Forest Sensitivity to the Cumulative Effects of Repeated Drought and Other Stresses

A special issue of Forests (ISSN 1999-4907). This special issue belongs to the section "Forest Ecophysiology and Biology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (29 February 2024) | Viewed by 2411

Special Issue Editors


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Plant Production and Technologies Department, Agriculture and Natural Sciences Faculty, Konya Food and Agriculture University, 42080 Konya, Turkey
Interests: plant stress physiology
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Departamento de Sistemas Agrícolas, Forestales y Medio Ambiente, Centro de Investigación y Tecnología Agroalimentaria de Aragón (CITA), Avda. Montañana 930, 50059 Zaragoza, Spain
Interests: plant physiology; plant biotechnology; plant ecology; plant biodiversity; hydraulics; climate; physiology; abiotic stress tolerance
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Climate change is inducing increasingly severe and frequent drought events. Often, these droughts are accompanied by higher temperatures in the form of heat waves, and also by an increased proliferation of biotic stresses in the form of diseases, as inset vectors are influenced by climate and human activities. Over time, repeated stress events may have one of two outcomes: adaptation and the development of acquired resilience, or the progressive degradation of plant performance and a decline in plant health. This is particularly evident in long-lived tree species, where the confluence of an increased frequency of drought events with other abiotic/biotic stresses is having profound effects on the viability of natural forests, managed forestry plantation, and urban trees. This Special Issue focuses on the monitoring, physiological, genetic, and biomolecular analysis of repeated multiple stresses on trees. Particular attention is paid to the interaction of drought, elevated [CO2], atmospheric pollutants such as ozone, and diseases such as Xylella fastidiosa. Remote sensing and physiological approaches to quantify the impact, and resilience to, repeated and intersecting stresses will assist in our understanding and mitigation of the impact on natural, semi-natural, and urban forests.

Dr. Dilek Killi
Dr. Domingo Sancho-Knapik
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • stress
  • drought
  • carbon dioxide
  • heat waves
  • urban forests
  • natural forests
  • ozone
  • disease
  • xylella
  • photosynthesis
  • stomatal conductance
  • spectro-radiometry
  • hyperspectral
  • multispectral
  • chlorophyll fluorescence
  • secondary metabolism
  • forest dieback

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

10 pages, 1952 KiB  
Communication
Physiological Activity of Quercus suber with a High Presence of Cerambyx welensii
by Israel Sánchez-Osorio, Gloria López-Pantoja, Raúl Tapias, Evangelina Pareja-Sánchez and Luis Domínguez
Forests 2024, 15(2), 282; https://doi.org/10.3390/f15020282 - 2 Feb 2024
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Abstract
The wood borer Cerambyx welensii Küster is a key contributor to Quercus open woodland (dehesa) decline. Among other factors, olfactory and visual cues could influence host colonisation by this species. In this study, we investigated whether the physiological performance and morphological features of [...] Read more.
The wood borer Cerambyx welensii Küster is a key contributor to Quercus open woodland (dehesa) decline. Among other factors, olfactory and visual cues could influence host colonisation by this species. In this study, we investigated whether the physiological performance and morphological features of Q. suber trees under summer stress are affected by C. welensii infestation. Additionally, we analysed the relation between morpho-physiological variables and the emission of monoterpenes that potentially mediate host selection by C. welensii. Thirty-six Q. suber trees with known monoterpene emission profiles were selected: 18 trees highly visited by C. welensii, and 18 neighbouring trees not visited or at least not visibly damaged by this wood borer. For each tree, we assessed photosynthesis, stomatal conductance, and transpiration during the early evening, and also the perimeter and crown projection. Trees visited by C. welensii maintained higher photosynthetic activity than non-visited trees (1.5–2.15 times) from 19:35 to 20:45 h. Visited trees had larger perimeters and smaller crown projection area-to-perimeter ratios than non-visited trees. Results suggest that, under stress conditions, the physiological performance of trees infested by C. welensii could have favoured foliar emission of certain monoterpenes influencing intraspecific host selection by this species. Full article
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13 pages, 2053 KiB  
Article
Ecophysiological Behavior of Fagus sylvatica L. Growing at Its Southern Distribution Limit: Insights for Understanding the Fate of the European Beech under Warmer and Dryer Growth Conditions
by Maria Prigoliti, Maria Teresa Chiofalo, Francesco Petruzzellis, Maria Assunta Lo Gullo and Patrizia Trifilò
Forests 2023, 14(10), 2058; https://doi.org/10.3390/f14102058 - 15 Oct 2023
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Abstract
In the last 20 years, a significant mortality of Fagus sylvatica L. (European beech) has been documented in central and northern European forests. Surprisingly, no beech die off occurred at the southern limit. This fact leads us to hypothesize that European beech populations [...] Read more.
In the last 20 years, a significant mortality of Fagus sylvatica L. (European beech) has been documented in central and northern European forests. Surprisingly, no beech die off occurred at the southern limit. This fact leads us to hypothesize that European beech populations growing at the southern limit of the distribution might have a significant phenotypic plasticity to better cope with low water availability and rising temperatures. To check this hypothesis, we evaluated the ecophysiological behavior of F. sylvatica growing along an altitudinal transect in Calabria (Italy). We selected three study sites (750 m a.s.l., 976 m a.sl. m a.s.l., 1450 m a.s.l.) showing narrow ranges of temperature, rainfall and air humidity. Trees growing at 976 m a.s.l. showed the highest stomatal conductance values during the entire experimental period. The lowest gas exchange and highest leaf mass area were recorded in plants growing at 750 m a.s.l. In the European beech growing at 1450 m a.s.l., higher vessel density, lower mean vessel diameter and higher vessel grouping index values were recorded. Overall, our results highlighted that the measured populations show a considerable phenotypic plasticity leading them to adjust anatomical and physiological traits in response to narrow ranges of environmental parameters. Despite that, the distribution of F. sylvatica seems to be limited to areas with a growing season rainfall of at least 400 mm and vapor pressure deficit (VPD) values < 3 kPa, which may represent the main environmental thresholds which strongly limit the beech growth and, therefore, influence the ability of this species to cope with future environmental conditions. Full article
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