New Forests

, Volume 35, Issue 1, pp 1–14 | Cite as

Effects of flooding depth on growth, morphology and photosynthesis in Alnus japonica species



The present study deals with effects of flooding depth on growth, morphology and photosynthesis in Alnus japonica species thorough one field study and two controlled experiments. In the field study performed in Kushiro Mire, Hokkaido Island, Japan, tree heights and stem diameters decreased with an increase in water depth accompanied with the reduction of soil redox potential. In contrast, the rate of multiple stems per individual tree increased. In the controlled experiments for seedlings flooding suppressed the shoot elongation and biomass increment in roots. However, diameter increment around water levels, epicormic shoot development and adventitious root formation were enhanced in flooded seedlings. The photosynthetic rate and stomatal conductance of flooded seedlings also were lowered with an increase in flooding depth. The recovery of the reduced photosynthetic rate and stomatal conductance occurred simultaneously with the advancement of adventitious root formation in the flooded seedlings. These results indicate the importance of a series of morphological changes occurring on stems around water levels in flood tolerance in A. japonica species.


Adventitious roots Alnus japonica Flooding depth Photosynthesis 



We would like to thank Dr. Asayo Oda and Mr. Yoshiharu Minami for provided valuable assistance and collecting data in field works.


  1. Anderson PH, Pezeshki SR (2001) Effects of flood pre-conditioning on responses of three bottomland tree species to soil waterlogging. J Plant Physiol 158:227–233CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Angelov MN, Sung SS, Doon RL, Harms WR, Kormanik PP, Black CC Jr (1996) Long- and short-term flooding effects on survival and sink-source relationships of swamp-adapted tree species. Tree Physiol 16:477–484PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Armstrong J, Armstrong W (1999) Phragmites dieback: toxic effects of propionic, butyric and caproic acids in relation to pH. New Phytol 142:201–217CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Armstrong J, AfreenZobayed F, Armstrong W (1996) Phragmites dieback: sulphide- and acetic acid-induced bud and root death, lignifications, and blockages within aeration and vascular systems. New Phytol 134:601–614CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Buchel HB, Grosse W (1990) Localization of the porous partition responsible for pressurized gas transport in Alnus glutinosa (L.) Gaertn. Tree Physiol 6:247–256PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Dat JF, Capelli N, Folzer H, Bourgeade P, Badot P (2004) Sensing and signalling during plant flooding. Plant Physiol Biochem 42:273–282PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. DeLaune RD, Pezeshki SR, Lindau CW (1998) Influence of soil redox potential on nitrogen uptake and growth of wetland oak species. J Plant Nutr 21:757–768Google Scholar
  8. Eklund L, Little CHA (1996) Laterally applied ethrel causes local increases in radial growth and indole-3-acetic acid concentration in Abies balsamea shoots. Trees 16:509–513Google Scholar
  9. Fujita H, Kikuchi T (1986) Differences in soil condition of alder and neighboring elm stands in a small tributary basin. Jap J Ecol 35:565–573Google Scholar
  10. Gill CJ (1975) The ecological significance of adventitious rooting as a response to flooding in woody species, with special reference to Alnus glutinosa (L.) Gaertn. Flora 164:85–97Google Scholar
  11. Grinchko VP, Glick BR (2001) Ethylene and flooding stress in plants. Plant Physiol Biochem 39:1–9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Grosse W, Frye J, Lattermann S (1992) Root aeration in wetland trees by pressurized gas transport. Tree Physiol 10:285–295PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Grosse W, Schulte A, Fujita H (1993) Pressurized transport in two Japanese alder species in relation to their habitats. Ecol Res 8:151–158CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Hook DD (1984) Adaptation to flooding with fresh water. In: Kozlowski TT (ed) Flooding and plant growth. Academic press, Inc., Orland, pp 265–294Google Scholar
  15. Islam MA, MacDonald SE (2004) Ecophysiological adaptations of black spruce (Picea mariana) and tamarack (Larix laricina) seedlings to flooding. Trees 18:35–42Google Scholar
  16. Jackson MB, Drew MC (1984) Effects of flooding on growth and metabolism of herbaceous plants. In: Kozlowski TT (ed) Flooding and plant growth. Academic Press, Inc., Orland, pp 47–128Google Scholar
  17. Kozlowski TT (1984a) Event, causes and impacts of flooding. In: Kozlowski TT (ed) Flooding and plant growth. Academic press, Inc., Orland, pp 1–5Google Scholar
  18. Kozlowski TT (1984b) Response of woody plants to flooding. In: Kozlowski TT (ed) Flooding and plant growth. Academic press, Inc., Orland, pp 129–163Google Scholar
  19. Kozlowski TT (1997) Responses of woody plants to flooding and salinity. Tree Physiol Monogr 1:1–29Google Scholar
  20. Kozlowski TT, Pallardy SG (1997) Growth control in woody plants. Academic Press, Inc., San Diego TokyoGoogle Scholar
  21. Kozlowski TT, Kramer PJ, Pallardy SG (1991) Soil aeration, compaction, and flooding. In: Kozlowski TT, Kramer PJ, Pallardy SG (eds) The physiological ecology of woody plants. Academic Press, Inc., San Diego Tokyo, pp 303–337Google Scholar
  22. Kozlowski TT, Pallardy SG, Kramer PJ (1996) Physiology of woody plants. Academic Press, Inc., San DiegoGoogle Scholar
  23. Little CHA, Pharis RP (1995) Hormonal control of radial and longitudinal growth in the tree stem. In: Gartner BL (ed) Plant stems: physiology and functional morphology. Academic Press, Inc., San Diego Tokyo, pp 281–319Google Scholar
  24. Nakamura F, Jitsu M, Kameyama S, Mizugaki S (2002) Changes in riparian forests in the Kushiro Mire, Japan, associated with stream channelization. River Res Appl 18:65–79CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Pennington MR, Walters MB (2006) The response of vegetation zonation and soil redox potential in created wetlands. Forest Ecol Manag 233:1–10CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Pezeshki SR (2001) Wetland plant responses to soil flooding. Env Exp Bot 46:299–312CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Ponnamperuma FN (1984) Effects of flooding on soils. In. Kozlowski TT (ed) Flooding and plant growth. Academic press, Inc., Orland, pp 10–46Google Scholar
  28. Schaffer B (1998) Flooding responses and water-use efficiency of subtropical and tropical fruit trees in an environmentally-sensitive wetland. Ann Bot 81:473–481CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. SenaGomes AR, Kozlowski TT (1980) Growth responses and adaptations of Fraxinus pennsylvanica seedlings to flooding. Plant Physiol 66:267–271CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Shinshoh H (1985) Alder forests in Kushio Shitsugen marshes (in Japanese). North For 37:92–97Google Scholar
  31. Terazawa K, Kikuzawa K (1994) Effect of flooding on leaf dynamics and other seedling responses in flood-torelant Alnus japonica and flood-intorelant Betura platyphulla var. japonica Tree Physiol 14:251–261PubMedGoogle Scholar
  32. Terazawa K, Seiwa K, Usui G, Kikuzawa K (1989) Response of some deciduous tree seedlings under water saturated soil condition (●) growth, and morphological changes of stem and root (in Japanese). In: Abstracts of the 100th Transmeeting of Japanese Forest Society, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, 3–5 April 1989Google Scholar
  33. Topa MA, Cheeseman JM (1992) Effect of root hypoxia and a low P supply on relative growth, carbon dioxide exchange rates and carbon partitioning in Pinus serotina seedlings. Physiol Plant 86:136–144CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Tsukahara H, Kozlowski TT (1985) Importance of adventitious root to growth of flooded Platanus occidentalis seedlings. Plant Soil 88:123–132CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Vartapetian BB, Jackson MB (1997) Plant adaptation to anaerobic stress. Ann Bot 79(Suppl A):3–20Google Scholar
  36. Yamamoto F, Kozlowski TT (1987) Effects of flooding on growth, stem anatomy and ethylene production of Pinus halepensis seedlings. Can J For Res 17:69–79CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Yamamoto F, Sakata T, Terazawa K (1995a) Growth, morphology, stem anatomy and ethylene production in flooded Alnus japonica seedlings. IAWA J 16:47–59Google Scholar
  38. Yamamoto F, Sakata T, Terazawa K (1995b) Physiological, morphological and anatomical responses of Fraxinus mandshurica seedlings to flooding. Tree Physiol 15:713–719PubMedGoogle Scholar
  39. Zimmermann MH, Brown CL (1971) Primary growth. In: Zimmermann MH, Brown CL (eds) Trees, structure and function. Springer-Verlag, New York, Berlin, pp 1–60Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Forest Science, Faculty of AgricultureTottori UniversityKoyamaJapan

Personalised recommendations