Blog List

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Ontogeny influences developmental physiology of post-transplant Quercus rubra seedlings more than genotype

Published Date
Original Paper
DOI: 10.1007/s13595-016-0584-z

Cite this article as: 
Sloan, J.L. & Jacobs, D.F. Annals of Forest Science (2016). doi:10.1007/s13595-016-0584-z

  • Joshua L. Sloan
  • Douglass F. Jacobs 
  • Email author

Key message

Seedling ontogeny exerted a greater influence on physiological activity ofQuercus rubraseedlings than genetics; thus, it may be more important to use an appropriate growth index to account for seedling ontogeny in experiments than to control for genetic variation.


Members of the genus Quercus exhibit semi-determinate growth, resulting in complex and developmentally variable endogenous physiological patterns. The Quercus morphological index (QMI; Hanson et al. Tree Physiol. 2:273-281, 1986) was developed as a tool to relate physiological patterns to morphologically identifiable ontological stages, thereby allowing for treatment or measurement of seedlings at uniform ontological stages rather than strictly by chronology.


Although clear physiological patterns relative to seedling ontogeny have been observed using the QMI in pre-transplant half-sibling seedlings, we sought to determine whether physiological patterns remain consistent across genotypes within a species.


We examined net photosynthesis, transpiration, leaf chlorophyll concentrations, and chlorophyll fluorescence (Fv/Fm) throughout the first flush after transplant for northern red oak (Quercus rubra L.) seedlings from three half-sibling families.


Neither net photosynthesis nor transpiration rates varied by family, whereas leaf chlorophyll concentrations and Fv/Fm differed significantly. Despite family differences for magnitudes of some parameters, no interactions between QMI growth stage and family were observed, and patterns of all parameters relative to growth stage were consistent across families. Net photosynthetic rates, transpiration rates, and Fv/Fm increased during the flush, while leaf chlorophyll concentration decreased, suggesting that chlorophyll synthesis is not a limiting factor during leaf maturation in this species.


Findings indicate that QMI-based physiological patterns may be at least regionally applicable within a given Quercus species.


Growth indexEpisodic growthPlant developmentSeedling physiologyExperimental error

  1. Arnon DI (1949) Copper enzymes in isolated chloroplasts. Polyphenoloxidase in Beta vulgaris. Plant Physiol 24:1–15CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  2. Craft KJ, Ashley MV (2006) Population differentiation among three species of white oak in northeastern Illinois. Can J For Res 36:206–215CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Dickson RE, Tomlinson PT, Isebrands JG (2000a) Allocation of current photosynthate and changes in tissue dry weight within northern red oak seedlings: individual leaf and flush carbon contribution during episodic growth. Can J For Res 30:1296–1307CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Dickson RE, Tomlinson PT, Isebrands JG (2000b) Partitioning of current photosynthate to different chemical fractions in leaves, stems, and roots of northern red oak seedlings during episodic growth. Can J For Res 30:1308–1317CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Epron D, Dreyer E (1992) Effects of severe dehydration on leaf photosynthesis in Quercus petraea (Matt.) Liebl.: photosystem II efficiency, photochemical and nonphotochemical fluorescence quenching and electrolyte leakage. Tree Physiol 10:273–284CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Epron D, Dreyer E (1993) Photosynthesis of oak leaves under water stress: maintenance of high photochemical efficiency of photosystem II and occurrence of non-uniform CO2assimilation. Tree Physiol 13:107–117CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Hanson PJ, Dickson RE, Isebrands JG, Crow TR, Dixon RK (1986) A morphological index of Quercus seedling ontogeny for use in studies of physiology and growth. Tree Physiol 2:273–281CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Hiscox JD, Israelstam GF (1979) A method for the extraction of chlorophyll from leaf tissue without maceration. Can J Bot 57:1332–1334CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Isebrands JG, Tomlinson PT, Dickson RE (1994) Carbon fixation and allocation in northern red oak. In: Biology and silviculture of northern red oak in the north central region: a synopsis. Eds. J.G. Isebrands and R.E. Dickson. USDA For. Serv., Gen. Tech. Rep. NC-173, pp. 21–31
  10. Jacobs DF (2003) Nursery production of hardwood seedlings. Purdue University Department of Forestry and Natural Resources, Hardwood Tree Improvement and Regeneration Center, FNR-212. 8 pp
  11. Jacobs DF, Davis AS (2005) Genetic consideration in the operational production of hardwood nursery stock in the eastern United States. Native Plants J 6:4–13CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kleinschmit J (1993) Intraspecific variation of growth and adaptive traits in European oak species. Ann For Sci 50(Suppl. 1):166s–185sCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Kriebel HB (1993) Intraspecific variation of growth and adaptive traits in North American oak species. Ann For Sci 50(Suppl. 1):153s–165sCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Major JE, Mosseler A, Barsi DC, Campbell M, Rajora OP (2003) Morphometric, allometric, and developmentally adaptive traits in red spruce and black spruce. I. Species and seed-source variation. Can J For Res 33:885–896CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Marchin RM, Sage EL, Ward JK (2008) Population-level variation of Fraxinus americana(white ash) is influenced by precipitation differences across the native range. Tree Physiol 28:151–159CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Maxwell K, Johnson GN (2000) Chlorophyll fluorescence—a practical guide. J Exp Bot 51:659–668CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Parelle J, Brendel O, Jolivet Y, Dreyer E (2007) Intra- and interspecific diversity in the response to waterlogging of two co-occurring white oak species (Quercus robur and Q. petraea). Tree Physiol 27:1027–1034CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Ramírez-Valiente JA, Sánchez-Gómez D, Aranda I, Valladares F (2010) Phenotypic plasticity and local adaptation in leaf ecophysiological traits of 13 contrasting cork oak populations under different water availabilities. Tree Physiol 30:618–627CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Romero-Severson J, Aldrich P, Feng Y, Sun W, Michler C (2003) Chloroplast DNA variation of northern red oak (Quercus rubra L.) in Indiana. New Forest 26:43–49CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Rossini M, Panigada C, Meroni M, Colombo R (2006) Assessment of oak forest condition based on leaf biochemical variables and chlorophyll fluorescence. Tree Physiol 26:1487–1496CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. Sloan JL, Islam MA, Jacobs DF (2016) Reduced translocation of current photosynthate precedes changes in gas exchange for Quercus rubra seedlings under flooding stress. Tree Physiol 36:54–62CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Staudt M, Mandl N, Joffre R, Rambal S (2001) Intraspecific variability of monoterpene composition emitted by Quercus ilex leaves. Can J For Res 31:174–180Google Scholar

For further details log on website :

No comments:

Post a Comment

Mangrove Forest Management & Restoration

The Sabah Forestry Department has conserved most if not all Mangrove Forests under Class V for marine life conservation and as a natural me...