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Title: Light-use efficiency of native and hybrid poplar genotypes at high levels of intracanopy competition

Author: Green, D. Scott; Kruger, Eric L.; Stanosz, Glen R,; Isebrands, J. G.;

Date: 2001

Source: Canadian Journal of Forest Research. Vol. 31 p. 1030-1037. (2001)

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: In southern Wisconsin, U.S.A., tree growth and associated canopy traits were compared among five native and hybrid genotypes of poplar (Populus spp.) in replicated, monoclonal stands planted at a 1 x 1 m spacing. The overall objective of this study was to assess clonal suitability to cultural conditions entailing high levels of intracanopy competition (such as high-density plantations or long rotations) and to identify selection criteria suitable to such conditions. Two of the clones were Populus deltoides Bartr., two were P. deltoides x Populus nigra L. (DN) crosses, and the fifth was a P. nigra x Populus maximowiczii A. Henry (NM) cross. In the third year after establishment, variation in aboveground biomass gain (ANBG) was analyzed in relation to canopy light interception (IPAR) and canopy light-use efficiency (LUE) during a 3l-day period when growing conditions were most favorable (late June through late July). ANBG in this interval varied by twofold among genotypes (2.76-5.78 Mg*ha-l), and it was highest in the two P. deltoides clones, followed by the NM and DN hybrids, respectively. Across genotypes, ANBG was unrelated to IPAR, which varied by only 5%. Instead, it was strongly and positively related (r2 = 0.99) to the twofold variation in LUE (1.06-2.22 g*MJ-1). Among measured canopy traits, the best predictor of LUE (r2 = 0.88) was an additive combination of factors associated to the optimization of canopy photosynthesis: LUE was negatively related to both the canopy light-extinction coefficient and compensation irradiance at the canopy base. We infer from these findings that poplar genotypes can vary considerably in LUE and, correspondingly, in the extent to which photosynthesis is optimized in dense canopies. Furthermore, the low LUE among hybrid genotypes at this level of intracanopy competition may reflect a bais in "tree improvement" efforts toward maximizing biomass production under conditions of relatively low competition.

Keywords: Wisconsin, LUE, IPAR, ANBG, canopy, Populus deltoides

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Green, D. Scott; Kruger, Eric L.; Stanosz, Glen R,; Isebrands , J. G. 2001. Light-use efficiency of native and hybrid poplar genotypes at high levels of intracanopy competition. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. Vol. 31 p. 1030-1037. (2001)


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