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Allometric scaling of biomass with nitrogen and phosphorus above- and below-ground in herbaceous plants varies along water-salinity gradients.


ABSTRACT: Biomass allocation affects the ability of plants to acquire resources and nutrients; a limited allocation of nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, affects ecological processes. However, little research has been conducted on how plant allocation patterns change and on the trade-offs involved in allocation strategies when microhabitat gradients exist. We selected a 3.6 km transect in the Ebinur Lake Wetland Natural Reserve of Xinjiang, China, to investigate the relationships between plant traits (biomass and N and P concentrations) of herbaceous plants and environmental factors (soil moisture, salinity and nutrient content), and to determine the allometric scaling of biomass and stoichiometric traits between the above- and below-ground plant parts. The results show that the biomass and stoichiometric traits of plants reflected both the change of micro-environment and the natural characteristics of plants. With a decrease of the soil water availability and salinity, above- and below-ground N and P concentrations decrease gradually; scaling relationships exist between above- and below-ground plant parts, for biomass and N and P concentrations. Biomass allocation is influenced by soil nutrient ratios, and the allocation strategy tended to be conserved for N and variable for P. Second, the scaling relationships also show interspecific differences; all scaling exponents of Suaeda prostrata are larger than for other species and indicate a 'tolerance' strategy, while other species tend to increase the below-ground biomass and N and P concentrations, i.e. a 'capture' strategy.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC8500215 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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