Volker Bahn (Advisor), Don Cipollini (Committee Member), John Stireman (Committee Member)
Master of Science (MS)
The Evolution of Increased Competitive Ability (EICA) hypothesis predicts that subsequent to introduction, non-native plants escape enemies and selection favors genotypes that invest more in growth and reproduction and less in resistance. Here, I evaluated if the invasive Asian grass Microstegium vimineum has developed decreased resistance in its introduced range of the eastern US, as predicted by the EICA hypothesis. Asian and US genotypes were evaluated for differences in enemy damage, leaf toughness, specific leaf area (SLA), and flowering in a common garden experiment. Leaf damage, SLA, and flower production were greater and leaf toughness lower in US plants. These results, along with the previously reported faster growth of US populations, appear to support the EICA hypothesis. However, a common garden study should be conducted in the native range to evaluate if differences between US and Asian genotypes were influenced by environmental conditions of the introduced range.
Department or Program
Department of Biological Sciences
Year Degree Awarded
Copyright 2012, all rights reserved. This open access ETD is published by Wright State University and OhioLINK.