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Forests 2017, 8(11), 406; https://doi.org/10.3390/f8110406

Wild Apple Growth and Climate Change in Southeast Kazakhstan

1
Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, University of Arizona, 1215 W. Lowell St., Tucson, AZ 85721, USA
2
Z.H. Zhiembaev Research Institute of Plant Protections and Quarantine, Almaty 050070, Kazakhstan
3
U.S. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA
4
U.S. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Missoula, MT 59801, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 August 2017 / Revised: 20 October 2017 / Accepted: 22 October 2017 / Published: 26 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tree-Ring Records of Climatic Impacts on Forests)
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Abstract

Wild populations of Malus sieversii [Ldb.] M. Roem are valued genetic and watershed resources in Inner Eurasia. These populations are located in a region that has experienced rapid and on-going climatic change over the past several decades. We assess relationships between climate variables and wild apple radial growth with dendroclimatological techniques to understand the potential of a changing climate to influence apple radial growth. Ring-width chronologies spanning 48 to 129 years were developed from 12 plots in the Trans-Ili Alatau and Jungar Alatau ranges of Tian Shan Mountains, southeastern Kazakhstan. Cluster analysis of the plot-level chronologies suggests different temporal patterns of growth variability over the last century in the two mountain ranges studied. Changes in the periodicity of annual ring-width variability occurred ca. 1970 at both mountain ranges, with decadal-scale variability supplanted by quasi-biennial variation. Seascorr correlation analysis of primary and secondary weather variables identified negative growth associations with spring precipitation and positive associations with cooler fall-winter temperatures, but the relative importance of these relationships varied spatially and temporally, with a shift in the relative importance of spring precipitation ca. 1970 at Trans-Ili Alatau. Altered apple tree radial growth patterns correspond to altered climatology in the Lake Balkhash Basin driven by unprecedented intensified Arctic Oscillations after the late 1970s. View Full-Text
Keywords: wild fruit wood forest; Malus sieversii; dendrochronology; climate change; Central Asia wild fruit wood forest; Malus sieversii; dendrochronology; climate change; Central Asia
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Panyushkina, I.P.; Mukhamadiev, N.S.; Lynch, A.M.; Ashikbaev, N.A.; Arizpe, A.H.; O’Connor, C.D.; Abjanbaev, D.; Mengdіbayeva, G.Z.; Sagitov, A.O. Wild Apple Growth and Climate Change in Southeast Kazakhstan. Forests 2017, 8, 406.

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