Salt- and alkaline-tolerance are linked in Acacia

Bui, Elisabeth N., Thornhill, Andrew, and Miller, Joseph T. (2014) Salt- and alkaline-tolerance are linked in Acacia. Biology Letters, 10 (7). pp. 1-4.

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Abstract

Saline or alkaline soils present a strong stress on plants that together may be even more deleterious than alone. Australia's soils are old and contain large, sometimes overlapping, areas of high salt and alkalinity. Acacia and other Australian plant lineages have evolved in this stressful soil environment and present an opportunity to understand the evolution of salt and alkalinity tolerance.We investigate this evolution by predicting the average soil salinity and pH for 503 Acacia species and mapping the response onto a maximum-likelihood phylogeny. We find that salinity and alkalinity tolerance have evolved repeatedly and often together over 25 Ma of the Acacia radiation in Australia. Geographically restricted species are often tolerant of extreme conditions. Distantly related species are sympatric in the most extreme soil environments, suggesting lack of niche saturation. There is strong evidence that many Acacia have distributions affected by salinity and alkalinity and that preference is lineage specific.

Item ID: 35948
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: salt-tolerance, soil pH, stress-tolerance
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ISSN: 1744-957X
Date Deposited: 05 Nov 2014 04:00
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0503 Soil Sciences > 050303 Soil Biology @ 75%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0603 Evolutionary Biology > 060303 Biological Adaptation @ 20%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0603 Evolutionary Biology > 060310 Plant Systematics and Taxonomy @ 5%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960805 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity at Regional or Larger Scales @ 20%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9614 Soils > 961499 Soils not elsewhere classified @ 80%
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