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We develop a modeling framework that estimates the effects of species identity and diversity on ecosystem function and permits prediction of the diversity-function relationship across different types of community composition. Rather than just measure an overall effect of diversity, we separately estimate the contributions of different species interactions.(More)
Trifolium repens L. was grown to test the following hypotheses: when P is deficient (i) N2 fixation decreases as a result of the plant's adaptation to the low N demand, regulated by an N feedback mechanism, and (ii) the decrease in the photosynthetic capacity of the leaves does not limit N2 fixation. Severe P deficiency prevented nodulation or stopped(More)
In grasslands, the loss of structural carbon (C) from nonharvested plant parts is a primary C source for the soil. The amount of input depends not only on the size of structural C pools but also on their loss rates. In the field, we examined the effects of elevated atmospheric partial pressures of CO2 (pCO2) and nitrogen (N) supply on pool size and rates of(More)
European grassland-based livestock production systems face the challenge of producing more meat and milk to meet increasing world demands and to achieve this using fewer resources. Legumes offer great potential for achieving these objectives. They have numerous features that can act together at different stages in the soil–plant–animal–atmosphere system,(More)
The extent of the response of plant growth to atmospheric CO2 enrichment depends on the availability of resources other than CO2. An important growth-limiting resource under field conditions is nitrogen (N). N may, therefore, influence the CO2 response of plants. The effect of elevated CO2 (60 Pa) partial pressure (pCO2) on the N nutrition of field-grown(More)
To test inter- and intraspecific variability in the responsiveness to elevated CO2, 9-14 different genotypes of each of 12 perennial species from fertile permanent grassland were grown in Lolium perenne swards under ambient (35 Pa) and elevated (60 Pa) atmospheric partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2) for 3 years in a free air carbon dioxide enrichment (FACE)(More)
BACKGROUND AND AIMS Condensed tannins (CTs) in the diet affect consumers in a concentration-dependent manner. Because of their importance in plant defence against herbivores and pathogens as well as their potential application against gastrointestinal parasites of ruminants in agronomy, an understanding of the seasonal dynamics of CT concentrations during(More)
We investigated whether spatial differences in belowground niches between shallow- and deep-rooted species result in increased resource uptake and drought resistance in agricultural grassland communities. We injected the tracers 15N and rubidium (Rb) into the soil and measured tracer uptake from 5 and 35 cm soil depth in monocultures and mixtures containing(More)
There is increasing interest in how resource utilisation in grassland ecosystems is affected by changes in plant diversity and abiotic conditions. Research to date has mainly focussed on aboveground responses and there is limited insight into belowground processes. The aim of this study was to test a number of assumptions for the valid use of the trace(More)
Current challenges to global food security require sustainable intensification of agriculture through initiatives that include more efficient use of nitrogen (N), increased protein self-sufficiency through homegrown crops, and reduced N losses to the environment. Such challenges were addressed in a continental-scale field experiment conducted over 3 years,(More)