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Protocols in ecological and environmental plant physiology


Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 33(12)

Hydraulically based stomatal oscillations and stomatal patchiness in Gossypium hirsutum

Ricardo A. Marenco A C, Katharina Siebke B, Graham D. Farquhar A D, Marilyn C. Ball B

A Environmental Biology Group, Research School of Biological Sciences, The Australian National University, Canberra, ACT 0200, Australia.
B Ecosystem Dynamics Group, Research School of Biological Sciences, The Australian National University, Canberra, ACT 0200, Australia.
C Coordenação de Pesquisas em Silvicultura Tropical, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia — INPA-CPST. Bolsista do CNPq. PO Box 478, Manaus, AM, Brazil 69010-970.
D Corresponding author. Email: Graham.Farquhar@anu.edu.au
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Slow stomatal oscillations (70–95 min), associated with feedback within the plant hydraulic systems, were studied in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.). Oscillations were only evident when the whole plant was exposed to light, and were not influenced by reductions in intercellular CO2 concentrations (Ci) in intact, attached leaves. Oscillations were synchronised among different leaves of the same plant, even when the leaf-to-air vapour pressure difference (VPD) was reduced in a cuvette enclosing one of the leaves. In the trough phase of stomatal oscillations the apparent Ci was higher than expected from the combination of the observed assimilation rate and the A(Ci) relationship measured in the absence of oscillations. Using chlorophyll fluorescence imaging we found evidence of stomatal heterogeneity in this phase. Finally, we found that stomatal oscillations appeared to be correlated with xylem embolism, with more vessels filled with gas at the peak than at the troughs of stomatal oscillations.

Keywords: chlorophyll fluorescence, photosynthesis, stomatal conductance, xylem embolism.

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