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Forests 2018, 9(1), 32; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9010032

Responses of Sap Flow of Deciduous and Conifer Trees to Soil Drying in a Subalpine Forest

1
Shenzhen Engineering Laboratory for Water Desalinization with Renewable Energy, School of Environment and Energy, Peking University Shenzhen Graduate School, Shenzhen 518055, China
2
Faculty of Environmental Horticulture, Minami Kyushu University, Miyakonojyo City, Miyazaki 885-0035, Japan
These authors contribute equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 3 December 2017 / Revised: 12 January 2018 / Accepted: 12 January 2018 / Published: 14 January 2018
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Abstract

Co-occurring species may adopt different water-use strategies to adapt to limited soil water. In Jiuzhaigou Valley, a continuous decline in soil water after an initial recharge from the thawing of snow and frozen soil in early spring was observed, but its effects on the sap flow dynamics of co-occurring species are not well understood. To clarify the species-specific water-use strategy, variations in sap flow and environmental conditions were investigated for two co-occurring species (Betula albosinensis Burk. and Pinus tabuliaeformis Carr.) in a mixed forest during a transition from the wet to dry period in 2014. Sap flow was measured using Granier-type thermal dissipation probes, and the soil-water content was measured using time-domain reflectometry probes for a successive period. Our study showed that B. albosinensis maintained relatively high transpiration until late into the season regardless of soil moisture, while the transpiration of P. tabuliformis showed a continuous decrease in response to seasonal soil drying. Sap flow for both species exhibited a marked hysteresis in response to meteorological factors and it was conditioned by the soil-water status, especially in the afternoon. We found that P. tabuliformis was sensitive to soil-water conditions, while for B. albosinensis, the sap flow was not very sensitive to changes in soil-water conditions. These results indicate that B. albosinensis could manage the water consumption conservatively under both dry and wet conditions. These results may have implications for evaluating the species-specific water-use strategy and carrying out proper reforestation practices. View Full-Text
Keywords: sap flow; water-use strategy; meteorological factors; soil-water availability; proper reforestation practice sap flow; water-use strategy; meteorological factors; soil-water availability; proper reforestation practice
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Yan, C.; Wang, B.; Zhang, Y.; Zhang, X.; Takeuchi, S.; Qiu, G.Y. Responses of Sap Flow of Deciduous and Conifer Trees to Soil Drying in a Subalpine Forest. Forests 2018, 9, 32.

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