Sutter, L.A., J. Vymazal, C.B. Craft, and C.J. Richardson. 1993. Effects of phosphorus loading and hydroperiod on sawgrass, Cladium jamaicense. P. 467 in: Landin, M.C. (ed.), Wetlands: Proceedings of the 13th Annual SWS Conference, New Orleans, LA, June 1992. SWS South Central Chapter, Utica, Mississippi. 990 pp.

Phosphorus loading and altered hydroperiod may contribute to the decline of sawgrass (Cladium jamaicense) in the Florida Everglades via invasion of cattail into nutrient-enriched deeper water habitats and by colonization of drier sites by upland plant species.

The effects of P loading and flooding depth on sawgrass productivity were investigated in a controlled greenhouse experiment using a factorial design with five P concentrations (0.0, 0.04, 0.08, 0.15, and0.3 mg/l) and three flooding depths (0, 11, and 22 cm).

Preliminary results suggest that increased P concentrations have little effect on the aboveground sawgrass biomass. Leaf tissue P concentrations increased with flooding depth and P dosing up to the 0.15 mg/l concentration, after which a decrease in tissue P was observed. Periphyton, other macrophytes and belowground sawgrass biomass consumed significant amounts of P.

Based on these preliminary data, low doses of P at the tested depth do not have a significant effect on sawgrass productivity.

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