Annals of Forest Science

, 76:74 | Cite as

Xylogenesis of Pinus radiata D. Don growing in New Zealand

  • Bernadette NanayakkaraEmail author
  • Alan R. Dickson
  • Dean F. Meason
Research Paper
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Wood formation and tree adaptation to climate


Key Message

Pinus radiata D. Don growing in the central North Island of New Zealand did not show full winter cambial dormancy. While there was a brief cessation of cambial cell division during June (winter), cell wall thickening, secondary wall deposition, and lignification of tracheids continued throughout the year.


The xylogenesis of Pinus radiata showing only partial winter dormancy has not previously been reported.


To verify the absence of winter dormancy of P. radiata growing in the mild cool climate of the central North Island. To characterise the intra-annual dynamics of xylem cell formation (cell division and enlargement as well as cell wall thickening and lignification) and growth rates and identify the main drivers of growth.


Xylogenesis was monitored by microcore sampling while radial growth was monitored by dendrometers, which was then related to rainfall and temperature.


Xylem cell formation started by mid-July and continued until late May of the following year and peaked in spring and early autumn with minimum activity in Southern Hemisphere winter solstice (June 21, DOY 172). A higher correlation was found between the radial stem growth and temperature than with rainfall.


There was a winter period of about 30 days where there was no cambial cell division and the differentiation of latewood cells was stalled. This slow-down was supported by dendrometer measurements. This is likely due to the relatively mild winter temperatures and absence of drought conditions that are characteristic of the central North Island climate.

Key words

Dormancy Microcores Cambium Lignification Dendrometers Climate 



Authors acknowledge Alex Manig’s help in microcore sampling, Rod Brownlie for his expertise in dendrometers and Damien Sellier for helping in tree measurements and dendrometer data collation. Rowland Burdon, Lloyd Donaldson for critical review of manuscript and Rowland Burdon for useful suggestions. Michelle Harnett for editorial review.


This research was supported by the ‘Growing Confidence in Forestry’s Future’ research programme (C04X1306) which is jointly funded by the New Zealand Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and the New Zealand Forest Growers Levy Trust.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© INRA and Springer-Verlag France SAS, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.ScionRotoruaNew Zealand

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