Special Issue "Tree Responses to Drought"

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (14 February 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Martin Bader
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Science, Auckland University of Technology, 34 St Paul St, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
Interests: tree physiology; plant-insect-interactions; plant-pathogen-interactions; global change ecology; biostatistics

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Drought-induced tree mortality is expected to increase in many regions under the current climate change scenarios, and shifts in forest community composition and structure driven by changes in interspecific and intraspecific competition are very likely to occur, as water becomes an increasingly limiting resource in the future. Owing to the large variation in the root, crown, and hydraulic architecture and physiological traits, trees respond to drought in various and complex ways, with a high degree of inter- and intra-species specificity. Moreover, the environmental requirements commonly change spatially across a species’ distribution range, and also temporally with life stage.

This Special Issue is calling for original and innovative papers on anatomical, morphological, molecular, and physiological tree responses to drought, at the a, organ, and whole-plant level, from the seedling phase to the mature stage.

Dr. Martin K.-F. Bader
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Embolism
  • Osmotic adjustment
  • Hydraulic failure
  • Carbon starvation

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessCommunication
Effect of Different Soil Treatments with Hydrogel on the Performance of Drought-Sensitive and Tolerant Tree Species in a Semi-Arid Region
Forests 2020, 11(2), 211; https://doi.org/10.3390/f11020211 - 13 Feb 2020
Abstract
Research Highlights: Although a number of forestry studies have found that hydrogel improves tree performance, studies that are located in semi-arid regions and that include a broad spectrum of tree species and the assessment of multiple physiological traits are lacking. Background and Objectives: [...] Read more.
Research Highlights: Although a number of forestry studies have found that hydrogel improves tree performance, studies that are located in semi-arid regions and that include a broad spectrum of tree species and the assessment of multiple physiological traits are lacking. Background and Objectives: The objective of the current study was to evaluate the effects of hydrogel treatments (with sawdust, organic fertilizer, compost, wheat straw, subsoil, or subsoil with a cobble cover) applied during planting on the survival, growth, and physiological traits of 20 tree species. Materials and Methods: In a field experiment (factorial design with seven treatments including a control, 20 species, and ten replicates) in a semi-arid part of Iran, we applied water alone (control) or water with hydrogel and other materials to recently planted samplings. We evaluated tree height, health, osmotic potential, and biochemical properties after 6 months and survival after 12 months. Results: Hydrogel treatment (regardless of other material) significantly improved the performance of drought-sensitive but not of drought-tolerant species. Conclusions: The benefits of hydrogel treatment are substantial for drought-sensitive species but are insignificant for drought-resistant species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tree Responses to Drought)
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Open AccessArticle
Shifts in Leaf and Branch Elemental Compositions of Pinus massoniana (Lamb.) Following Three-Year Rainfall Exclusion
Forests 2020, 11(1), 113; https://doi.org/10.3390/f11010113 - 16 Jan 2020
Abstract
We investigated changes in leaf and branch stoichiometry of Pinus massoniana caused by seasonal variation and experimental drought in response to a three-year manipulation of the rainfall exclusion. The results showed that (1) in response to rainfall exclusion manipulation, plant capacity to regulate [...] Read more.
We investigated changes in leaf and branch stoichiometry of Pinus massoniana caused by seasonal variation and experimental drought in response to a three-year manipulation of the rainfall exclusion. The results showed that (1) in response to rainfall exclusion manipulation, plant capacity to regulate leaf potassium (K) concentrations were notably lower than for leaf nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) concentrations. Thus, the plants modulated leaf N and P concentrations to improve water use efficiency, which take part in drought resistance mechanisms. Leaf K concentrations decreased continuously, having additional indirect negative effects on plant fitness. (2) The effects of seasonal variation on both the leaf K and P concentrations were significantly stronger than on leaf N concentrations. High leaf N and P concentrations and a low N:P ratio in the growing season improved the growth rate. (3) Principal component analyses (PCA) revealed that to adapt to drought, the plants regulated nutrient elements and then maintained certain stoichiometries as a capital to resist stress. Our results suggest that, on nutrient-poor soils, a lack of N or P (or both) would probably impede P. massoniana’s response to drought. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tree Responses to Drought)
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Open AccessArticle
Development of Fine Root Biomass of Two Contrasting Urban Tree Cultivars in Response to Drought Stress
Forests 2020, 11(1), 108; https://doi.org/10.3390/f11010108 - 15 Jan 2020
Abstract
Global climate change associated with rapid urbanization is projected to cause a worsening of environmental problems such as extreme heat and drought in cities. Urban trees play an essential role in improving air quality, fixing carbon, mitigating environmental degradation, and providing other ecosystem [...] Read more.
Global climate change associated with rapid urbanization is projected to cause a worsening of environmental problems such as extreme heat and drought in cities. Urban trees play an essential role in improving air quality, fixing carbon, mitigating environmental degradation, and providing other ecosystem services. However, limited research has been conducted on belowground processes, which hampers a comprehensive understanding of the effect of climate change and urbanization on urban tree growth. Fine roots (<2-mm diameter) are the primary pathway for water and nutrient uptake by plants, and they considerably contribute to the survival of urban trees under drought stress. In this study, we conducted a controlled experiment on the development of fine roots of Tilia cordata Mill ‘Greenspire’ and Tilia tomentosa Moench ‘Brabant’ in response to drought stress via soil coring. Our results indicate that the two cultivars have different strategies for coping with drought. Tilia tomentosa ‘Brabant’, originating from drier regions, gave allocation to deeper soil parts priority probably to obtain more water. On the other hand, Tilia cordata ‘Greenspire’, which is native in Central Europe, showed a negative response to water shortage and preferred a more horizontal development of fine roots rather than a vertical development. Long-term studies are needed to gain a better understanding of the belowground processes of urban trees to select tree species and cultivars which are appropriate for planting in major cities, particularly with regard to future climate change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tree Responses to Drought)
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