Imperforate tracheary elements and vessels alleviate xylem tension under severe dehydration: insights from water release curves for excised twigs of three tree species

Kenichi Yazaki, Delphis F. Levia, Akiko Takenouchi, Makoto Watanabe, Daisuke Kabeya, Naoko H. Miki, Haruhiko Taneda, Mayumi Y. Ogasa, Michio Oguro, Shin Taro Saiki, Hiroyuki Tobita, Kenji Fukuda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Premise: Water stored in the xylem of woody plants is important for supporting the transpiration stream under prolonged drought, yet the source of stored water within the xylem during drought remains unclear. Insights into xylem water utilization during drought will uncover the adaptation strategies of the test species to stress. Methods: To fill the existing knowledge gap, we excised twigs of Abies firma (Japanese fir, conifer), Cercidiphyllum japonicum (katsura tree, diffuse-porous) and Quercus serrata (konara oak, ring-porous) to quantify interspecific variation of water transfer in xylem corresponding with increasing cumulative water release (CWR) using micro x-ray computed tomography and cryo-SEM. Results: For all species studied, the main components of water storage within the operating range of water potential were not living cells but cavitation release and capillaries. Abies firma maintained water in the earlywood-like cells, for possible maintenance of the transpiration stream. Cercidiphyllum japonicum maintained water in its vessels over 200 kg m-3 of CWR, while Q. serrata lost most of its water in vessels with increasing CWR up to 100 kg m-3. Cercidiphyllum japonicum exhibited a higher water storage capacity than Q. serrata. Under high CWR, narrow conduits stored xylem water in C. japonicum and imperforate tracheary elements in Q. serrata. Conclusions: Among the species examined, increasing CWR appears to indicate differential utilization of stored water in relation to variation of xylem structure, thereby providing insight into the interspecific responses of tree species to drought.

Original languageEnglish
JournalApplications in Plant Sciences
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • Abies
  • Cercidiphyllum
  • Quercus
  • capacitance
  • cryo-SEM
  • micro focus x-ray CT
  • water storage
  • xylem structure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Plant Science

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    Yazaki, K., Levia, D. F., Takenouchi, A., Watanabe, M., Kabeya, D., Miki, N. H., Taneda, H., Ogasa, M. Y., Oguro, M., Saiki, S. T., Tobita, H., & Fukuda, K. (Accepted/In press). Imperforate tracheary elements and vessels alleviate xylem tension under severe dehydration: insights from water release curves for excised twigs of three tree species. Applications in Plant Sciences. https://doi.org/10.1002/ajb2.1518