Woody species tolerance to expansion of the perennial tussock grass Ampelodesmos mauritanica after fire

M. Vilà, F. Lloret

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In Mediterranean shrublands, post-fire accumulation of above-ground biomass of resprouters is faster than that of seeders. This suggests that resprouters may have a competitive advantage. To test this hypothesis, we used a removal experiment to study the effect of the presence of the dominant tussock-grass Ampelodesmos mauritanica on the resprouting shrubs Erica multiflora and Globularia alypum and on the seeders Rosmarinus officinalis and Pinus halepensis three and four years after a wildfire. Water potential of target plants was also measured to see if Ampelodesmos removal increased water availability. Ampelodesmos marginally reduced growth of all target species but did not influence survival or water potential of any target species. Our results suggest that the effect of climatically influenced water stress was stronger than the effect of Ampelodesmos neighbours. Plant-plant interactions in this Mediterranean community are weak after fire and the magnitude of the Ampelodesmos effect does not differ between seeders and resprouters.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)597-606
JournalJournal of Vegetation Science
Volume11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2000

Keywords

  • Addition experiment
  • Grass expansion
  • Mediterranean shrubland
  • Neighbour
  • Removal experiment
  • Resprouting

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