Journal Article

Responses of two closely related oak species, <i>Quercus robur</i> and <i>Q. petraea</i>, to excess manganese concentrations in the rooting medium

Frank M. Thomas and Susanne Sprenger

in Tree Physiology

Volume 28, issue 3, pages 343-353
Published in print March 2008 | ISSN: 0829-318X
Published online March 2008 | e-ISSN: 1758-4469 | DOI:
Responses of two closely related oak species, Quercus robur and Q. petraea, to excess manganese concentrations in the rooting medium

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Quercus robur (L.) and Q. petraea (Matt.) Liebl. are European oak species that often grow in forest soils with high soluble manganese (Mn2+) concentrations. We tested the effects of Mn2+ at concentrations of 0.0024 mM (control), 0.24 mM (typical of acidic forest soils) and 1.2 mM (typical of forest soils under strongly reducing conditions) on the growth, tissue anatomy, foliar element concentrations, subcellular element distribution and gas exchange of solution-cultured seedlings. At the highest Mn2+ concentration, seedlings were grown with and without an elevated concentration (1.2 mM) of magnesium (Mg2+). At 0.24 mM Mn2+, foliar Mn concentrations were higher than observed in the field. Vacuoles of the leaf epidermis and mesophyll were the main sites of manganese accumulation. High nutrient solution Mn2+ concentration significantly lowered foliar iron (Fe) and Mg concentrations. Elevated Mg2+ concentration raised the foliar Mg concentrations to control values, but Fe concentrations and gas exchange remained depressed. In seedlings grown in the 1.2 mM Mn2+ treatment without elevated Mg2+, damage to the phloem of the petioles and a reduction in root mass were observed in both species. The effects on shoot and root growth were greatest in Q. petraea. Alleviation of manganese toxicity symptoms by Mg2+ in Q. petraea was less effective than in Q. robur. Our results suggest that the soil solution Mn2+concentrations that occur in European oak forests are unlikely to affect the distribution and performance of Q. robur and Q. petraea in the field.

Keywords: biomass partitioning; EDX analysis; gas exchange; iron; magnesium; phloem damage; root growth; toxicity

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry

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