, Volume 43, Issue 4, pp 567–574

Photosynthesis and photoinhibition after night chilling in seedlings of two tropical tree species grown under three irradiances


    • Kunming Division, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical GardenChinese Academy of Sciences
    • College of Life SciencesHebei University
  • K.-F. Cao
    • Kunming Division, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical GardenChinese Academy of Sciences

DOI: 10.1007/s11099-005-0089-8

Cite this article as:
Feng, Y. & Cao, K. Photosynthetica (2005) 43: 567. doi:10.1007/s11099-005-0089-8


We investigated the physiological effect of night chilling (CN) on potted seedlings of two tropical tree species, Calophyllum polyanthum and Linociera insignis, in Xishuangbanna, southwest China. Seedlings grown under 8, 25, and 50 % daylight for five months were moved to a 4–6 °C cold storage house for three consecutive nights, and returned to the original shaded sites during the day. CN resulted in strong suppression of photosynthesis and stomatal conductance for L. insignis, and reduced photorespiration rates, carboxylation efficiency, and maximum photochemical efficiency of photosystem 2 (PS2) at dawn and midday for both species. CN increased dawn and midday rates of non-photochemical quenching, and the contents of malondialdehyde and H2O2 for both species. CN also induced inactivation or destruction of PS2 reaction centres. The impacts of CN on tropical seedlings increased with the number of CN. Shading could significantly mitigate the adverse effects of CN for both species. After 3-d-recovery, gas exchange and fluorescence parameters for both species returned to pre-treatment levels in most cases. Thus CN induced mainly stomatal limitation of photosynthesis for L. insignis, and non-stomatal limitation for C. polyanthum. C. polyanthum was more susceptible to CN than L. insignis. Fog, which often occurs in Xishuangbanna, could be beneficial to chilling sensitive tropical seedlings in this area through alleviating photoinhibition or photodamage by reducing sunlight.

Additional key words

Calophyllum polyanthumcarboxylation efficiencychlorophyll fluorescencefogH2O2Linociera insignismalondialdehydereactive oxygen speciesstomatal conductance

Copyright information

© Institute of Experimental Botany, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Praha 2005