Exotic species display greater germination plasticity and higher germination rates than native species across multiple cues

Wainwright, Claire E. and Cleland, Elsa E. (2013) Exotic species display greater germination plasticity and higher germination rates than native species across multiple cues. Biological Invasions, 15 10: 2253-2264. doi:10.1007/s10530-013-0449-4


Author Wainwright, Claire E.
Cleland, Elsa E.
Title Exotic species display greater germination plasticity and higher germination rates than native species across multiple cues
Journal name Biological Invasions   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1387-3547
1573-1464
Publication date 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s10530-013-0449-4
Volume 15
Issue 10
Start page 2253
End page 2264
Total pages 12
Place of publication Dordrecht, The Netherlands
Publisher Springer
Language eng
Abstract Rapid germination or flexible germination cues may be key traits that facilitate the invasion of exotic plant species in new environments. We investigated whether robustness or plasticity in response to environmental cues were more commonly exhibited by exotic than native species during germination, evidenced by (1) exhibiting consistently greater germination rate under a variety of conditions (robustness), or (2) increasing germination rate more strongly than native species in response to favorable conditions (plasticity). We conducted growth chamber germination trials of 12 native and 12 exotic species common to coastal sage scrub, a shrub-dominated Mediterranean-type ecosystem in California. Time to germination and percentage germination were recorded in response to variation in three environmental cues: temperature, day length, and soil moisture. Exotic species, especially annuals, displayed consistently higher germination percentages and more rapid germination than native species. Exotic germination percentages also responded more strongly when conditions were favorable (warm temperatures and high soil moisture), and germinated earlier than natives when conditions were indicative of typical growing season conditions in Mediterranean ecosystems (short day length and cool temperatures). Exotic species had more rapid and prolific germination across a variety of environmental cues and in response to increased resource availability compared with native species, indicating both germination plasticity and robustness. These traits may enable colonization of novel environments, particularly if they allow exotic species to establish earlier in the growing season than native species, setting the stage for seasonal priority effects.
Keyword Germination
Invasion
Phenology
Plasticity
Priority effects
Robustness
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Biological Sciences Publications
 
Versions
Version Filter Type
Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 14 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 17 times in Scopus Article | Citations
Google Scholar Search Google Scholar
Created: Mon, 17 Aug 2015, 14:09:44 EST by Claire Wainwright on behalf of School of Biological Sciences