, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 363–375 | Cite as

Anatomical responses of leaves of Black Locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) to urban pollutant gases and climatic factors

  • Farahnaz Rashidi
  • Adel Jalili
  • Sasan Babaie Kafaki
  • Khosro Sagheb-Talebi
  • John Hodgson
Original Paper


This study investigates responses in the leaf anatomy of Black Locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) to the atmospheric pollutants, SO2, NO2 and O3 and climate in Tehran. The anatomical variables studied include thickness of the leaf lamina and of its main constituent tissues and the length and density of stomata. We present evidence that, in response to urban air pollution, the spongy mesophyll layer is thinner, the upper cuticle of the leaf thicker and stomatal density and the ratio of palisade parenchyma to spongy parenchyma are increased. Similar responses were also detected in relation to a climatic gradient. Stomatal density and thickness of the leaf lamina and of its mesophyll layer were all higher under warmer drier conditions. This overlap in anatomical response to two very different suites of environmental variables may reflect a functional overlap between mechanisms designed to restrict water loss in dry climates and those that minimize the uptake of toxic gases in polluted habitats.


Leaf anatomy Climate Urban pollutant gases Black Locust, Tehran city 



The authors thank the Islamic Azad University Science and Research Branch for providing financial support for this project and Research Institute of Forest and Rangelands for technical support. Appreciation is extended to Ali Dargahi, who helped during the collection and analysis of samples, and to R. Azimi and F. Ghasemi for assistance in laboratory tests.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Farahnaz Rashidi
    • 1
  • Adel Jalili
    • 2
  • Sasan Babaie Kafaki
    • 1
  • Khosro Sagheb-Talebi
    • 2
  • John Hodgson
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Forestry, Science and Research BranchIslamic Azad UniversityTehranIran
  2. 2.Research Institute of Forest and RangelandsTehranIran
  3. 3.Department of ArchaeologyThe University of SheffieldSheffieldUK

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