Research Applications

Global climate change is expected to have a profound effect on plant communities over the next century. Warming and N deposition have already decreased diversity and altered species phenology and range distributions.
Collins et al. (2010) determined the effects of warming and N addition in a Chihuahuan Desert grassland. Increased warming caused an increase in live plant cover. Although N did not affect total live plant cover, N addition did result in increased cover of blue grama (B. gracilis). These results show that this aridland ecosystem rapidly responds to changes in temperature and N deposition.

PRS® N supply rates and percent cover of common native plants in the Chihuahuan Desert. PRS® supply rates are N per 10-cm2/3 months. Data in brackets are standard errors.