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Hydraulic and photosynthetic co-ordination in seasonally dry tropical forest trees


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Brodribb, TJ and Holbrook, NM and Gutierrez, MV (2002) Hydraulic and photosynthetic co-ordination in seasonally dry tropical forest trees. Plant, Cell and Environment, 25 (11). pp. 1435-1444. ISSN 0140-7791

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In the present study the linkage between hydraulic, photosynthetic and phenological properties of tropical dry forest trees were investigated. Seasonal patterns of stem-specific conductivity ( K SP ) described from 12 species, including deciduous, brevi-deciduous and evergreen species, indicated that only evergreen species were consistent in their response to a dry-to-wet season transition. In contrast, K SP in deciduous and brevi-deciduous species encompassed a range of responses, from an insignificant increase in K SP following rains in some species, to a nine-fold increase in others. Amongst deciduous species, the minimum K SP during the dry season ranged from 6 to 56% of wet season K SP, indicating in the latter case that a significant portion of the xylem remained functional during the dry season. In all species and all seasons, leaf-specific stem conductivity ( K L ) was strongly related to the photosynthetic capacity of the supported foliage, although leaf photosynthesis became saturated in species with high K L . The strength of this correlation was surprising given that much of the whole-plant resistance appears to be in the leaves. Hydraulic capacity, defined as the product of K L and the soil–leaf water potential difference, was strongly correlated with the photosynthetic rate of foliage in the dry season, but only weakly correlated in the wet season.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: fluorescence; hydraulic conductivity; phenology; photosynthesis; tropical dry forest.
Journal or Publication Title: Plant, Cell and Environment
Page Range: pp. 1435-1444
ISSN: 0140-7791
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1046/j.1365-3040.2002.00919.x
Additional Information: The definitive version is available at
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2007 03:09
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 03:25
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