IMHE OpenIR  > Journal of Mountain Science  > Journal of Mountain Science-2016  > Vol13 No.7
A size-gradient hypothesis for alpine treeline ecotones
Corresponding AuthorGeorge P. MALANSON
Source PublicationJournal of Mountain Science
AbstractResearch on the stress gradient hypothesis recognizes that positive (i.e. facilitative) and negative (i.e. competitive) plant interactions change in intensity and effect relative to abiotic stress experienced on a gradient. Motivated by observations of alpine treeline ecotones, we suggest that this switch in interaction could operate along a gradient of relative size of individual plants. We propose that as neighbors increase in size relative to a focal plant they improve the environment for that plant up to a critical point. After this critical point is surpassed, however, increasing relative size of neighbors will degrade the environment such that the net interaction intensity becomes negative. We developed a conceptual (not site or species specific) individual based model to simulate a single species with recruitment, growth, and mortality dependent on the environment mediated by the relative size of neighbors. Growth and size form a feedback. Simulation results show that the size gradient model produces metrics similar to that of a stress gradient model. Visualizations reveal that the size gradient model produces spatial patterns that are similar to the complex ones observed at alpine treelines. Size-mediated interaction could be a mechanism of the stress gradient hypothesis or it could operate independent of abiotic stress.
KeywordCompetition Ecotone Environmental Gradient Plant Interaction Stress Gradient Facilitation
Indexed BySCI
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Document Type期刊论文
CollectionJournal of Mountain Science_Journal of Mountain Science-2016_Vol13 No.7
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George P. MALANSON,Lynn M. RESLER. A size-gradient hypothesis for alpine treeline ecotones[J]. Journal of Mountain Science,2016,13(7):1154-1161.
APA George P. MALANSON,&Lynn M. RESLER.(2016).A size-gradient hypothesis for alpine treeline ecotones.Journal of Mountain Science,13(7),1154-1161.
MLA George P. MALANSON,et al."A size-gradient hypothesis for alpine treeline ecotones".Journal of Mountain Science 13.7(2016):1154-1161.
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