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Open AccessArticle

Wild Apple Growth and Climate Change in Southeast Kazakhstan

Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, University of Arizona, 1215 W. Lowell St., Tucson, AZ 85721, USA
Z.H. Zhiembaev Research Institute of Plant Protections and Quarantine, Almaty 050070, Kazakhstan
U.S. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA
U.S. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Missoula, MT 59801, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2017, 8(11), 406;
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)
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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