LINKING CHANGES IN RADIAL PROFILES OF SAP FLUX DENSITY WITH THE RESPONSE OF WATER VAPOUR EXCHANGE TO WATER DEFICIT
Knowledge of temporal variations in radial profiles of sap flux density (Js) and its relation to canopy water vapour exchange would help to improve our understanding of plant water relations. In this study we aimed to test if there is a consistent radial profile of Js in olive trees under optimal soil water availability and severe water stress conditions. Furthermore, if the radial profile of Js is not consistent through time we aimed to assess whether this radial variability can be explained through differential water exchange response to evaporative demand (D) of sun-exposed, new foliage and shade, old foliage. We measured sap flux density in the trunk of 6-year-old olive trees under two different irrigation treatments: a full irrigation treatment and a treatment replacing 30% of the of irrigation needs. We related the hourly radial profiles characterized with the Beta probability distribution function with independent water vapour exchange measurements at different exposures in the tree canopy (sun-exposed, young foliage and shade, old foliage). Results showed that under well irrigated conditions the shape of the radial profile of Js hardly varied, but under water deficit situations most of the sap appears to be conducted deeper into the sapwood and Js is also more variable throughout the sapwood. Accordingly, results demonstrated that in shade, old foliage water vapour exchange varied less than in sun-exposed new foliage. As a result, in days under severe water deficit, the contribution of shade old foliage to the whole tree transpiration was greater. Radial profile changes and canopy measurements were found to respond in a similar way to D. During conditions of low D and soil water deficit it was observed a greater contribution of the inner xylem to total stem flow and shade, old leaves to canopy gas exchange.
Hernandez-Santana, V., Alvarado-Barrientos, M.S., Rodriguez-Dominguez, C.M., Perez-Martin, A. and Díaz-Espejo, A. (2013). LINKING CHANGES IN RADIAL PROFILES OF SAP FLUX DENSITY WITH THE RESPONSE OF WATER VAPOUR EXCHANGE TO WATER DEFICIT. Acta Hortic. 991, 189-196
sap flux density, radial patterns, Beta function, olive trees, stomatal control, transpiration