IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Dynamics of three types of annual plants competing for water and light

Listed author(s):
  • Pȩkalski, Andrzej
  • Szwabiński, Janusz
Registered author(s):

    We present and discuss a Monte Carlo model describing the dynamics of three types of annual plants which have different tolerances to shade and drought. External conditions (water and light) fluctuate around some values which are our control parameters and which decide how many resources the system receives. The plants compete with their nearest neighbours for the resources, however not in the same way. We show that for certain ranges of the control parameters a coexistence of the three species is observed. We discuss how the characteristics of the the plants — their number, germination, biomass or the number of nearest neighbours, depend on the two control parameters characterising external conditions. We show that elimination is done at the level of adult plants, not seedlings. We find also cooperative behaviour of plants in difficult conditions, as observed in field studies and we propose an explanation for this fact. Apart from plants tolerating shade but requiring more water and those tolerating drought but needing more light, which are common in nature, we introduce a third species with intermediary demands. We investigate under what conditions this new species could dominate and whether the total number of plants, regardless of their type, is larger with or without the intermediate plant. We show that in our model, like in nature, systems with two kinds of plants with opposite characteristics are, in general, as effective as a system with an additional third type of plants. We show that two contradictory hypotheses made by biologists, concerning the demands of plants in drought and shade, could be both true, however in different regimes.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only. Journal offers the option of making the article available online on Science direct for a fee of $3,000

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications.

    Volume (Year): 392 (2013)
    Issue (Month): 4 ()
    Pages: 710-721

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:eee:phsmap:v:392:y:2013:i:4:p:710-721
    DOI: 10.1016/j.physa.2012.09.029
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:phsmap:v:392:y:2013:i:4:p:710-721. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.