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Cat's claw creeper vine, Macfadyena unguis-cati (Bignoniaceae), invasion impacts: comparative leaf nutrient content and effects on soil physicochemical properties

Perrett, Christine and Osunkoya, Olusegun O. and Clark, Cameron (2012) Cat's claw creeper vine, Macfadyena unguis-cati (Bignoniaceae), invasion impacts: comparative leaf nutrient content and effects on soil physicochemical properties. Australian Journal of Botany, 60 (6). pp. 539-548.

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Article Link(s): http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/BT12055

Publisher URL: http://www.publish.csiro.au/paper/BT12055

Abstract

Macfadyena unguis-cati (L.) Gentry (Bignoniaceae) is a major environmental weed in coastal Queensland, Australia. There is a lack of quantitative data on its leaf chemistry and its impact on soil properties. Soils from infested vs uninfested areas, and leaves of M. unguis-cati and three co-occurring vine species (one exotic, two native) were collected at six sites (riparian and non-riparian) in south-eastern Queensland. Effects of invasion status, species, site and habitat type were examined using univariate and multivariate analyses. Habitat type had a greater effect on soil nutrients than on leaf chemistry. Invasion effect of M. unguis-cati on soil chemistry was more pronounced in non-riparian than in riparian habitat. Significantly higher values were obtained in M. unguis-cati infested (vs. uninfested) soils for ~50% of traits. Leaf ion concentrations differed significantly between exotic and native vines. Observed higher leaf-nutrient load (especially nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium) in exotic plants aligns with the preference of invasive plant species for disturbed habitats with higher nutrient input. Higher load of trace elements (aluminium, boron, cadmium and iron) in its leaves suggests that cycling of heavy-metal ions, many of which are potentially toxic at excess level, could be accelerated in soils of M. unguis-cati-invaded landscape. Although inferences from the present study are based on correlative data, the consistency of the patterns across many sites suggests that M. unguis-cati may improve soil fertility and influence nutrient cycling, perhaps through legacy effects of its own litter input.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Biosecurity Queensland
Subjects:Science > Invasive Species > Plants > Impact assessment
Science > Invasive Species > Plants > Weed ecology
Deposited On:06 Jun 2013 03:00
Last Modified:08 Jun 2015 16:00

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