Tagged: light environment

Trait coordination and structural variation in Amborella trichopoda

Finding that Amborella trichopoda is sister to the rest of the angiosperms has raised the question of whether it shares certain key functional trait characteristics and plastic responses apparently widespread within the angiosperms at large. With this in mind, Trueba et al. tested the hypothesis that local canopy openness induces plastic responses in Amborella in a recent study published in AoB PLANTS. The authors provide evidence of intraspecific coordination between leaf and stem economic spectra in this key species. Moreover, by presenting the first architectural and biomechanical characterization of Amborella, their study offers new insights for the understanding of the...

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Sphaeropteris cooperi unfurling.

A leaf cost–benefit analysis on subtropical ferns

Some fern species occurring in subtropical forests are restricted to shade understorey, whereas others can thrive in disturbed open habitats. Yet mechanisms underlying these distinct distribution patterns are not well understood. Zhu et al. conducted a leaf cost–benefit analysis on ferns from either open sites of disturbed forest or understorey of natural forest. They found contrasting growth strategies for the two fern groups: ferns from disturbed forest employ a quick-return strategy that can pre-empt resources and rapidly grow in open habitats; while ferns from natural old-growth forest show a slow-return strategy allowing their persistence in the shady understorey.

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