Effect of altitude on resource allocation in the weed Achillea millefolium (yarrow, Asteraceae) in the Australian AlpsFrances Mary Johnston A C and Catherine Marina Pickering B
A PO Box 192, 40 McIntosh Circuit, Murrumbateman, NSW 2586, Australia.
B School of Environmental and Applied Sciences, Griffith University, Gold Coast Campus, PMB 50 Gold Coast Mail Centre, Qld 9726, Australia.
C Corresponding author. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Australian Journal of Botany 52(5) 639-646 https://doi.org/10.1071/BT03005
Submitted: 6 January 2003 Accepted: 9 July 2004 Published: 25 October 2004
Increasing severity of environment associated with increasing altitude in mountain ecosystems (decreasing temperature, increasing duration of snow cover) can affect relative and absolute biomass-allocation patterns in plants. Biomass allocation was examined along a 620-m altitudinal gradient in the Australian Alps for the important environmental weed Achillea millefolium (L., Asteraceae, yarrow). Relative and absolute biomass allocation (dry weight) to reproductive (capitula, flowering stems and associated leaves), vegetative (leaves not on the flowering stem) and below-ground structures (rhizome and roots) were measured at each of nine sites by using quadrats. Increasing altitude resulted in a decrease in relative and absolute allocation of biomass to reproductive structures. For example, the dry weight of inflorescences declined as altitude increased because of a decrease in the weight of the terminal and side branches of the inflorescences, but not the total number of capitula produced. There was also a trend for increased relative allocation to below-ground structures with increasing altitude, even though altitude did not affect absolute allocation to below-ground and vegetative structures, or the total dry weight of A. millefolium. These results are consistent with those for other species growing at high altitude. The management implications for the control of A. millefolium in the Australian Alps are discussed, including in relation to predicted climatic change.
This research was supported by the Cooperative Research Centre for Sustainable Tourism and the New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service. The authors thank Wendy Hill for fieldwork assistance and comments on a draft of this manuscript and Darri Adamson of Editing Matters for proof reading the manuscript. Thanks also go to Stuart, William, Megan and Evonne Johnston for assistance in the preparation and measurement of plant material. The comments of two anonymous reviewers are appreciated.
Bostock SJ, Benton RA (1979) The reproductive strategies of five perennial Compositae. Journal of Ecology 67, 91–107.
Bourdot GW (1984) Regeneration of yarrow (Achillea millefolium L.) rhizome fragments of different length from various depths in the soil. Weed Research 24, 421–429.
Bourdot GW, Butler JHB (1985) Control of Achillea millefolium L. (yarrow) by rotary cultivation and glyphosphate. Weed Research 25, 251–258.
Bourdot GW, Field RJ (1988) Review of the ecology and control of Achillea millefolium L. (yarrow) on arable land in New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Experimental Agriculture 16, 99–108.
Bourdot GW, White JGH, Field RJ (1979) Seasonality of growth and development in yarrow. In ‘Proceedings of the thirty-second New Zealand weed and pest control conference’. (Ed. MJ Hartley ) pp. 49–54. (New Zealand Weed and Pest Control Association: Dunedin)
Bourdot GW, Field RJ, White JGH (1985) Growth analysis of Achillea millefolium L. (yarrow) in the presence and absence of a competitor—Hordeum vulgare L. (barley). New Phytologist 101, 507–519.
Brown JAH, Millner FC (1989) Aspects of the meteorology and hydrology of the Australian Alps. In ‘The scientific significance of the Australian Alps. Proceedings of the first Fenner conference’. (Ed. R Good ) pp. 297–332. (Australian Alps National Parks Liaison Committee: Canberra)
Chapin FS, Chapin MC (1981) Ecotypic differentiation of growth processes in Carex aquatilis along latitudinal and local gradients. Ecology 62, 1000–1009.
Clausen JJ, Keck DD, Hiesey WM (1958) Experimental studies on the nature of species 3. Environmental responses of climatic races of . Publication no. 581, (Carnegie Institution of Washington Publication: Washington)
Coakes, SJ , and Steed, LG (2000).
Costin, AB , Gray, M , Toterdell, CJ , and Wimbush, DJ (2000).
Field RJ, Jayaweera CS (1985) The influence of clopyralid and glyophosate on yarrow rhizome regeneration. In ‘Proceedings of the New Zealand weed and pest control conference’.
Grime JP (1977) Evidence for the existence of three primary strategies in plants and its relevance to ecological and evolutionary theory. American Naturalist 111, 1169–1194.
| CrossRef |
Hiesey WM (1953) Comparative growth between and within climatic races of Achillea under controlled conditions. Evolution 7, 297–316.
Holm, L , Panch, JV , Herberger, JP , and Plunknett, DL (1979).
Johnston FM, Pickering CM (2001a) Alien plants in the Australian Alps. Mountain Research and Development 21, 284–291.
Johnston FM, Pickering CM (2001b) Yarrow Achillea millefolium L., a weed threat to the flora of the Australian Alps. Victorian Naturalist 118, 21–24.
Körner CH, Renhardt U (1987) Dry matter partitioning and root length/leaf area ratios in herbaceous perennial plants with diverse altitudinal distribution. Oecologia 74, 411–418.
Körner C, Larcher W (1988) Plant life in cold climates. Symposium Society of Experimental Biology 42, 25–57.
Körner, C (1999).
Körner C, Neumayer M, Menendez-Riedl S, Smeets-Scheel A (1989) Functional morphology of mountain plants. Flora 182, 353–383.
Mallen-Cooper J (1990) Introduced plants in the high altitude environments of Kosciusko National Park, south eastern Australia. PhD Thesis (Department of Biogeography, Research School of Pacific Studies, Australian National University: Canberra)
McDougall KL, Appleby ML (2000) Plant invasions in the high mountains of north-eastern Victoria. Victorian Naturalist 117, 52–59.
Mendez M, Obeso JR (1992) Size-dependant reproductive and vegetative allocation in Arum italicum (Araceae). Canadian Journal of Botany 71, 309–314.
Molau U (1993) Relationships between flowering phenology and life history strategies in Tundra plants. Arctic and Alpine Research 25, 391–402.
Pickering CM (1994) Size-dependant reproduction in Australian alpine Ranunculus. Australian Journal of Ecology 19, 336–344.
Pickering CM, Armstrong T (2003) Potential impact of climate change on plant communities in the Kosciuszko alpine zone. Victorian Naturalist 120, 263–272.
Rutherford GA (1986) A survey of yarrow control with cloypralid on Canterbury mixed cropping farms. In ‘Proceedings of the thirty-ninth New Zealand weed and pest conference’.
Saintly, G , Hoskings, J , and Jacobs, S (1998).
Sanecki GM, Saneki KL, Wright GT, Johnston FM (2003) The response of yarrow (Achillea millefolium L.) to herbicide application in the Snowy Mountains, South Eastern Australia. Weed Research 43, 357–361.
| CrossRef |
Schmid B, Bazzaz FA, Weiner J (1995) Size dependency of sexual reproduction and of clonal growth in two perennial plants. Canadian Journal of Botany 73, 1831–1837.
Warwick SI, Black L (1982) The biology of Canadian weeds 52. Achillea millefolium L. Canadian Journal of Plant Science 62, 163–182.
Whetton P (1998) Climate change impacts on the spatial extent of snow-cover in the Australian Alps. In ‘Snow, a natural history: an uncertain future’. (Ed. K Green ) pp. 195–206. (Australian Alps Liaison Committee: Canberra)