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Keywords:

  • Ectomycorrhiza;
  • drought;
  • water relations;
  • photosynthesis;
  • mineral nutrition

summary

Mycorrhizal [Paxillus involutus (Batsch) Fr.] and non–mycorrhizal Sitka spruce [Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carr.] seedlings were grown to comparable size and with comparable shoot N, P and K concentrations in a perlite nutrient solution culture. Shoot water potentials of mycorrhizal and non–mycorrhizal seedlings were related to the moisture content of the substrate during a drying cycle. At any given substrate moisture content, mycorrhizal plants had significantly lower water potentials than non–mycorrhizal plants, the difference being about O.l MPa. In a factorial experiment there was no effect of mycorrhizal infection on stomatal conductance or net photosynthetic rate in either well–watered or droughted seedlings.