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2018 Update: Echinacea hybrids — exPt 9

In summer 2018, we again measured Echinacea plants in experimental plot 9 at Hegg Lake. These plants are from open-pollinated E. angustifolia plants near the restoration plot with flowering E. pallida plants. ExPt9 includes some hybrid plants, as determined by DNA fingerprinting techniques. The table below shows the number of plants found alive during each search since the experiment started in 2014. Much like last year, the average surviving plant had about 3 leaves. The average longest leaf was 21 cm, 4 cm shorter than in 2017. We suspect that leaves are shorter this year than last year (25cm in 2017 on average) because of a burn in the Hegg Lake WMA. This year we searched for plants once then rechecked every position where we didn’t find a plant during our first search. No plants flowered this year (no flowering plants yet!).

Year / Event Number Alive % Original remaining % Of previous year
Planting (2014) 746 100 N/A
2014 638 85.5 85.5
2015 521 69.8 81.7
2016 493 66.1 94.6
2017 401 53.8 81.3
2018 329 44.1 82.0

This experiment comparing the fitness of Echinacea hybrids with pure-bred E. angustifolia and E. pallida will give insight into the possible consequences of non-native E. pallida being planted in restorations in Minnesota, where E. angustifolia is the only native Echinacea to this area of MN.

Most exPt9 plants look like this!

Start year: 2014

Location: Hegg Lake Wildlife Management Area — experimental plot 9

Overlapping experiments: Echinacea hybrids — experimental plot 6Echinacea hybrids — experimental plot 7

Data collected: Rosette number, length of all leaves, herbivory for each plant collected electronically and exported to CGData. Recheck information for plants not found was also collected electronically and stored in CGData.

You can find out more information about experimental plot 9 and flog posts mentioning the experiment on the background page for the experiment.

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