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Grasses occupy a greater area of the world's land surface than any other plant family, occurring in almost every terrestrial environment and providing a vital source of food for humans and animals.
This volume presents the most recent information on their population biology, bringing together contributions from researchers studying both applied and fundamental aspects of this important group of plants. Demographic, physiological, ecological and molecular approaches to understanding grass populations are considered in relation to reproduction and to aspects of life history patterns such as dispersal, germination, seedling establishment, population dynamics and reproduction. Other areas covered include the role of genetic variation and phenotypic plasticity in shaping life history traits, the impact of biotic factors, and the ecology of specific species in major grass-dominated ecosystems in Africa, Australia and Japan.
Re-issue, originally published in 1998.
Contributors; Preface; Darwin revisited: approaches to the ecological study of grasses A. D. Bradshaw; Part I. Population Variation and Life History Patterns: 1. Allozyme diversity in the grasses M. J. W. Godt and J. L. Hamrick; 2. Ecology of seed dormancy and germination in grasses C. C. Baskin and J. M. Baskin; 3. Seed dispersal and seedling establishment in grass populations G. P. Cheplick; 4. Clonal biology of caespitose grasses D. D. Briske and J. D. Derner; 5. Ecological aspects of sex expression in grasses J. A. Quinn; 6. Interspecific variation in plasticity of grasses in response to nitrogen supply E. Garnier; 7. Population biology of intraspecific polyploidy in grasses K. H. Keeler; Part II. Ecological Interactions; 8. Plant-plant interactions in grasses and grasslands W. K. Lauenroth and M. O. Aguilera; 9. Competition between grasses and woody plants S. D. Wilson; 10. Fungal endophyte infection and the population dynamics of grasses K. Clay; 11. Arbuscular mycorrhizas and the population biology of grasses K. K. Newsham and A. R. Watkinson; Part III. Population Biology of Specific Groups: 12. Population dynamics in the regeneration process of monocarpic dwarf bamboos, Sasa species A. Makita; 13. Population dynamics of perennial grasses in African savanna and grassland T. G. O'Connor and T. M. Everson; 14. A life cycle approach to the population ecology of two tropical grasses in Queensland, Australia D. M. Orr; Index.
'Overall, this is a useful book that will be of interest and value to plant population biologists in general and grassland ecologists specifically. Areas where additional research is needed are brought out directly, or alluded to at least, in all the chapters. It is not a textbook on the group but will be a most useful review of the topic for several years and points the way for future studies.' David Gibson, Ecology 'All said and done, for specialists this is an excellent book and covers a wide range of topics.' Colin L. A. Leakey, The Times Higher Education Supplement 'I recommend it not only for botanists, but also for anyone interested in population biology in general.' Trends in Ecology and Evolution '... found the book a useful synthesis of the topic. It is exceptionally well edited, with a wealth of new ideas and data, and is a worthy contribution to the study of an important and fascinating family of plants.' Journal of Vegetation Sciences '... an excellent book which presents quite different concepts and approaches clearly and concisely. I strongly recommend it for all those interested in the population biology of grasses.' Journal of Agronomy and Crop Science