Journal of Plant Research

, 122:611

Leaf-level plasticity of Salix gordejevii in fixed dunes compared with lowlands in Hunshandake Sandland, North China

  • Hua Su
  • Yonggeng Li
  • Zhenjiang Lan
  • Hong Xu
  • Wei Liu
  • Bingxue Wang
  • Dilip Kumar Biswas
  • Gaoming Jiang
Regular Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10265-009-0249-1

Cite this article as:
Su, H., Li, Y., Lan, Z. et al. J Plant Res (2009) 122: 611. doi:10.1007/s10265-009-0249-1
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Abstract

To cope with adverse environments, the majority of indigenous plants in arid regions possess adaptive plasticity after long-term evolution. Leaf-level morphology, anatomy, biochemical properties, diurnal water potential and gas exchange of Salix gordejevii distributed in fixed dunes and lowlands in Hunshandake Sandland, China, were compared. Compared to plants growing in lowlands, individuals of S. gordejevii in fixed dunes displayed much smaller leaf area (0.26 vs 0.70 cm2) and thicker leaves (leaf total thickness 148.59 vs 123.44 μm), together with heavier crust wax, denser hairs, and more compacted epidermal cells. Moreover, those growing in fixed dunes displayed stronger drought-resistance properties as evidenced by higher levels of proline (3.68 vs 0.20 mg g−1 DW) and soluble sugar (17.24 vs 14.49%). Furthermore, S. gordejevii in fixed dunes demonstrated lower water potential and lower light compensation point (28.8 vs 51.9 μmol m−2 s−1). Our findings suggest that morphological and/or anatomical plasticity in leaves has had great adaptive value for Salix in responding to deteriorating environments. The evidence provided here may facilitate the prediction of plant adaptation in community succession in sandy habitats.

Keywords

AnatomyDiurnal gas exchangeHunshandake SandlandMorphologyPhenotypic plasticitySalix gordejevii

Copyright information

© The Botanical Society of Japan and Springer 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hua Su
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yonggeng Li
    • 1
  • Zhenjiang Lan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hong Xu
    • 1
  • Wei Liu
    • 3
  • Bingxue Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Dilip Kumar Biswas
    • 1
  • Gaoming Jiang
    • 1
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Vegetation and Environmental Change, Institute of Botany Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Graduate University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Zeal Quest Scientific Technology Co. LtdShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China