at different time and cultured in different medium had influence on the rhythm of root pressure to some degrees, but did not the general rhythm of high in daytime and low overnight. Defoliation, girdling and the inhibitors for root respiration or cytomembrane hydraulic conductivity could affect the maximum value of root pressure while have no significant influence on the daily rhythm. Defoliation, girdling and respiration inhibitor reduced the maximum value of root pressure, whereas the hydraulic conductivity inhibitor had little influence on root pressure. The maximum value of root pressure declined with the decrease in soil temperature which could change the rhythm of root pressure. The synchronous change in the maximum value of root pressure and root respiration rate with temperature indicated that root respiration contributed to the change of root pressure along with temperature. Osmotic potential of root exudation was higher during the daytime and lower at night. Diurnal variations of ions and soluble sugar content of exudation were consistant with that of osmotic potential. The peak of root pressure measured under the condition of differential temperature during day and night was significant higher than that measured under constant temperature. In conclusion, root pressure of the poplar ‘84K’ showed significant diurnal rhythm, i.e. higher during the daytime and lower at night. The maximum value of root pressure was mainly regulated by root respiration metabolism. The factors such as respiration inhibitor, respiration substrate and temperature influence the value of the maximum root pressure of poplar ‘84K’. Root hydraulic conductivity had no significant influence on root pressure.

    Method and Technology
    Using approximate Bayesian computation to infer photosynthesis model parameters
    Ji-Ye ZENG, Zheng-Hong TAN, Nobuko SAIGUSA
    Chin J Plan Ecolo. 2017, 41 (3):  378-385.  doi:10.17521/cjpe.2016.0067
    Abstract ( 433 )   HTML ( 1 )   PDF (2180KB) ( 788 )   Save
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    We developed a method, namely Adaptive Population Monte Carlo Approximate Bayesian Computation (APMC), to estimate the parameters of Farquhar photosynthesis model. Treating the canopy as a big leaf, we applied this method to derive the parameters at canopy scale. Validations against observational data showed that parameters estimated based on the APMC optimization are un-biased for predicting the photosynthesis rate. We conclude that APMC has greater advantages in estimating the model parameters than those of the conventional nonlinear regression models.


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