Mangrove range expansion limited by ocean currents and coastal features

Jackie Raw discusses her recent article: Dispersal and coastal geomorphology limit potential for mangrove range expansion under climate change. Find out more about the implications of this work for modelling mangrove responses to climate change. Mangroves, often described as tropical swamp lands, are classic features of warm coastlines where sea-surface temperatures are above 20°C. These…

How much genetic variation exists in a plant population?

F. Xavier Picó discusses the recent article: ‘Spatio-temporal dynamics of genetic variation at the quantitative and molecular levels within a natural Arabidopsis thaliana population‘. Find out more about the importance of long term monitoring for investigating genetic diversity. In science, the simplest questions are commonly hard to answer. In the field of plant population biology,…

Looking at shrubs (more) carefully: epigenetic mosaicism boosts variance of offspring traits

Carlos M. Herrera, Mónica Medrano and Conchita Alonso discuss their recent paper: Ecological significance of intraplant variation: Epigenetic mosaicism in Lavandula latifolia plants predicts extant and transgenerational variability of fecundity-related traits. Plants are nonunitary entities Charles Darwin emphasized long ago that, given the constellation of features which set them apart, terrestrial plants and animals are…

Genetic changes in New England Cichorium intybus since Thoreau’s times

Tomáš Závada discusses his recent paper ‘Radical shift in the genetic composition of New England chicory populations‘. Find out more about how genetic diversity and structure of Cichorium intybus populations have changed over time and the importance of herbarium specimens in this discovery. Herbarium collections represent a goldmine of botanical data. These days, herbarium specimens…

How abiotic context affects plant invasions mechanisms

Mariana Chiuffo discusses her recent paper: ‘Importance of invasion mechanisms varies with abiotic context and plant invader growth form‘. You can also read this blog post in Spanish here. Human activity has caused an unprecedented geographic reorganization of non-native plants. At a global level, 3.9% of vascular plants have become naturalized somewhere else (van Kleunen…

How is polyploidy affecting the evolution and diversity of plant functional traits? the case of Dianthus broteri complex

Javier López-Jurado discusses recent article: Polyploidy promotes divergent evolution across the leaf economics spectrum and plant edaphic niche in the Dianthus broteri complex. Find out more about role of polyploidy – the state of having more than two paired sets of chromosomes – in overcoming constraints for the evolution of plant functional traits. Major functional traits in…