The Contribution of Aspen Bark Photosynthesis to the Energy Balance of the Stem

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The total annual CO2 assimilation of Populus tremuloides was similar to evergreen tree foliage when expressed on a surface area basis. Of the annual total 2650 mg CO2dm² assimilated by the bark tissue, 27 percent was fixed during the months of March through May; 59 percent, June through August; 10 percent, September through November; and 4 percent, December through February. Canopy shading reduced CO2 fixation during the summer months, at a time when stem respiration was at its peak. When provided with artificial illumination, corticular photosynthesis reached a maximum of 9-12 mg CO2dm² hr. When leaves are absent, corticular photosynthesis is able to contribute significantly to the carbohydrate supply of the aspen stem. Forest Sci. 24: 569-573.

Keywords: Populus tremuloides; carbon balance

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, NY 13210

Publication date: December 1, 1978

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