J Plant Ecol ›› 2020, Vol. 13 ›› Issue (6): 676-682 .DOI: 10.1093/jpe/rtaa055

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

The impacts of warming and nitrogen addition on competitive ability of native and invasive populations of Plantago virginica

Xi Luo1 , Yi Zheng1 , Xiaohong Xu2 , Rui Xiao3 and Hui Guo1, *   

  1. 1 Department of Ecology, College of Resources and Environmental Sciences, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, Jiangsu 210095, China, 2 Laboratory Center of Life Sciences, College of Life Sciences, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing 210095, China, 3 School of Life Science, Henan University, Kaifeng, Henan 475000, China

    *Corresponding author. E-mail: hui.guo@njau.edu.cn
  • Received:2020-03-29 Revised:2020-07-22 Accepted:2020-08-03 Online:2020-08-08 Published:2020-12-01



Global change factors (e.g. warming and nitrogen deposition) may influence biological invasions, but how these factors may influence the performance of invasive species and further mediate the interactions with native competitors remain still unknown.


Here, we conducted a 5-month greenhouse experiment to examine the effects of warming (using open-top chambers, +0.62°C) and N addition (adding NH4NO3 at a rate of 4.2 g m−2) on the performance of the native and invasive populations of an invasive species Plantago virginica in competition with a native Plantago asiatica.

Important Findings

Under warming treatment and its interaction with nitrogen addition treatment (W × N), invasive and native populations of P. virginica had different biomass allocation strategies to compete with native competitor P. asiatica. Native population of P. virginica (PV-Na) increased more below-ground biomass, whereas those from the invasive population (PV-In) increased more above-ground biomass. We also found that invasive species P. virginica had stronger responses to warming and N addition than the native species P. asiatica. The competitive ability of the invasive plants was significantly reduced by warming which indicated that the invasive plant were much stronger sensitivity to elevated temperature than native plant. Similarly, N addition and W × N reduced the competitive response of PV-In in below-ground biomass, but increased the competitive response of PV-Na in above-ground and total biomass when they grew with the P. asiatica. The results show that P. virginica have occurred differential biomass allocation strategies during its invasions and invasive population exhibit flexible competition ability to adapt to environmental changes (especially warming). These findings may potentially help to predict plant invasions and make management strategies in a world with changing climate.

Key words: invasive species, warming, nitrogen addition, competition, Plantago virginica


全球变化因子(如增温和氮沉降)可能会影响生物入侵,但是这些因子如何影响入侵物种的表现并进一步调节入侵物种与本地竞争者之间的相互作用仍不清楚。本文通过为期五个月的温室实验,研究了增温(开顶式增温箱,+0.62°C)和氮添加(4.2 g N m−2)对入侵物种北美 车前(Plantago virginica)原产地和入侵地种群与本地车前草(Plantago asiatica)竞争的影响。实验结果表明,在增温及其与氮添加处理(W × N) 的相互作用下,P. virginica的入侵种群(PV-In)和原产地种群(PV-Na)在与本地竞争者P. asiatica竞争时具有不同的生物量分配策略。其中,PV-Na在与P. asiatica竞争时增加了地下生物量,而PV-In增加了地上生物量。我们还发现,P. virginica对增温和氮添加比P. asiatica的反应更强 烈。增温显著降低了P. virginica的竞争能力,这表明P. virginicaP. asiatica对增温的响应更为敏感。同样,在竞争条件下,氮添加及 其和增温交互作用减少了PV-In地下生物量,但增加了PV-Na地上和总生物量。这些发现表明,P. virginica在入侵过程中改变了生物量分配 策略,PV-In展示出更具弹性的竞争能力以适应环境变化(特别是增温)。这些发现可能有助于我们预测气候变化下的植物入侵并制定相应的 管理策略。

关键词: 入侵物种, 增温, 氮添加, 竞争, 北美车前