The relationship between facilitation and evolutionary ecology is poorly understood. We review five issues elucidating how the phylogenetic relatedness of species provides insight into the role of facilitation in community assembly: () Are the facilitative interactions more common between species that differ in a regeneration niche? () Are facilitative interactions more common between distantly related species? () Do communities governed by facilitation (rather than competition) have higher phylogenetic diversity? () As facilitated juvenile plants mature, do they compete with their nurses more often if they are closely related to them? () How does the phylogenetic signature in a community reveal ecological processes, such as succession, regeneration dynamics, indirect interactions, and coextinction cascades? The evolutionary history of lineages explains the regeneration niche of species, which ultimately determines the facilitation-competition balance and therefore community assembly and dynamics. We apply this framework to the conservation of biodiversity and propose future research avenues.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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