, Volume 44, Issue 2, pp 192–198 | Cite as

Photosynthesis and transpiration ofPinus radiata D. Don under natural conditions in a forest stand

  • Udo Benecke


Gas-exchange ofPinus radiata foliage was measured with climatised cuvettes under natural light in the sun-crown of 8 m tall trees in a forest stand. Measurement began during a period of drought (ψWS −8.2 bar, ψWe −10.5 bar) and continued after elimination of soil moisture-deficit by watering (ψWS −0.5 bar, ψWe −5.5 bar). Soil and air moisture-deficits severely restricted gas-exchange. Watering resulted in an immediate decline in stomatal resistance (r s ) and an increase in net photosynthesis (P N ) of 13%. A slower progressive gas-exchange recovery occurred additionally during the 10 days after watering leading to a further decline inr s to 3 s cm-1 and an ultimate increase inP N of 38% when measured under comparable conditions at 8 mb v.p.d. Radiata pine had a high photosynthetic capacity with a measured maximumP N of 10.2 mg CO2 dm-2 h-1 total needle surface (11.4 mg CO2 g-1 DM h-1).

Optimum temperature forP N in March (late summer) occurred at ca. 18°C. Rate ofP N was 95% saturated at irradiance of 900 μE m-2 s-1 and 50% saturated at only 270 μE m-2 s-1. Radiata pine needles responded directly to changes in atmospheric humidity by adjusting their stomatal diffusive resistance. As a result, between 8 and 18 mb v.p.d.P N declined by 2.3% mb-1 increase.


Photosynthesis Natural Condition Late Summer Forest Stand Photosynthetic Capacity 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Udo Benecke
    • 1
  1. 1.Forest Research InstituteChristchurchNew Zealand

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