Soil Moisture Influence on Growth, Transpiration, and Nutrient Uptake of Pine Seedlings

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Pinus radiata and P. rigida seedlings were grown for 52 days in two soils under three soil-moisture treatments. Daily transpiration losses were recorded and the plants were analyzed for height, weight, Na, Mg, Ca, K, and P at harvesting. Transpiration was lowest in the low soil-moisture treatments. Waterlogging also retarded transpiration. Statistically significant effects due to treatments were shown by certain nutrients and growth parameters. However, there were no consistent treatment effects on growth or nutrient uptake, although the medium soil-moisture treatment was the most favorable in some cases. Phosphorus and water uptake by P. radiata seedlings were studied with radioactive tracers over a 36-hour period. Uptake of tritiated water decreased, but uptake of 32P per unit uptake of tritiated water increased with increasing soil-moisture tension especially in the high and medium treatments. Both long- and short-term experiments showed that transpiration and nutrient uptake were not positively correlated. Forest Sci. 19:281-288.

Keywords: Moisture stress; Pinus radiata; Pinus rigida; radioactive tracers; water use

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Assistant Professor, Department of Ecology and Behavioral Biology, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minn. 55101

Publication date: December 1, 1973

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