Finlands Akademi  
Sökande / Kontakt person Ramula, Satu
Organisation Åbo universitet
Projektets titel Going belowground to curb plant invsions
Beslutnr 331046
Beslutsdatum 27.05.2020
Finansierings period 01.09.2020 - 31.08.2024
Finansiering 471 515
Beskrivning av projektet
Biological invasions, which result from introductions of non-native species, are identified as one of the major threats to biomes. Plants are forming a significant part of all invasive species and therefore, several hypotheses have been proposed to explain their success, such as release from natural enemies. However, previous studies on plant invasions and their related mechanisms have mostly focused on aboveground systems, overlooking belowground mechanisms. This project will investigate how soil microbes (pathogens and mutualists) may promote or prevent plant invasions. By combining manipulative experiments, modern molecular tools, and demographic models, the project will explicitly link soil microbes to herbivory, plant performance, and population growth rate. This information will be critical for understanding the biotic factors that shape plant communities beyond invasive species, and it has applications to biological control and weed management.