Whole plant traits of coastal dune vegetation and implications for interactions with dune dynamics
Advanced Search
Select up to three search categories and corresponding keywords using the fields to the right. Refer to the Help section for more detailed instructions.

Search our Collections & Repository

For very narrow results

When looking for a specific result

Best used for discovery & interchangable words

Recommended to be used in conjunction with other fields



Document Data
Clear All
Clear All

For additional assistance using the Custom Query please check out our Help Page


Whole plant traits of coastal dune vegetation and implications for interactions with dune dynamics

Filetype[PDF-1.46 MB]


  • Journal Title:
  • Personal Author:
  • NOAA Program & Office:
  • Description:
    Coastal dunes are important protective features against sea level rise and coastal storms. Interactions between dune plant aboveground structures and sediment trapping that allow for dune building and maintenance are well established. More recently, studies documenting belowground biomass for promoting erosion resistance in dominant dune species have been conducted, yet a knowledge gap remains regarding species‐specific characterization of whole plants, specifically with respect to roots, rhizomes, and belowground stems. Our objective was to quantify above‐ and belowground traits of four dominant dune grasses to document the potential for species‐specific effects on dune growth, maintenance, and erosion resistance. We examined above‐ and belowground traits among four prominent dune grasses of the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts of North America: Ammophila breviligulata, Panicum amarum, Spartina patens, and Uniola paniculata. Whole plant samples of each species were collected from the foredune at the US Army Engineer Research and Development Center's Field Research Facility in Duck, North Carolina, USA, and quantified for several above‐ and belowground traits (e.g., stem height, rhizome number and length, root surface area by diameter class, root tensile strength, and mycorrhizal percent infection). Belowground factors known to impact important dune processes, such as rhizome length, mycorrhizal percent infection, and root traits, differed substantially among species. When visualized in multivariate space, all species significantly differed in suites of above‐ and belowground traits. When considering belowground only, Ammophila and Spartina were similar, despite differences in biomass allocation. Species separated along axes related to mycorrhizal association, biomass allocation, and root construction. The four co‐occurring dune grass species were dissimilar in suites of plant traits. Belowground trait differences were driven by those describing root construction, biomass allocation, and mycorrhizal infection. Dissimilarity in above‐ and belowground suites of traits may demonstrate different approaches for surviving the dune environment. Incorporating belowground traits into modeling will enhance predictions of dune response to climate change through interactions between vegetation and dune dynamics that facilitate coastal resistance and resilience.
  • Keywords:
  • Source:
    Ecosphere, 13(5)
  • DOI:
  • ISSN:
  • Format:
  • Publisher:
  • Document Type:
  • Funding:
  • License:
  • Rights Information:
    CC BY
  • Compliance:
  • Main Document Checksum:
  • Download URL:
  • File Type:

You May Also Like

Checkout today's featured content at repository.library.noaa.gov

Version 3.26.1