Does salt stress constrain spatial distribution of dune building grasses Ammophila arenaria and Elytrichia juncea on the beach?

M.E.B. van Puijenbroek, C. Teichmann, Noortje Meijdam, I. Oliveras Menor, F. Berendse, J. Limpens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Rising sea levels threaten coastal safety by increasing the risk of flooding. Coastal dunes provide a natural form of coastal protection. Understanding drivers that constrain early development of dunes is necessary to assess whether dune development may keep pace with sea-level rise. In this study, we explored to what extent salt stress experienced by dune building plant species constrains their spatial distribution at the Dutch sandy coast. We conducted a field transplantation experiment and a glasshouse experiment with two dune building grasses Ammophila arenaria and Elytrigia juncea. In the field, we measured salinity and monitored growth of transplanted grasses in four vegetation zones: (I) nonvegetated beach, (II) E. juncea occurring, (III) both species co-occurring, and (IV) A. arenaria dominant. In the glasshouse, we subjected the two species to six soil salinity treatments, with and without salt spray. We monitored biomass, photosynthesis, leaf sodium, and nutrient concentrations over a growing season. The vegetation zones were weakly associated with summer soil salinity; zone I and II were significantly more saline than zones III and IV. Ammophila arenaria performed equally (zone II) or better (zones III, IV) than E. juncea, suggesting soil salinity did not limit species performance. Both species showed severe winter mortality. In the glasshouse, A. arenaria biomass decreased linearly with soil salinity, presumably as a result of osmotic stress. Elytrigia juncea showed a nonlinear response to soil salinity with an optimum at 0.75% soil salinity. Our findings suggest that soil salinity stress either takes place in winter, or that development of vegetated dunes is less sensitive to soil salinity than hitherto expected.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7290-7303
JournalEcology and Evolution
Volume7
Issue number18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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Ammophila arenaria
soil salinity
dunes
beaches
salt stress
dune
Thinopyrum junceum
beach
grass
spatial distribution
grasses
salt
greenhouses
sea level
vegetation
coastal protection
winter
transplantation
biomass
osmotic stress

Cite this

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title = "Does salt stress constrain spatial distribution of dune building grasses Ammophila arenaria and Elytrichia juncea on the beach?",
abstract = "Rising sea levels threaten coastal safety by increasing the risk of flooding. Coastal dunes provide a natural form of coastal protection. Understanding drivers that constrain early development of dunes is necessary to assess whether dune development may keep pace with sea-level rise. In this study, we explored to what extent salt stress experienced by dune building plant species constrains their spatial distribution at the Dutch sandy coast. We conducted a field transplantation experiment and a glasshouse experiment with two dune building grasses Ammophila arenaria and Elytrigia juncea. In the field, we measured salinity and monitored growth of transplanted grasses in four vegetation zones: (I) nonvegetated beach, (II) E. juncea occurring, (III) both species co-occurring, and (IV) A. arenaria dominant. In the glasshouse, we subjected the two species to six soil salinity treatments, with and without salt spray. We monitored biomass, photosynthesis, leaf sodium, and nutrient concentrations over a growing season. The vegetation zones were weakly associated with summer soil salinity; zone I and II were significantly more saline than zones III and IV. Ammophila arenaria performed equally (zone II) or better (zones III, IV) than E. juncea, suggesting soil salinity did not limit species performance. Both species showed severe winter mortality. In the glasshouse, A. arenaria biomass decreased linearly with soil salinity, presumably as a result of osmotic stress. Elytrigia juncea showed a nonlinear response to soil salinity with an optimum at 0.75{\%} soil salinity. Our findings suggest that soil salinity stress either takes place in winter, or that development of vegetated dunes is less sensitive to soil salinity than hitherto expected.",
author = "{van Puijenbroek}, M.E.B. and C. Teichmann and Noortje Meijdam and {Oliveras Menor}, I. and F. Berendse and J. Limpens",
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journal = "Ecology and Evolution",
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Does salt stress constrain spatial distribution of dune building grasses Ammophila arenaria and Elytrichia juncea on the beach? / van Puijenbroek, M.E.B.; Teichmann, C.; Meijdam, Noortje; Oliveras Menor, I.; Berendse, F.; Limpens, J.

In: Ecology and Evolution, Vol. 7, No. 18, 2017, p. 7290-7303.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Does salt stress constrain spatial distribution of dune building grasses Ammophila arenaria and Elytrichia juncea on the beach?

AU - van Puijenbroek, M.E.B.

AU - Teichmann, C.

AU - Meijdam, Noortje

AU - Oliveras Menor, I.

AU - Berendse, F.

AU - Limpens, J.

PY - 2017

Y1 - 2017

N2 - Rising sea levels threaten coastal safety by increasing the risk of flooding. Coastal dunes provide a natural form of coastal protection. Understanding drivers that constrain early development of dunes is necessary to assess whether dune development may keep pace with sea-level rise. In this study, we explored to what extent salt stress experienced by dune building plant species constrains their spatial distribution at the Dutch sandy coast. We conducted a field transplantation experiment and a glasshouse experiment with two dune building grasses Ammophila arenaria and Elytrigia juncea. In the field, we measured salinity and monitored growth of transplanted grasses in four vegetation zones: (I) nonvegetated beach, (II) E. juncea occurring, (III) both species co-occurring, and (IV) A. arenaria dominant. In the glasshouse, we subjected the two species to six soil salinity treatments, with and without salt spray. We monitored biomass, photosynthesis, leaf sodium, and nutrient concentrations over a growing season. The vegetation zones were weakly associated with summer soil salinity; zone I and II were significantly more saline than zones III and IV. Ammophila arenaria performed equally (zone II) or better (zones III, IV) than E. juncea, suggesting soil salinity did not limit species performance. Both species showed severe winter mortality. In the glasshouse, A. arenaria biomass decreased linearly with soil salinity, presumably as a result of osmotic stress. Elytrigia juncea showed a nonlinear response to soil salinity with an optimum at 0.75% soil salinity. Our findings suggest that soil salinity stress either takes place in winter, or that development of vegetated dunes is less sensitive to soil salinity than hitherto expected.

AB - Rising sea levels threaten coastal safety by increasing the risk of flooding. Coastal dunes provide a natural form of coastal protection. Understanding drivers that constrain early development of dunes is necessary to assess whether dune development may keep pace with sea-level rise. In this study, we explored to what extent salt stress experienced by dune building plant species constrains their spatial distribution at the Dutch sandy coast. We conducted a field transplantation experiment and a glasshouse experiment with two dune building grasses Ammophila arenaria and Elytrigia juncea. In the field, we measured salinity and monitored growth of transplanted grasses in four vegetation zones: (I) nonvegetated beach, (II) E. juncea occurring, (III) both species co-occurring, and (IV) A. arenaria dominant. In the glasshouse, we subjected the two species to six soil salinity treatments, with and without salt spray. We monitored biomass, photosynthesis, leaf sodium, and nutrient concentrations over a growing season. The vegetation zones were weakly associated with summer soil salinity; zone I and II were significantly more saline than zones III and IV. Ammophila arenaria performed equally (zone II) or better (zones III, IV) than E. juncea, suggesting soil salinity did not limit species performance. Both species showed severe winter mortality. In the glasshouse, A. arenaria biomass decreased linearly with soil salinity, presumably as a result of osmotic stress. Elytrigia juncea showed a nonlinear response to soil salinity with an optimum at 0.75% soil salinity. Our findings suggest that soil salinity stress either takes place in winter, or that development of vegetated dunes is less sensitive to soil salinity than hitherto expected.

U2 - 10.1002/ece3.3244

DO - 10.1002/ece3.3244

M3 - Article

VL - 7

SP - 7290

EP - 7303

JO - Ecology and Evolution

JF - Ecology and Evolution

SN - 2045-7758

IS - 18

ER -