Presentation Title

The Effect of Nitrogen on the Growth Rate of the Invasive Species Barassica nigra

Faculty Mentor

George Vourlitis

Start Date

23-11-2019 8:45 AM

End Date

23-11-2019 9:30 AM

Location

100

Session

poster 2

Type of Presentation

Poster

Subject Area

biological_agricultural_sciences

Abstract

The effect of nitrogen on the growth rate of the invasive species Brassica nigra Author: Charlton Rodriguez, California State University, San Marcos Mentor:

George Vourlitis, Department of Biological Sciences, California State University, San Marcos

Abstract Brassica nigra (Black mustard) is an annual plant species that is widespread in California and considered invasive. Recent studies have shown that this species is invading plots that have received experimental dry season inputs of nitrogen (N) for the last 16 years, especially after drought-induced mortality of native shrubs open space for the invading mustard. We were interested to see if a N increase will increase the growth and reproduction of mustard in field plots located at the Santa Margarita Ecological Reserve (SMER) during the 2019 growing season. Mustard plants were harvested in the spring (April and May) from four-0.25 m2 sub-plots that were randomly located in each 10 x 10 m control and added N plot at SMER (n = 4/treatment group), and the biomass allocation to shoots and reproductive structures was measured. We found B. nigra had significantly higher shoot and reproductive production in N-rich plots, and that relative growth rates were significantly higher for N exposed plants during the vegetative growth phase (November 2018-April 2019) but not during the flowering a fruiting phase (April-May, 2019). By the end of the growing season, total biomass production of B. nigra was nearly 7-fold higher in N-rich plots than in control plots. These data indicate that B. nigra is able to substantially increase growth and reproduction in areas that are enriched in N. These data have implications for plant biodiversity in southern California chaparral and coastal sage scrub exposed to high levels of atmospheric N deposition.

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Nov 23rd, 8:45 AM Nov 23rd, 9:30 AM

The Effect of Nitrogen on the Growth Rate of the Invasive Species Barassica nigra

100

The effect of nitrogen on the growth rate of the invasive species Brassica nigra Author: Charlton Rodriguez, California State University, San Marcos Mentor:

George Vourlitis, Department of Biological Sciences, California State University, San Marcos

Abstract Brassica nigra (Black mustard) is an annual plant species that is widespread in California and considered invasive. Recent studies have shown that this species is invading plots that have received experimental dry season inputs of nitrogen (N) for the last 16 years, especially after drought-induced mortality of native shrubs open space for the invading mustard. We were interested to see if a N increase will increase the growth and reproduction of mustard in field plots located at the Santa Margarita Ecological Reserve (SMER) during the 2019 growing season. Mustard plants were harvested in the spring (April and May) from four-0.25 m2 sub-plots that were randomly located in each 10 x 10 m control and added N plot at SMER (n = 4/treatment group), and the biomass allocation to shoots and reproductive structures was measured. We found B. nigra had significantly higher shoot and reproductive production in N-rich plots, and that relative growth rates were significantly higher for N exposed plants during the vegetative growth phase (November 2018-April 2019) but not during the flowering a fruiting phase (April-May, 2019). By the end of the growing season, total biomass production of B. nigra was nearly 7-fold higher in N-rich plots than in control plots. These data indicate that B. nigra is able to substantially increase growth and reproduction in areas that are enriched in N. These data have implications for plant biodiversity in southern California chaparral and coastal sage scrub exposed to high levels of atmospheric N deposition.