<< back

Publication Details

Reference Category Journals
DOI / URL link
Document Shareable Link
Title (Primary) Snow cover consistently affects growth and reproduction of Empetrum hermaphroditum across latitudinal and local climatic gradients
Author Bienau, M.J.; Hattermann, D.; Kröncke, M.; Kretz, L.; Otte, A.; Eiserhardt, W.L.; Milbau, A.; Graae, B.J.; Durka, W.; Eckstein, R.L.;
Journal Alpine Botany
Year 2014
Department BZF;
Volume 124
Issue 2
Language englisch;
POF III (all) T11;
Supplements https://static-content.springer.com/esm/art%3A10.1007%2Fs00035-014-0137-8/MediaObjects/35_2014_137_MOESM1_ESM.tif
Keywords Empetrum hermaphroditum; Snow cover gradient; Growth response
UFZ wide themes RU1;

Arctic ecosystems face strong changes in snow conditions due to global warming. In contrast to habitat specialists, species occupying a wide range of microhabitats under different snow conditions may better cope with such changes. We studied how growth and reproduction of the dominant dwarf shrub Empetrum hermaphroditum varied among three habitat types differing in winter snow depth and summer irradiation, and whether the observed patterns were consistent along a local climatic gradient (sub-continental vs. sub-oceanic climates) and along a latitudinal gradient (northern Sweden vs. central Norway). Habitat type explained most of the variation in growth and reproduction. Shoots from shallow snow cover and high summer irradiation habitats had higher numbers of flowers and fruits, lower ramet heights, shorter shoot segments, lower numbers of lateral shoots and total biomass but higher leaf density and higher relative leaf allocation than shoots from habitats with higher snow depth and lower summer irradiation. In addition, biomass, leaf allocation and leaf life expectancy were strongly affected by latitude, whereas local climate had strong effects on seed number and seed mass. Empetrum showed high phenotypic trait variation, with a consistent match between local habitat conditions and its growth and reproduction. Although study areas varied strongly with respect to latitude and local climatic conditions, response patterns of growth and reproduction to habitats with different environmental conditions were consistent. Large elasticity of traits suggests that Empetrum may have the potential to cope with changing snow conditions expected in the course of climate change.

ID 15396
Persistent UFZ Identifier https://www.ufz.de/index.php?en=20939&ufzPublicationIdentifier=15396
Bienau, M.J., Hattermann, D., Kröncke, M., Kretz, L., Otte, A., Eiserhardt, W.L., Milbau, A., Graae, B.J., Durka, W., Eckstein, R.L. (2014):
Snow cover consistently affects growth and reproduction of Empetrum hermaphroditum across latitudinal and local climatic gradients
Alp. Bot. 124 (2), 115 - 129