Global change has dramatic impacts on grassland diversity. However, little is known about how fast species can adapt to diversity loss and how this affects their responses to global change. Here, we performed a common garden experiment testing whether plant responses to global change are influenced by their selection history and the conditioning history of soil at different plant diversity levels. Using seeds of four grass species and soil samples from a 14-year old biodiversity experiment, we grew the offspring of the plants either in their own soil or in soil of a different community, and exposed them either to drought, increased nitrogen input, or a combination of both. Under nitrogen addition, offspring of plants selected at high diversity produced more biomass than those selected at low diversity, while drought neutralized differences in biomass production. Moreover, under the influence of global change drivers, soil history, and to a lesser extent plant history, had species-specific effects on trait expression. Our results show that plant diversity modulates plant-soil interactions and growth strategies of plants, which in turn affects plant eco-evolutionary pathways. How this change affects species' response to global change and whether this can cause a feedback loop should be investigated in more detail in future studies.
The data reported in this paper have been deposited in Dryad, whichcan be publicly accessed at https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.gmsbcc2p7
Eco-evolutionary feedbacks modulate plant responses to global change depending on plant diversity and species identityDryad Digital Repository, doi:10.5061/dryad.gmsbcc2p7.
- Nico Eisenhauer
- Christiane Roscher
- Peter Dietrich
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
- David A. Donoso, Escuela Politécnica Nacional, Ecuador
© 2022, Dietrich et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
While bacterial diversity is beneficial for the functioning of rhizosphere microbiomes, multi-species bioinoculants often fail to promote plant growth. One potential reason for this is that competition between different species of inoculated consortia members creates conflicts for their survival and functioning. To circumvent this, we used transposon insertion mutagenesis to increase the functional diversity within Bacillus amyloliquefaciens bacterial species and tested if we could improve plant growth promotion by assembling consortia of highly clonal but phenotypically dissimilar mutants. While most insertion mutations were harmful, some significantly improved B. amyloliquefaciens plant growth promotion traits relative to the wild-type strain. Eight phenotypically distinct mutants were selected to test if their functioning could be improved by applying them as multifunctional consortia. We found that B. amyloliquefaciens consortium richness correlated positively with plant root colonization and protection from Ralstonia solanacearum phytopathogenic bacterium. Crucially, 8-mutant consortium consisting of phenotypically dissimilar mutants performed better than randomly assembled 8-mutant consortia, suggesting that improvements were likely driven by consortia multifunctionality instead of consortia richness. Together, our results suggest that increasing intra-species phenotypic diversity could be an effective way to improve probiotic consortium functioning and plant growth promotion in agricultural systems.
High proportions of gut bacteria that produce their own food can be an indicator for poor gut health.