Chin J Plant Ecol ›› 2022, Vol. 46 ›› Issue (1): 51-61.DOI: 10.17521/cjpe.2020.0239

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of patch pattern on plant diversity and functional traits in center Hunshandak Sandland

Min FAN, Yi-Tong LU, Zhao-Hua WANG, Ying-Qi HUANG, Yu PENG(), Jia-Xin SHANG, Yang ZHANG   

  1. College of Life & Environmental Sciences, Minzu University of China, Beijing 100081, China
  • Received:2020-07-17 Accepted:2021-05-08 Online:2022-01-20 Published:2022-04-13
  • Contact: Yu PENG


Aims We address the issue of adapting patch pattern for improved plant biodiversity conservation in sandy grasslands by assessing the role of edge type in the influences of patch pattern on plant diversity and functional traits. We test the hypotheses that plant richness, alpha and beta diversity would vary according to patch pattern but that these effects would vary according to edge type, through adaptation of plant functional traits. Methods Jointing satellite imagery interpretation, 705 plots from two-year surveys and spatial analysis, patch edges in center Hunshandak Sandland were categorized into four types. Duncan’s differences were tested across four edge types. Pearson’s correlation and redundancy analysis (RDA) were used to discern the patch contributions. Important findings Plant richness and diversity indices are closely related with patch patterns, these relations vary significantly across edge types, demonstrating different functional traits. For inward edge, edge metrics attributes to richness reduction and C4 plant proportion, mean perimeter-area ratio (MPAR) positively related to nitrogen-fixed species proportion. For outward edge, mean patch fractal dimension (MPFD) negatively related to richness, MPAR positively related to the proportion of nitrogen-fixing species, edge metrics positively related to C4 proportion. For inward nucleating edge, MPAR, total edge (TE) and landscape area (TLA) positively related to perennial plants, TE and TLA positively linked to insect-pollination plants. For outward nucleating edge, angle and pattern metrics positively related to Shannon-Wiener and Simpson index, negatively related to Pielou index, richness and animal-seed dispersing plants. Patch pattern distressing plant diversity through edge effects can be moderately interpreted by plant practical qualities and edge metrics. It must be well thought-out in landscape management, vegetation restoration and biodiversity conservation.

Key words: patch pattern, plant diversity, edge type, functional traits, edge effect