Effect of water stress on monoterpene emissions from young potted holm oak ( Quercus ilex L.) trees
- 1) Host Institute Joint Research Centre, Environment Institute, TP051, 21020, Ispra (VA), USA
We investigated the effects of a short period of water stress on monoterpene emissions from Quercus ilex, a common oak species of the Mediterranean vegetation and a strong emitter of monoterpenes. The experiment was carried out on two young saplings with a branch enclosure system under semi-controlled conditions. Under unstressed conditions, small qualitative (cis-β-ocimene, trans-β-ocimene, β-caryophyllene and 1,8-cineol) and large quantitative (as much as 40% for the main compounds emitted) differences were observed between the two apparently similar trees. Nevertheless these differences did not affect the short-and long-term responses to temperature and water stress. Daily courses of emissions and gas exchanges were similar before and after the stress. During the most severe stress, emissions were reduced by a factor of two orders of magnitude and the log-linear relationship between emissions and temperature no longer existed. Photosynthesis and transpiration rates decreased as soon as the soil started to dry, whereas monoterpene emissions slightly increased for few days and then dropped when the daily CO2 balance approached zero. We concluded that under water stress monoterpene emissions were highly limited by monoterpene synthesis resulting from a lack of carbon substrate and/or ATP. After rewatering, both emissions and gas exchanges recovered immediately, but to a level lower than the pre-stress level. These results have many implications for monoterpene emission modelling in the Mediterranean area, since the dry period generally extends from May to August. If our results are confirmed by field experiments, water stress could lead to a large overestimation of the emissions under summer conditions, when the algorithms based on light and temperature would give high emission rates.
- 1 - sciences appliquees, technologies et medecines
- 2 - sciences biologiques et medicales
- 3 - sciences biologiques fondamentales et appliquees. psychologie
- 1 - Life Sciences ; 2 - Agricultural and Biological Sciences ; 3 - Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics