Suitability of chestnut earlywood vessel chronologies for ecological studies
Article first published online: 14 MAY 2004
Volume 163, Issue 1, pages 77–86, July 2004
How to Cite
Fonti, P. and García-González, I. (2004), Suitability of chestnut earlywood vessel chronologies for ecological studies. New Phytologist, 163: 77–86. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-8137.2004.01089.x
- Issue published online: 14 MAY 2004
- Article first published online: 14 MAY 2004
- Received: 10 December 2003 Accepted: 8 March 2004; doi: 10.1111/j.1469-8137.2004.01089.x
- Castanea sativa (European chestnut);
- tree rings;
- vessel size;
- • Wood anatomical features measured in dated tree rings have often proven to be of ecological value. However, little is known about the suitability and power of such measurements studied in a year-to-year basis as is done in dendrochronology.
- • The present work is based on a comparative analysis of 60 dated time-series of earlywood features of chestnut (Castanea sativa) grown in the climatic context of the Southern part of the Swiss Alps.
- • It has been shown that the earlywood vessel area is a suitable ecological indicator. This variable, although not very sensitive, contains environmental information that is different from that stored in all other ring-width and earlywood features we considered. The vessel size is mainly related to the temperature during two physiologically crucial periods for vessel growth: the end of the previous vegetation period (during reserve storage) and the onset of cambial activity (during cell division and vessel differentiation).
- • Our work shows that the mean vessel size of the ring-porous chestnut contains ecophysiological information that can be used for research in dendrochronology.