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How perennial are perennial plants?
Södertörn University, Avdelning Naturvetenskap. Stockholm University.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0260-3978
2002 (English)In: Oikos, ISSN 0030-1299, E-ISSN 1600-0706, Vol. 98, no 2, 308-322 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Trade-offs involving life span are important in the molding of plant life histories. However, the empirical examination of such patterns has so far been limited by the fact that information on life span is mainly available in terms of discrete categories; annuals, semelparous perennials and iteroparous perennials. We used transition matrix models to project continuous estimates of conditional life spans from published information on size- or stage-structured demography for 71 perennial plant species. The projected life span ranged from 4.3 to 988.6 years and more than half of the species had a life span of more than 35 years. Woody plants had on average a projected life span more than four times as long as non-woody plants. Life spans were higher in forests than in open habitats and individuals of non-clonal species tended to have a longer life span than ramets of clonal species. Self-incompatible plants on average lived longer than self-compatible plants. There were no clear relations between life span and geographical region, dispersal syndrome, pollination mode, seed size or the presence of a seed bank. We conclude that accurate estimates of life span are central to understand how longevity is correlated to other traits within the group of perennial plants.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2002. Vol. 98, no 2, 308-322 p.
National Category
Natural Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-6061DOI: 10.1034/j.1600-0706.2002.980212.xISI: 000177713700012ScopusID: 2-s2.0-0036687846OAI: diva2:395505
Available from: 2011-02-07 Created: 2011-02-07 Last updated: 2016-09-29Bibliographically approved

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Lehtilä, Kari
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