Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Species invasion alters local adaptation to soil communities in a native plant.

Abstract

Plant populations are often adapted to their local conditions, including abiotic factors as well as the biotic communities with which they interact. Soil communities, in particular, have strong effects on both the ecology and evolution of plant populations. Many invasive plant species alter the ecological relationships between native plants and soil communities; however, whether invaders also alter the evolutionary dynamics between native plants and soils is less well known. Here I show that populations of a native annual, Pilea pumila, shift from being maladapted to adapted to their local soil community with increasing history of invasion by Alliaria petiolata, an invader known to alter microbial communities. Additionally, native populations showed a signal of adaptation to soils of particular invasion stages, independent of local coevolutionary dynamics. These results suggest that invasive species affect not only the ecological, but also the evolutionary relationships of native species.