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Interannual xylem plasticity in Pinus edulis and Populus tremuloides

Sheriff, Taylor Nicole (2021) Interannual xylem plasticity in Pinus edulis and Populus tremuloides. Masters thesis, Northern Arizona University.

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Phenotypic plasticity of xylem conduits could facilitate the rapid acclimatization needed for trees to thrive in the Southwest under the expected increase in drought severity and frequency. This study examined the interannual xylem plasticity of two widespread tree species, Pinus edulis and Populus tremuloides, to better understand it’s role in shaping these species’ response to future climate extremes. We analyzed annual growth rings formed during the years 1995 through 2016 to determine the response of mean lumen diameter and hydraulic mean diameter (HMD) to variation in moisture availability. We hypothesized that lumen diameter changes in size to match environmental conditions, being larger in wetter years and smaller in drier years. We found xylem anatomy was highly plastic with respect to drought but complacent under favorable moisture conditions. Trends in plasticity were consistent among different populations and species. These results suggest that Pinus edulis and Populus tremuloides in the Southwest have limited potential for adjusting xylem conduit size, perhaps indicative of a conservative survival strategy related to the arid climate and frequent occurrence of drought.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Publisher’s Statement: © Copyright is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the Cline Library, Northern Arizona University. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Keywords: dendrochronology; drought; tracheid; vessel; xylem plasticity; Pinus edulis; Populus tremuloides; Southwest (U.S.)
Subjects: Q Science > QK Botany
NAU Depositing Author Academic Status: Student
Department/Unit: Graduate College > Theses and Dissertations
College of the Environment, Forestry, and Natural Sciences > Biological Sciences
Date Deposited: 14 Feb 2022 19:06
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2022 19:06
URI: https://openknowledge.nau.edu/id/eprint/5701

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