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Photosynthetic capacity of tropical montane tree species in relation to leaf nutrients, successional strategy and growth temperature

Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift
Författare Mirindi Eric Dusenge
Göran Wallin
Johanna Gårdsten
Felix Niyonzima
Lisa Adolfsson
Donat Nsabimana
Johan Uddling
Publicerad i Oecologia
Volym 177
Nummer/häfte 4
Sidor 1183-1194
ISSN 0029-8549
Publiceringsår 2015
Publicerad vid Institutionen för biologi och miljövetenskap
Sidor 1183-1194
Språk en
Länkar dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00442-015-3260-...
Ämnesord Montane rainforest · Photosynthesis model, Thermal acclimation, Tropical trees, SPAD
Ämneskategorier Botanik, Terrestrisk ekologi, Skogsvetenskap

Sammanfattning

Photosynthetic capacity of tree leaves is typically positively related to nutrient content and little affected by changes in growth temperature. These relationships are, however, often poorly supported for tropical trees, for which interspecific differences may be more strongly controlled by within-leaf nutrient allocation than by absolute leaf nutrient content, and little is known regarding photosynthetic acclimation to temperature. To explore the influence of leaf nutrient status, successional strategy and growth temperature on the photosynthetic capacity of tropical trees, we collected data on photosynthetic, chemical and morphological leaf traits of ten tree species in Rwanda. Seven species were studied in a forest plantation at mid-altitude (~1,700 m), whereas six species were studied in a cooler montane rainforest at higher altitude (~2,500 m). Three species were common to both sites, and, in the montane rainforest, three pioneer species and three climax species were investigated. Across species, interspecific variation in photosynthetic capacity was not related to leaf nutrient content. Instead, this variation was related to differences in within-leaf nitrogen allocation, with a tradeoff between investments into compounds related to photosynthetic capacity (higher in pioneer species) versus light-harvesting compounds (higher in climax species). Photosynthetic capacity was significantly lower at the warmer site at 1,700 m altitude. We conclude that (1) within-leaf nutrient allocation is more important than leaf nutrient content per se in controlling interspecific variation in photosynthetic capacity among tree species in tropical Rwanda, and that (2) tropical montane rainforest species exhibit decreased photosynthetic capacity when grown in a warmer environment.

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