Plant–Soil Feedbacks and Temporal Dynamics of Plant Diversity–Productivity Relationships

Madhav P. Thakur*, Wim H. van der Putten, Rutger A. Wilschut, G.F. Veen, Paul Kardol, Jasper van Ruijven, Eric Allan, Christiane Roscher, Mark van Kleunen, Martijn Bezemer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Plant–soil feedback (PSF) and diversity–productivity relationships are important research fields to study drivers and consequences of changes in plant biodiversity. While studies suggest that positive plant diversity–productivity relationships can be explained by variation in PSF in diverse plant communities, key questions on their temporal relationships remain. Here, we discuss three processes that change PSF over time in diverse plant communities, and their effects on temporal dynamics of diversity–productivity relationships: spatial redistribution and changes in dominance of plant species; phenotypic shifts in plant traits; and dilution of soil pathogens and increase in soil mutualists. Disentangling these processes in plant diversity experiments will yield new insights into how plant diversity–productivity relationships change over time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)651-661
JournalTrends in Ecology and Evolution
Issue number7
Early online date20 Apr 2021
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • biodiversity–ecosystem functioning
  • dilution effects
  • plant–soil interactions
  • spatial turnover
  • trait evolution


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