soil water potential
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HortScience ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 57 (1) ◽  
pp. 118-125
Aidan Kendall ◽  
Carol A. Miles ◽  
Travis R. Alexander ◽  
Edward Scheenstra ◽  
Gabriel T. LaHue

Irrigation water productivity is a priority for sustainable orchard management as water resources become more limiting. This study evaluated reduced irrigation (RI) as a management strategy for cider apple (Malus domestica Borkh.) production in 2019 and 2020 in northwestern Washington, which has a Mediterranean climate and averages 14.1 cm of precipitation from June to September. RI was evaluated on three cider apple cultivars, Dabinett, Porter’s Perfection, and Golden Russet, in their third and fourth leaf. Stem water potential (stem ψ) was measured weekly throughout the growing season to monitor water stress and implement the RI treatment: irrigation would be applied when stem ψ values dropped below −1.5 MPa, a threshold indicative of moderate water stress in apples. Soil water potential was monitored throughout the season, vegetative growth was assessed by measuring shoot length and non-destructive imaging of the plant canopy using lateral photography, and yield, fruit quality, and juice quality were measured at harvest. Moderate water stress as indicated by stem ψ did not occur either year, thus irrigation was never applied to the RI treatment plots. There was a negative relationship between average stem ψ and both yield and air temperature (P < 0.0001 for each); as yield increased by 5.9 kg per tree or temperature increased by 3.3 °C, stem ψ decreased by 0.1 MPa. The juice quality attributes of the three cultivars in this study were similar to their historic measures at this site and there were no differences due to irrigation treatment, likely because trees did not reach the threshold to induce physiological stress. Both years, trees in the RI treatment did not differ from the control treatment in vegetative growth, fruit yield, juice yield, or any juice quality attribute, but weight per fruit decreased by 7 g, and fruit firmness (measured only in 2020) increased by 2 N. Results from this study indicate that fruit yield and quality in an establishing orchard can be maintained when irrigation is reduced relative to crop water requirements that are estimated from a calculated water balance or relative to conventional grower practices for this region. This finding highlights the benefits of using plant water status to schedule irrigation.

2021 ◽  
Dongmei Yang ◽  
Xiaolin Wang ◽  
Mengqi Yin ◽  
Yongjiang Zhang ◽  
Guoquan Peng ◽  

We derived a steady-state model of whole root pressure generation through the combined action of all parallel segments of fine roots. This may be the first complete analytical solution for root pressure, which can be applied to complex roots/shoots. The osmotic volume of a single root is equal to that of the vessel lumen in fine roots and adjacent apoplastic spaces. Water uptake occurs via passive osmosis and active solute uptake (J_s^*, osmol s-1), resulting in the osmolal concentration Cr (mol·kg-1 of water) at a fixed osmotic volume. Solute loss occurs via two passive processes: radial diffusion of solute Km (Cr-Csoil), where Km is the diffusional constant and Csoil is the soil-solute concentration) from fine roots to soil and mass flow of solute and water into the whole plant from the end of the fine roots. The proposed model predicts the quadratic function of root pressure P_r^2+bP_r+c=0, where b and c are the functions of plant hydraulic resistance, soil water potential, solute flux, and gravitational potential. The present study investigates the theoretical dependencies of Pr on the factors detailed above and demonstrates the root pressure-mediated distribution of water through the hydraulic architecture of a 6.8-m-tall bamboo shoot.

2021 ◽  
Vol 1 (1) ◽  
Diana J. Cisneros-de la Cruz ◽  
Laura Yáñez-Espinosa ◽  
Casandra Reyes-García ◽  
Roberth Us-Santamaría ◽  
José Luis Andrade

Background: Mangrove plant species have distinctive anatomical and physiological responses to cope with a wide range of salinities and inundations. These strategies pertain a safe and efficient water use and transport, essential for survival. Questions: How are the anatomical and physiological attributes of the hydraulic architecture of seedlings and adults of Rhizophora mangle? what are the changes in hydraulic architecture of seedlings and adults of R. mangle in contrasting microenvironments? Studied species: Rhizophora mangle L. (Rhizophoraceae). Study site and dates: Scrub and fringe mangroves in Ria Celestún Biosphere Reserve, during the rainy season of 2013 (July to October). Methods: Hydraulic conductivity and leaf water potential, as well as xylem vessel density, length, transversal and radial diameter, and area were measured for seedlings and adults from both sites. The prevailing environmental conditions (soil water potential, salinity, photon flux density, air temperature and relative humidity) were also characterized. Results: A safer hydraulic conduction system, with narrow and more grouped vessels, was observed in seedlings than in adults of R. mangle in both sites. Adult individuals from the scrub mangrove, in the hyper saline microenvironment, had a safer hydraulic conduction system than adults in the fringe mangrove. Conclusions: The seedling stage of R. mangle showed a safer hydraulic system than adults in both types of mangroves. However, over time this hydraulic conduction system could become more efficient or remain safe depending on the microenvironment in which individuals are growing.

Daniel Johnson ◽  
Gabriel G Katul ◽  
Jean-Christophe Domec

Water inside plants forms a continuous chain from water in soils to the water evaporating from leaf surfaces. Failures in this chain result in reduced transpiration and photosynthesis and these failures are caused by soil drying and/or cavitation-induced xylem embolism. Xylem embolism and plant hydraulic failure share a number of analogies to “catastrophe theory” in dynamical systems. These catastrophes are often represented in the physiological and ecological literature as tipping points or alternative stable states when control variables exogenous (e.g. soil water potential) or endogenous (e.g. leaf water potential) to the plant are allowed to slowly vary. Here, plant hydraulics viewed from the perspective of catastrophes at multiple spatial scales is considered with attention to bubble expansion (i.e. cavitation), organ-scale vulnerability to embolism, and whole-plant biomass as a proxy for transpiration and hydraulic function. The hydraulic safety-efficiency tradeoff, hydraulic segmentation and maximum plant transpiration are examined using this framework. Underlying mechanisms for hydraulic failure at very fine scales such as pit membranes, intermediate scales such as xylem network properties and at larger scales such as soil-tree hydraulic pathways are discussed. Lacunarity areas in plant hydraulics are also flagged where progress is urgently needed.

Maya Sharma

The US pacific northwest recorded its highest temperature in late June 2021. The three-day stretch of scorching heat had a devastating effect on not only the residents of the state, but also on the crops thus impacting the food supply-chain. It is forecasted that streaks of 100-degree temperatures will become common. Farmers will have to adapt to the changing landscape to preserve their crop yield and profitability. A research collaborative consisting of researchers and academicians in Eastern Washington led by a pioneering startup has setup a 16.9-acre Honeycrisp Apple Smart Orchard in Grandview, WA as a laboratory to study the environmental and plant growth factors in real-time using modern computational tools and techniques like IoT (Internet of Things), Edge and Cloud Computing, and Drone and LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) imaging. The computational analysis is used to develop guidelines for precision agriculture for orchard blocks to address plant growth issues scientifically and in a timely fashion. The analysis also helps in creating risk-mitigation strategies for severe weather events while helping prepare farmers to maximize crop yield and profitability per acre. I was fortunate to gain access to the terabytes of farm data related to the weather, soil, water, tree, and canopy health, to analyze and formulate recommendations for the farmers that can be adopted nationwide for different crops and weather conditions. This paper discusses the different streams of farm data that were analyzed (ex. soil moisture, soil water potential, and sap flow) and the development of the framework to use data to convert insights into actionable steps. For example, the use of sensors can inform a farmer that their level of soil water potential is below threshold in a specific patch of the orchard, prompting them to turn on irrigation for the patch instead of the whole orchard. I estimate that using an IoT-sensor-based decision framework discussed in this paper, growers can save up to 55% of their water costs for the season. Using these insights, farmers can better manage their irrigation resources and labor, thus maximizing their crop yield and profits.

2021 ◽  
Vol 50 (10) ◽  
pp. 2913-2921
Mohd Syahmi Salleh ◽  
Mohd Shukor Nordin ◽  
Adam B. Puteh ◽  
Rozilawati Shahari ◽  
Zarina Zainuddin ◽  

Seed priming could be promoted as a potential alternative in alleviating drought stress challenges in rice cultivation. The present study was conducted as an attempt to verify potential performance of seed priming in improving seedling growth and harvestable grain yield of rice under reproductive stage drought stress (RS). Seed treatments involved were non-primed seeds as control (T1), hydro-primed (T2) and osmo-primed at -1.0 mPa with polyethylene glycol (PEG6000) (T3). Reproductive stage drought stress (RS) was imposed at soil water potential lower than -60 kPa. The well-watered plants served as control of the experiment. In general, seedling growth of T3 was better than T2 and T1 for all growth parameters in both planting seasons. Yield components were significantly lower in RS as compared to well-watered treatment (WW). The agronomic performance of primed seeds in T2 and T3 were not significantly different with T1 under both RS and WW for both planting seasons. As a conclusion, seed priming treatments used in this study was ineffective in improving agronomic performance of rice under RS. Therefore, other alternatives such as development of drought tolerant rice should be highly emphasized in order to minimize the impact of drought on growth and yield of rice plant.

Christophe Corona ◽  
Markus Stoffel ◽  
Jérôme Lopez Saez

AbstractThis paper reports on climate-induced growth changes in relict, low-altitude mountain pines (Pinus uncinata Mill. ex. Mirb.) from two refugia with cold microclimates located in the Northern French Alps. The P. uncinata stands analyzed grow at the lower bound of their ecological limit and are thus thought to be sensitive indicators of ongoing climate change. Using dendroecological approaches, we compare tree-ring growth at two closely spaced low-altitude stands in the Chartreuse massif (French Alps): La Plagne and Cirque de Bresson. La Plagne is a N-NW-exposed, ventilated slope with cold air circulating in the scree during summer, and the presence of sporadic permafrost as well as ground overcooling, whereas Cirque de Bresson is located on a small, S-exposed fan with sporadic avalanche activity. At both sites, growth responses of P. uncinata to changes in twentieth and twenty-first centuries temperature and precipitation conditions were investigated by means of moving correlation analyses. At Cirque de Bresson, a significant and rapid decline in tree-ring widths has been observed since the early 1990s. We attribute this decline to (i) increasing air temperatures at the beginning of the growing season (May–June) as well as to (ii) a decrease in soil water potential. At La Plagne, we do not detect any significant trend between the higher summer temperatures and tree growth, presumably as a result of the circulation of cold air in the scree slope, which is thought to maintain fresh and humid soil conditions and therefore favor tree growth. These forest stands provide prime examples on how dendroecology can contribute to the study of the dynamics and local variability of tree growth and climate change in relict forest populations with high ecological and conservation values.

2021 ◽  
Vol 9 (1) ◽  
pp. 3165-3173
Jiyanti Yana Saputri ◽  
Sugeng Prijono ◽  
Budi Prasetya

Climate change and the erratic and uneven rainfall distribution are the causes of reduced water available in the soil for plant needs to the transpiration process. This study aimed to determine coffee transpiration rate on dry land with rain harvesting techniques during the dry season, transition season, and rainy season and the factors that influence it. This study used field observation and laboratory analysis with two treatments, i.e. a bench terrace as a control (P1) and an L-shaped silt pit (P2). The variables observed were soil moisture content, transpiration rate, soil water potential, leaf water potential, and microclimate, especially temperature and sunlight intensity. The results showed that the transpiration rate of coffee plants was significantly different in the two treatments. The highest transpiration rate was found in P2 as much as 13.17 mm week-1 or equivalent to 1.88 mm day-1 during the dry season. Application of the L-shaped silt pit (P2) increased soil moisture content compared to the control (P1). This increase was followed by an increase in soil water potential and leaf water potential, which could reach the highest values of 0.18 bar and 0.49 bar, respectively. The transpiration decreases with the change of seasons from the dry season to the transitional season and the rainy season. This decrease is caused by changes in the microclimate, especially the temperature and sunlight intensity. Both are the most variables that affect the rate of transpiration.

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