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Seasonal Changes of Tissue-Water Relations in Shoots and Root Systems of Douglas-fir Seedlings

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Values of bulk osmotic potential at full turgor (o), water potential at which the bulk turgor pressure first reaches zero (z) and maximum bulk elastic modulus (max) were monitored monthly for 13 months in the shoot and root systems of 2- to 3-year-old Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco) seedlings using the pressure-volume method. In shoots, o and z went through two maxima and minima throughout the year; the minima for o and z were - 2.3 and - 3.8 MPa, respectively, in midwinter and - 2.5 and - 3.5 MPa, respectively, in midsummer. max was lowest (elasticity highest) in April (5.0 MPa) and highest in September (17.0 MPa). In root systems o was nearly constant at - 1.0 MPa all year, while z dropped to a minimum annual value of -3.0 MPa in July and reached maxima (-2.0 MPa) in March and September. Turgor maintenance capacity changed seasonally due to changes in o (osmotic adjustment). Dynamics of these and other tissue water relations properties are discussed in relation to phenological developmental stages, frost hardiness, and drought tolerance. Forest Sci. 30:538-548.

Keywords: Osmotic potential; osmotic adjustment; pressure-volume curves; tissue elasticity; turgor maintenance

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Forestry Research Associate, Forest Research Institute, Private Bag, Rotorua, New Zealand

Publication date: June 1, 1984

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