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Abstract Detail



Pteridological Section/AFS

Mehltreter, Klaus [1].

Nutrient ecology of Mexican riparian ferns.

Current knowledge on nutrient composition of ferns is based on a few scattered studies with a preponderance of temperate ferns although most species are growing in tropical latitudes. Consequently, we may ask if tropical ferns show the same nutritional patterns as the ones reported in earlier studies, concluding that ferns tend to have lower N, P and Ca concentrations than angiosperms, with exception of tree ferns, and that some species may accumulate Aluminum such as Gleicheniaceae. Leaves of 13 riparian fern species at 10 Mexican sites were analyzed chemically to study the variation of their nutrient composition. Nitrogen concentrations averaged 3.1% with a C:N proportion of 15.5, and P concentrations averaged 0.19% indicating a high nutrient availability at these humus rich, riparian sites. Calcium concentrations were especially high (>1%) in two species of Asplenium, which also had the highest concentrations in Na and Mg. In addition to Marattia and Sticherus, two tree fern species were detected as accumulators of Aluminum with concentrations above 1000 mg/kg dry weight, whereas Dennstaedtiaceae had the lowest Al concentrations below 100 mg/kg. Results indicate that nutrient composition of ferns varies broadly among species and families and it cannot be assumed easily that they differ in general terms from angiosperms.

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1 - Instituto de Ecologia, A. C., Red de Ecologia Funcional, Carretera antigua a Coatepec No. 351, El Haya, Xalapa, Veracruz, 91070, Mexico

Keywords:
nutrients
Aluminum accumulators
Calcium
ferns
Mexico
riparian forests.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: 34
Location: Melrose/Riverside Hilton
Date: Tuesday, July 30th, 2013
Time: 1:30 PM
Number: 34001
Abstract ID:860
Candidate for Awards:Edgar T. Wherry award


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