Journal of Plant Research

, Volume 123, Issue 4, pp 563–576 | Cite as

Effects of seasonal and interannual variations in leaf photosynthesis and canopy leaf area index on gross primary production of a cool-temperate deciduous broadleaf forest in Takayama, Japan

  • Hiroyuki MuraokaEmail author
  • Nobuko Saigusa
  • Kenlo N. Nasahara
  • Hibiki Noda
  • Jun Yoshino
  • Taku M. Saitoh
  • Shin Nagai
  • Shohei Murayama
  • Hiroshi Koizumi
JPR Symposium Carbon cycle process in East Asia


Revealing the seasonal and interannual variations in forest canopy photosynthesis is a critical issue in understanding the ecological mechanisms underlying the dynamics of carbon dioxide exchange between the atmosphere and deciduous forests. This study examined the effects of temporal variations of canopy leaf area index (LAI) and leaf photosynthetic capacity [the maximum velocity of carboxylation (V cmax)] on gross primary production (GPP) of a cool-temperate deciduous broadleaf forest for 5 years in Takayama AsiaFlux site, central Japan. We made two estimations to examine the effects of canopy properties on GPP; one is to incorporate the in situ observation of V cmax and LAI throughout the growing season, and another considers seasonality of LAI but constantly high V cmax. The simulations indicated that variation in V cmax and LAI, especially in the leaf expansion period, had remarkable effects on GPP, and if V cmax was assumed constant GPP will be overestimated by 15%. Monthly examination of air temperature, radiation, LAI and GPP suggested that spring temperature could affect canopy phenology, and also that GPP in summer was determined mainly by incoming radiation. However, the consequences among these factors responsible for interannual changes of GPP are not straightforward since leaf expansion and senescence patterns and summer meteorological conditions influence GPP independently. This simulation based on in situ ecophysiological research suggests the importance of intensive consideration and understanding of the phenology of leaf photosynthetic capacity and LAI to analyze and predict carbon fixation in forest ecosystems.


AsiaFlux Takayama site Canopy and leaf photosynthesis Deciduous broadleaf forest Forest ecosystem carbon cycle Phenology 



We thank K. Kurumado and Y. Miyamoto of Takayama field station of Gifu University for their support of field investigations, and also the PEN project ( for the canopy photographs. Thanks are also due to S. Yamamoto of Okayama University, H. Kondo of AIST, J. D. Tenhunen of University of Bayreuth and R. W. Pearcy of UC Davis for discussion and encouragement. Also, we thank the anonymous reviewers who made valuable comments on the manuscript. This study was supported by the Ministry of Environment, Japan, as Global Environment Research Fund (S-1: Integrated Study for Terrestrial Carbon Management of Asia in the twenty-first Century Based on Scientific Advancement), JSPS twenty-first Century COE Program (Satellite Ecology), KAKENHI (JSPS, no. 18710006) to HM and JSPS-KOSEF-NSFC A3 Foresight Program (quantifying and predicting terrestrial carbon sinks in East Asia: toward a network of climate change research).


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Copyright information

© The Botanical Society of Japan and Springer 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hiroyuki Muraoka
    • 1
    Email author
  • Nobuko Saigusa
    • 2
  • Kenlo N. Nasahara
    • 3
  • Hibiki Noda
    • 1
  • Jun Yoshino
    • 4
  • Taku M. Saitoh
    • 1
  • Shin Nagai
    • 5
  • Shohei Murayama
    • 6
  • Hiroshi Koizumi
    • 7
  1. 1.Institute for Basin Ecosystem StudiesGifu UniversityGifuJapan
  2. 2.Center of Global Environmental ResearchNational Institute for Environmental StudyTsukubaJapan
  3. 3.Graduate School of Life and Environmental ScienceUniversity of TsukubaTsukubaJapan
  4. 4.Graduate School of EngineeringGifu UniversityGifuJapan
  5. 5.Research Institute for Global ChangeJapan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and TechnologyYokohamaJapan
  6. 6.National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST)TsukubaJapan
  7. 7.Department of Biology, Faculty of EducationWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan

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