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The Influence Of Variability Of Water Resources In Lowland Forests On Selected Parameters Describing The Condition Of Trees

The Influence Of Variability Of Water Resources In Lowland Forests On Selected Parameters... Abstract The influence of water conditions on the condition and growth of tree stands has been analysed in the context of the climatic and hydrological functions forest plays. Long observational series obtained for precipitation, outflow and depths below the surface of the water table have been put together with measured increases in the breast-height diameters of Scots pines and the severity of crown defoliation observable in selected tree species growing on the Polish Lowland, in order to determine the overall scope to the reaction stand condition manifests in the face of ongoing variability of water conditions within forest. An overall improvement in the condition of stands over the last 20 years does not disguise several-year cyclicity to changes capable of shaping the situation, i.a. departures from long-term mean values for precipitation totals and groundwater levels. The condition of stands is seen to worsen in both dry and wet years. Analysis of the degree to which pine, spruce and broadleaved stands experience defoliation points to spruce stands responding most to extreme hydro-climatic conditions. Extreme situations as regards water resources were seen to involve a response over two-year time intervals in the case of coniferous stands. Unsurprisingly, optimal growing-season (June-September) precipitation totals correspond with long-term average figures, while being slightly higher for spruce (at 384 mm), than for Scots pine or broadleaved species (375 mm). The relationships reported gain confirmation in analysis of periodic change in breast-height diameter increments characterising Scots pines, whose growth is seen to depend closely, not only on precipitation, but also above all on the depth of the water table in the summer half-year. Optimal depths of the water table proved to be different, being around 20 cm below ground in the case of marshy coniferous forest, 80 cm in wet habitats, and 135 cm in fresh habitats. Depending on the possibilities for water to soak into the rooting zone of trees there were even twofold differences in measured growth increments in Scots pine (as the dominant species in Poland’s lowland habitats). The maintenance of stable water conditions (as the most variable environmental factor in forest) should be an overriding aim of management activity in this habitat. When account is taken of the influence of the state of water resources on biomass production, and then on the intensity of evapotranspiration and the absorption of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, it is seen how important it is to achieve improvements in water conditions in forests, as such an important factor in combating climate change. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Papers on Global Change IGBP de Gruyter

The Influence Of Variability Of Water Resources In Lowland Forests On Selected Parameters Describing The Condition Of Trees

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References (36)

Publisher
de Gruyter
Copyright
Copyright © 2014 by the
ISSN
1730-802X
eISSN
1730-802X
DOI
10.1515/igbp-2015-0002
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract The influence of water conditions on the condition and growth of tree stands has been analysed in the context of the climatic and hydrological functions forest plays. Long observational series obtained for precipitation, outflow and depths below the surface of the water table have been put together with measured increases in the breast-height diameters of Scots pines and the severity of crown defoliation observable in selected tree species growing on the Polish Lowland, in order to determine the overall scope to the reaction stand condition manifests in the face of ongoing variability of water conditions within forest. An overall improvement in the condition of stands over the last 20 years does not disguise several-year cyclicity to changes capable of shaping the situation, i.a. departures from long-term mean values for precipitation totals and groundwater levels. The condition of stands is seen to worsen in both dry and wet years. Analysis of the degree to which pine, spruce and broadleaved stands experience defoliation points to spruce stands responding most to extreme hydro-climatic conditions. Extreme situations as regards water resources were seen to involve a response over two-year time intervals in the case of coniferous stands. Unsurprisingly, optimal growing-season (June-September) precipitation totals correspond with long-term average figures, while being slightly higher for spruce (at 384 mm), than for Scots pine or broadleaved species (375 mm). The relationships reported gain confirmation in analysis of periodic change in breast-height diameter increments characterising Scots pines, whose growth is seen to depend closely, not only on precipitation, but also above all on the depth of the water table in the summer half-year. Optimal depths of the water table proved to be different, being around 20 cm below ground in the case of marshy coniferous forest, 80 cm in wet habitats, and 135 cm in fresh habitats. Depending on the possibilities for water to soak into the rooting zone of trees there were even twofold differences in measured growth increments in Scots pine (as the dominant species in Poland’s lowland habitats). The maintenance of stable water conditions (as the most variable environmental factor in forest) should be an overriding aim of management activity in this habitat. When account is taken of the influence of the state of water resources on biomass production, and then on the intensity of evapotranspiration and the absorption of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, it is seen how important it is to achieve improvements in water conditions in forests, as such an important factor in combating climate change.

Journal

Papers on Global Change IGBPde Gruyter

Published: Jan 1, 2014

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