Close association between flowering time and aridity gradient for Sarcopoterium spinosum in Israel

Yoni Waitz, Haggai Wasserstrom, Nir Hanin, Netanel Landau, Tomer Faraj, Michal Barzilai, Jotham Ziffer-Berger, Oz Barazani

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3 Scopus citations


The climate gradient in the southeast Mediterranean region offers an opportunity to associate local conditions with adaptive inter-population phenotypic variability. In a common garden experiment, we monitored flowering time and plant biomass in Sarcopoterium spinosum (Rosaceae) representing plant populations along an aridity gradient that in nature differ according to two environmental parameters: elevation and temperature regime. As a significant correlation was found between elevation and the average winter and summer temperatures at the natural sites, elevation was used in the analysis as a proxy for annual temperature regimes. A significant positive correlation was found between flowering day and annual rainfall and elevation, as well as between the aboveground plant biomass and annual rainfall. In addition, a significant negative correlation was found between the flowering day coefficient of variation and the two environmental parameters. Our results show inter-population differentiation in a perennial species, emphasizing the ecological importance of early flowering and trade-offs between growth and reproduction in arid vs. mesic environments.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104468
JournalJournal of Arid Environments
StatePublished - May 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Ltd


  • Aridity gradient
  • Flowering time
  • Phenology
  • Resource allocation


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