Formation and Structure of Compression Wood

  • L. A. DonaldsonEmail author
  • A. P. Singh
Part of the Plant Cell Monographs book series (CELLMONO, volume 20)


Compression wood is a hard, dark-coloured wood typically found on the lower side of leaning stems and branches in conifers, Taxus and Ginkgo. This reaction wood is the result of the geotropic response of the tree, usually resulting from stem lean or the effect of stem flexing caused by wind. Compression wood is characterised by anatomical and compositional features that vary in a continuum between normal wood and severe compression wood. The main characteristics of compression wood are altered cell wall structure especially increased microfibril orientation, presence of helical cavities and intercellular spaces and increased lignification associated with significant amounts of (1 → 4)-β-galactan in the secondary wall. This chapter briefly reviews the formation, structure and composition of compression wood with an emphasis on recent advances.


Secondary Wall Compression Wood Middle Lamella Juvenile Wood Microfibril Angle 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Deoxyribonucleic acid


Expressed sequence tag


Indole acetic acid


Cellulose microfibril angle


1-Naphthaleneacetic acid


1-N-naphthylphthalamic acid


Sodium dodecyl sulphate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis


Transmission electron microscopy


Xyloglucan endotransglycosylase


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.ScionRotoruaNew Zealand

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