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Sabrina Kumschick, Ruth A. Hufbauer, Christina Alba and Dana M. Blumenthal Evolution of fast-growing and more resistant phenotypes in introduced common mullein (Verbascum thapsus) Journal of Ecology 101

Version of Record online: 10 JAN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12044

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Together, high biomass, strong responses to high water-availability and low root:shoot ratio suggest that mullein has evolved a fast-growing, weedy phenotype in its introduced range rather than adapting to a low water environment through increased root growth. Although fast-growing plants can be more palatable to herbivores, in this case there does not appear to be a trade-off between growth and defense against a generalist herbivore. Mullein appears to have evolved to be both faster-growing and better defended in the introduced range.

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