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Shoot hydraulic characteristics, plant water status and stomatal response in olive trees under different soil water conditions

AuthorsTorres Ruiz, José Manuel ; Díaz-Espejo, Antonio ; Morales Sillero, Ana; Martín Palomo, Mª José; Mayr, Stephan; Beikircher, Barbara; Fernández Luque, José Enrique
Vulnerability to drought-induced embolism
Water stress
Xylem anatomy
Issue Date2013
PublisherKluwer Academic Publishers
CitationPlant and Soil 373: 77-87 (2013)
AbstractAims: To evaluate the impact of the amount and distribution of soil water on xylem anatomy and xylem hydraulics of current-year shoots, plant water status and stomatal conductance of mature 'Manzanilla' olive trees. Methods: Measurements of water potential, stomatal conductance, hydraulic conductivity, vulnerability to embolism, vessel diameter distribution and vessel density were made in trees under full irrigation with non-limiting soil water conditions, localized irrigation, and rain-fed conditions. Results: All trees showed lower stomatal conductance values in the afternoon than in the morning. The irrigated trees showed water potential values around -1.4 and -1.6 MPa whereas the rain-fed trees reached lower values. All trees showed similar specific hydraulic conductivity (K s) and loss of conductivity values during the morning. In the afternoon, K s of rain-fed trees tended to be lower than of irrigated trees. No differences in vulnerability to embolism, vessel-diameter distribution and vessel density were observed between treatments. Conclusions: A tight control of stomatal conductance was observed in olive which allowed irrigated trees to avoid critical water potential values and keep them in a safe range to avoid embolism. The applied water treatments did not influence the xylem anatomy and vulnerability to embolism of current-year shoots of mature olive trees.
Identifiersdoi: 10.1007/s11104-013-1774-1
issn: 0032-079X
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