Playa wetland plant and soil response to predicted climate and land use change in the southern Great Plains
"To assess potential risks to playas in a changing climate, weaddressed the following objectives: (1) quantify effects of changing climatic conditions on plant germination and community composition, soil chemistry, greenhouse gas emissions, and microbial community and structure; (2) compare ecosystem response to changing climatic conditions between Northern (Nebraska) and Southern (Texas) playa soils; and (3) assess effectsof increased agricultural nitrogen inputs on playa plant communities. The research included fourexperiments with various temperature, hydroperiod, and nitrogen treatments to simulate climate and land use change projections. In the first study,atemperature-controlled growth chamber experiment was used to evaluate treatment effects on early season germinationand growth of Barnyardgrass(Echinochloa crusgalli), a common moist-soil playaplant.A six-month greenhouse experiment was conducted to quantify hydroperiod treatment effects on seed bank plant community composition andsoil biogeochemical properties.Using soils collected from the six-month greenhouse experiment, an incubation study was conducted to assess greenhouse gas emissions from playa soils under various hydroperiod conditions. Finally,a second greenhouse study was conducted to evaluate the effectof increased N inputs on playa plant community composition."--Page 3.
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