Journal Article

Daily sap flow and maximum daily trunk shrinkage measurements for diagnosing water stress in early maturing peach trees during the post-harvest period

W. Conejero, J. J. Alarcón, Y. García-Orellana, J. M. Abrisqueta and A. Torrecillas

in Tree Physiology

Volume 27, issue 1, pages 81-88
Published in print January 2007 | ISSN: 0829-318X
Published online January 2007 | e-ISSN: 1758-4469 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/treephys/27.1.81
Daily sap flow and maximum daily trunk shrinkage measurements for diagnosing water stress in early maturing peach trees during the post-harvest period

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We compared the sensitivity of two continuously recorded plant-based water stress indicators (sap flow, SF, and maximum daily trunk shrinkage, MDS) to detect changes in the water status of 4-year-old early maturing peach trees (Prunus persica (L.) Batsch cv. Flordastar grafted on GF-677 peach rootstock) during a cycle of deficit irrigation and recovery. The feasibility of obtaining SF and MDS reference equations for use in irrigation scheduling during the post-harvest period was also studied in trees irrigated in excess of crop water requirements. We found that MDS was a more sensitive and reliable detector of changes in plant water status than SF, making it a more precise tool for irrigation scheduling. Baseline relationships between SF or MDS and the climatic variables (air temperature, vapor pressure deficit (VPD) and crop reference evapotranspiration (ETo)) were established, despite some scatter in the data. Among the climatic variables, SF correlated more closely with ETo, whereas MDS correlated more closely with mean daily air temperature (Tm). The fits of the regressions between MDS and ETo, midday air temperature and Tm for individual periods were better than those obtained in the overall regressions, confirming that daily stem diameter variations must be considered not only in the context of plant water status but also in the context of plant carbon status.

Keywords: baselines; irrigation scheduling; trunk diameter fluctuations; water relations

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry

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