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      Beyond biomass: Soil feedbacks are transient over plant life stages and alter fitness

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          Most cited references 55

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          Soil biodiversity and soil community composition determine ecosystem multifunctionality.

          Biodiversity loss has become a global concern as evidence accumulates that it will negatively affect ecosystem services on which society depends. So far, most studies have focused on the ecological consequences of above-ground biodiversity loss; yet a large part of Earth's biodiversity is literally hidden below ground. Whether reductions of biodiversity in soil communities below ground have consequences for the overall performance of an ecosystem remains unresolved. It is important to investigate this in view of recent observations that soil biodiversity is declining and that soil communities are changing upon land use intensification. We established soil communities differing in composition and diversity and tested their impact on eight ecosystem functions in model grassland communities. We show that soil biodiversity loss and simplification of soil community composition impair multiple ecosystem functions, including plant diversity, decomposition, nutrient retention, and nutrient cycling. The average response of all measured ecosystem functions (ecosystem multifunctionality) exhibited a strong positive linear relationship to indicators of soil biodiversity, suggesting that soil community composition is a key factor in regulating ecosystem functioning. Our results indicate that changes in soil communities and the loss of soil biodiversity threaten ecosystem multifunctionality and sustainability.
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            VARIATION IN PLANT RESPONSE TO NATIVE AND EXOTIC ARBUSCULAR MYCORRHIZAL FUNGI

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              Soil community feedback and the coexistence of competitors: conceptual frameworks and empirical tests

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Journal of Ecology
                J Ecol
                Wiley
                00220477
                January 2018
                January 2018
                October 11 2017
                : 106
                : 1
                : 230-241
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Chair of Nature Conservation and Landscape Ecology; Institute of Earth and Environmental Sciences; University of Freiburg; Freiburg Germany
                [2 ]Institute of Ecology; University of Jena; Jena Germany
                [3 ]Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies; University of Zürich; Zürich Switzerland
                Article
                10.1111/1365-2745.12870
                © 2017

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