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Potential Germination Success of Exotic and Native Trees Coexisting in Central Spain Riparian Forests

International Journal of Ecology, 2016, Vol.2016 [Peer Reviewed Journal]

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  • Title:
    Potential Germination Success of Exotic and Native Trees Coexisting in Central Spain Riparian Forests
  • Author: Cabra-Rivas, Isabel ; Castro-Diez, Pilar ; Cabra-Rivas, Isabel ; Castro-Diez, Pilar
  • Found In: International Journal of Ecology, 2016, Vol.2016 [Peer Reviewed Journal]
  • Subjects: Seeds ; Germination ; Predation ; Age ; Success ; Ecosystems ; Trees ; Banking Industry ; Banks
  • Language: English
  • Description: We compared potential germination success (i.e., percentage of produced seeds that germinate under optimal conditions), the percentage of empty and insect-damaged seeds, germinability ([subscript]Gmax[/subscript] ), and time to germination ([subscript]Tgerm[/subscript] ) between the exotics Ailanthus altissima, Robinia pseudoacacia, and Ulmus pumila and two coexisting native trees (Fraxinus angustifolia and Ulmus minor) in the riparian forests of Central Spain. Additionally, we tested the effect of seed age, seed bank type (canopy or soil) and population on [subscript]Gmax[/subscript] and [subscript]Tgerm[/subscript] of A. altissima and R. pseudoacacia, which are seed-banking species. Species ranked by their potential germination success were A. altissima > U. pumila > R. pseudoacacia > U. minor > F. angustifolia. The combination of a high [subscript]Gmax[/subscript] and negligible seed insect-damage provided A. altissima with a potential germination advantage over the natives, which were the least successful due to an extremely high percentage of empty seeds or a very low [subscript]Gmax[/subscript] . R. pseudoacacia showed high vulnerability to insect seed predation which might be compensated with the maintenance of persistent seed banks with high [subscript]Gmax[/subscript] . [subscript]Gmax[/subscript] and [subscript]Tgerm[/subscript] were strongly affected by seed age in the seed-banking invaders, but between-seed bank variation of [subscript]Gmax[/subscript] and [subscript]Tgerm[/subscript] did not show a consistent pattern across species and populations.
  • Identifier: ISSN: 16879708 ; E-ISSN: 16879716 ; DOI: 10.1155/2016/7614683

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