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Restoring phylogenetic diversity through facilitation
- Navarro‐Cano, Jose A., Ferrer‐Gallego, Pablo P., Laguna, Emilio, Ferrando, Inmaculada, Goberna, Marta, Valiente‐Banuet, Alfonso, Verdú, Miguel
- Restoration ecology 2016 v.24 no.4 pp. 449-455
- Gypsophila, Limonium, Sedum album, ecological restoration, ecosystems, gypsum, new species, phylogeny, planting, Spain
- Phylogenetic diversity enhances ecosystem functioning but restoration ecology has not taken advantage of this knowledge. We propose plant facilitation as a mechanism to promote phylogenetic diversity in restoration practices. We planted three functionally different species (Gypsophila struthium, Sedum album, and Limonium sucronicum) in a degraded gypsum ecosystem in Spain and found that after 7 years, the species with nurse traits (G. struthium) survived longer and facilitated the establishment of new species forming phylogenetically diverse neighborhoods. These facilitation‐driven phylodiverse communities may potentially produce a cascade of benefits on ecosystem functioning.