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《Acta Prataculturae Sinica》 2010-01
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Research advances in the eco-physiological characteristics of ephemerals adaptation to habitats

YUAN Su-fen,TANG Hai-ping (State Key Laboratory of Earth Surface Processes and Resource Ecology;College of Resources Science and Technology,Beijing Normal University,Beijing 100875,China)  
Ephemerals are specially adapted to desert grasslands,Mediterranean grasslands,and the floor of deciduous,broad-leaved temperate forests conditions.They are considered to be a special herbaceous population that can take advantage of water resources and temperature conditions to rapidly complete their life-circle within two or three months.They mainly occur in arid or semi-arid areas,such as North America,Africa,Mediterranean areas,Western and Central Asia and partial zones of mid-Asia.Previous studies focused on their taxonomy and flora.Their adaptations to growing environmental conditions have not received enough attention,nevertheless,most aspects of adaptations to habitats are included in current studies although they are short of lateral comparison and systematic summarization.This paper reviews current research on the adaptations and feedback of ephemerals to light,temperature,water in environment,etc.Ephemerals have strong adaptability to habitats,and form their characteristic morphology,behavior and eco-physiology adaptations during a long-term process of acclimatization.In many extreme surroundings,ephemerals,as pioneer plants,play an important role in modifying soil texture and water content to provide new plants with a chance of successful invasion under improved environmental conditions.Ephemerals can act as a "Vernal Dam" by absorbing many nutrient elements on their surface and by promoting sound soil nutrient cycling.Ephemerals have higher photosynthetic rates and biomass in desert communities.They are important primary producers that may be important for the carbon pool.Finally,from the research summary and conclusions of the above dissertation,we discuss prospective future research directions.This paper can provide readers with a comprehensive understanding of ephemerals and their adaptation to environments,and supply concepts and references for further research.
【Fund】: 国家自然科学基金重点项目(40435014)资助
【CateGory Index】: Q948.12
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