Diverse Grasslands Tolerate Drought Well

K-State led study finds that grassland key to drought survival is diverse mixture of grasses.

Published on: Aug 16, 2012
The benefits of a diverse grassland are evident when the U.S. faced a drought in the 1980s, said Towne, who also collects plant community data.

"After that drought we saw a booming explosion of tall grasses the following year," Towne said. "So it really backs up what the study found: that drought forces the grasslands to adapt to the weather conditions so they can get through that rough period."

The study, "Global diversity of drought tolerance and grassland climate-change resilience," was recently published online at Nature Climate Change: http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate1634.html.