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Database on phenological, ecophysiological and structural observations on seedlings of Fagus sylvatica provenances and report on plant performance and acclimation strategies

This study on plant performance resulted in an assessment of ecological variation on plant growth, phenology, ecophysiological processes on seedlings and saplings (offspring) of selected European beech populations under different silvicultural regimes. Seven seed sources of four beech provenances originating from Austrian, French, German and Italian sites were studied. Leaf photosynthetic and stomatal conductance response curves to a number of environmental conditions including light, temperature, CO2 concentrations were measured on seedlings and saplings under field conditions and under controlled conditions. Photosynthesis was analysed in accordance with the Farquhar’s model. Differences in ecophysiological responses among and within beech genotypes from different sites were analysed. Phenological characteristics, bud-burst and leaf unfolding, were assessed and the variation of growth parameters (plant height, stem diameter, biomass allocation) were studied in experimental mini-plots under field-like environmental conditions and in greenhouse experiments under controlled environment. The photosynthetic key parameters Vcmax and Jmax were closely related to the foliage nitrogen content (Nleaf) and with morphological characteristics such as leaf mass area (LMA). The optimum temperature was analyzed from the An-Ci curves at different temperature levels. Linear dependencies of temperature optima for the photosynthetic parameters, maximal carboxylation rate of RubisCO (Vcmax) and potential rate of electron transport (Jmax) to leaf mass area (LMA) were detected. The optimal temperature (Topt) for Vcmax and Jmax varied with leaf structural properties (LMA) and ranged from 32.0 to 38.1°C (Vcmax) and from 30.5 to 36.3 °C (Jmax). The variation of bud-burst timing among the different European beech populations observed at the same study site (under identical environmental conditions) demonstrates the influence of genetic traits. Significant differences in bud-durst dates between the European beech populations and no differences between seed sources of the different management regimes (l: low management intensity and h: high management intensity) could be detected. Beech populations with earlier bud-burst timing showed enhanced growth. Tree height and stem diameter development varied significantly between families and populations.

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Technische Universitaet Berlin
Koenigin-Luise-Strasse 22
14195 Berlin
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