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Publication Type J
Authors Weber, E. and C. M. Dantonio
Title Germination and growth responses of hybridizing Carpobrotus species (Aizoaceae) from coastal California to soil salinity
Source American Journal of Botany
Author Keywords salt-marsh, mesembryanthemum-crystallinum, seed-germination, nitrogen, plant, introgression, halophytes, dispersal, edulis Aizoaceae, Carpobrotus, germination, invasion, salinity tolerance, water use efficiency
Abstract Germination, growth, and physiological responses of hybridizing Carpobrotus from coastal California to soil salinity were studied. Hybrids are presumably the result of hybridization and introgression between the exotic Carpobrotus edulis, a succulent perennial invading coastal habitats, and the native or long-naturalized C. chilensis. Germination responses were investigated at 0, 10, 20, and 50% seawater. Seedling growth and physiology were compared by irrigating seedlings with solutions of the same seawater concentrations and in low and high nutrients. Germination was inhibited in the presence of salt, but recovered after transferring the seeds to fresh water. Seeds exposed to salt had higher final germination rates than control. Growth of Carpobrotus was slightly enhanced by low seawater concentrations but reduced at high salinity at both nutrient regimes. Leaf cell sap osmolarity increased with increasing soil salinity, and taxa did not differ significantly in this physiological adjustment. Leaf carbon isotope ratios (partial derivative(13)C) ranged from -28 to -22% and became less negative at higher salinities, indicating an improved water use efficiency in the seedlings at high salt concentrations. In addition, partial derivative(13)C values were generally less negative at high than at low nutrients. Differences among taxa were generally small. The results show that salinity affects both establishment and growth of hybridizing Carpobrotus. The overall weak species differences in salt tolerance indicate that the exotic C. edulis can occupy the same sites as C. chilensis in terms of salinity. The similarity of hybrids in their response to salinity suggests that they may contribute to the invasion by Carpobrotus.
Year Published 1999
Volume 86
Issue 9
Beginning Page 1257-1263
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