Partitioning of water and nitrogen in co-occurring Mediterranean woody shrub species of different evolutionary history

Filella I., Peñuelas J. (2003) Partitioning of water and nitrogen in co-occurring Mediterranean woody shrub species of different evolutionary history. Oecologia. 137: 51-61.
Link
Doi: 10.1007/s00442-003-1333-1

Abstract:

We studied the interspecific and intraspecific variation in the development of water stress and in the use of different water and nitrogen sources during the spring (wet season) and summer (dry season) in a shrub community in NE Spain. We measured shoot water potentials, stable deuterium isotopic composition (δD) of xylem sap, leaf mass per area, leaf N and C concentrations, gas exchange, leaf δ13C, and leaf δ 15N of the dominant species (Quercus coccifera, Arbutus unedo, Pistacia lentiscus, Erica multiflora, Globularia alypum). The δD, the δ13C and the shoot water potential values showed diurnal, seasonal, intraspecific and interspecific variation in the source and use of water. There was also seasonal, intraspecific and interspecific variation in the foliar δ15N and N concentrations. In summer, some species (A. unedo, P. lentiscus and E. multiflora) presented significantly different δD values in morning and afternoon measurements likely indicating that they used different sources of water during the day, and a dual root system in these species. We conjecture that dew may be one of these water sources. Species predawn water potential was negatively correlated with species xylem water δD. There was also a positive correlation between δ 13C and δD in P. lentiscus, species for which we took additional samples from nearby sites. These results suggest that the access to water from greater depths allowed the maintenance of more favourable plant water supply. Multivariate principal component analysis based on the studied hydrological and isotope variables clearly separated the seasons (wet spring and dry summer) and the species. The species resulted separated according to their evolutionary history (Pre-Mediterranean and Mediterranean) and the associated root and functional traits. These results show water (and nitrogen) partitioning among coexisting species of the same functional type (Mediterranean woody shrubs). They also show the great intraspecific plasticity of responses to resource availability.

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Indications of hydraulic lift by Pinus halepensis and its effects on the water relations of neighbour shrubs.

Filella I, Peñuelas J (2003) Indications of hydraulic lift by Pinus halepensis and its effects on the water relations of neighbour shrubs. Biologia Plantarum 47:209-214.

Passeig ecofisiològic per l'espai i pel temps: l'estudi de les alteracions produïdes pels canvis climàtics i atmosfèrics en l'estructura i el funcionament de les plantes i dels ecosistemes terrestres.

Peñuelas J, Filella I, Estiarte M, Llusià J, Ogaya R, Ribas A, Llorens L, Mangiron M, Munné-Bosch S, Bruna P, Prieto P, Asensio D, Sardans J, Serrano L, Oliveira G, Castells E, Rodà F, Lloret F, Terradas J (2003) Passeig ecofisiològic per l'espai i pel temps: l'estudi de les alteracions produïdes pels canvis climàtics i atmosfèrics en l'estructura i el funcionament de les plantes i dels ecosistemes terrestres. Treballs de la Societat Catalana de Biologia 54:65-84.

Diurnal and seasonal variations in the photosynthetic performance and water relations of two co-occurring Mediterranean shrubs, Erica multiflora and Globularia alypum

Llorens L., Peñuelas J., Filella I. (2003) Diurnal and seasonal variations in the photosynthetic performance and water relations of two co-occurring Mediterranean shrubs, Erica multiflora and Globularia alypum. Physiologia Plantarum. 118: 84-95.
Link
Doi: 10.1034/j.1399-3054.2003.00101.x

Abstract:

Diurnal and seasonal fluctuations in the photosynthetic performance and water relations of two co-occurring Mediterranean shrubs, Erica multiflora and Globularia alypum were monitored throughout two consecutive years at Garraf Natural Park in north-east Spain. Leaf gas exchange rates, chlorophyll fluorescence and shoot water potentials were measured once each season. Leaf nitrogen and carbon concentrations, leaf δ13C and δ15N and specific leaf area (SLA) were also measured once a year (August) on well developed mature leaves. Globularia alypum experienced seasonal fluctuations in their water potential, with the lowest values recorded in summer, whereas E. multiflora did not show significant differences in water potential among seasons. Moreover, lower water potentials were found in G. alypum than in E. multiflora throughout the entire study, suggesting that the latter behaved as a drought-avoiding species, whereas the former tolerated lower water potentials. In both species, maximum leaf gas exchange rates were observed in autumn and secondarily in spring; in contrast, photosynthetic and transpiration rates reached absolute minima in summer. The stronger fluctuations in water potential and leaf gas exchange rates found in G. alypum compared to E. multiflora, suggest that G. alypum is, sensu Levitt (1980), a water spender, whereas E. multiflora is a water conservative. This hypothesis is further supported by a higher integrated water-use efficiency (higher δ13C values) and a higher degree of sclerophylly (lower SLA) in E. multiflora in comparison with G. alypum. Globularia alypum showed higher leaf gas exchange rates and higher predawn potential photochemical efficiency (Fv/Fm) than E. multiflora during most of the study. In spring and autumn, predawn Fv/Fm values were within the optimal range, whereas chronic photoinhibition in summer and winter was detected in both species. However, whereas both species could maintain positive photosynthetic rates in winter, frequent negative values were found in summer, suggesting higher levels of stress during the drought period. These results together with the high correlations that were found between the net photosynthetic rates and several parameters of water availability (accumulated rainfall, soil moisture or midday water potential) provided further evidence of the key role of water availability in the regulation of the photosynthetic rates in these Mediterranean species. Warmer and drier conditions in future decades, as a consequence of climate change, may alter the present, slight competitive advantage of G. alypum and the fitness of both shrub species within semi-arid Mediterranean environments.

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Efectos del cambio climático (sequía y calentamiento) en los procesos del suelo de ecosistemas arbustivos.

Estiarte M, Peñuelas J, Llorens L, Rodà F, Prieto P, Bruna P, Beier C, Schmidt I, Nielsen T, Emmet B, Sowerby A, Tietema A, Gorissen A, Filella I, Llusià J, Lloret F, Terradas J (2003) Efectos del cambio climático (sequía y calentamiento) en los procesos del suelo de ecosistemas arbustivos. In VII Congreso Nacional de la Asociación Española de Ecología Terrestre. AEET-CREAF. Soft Congres, Barcelona, pp. 835-857.

Efectes del canvi climàtic (eixut i escalfament) en una brolla del Garraf: resultats dels projectes Climoor i Vulcan.

Estiarte M, Peñuelas J, Llorens L, Bruna P, Prieto P, Filella I, Llusià J, Lloret F, Rodà F (2003) Efectes del canvi climàtic (eixut i escalfament) en una brolla del Garraf: resultats dels projectes Climoor i Vulcan. In IV Trobada d'Estudiosos del Garraf. Diputació de Barcelona, Barcelona, pp. 65-74.

Deuterium labelling of roots provides evidence of deep water access and hydraulic lift by Pinus nigra in a Mediterranean forest of NE Spain

Peñuelas J., Filella I. (2003) Deuterium labelling of roots provides evidence of deep water access and hydraulic lift by Pinus nigra in a Mediterranean forest of NE Spain. Environmental and Experimental Botany. 49: 201-208.
Link
Doi: 10.1016/S0098-8472(02)00070-9

Abstract:

We studied the tree access to deep water sources and the possibility of hydraulic lift from the deep roots of a Pinus nigra tree to the shallow soil layers in a Mediterranean forest of NE Spain. We also studied the use of hydraulically lifted water by neighboring trees, shrubs, and sprouts. We enriched the roots of a large P. nigra (10 m tall) with deuterium by accessing them from a below ground cave. During the next 3 days we measured stable deuterium isotopic composition of xylem sap, shoot predawn and midday water potentials, and the leaf δ13C and δ15N of the P. nigra tree, neighboring Quercus ilex ballota trees and sprouts, and Juniperus oxycedrus shrubs. The study was conducted both in dry summer and in wet spring. In summer, deuterated water absorbed by deep roots of P. nigra appeared in the stem water of neighboring plants and in surface soil. The most δD-enriched plant xylem sap was found in the enriched P. nigra tree, followed by the Q. ilex sprouts, the small Q. ilex trees and the surface soil (15 cm). All these trends disappeared in the wet spring season, when HDO only slightly appeared in the surface soil. The results show that the studied P. nigra tree accesses deep water source and conducts hydraulic lift in this Mediterranean forest in dry summer but not necessarily in wet spring. © 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

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Effects of climatic change on the phenology of butterflies in the northwest Mediterranean Basin

Stefanescu C., Penuelas J., Filella I. (2003) Effects of climatic change on the phenology of butterflies in the northwest Mediterranean Basin. Global Change Biology. 9: 1494-1506.
Link
Doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2486.2003.00682.x

Abstract:

Phenological changes in response to climatic warming have been detected across a wide range of organisms. Butterflies stand out as one of the most popular groups of indicators of climatic change, given that, firstly, they are poikilothermic and, secondly, have been the subject of thorough monitoring programmes in several countries for a number of decades. Here we provide for the first time strong evidence of phenological change as a consequence of recent climatic warming in butterflies at a Spanish site in the northwest Mediterranean Basin. By means of the widely used Butterfly Monitoring Scheme methodology, three different phenological parameters were analysed for the most common species to test for trends over time and relationships with temperature and precipitation. Between 1988 and 2002, there was a tendency for earlier first appearance dates in all 17 butterfly species tested, and significant advances in mean flight dates in 8 out of 19 species. On the other hand, the shape of the curve of adult emergence did not show any regular pattern. These changes paralleled an increase of 1-1.5°C in mean February, March and June temperatures. Likewise, a correlation analysis indicated the strong negative effect of spring temperature on phenological parameters (i.e. higher temperatures tended to produce phenological advances), and the opposite effect of precipitation in certain months. In addition, there was some evidence to indicate that phenological responses may differ between taxonomic lineages or species with similar diets. We discuss the consequences that these changes may have on species' population abundances, especially given the expected increase in aridity in the Mediterranean Basin caused by current climatic warming. We predict that varying degrees of phenological flexibility may account for differences in species' responses and, for multivoltine species, predict strong selection favouring local seasonal adaptations such as diapause phenomena or migratory behaviour.

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