Photosynthetic response of poplar leaves at different developmental phases to environmental factors
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- Wu, Q., Liu, Y., Fang, S. et al. J. For. Res. (2017). doi:10.1007/s11676-016-0358-3
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With economic incentives and interests in fast-growing poplar trees for short-rotation production of fiber and veneer, many new poplar hybrids have been bred and planted in China, but how to match the new poplar clones to suitable sites and maintain their higher growth rates is still not very clear. In this study, the photosynthetic response of poplar leaves at various developmental stages during two seasons (summer and autumn) was explored and mechanistic models for the photosynthesis of poplar leaves at different developmental phases in response photosynthetic active radiation (PAR), temperature, and relatively humidity were established using the optimization software package 1st Opt. Mature poplar leaves in autumn had significantly higher photosynthetic capacity than leaves at other stages and seasons. Based on the models established for poplar leaves at different phases, the main limiting factors for photosynthesis at the research site were high PAR and temperature in the summer and low PAR in the autumn. Our results highlight the importance of selecting suitable sites, pruning and stand density control during the plantation development to maintain higher photosynthetic rates of poplar trees and to establish optimum cultivation patterns for various utilization of poplar plantations.