J Plant Ecol ›› 2019, Vol. 12 ›› Issue (5): 846-856.DOI: 10.1093/jpe/rtz019

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Elevated nitrogen deposition may advance invasive weed, Solidago canadensis, in calcareous soils

Ling-Yun Wan1,2, Shan-Shan Qi1, Chris B. Zou2,*, Zhi-Cong Dai1,3, Guang-Qian Ren1, Qi Chen1, Bin Zhu4 and Dao-Lin Du1,3,*   

  1. 1 Academy of Environmental Health and Ecological Security and School of the Environment and Safety Engineering, Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang 212013, China
    2 Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078, USA
    3 Key Laboratory of Modern Agricultural Equipment and Technology, Ministry of Education and Jiangsu Province, Zhenjiang 212013, China
    4 Department of Biology, University of Hartford, 200 Bloomfield Avenue, West Hartford, CT 06117, USA
    *Correspondence address. Chris B. Zou, Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078, USA. Tel: +1-4057449637; Fax: +1-4057443530; E-mail: chris.zou@okstate.edu; Dao-Lin Du, Academy of Environmental Health and Ecological Security, School of the Environment and Safety Engineering, Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang 212013, China. Tel: +86-13852946639; E-mail: ddl@ujs.edu.cn
  • Received:2018-10-17 Revised:2019-03-22 Accepted:2019-04-02 Published:2019-10-01

Abstract:

Aims

Change in nitrogen (N) availability regulates phosphorus (P) acquisition and potentially alters the competition among native species and invasive weeds. This study determines how current and projected N deposition affect the growth, the intraspecific and interspecific competitive ability of native and invasive plants in calcareous soils with low P availability.

Methods

A controlled greenhouse experiment was conducted using sparingly soluble hydroxyapatite (HAP) to simulate the calcareous soils with low P availability. The growth and competitive intensity between an invasive weed (Solidago canadensis) and a native weed (Pterocypsela laciniata) exposed to two levels of N addition representative of current and future N deposition in China were experimentally determined.

Important Findings

P acquisition and the growth of both S. canadensis and P. laciniata growing alone significantly increased with increasing N level. However, the effect of N addition was reduced when intraspecific or interspecific competition existed. N addition altered the competitive relationship between S. canadensis and P. laciniata allowing S. canadensisto out-compete P. laciniata due to variation in P acquisition from HAP. Elevated N deposition might assist the invasion of S. canadensis in the widely distributed calcareous soils under environmental changes.

Key words: interspecific competition, nitrogen deposition, plant invasion, Pterocypsela laciniata, Solidago canadensis