Full TGIF Record # 44193
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Author(s):Francis, R.; Read, D. J.
Author Affiliation:Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, P.O. Box 601, Sheffield, S10 2UQ, UK
Title:The contributions of mycorrhizal fungi to the determination of plant community structure
Section:Proceedings of an International Symposium on Management of Mycorrhizas in Agriculture, Horticulture and Forestry
Other records with the "Proceedings of an International Symposium on Management of Mycorrhizas in Agriculture, Horticulture and Forestry" Section
Source:Plant and Soil. Vol. 159, No. 1, February 1994, p. 11-25.
Publishing Information:Dordrecht, Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers
# of Pages:15
Related Web URL:http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/BF00000091
    Last checked: 10/14/2015
    Notes: Abstract only
Keywords:TIC Keywords: Mycorrhizal fungi; Infection; Seeding; Phosphorus
Abstract/Contents:"While it is now widely accepted, even by ecologists, that most plants in the majority of ecosystems are infected by mycorrhizal fungi, few experiments have been designed to investigate the function of the mutualism at the community level. Those involved with mycorrhizal research have been largely preoccupied with questions of the mineral, particularly phosphorous, nutrition of individual plants, while plant community ecologists have too often found it convenient, even when acknowledging the presence of infection, to ignore its possible function in the ecosystem. This presentation examines a selected number of seminal papers written by plant community ecologists and highlights some of 'the most striking mysteries' which they reveal. It describes experiments designed to determine whether knowledge of the presence and activity of the mycorrhizal mycelium can help us to unravel the 'mysteries' which they define. It is revealed that by having direct adverse effects upon seedlings of many 'r' selected species, while at the same time being beneficial, if not essential, to those that are 'K' selected, the activities of the mycelium of VA fungi have a direct bearing upon community composition. The extent to which 'turf compatibility' is actually a reflection of the compatibility of plant species with the VA mycorrhizal mycelium is discussed and the possible role of the mycelium in consigning some species to the ruderal habit is considered. It is concluded that those attempting scientifically to understand, or managerially to manipulate, plant communities, without recognizing the role of the mycorrhizal mycelium, do so at their peril, and it is recommended that scientists involved in research on mycorrhiza extend their vision beyond the limited horizons which are currently so often defined by considerations of the phosphorous nutrition of individual host plants."
Note:Pictures, b/w
ASA/CSSA/SSSA Citation (Crop Science-Like - may be incomplete):
Francis, R., and D. J. Read. 1994. The contributions of mycorrhizal fungi to the determination of plant community structure. Plant Soil. 159(1):p. 11-25.
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