Report

Differential soil fungus accumulation and density dependence of trees in a subtropical forest

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  04 Oct 2019:
Vol. 366, Issue 6461, pp. 124-128
DOI: 10.1126/science.aau1361

You are currently viewing the editor's summary.

View Full Text

Log in to view the full text

Log in through your institution

Log in through your institution

Fungal influence on density dependence

Tree species in highly diverse tropical forests tend to exhibit conspecific negative density dependence, a phenomenon whereby individuals of the same species tend to grow at a distance from one another. This is understood to be a key driver of species coexistence. The strength of negative density dependence varies between species, but the mechanisms driving this variation are unknown. Chen et al. studied tree species in a subtropical forest in China and found an important role for soil-dwelling fungi in this variation. Elevated accumulation of pathogenic fungi leads to stronger negative density dependence, whereas elevated accumulation of mutualistic fungi leads to weaker negative density dependence.

Science, this issue p. 124

View Full Text