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Thirsty roots and hungry leaves: unravelling the roles of carbon and water dynamics in tree mortality


O'Grady, AP and Mitchell, PJM and Pinkard, E and Tissue, DT, Thirsty roots and hungry leaves: unravelling the roles of carbon and water dynamics in tree mortality, New Phytologist, 200, (2) pp. 294-297. ISSN 0028-646X (2013) [Letter or Note in Journal]

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DOI: doi:10.1111/nph.12451


Research into the mechanisms driving drought-related plant mortality has seen a focussed effort in recent years. Drought and water availability are pervasive factors influencing the distribution of forests and woodlands globally, particularly in water-limited environments, where evaporation exceeds rainfall and is therefore a major constraint on productivity. However, the lack of a predictive framework for forest mortality remains an important knowledge gap in ecosystem and biogeochemical models (Roxburgh et al., 2004). The paper by Hartmann et al. (pp. 340349) in the Feature on drought-related mortality in this issue of New Phytologist provides some novel insights into the relative contributions of hydraulic failure and carbon (C) starvation in trees. In conjunction with recent activity focussed on unravelling the relative importance of the putative mechanisms of plant mortality, our goal should be to improve our understanding of C, water and nutrient dynamics in ecosystems and improve our capacity to predict conditions under which mortality is likely to occur.

Item Details

Item Type:Letter or Note in Journal
Keywords:carbon starvation, ecosystem resilience, hydraulic failure, low CO2, mortality
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Forestry sciences
Research Field:Tree nutrition and physiology
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the biological sciences
UTAS Author:O'Grady, AP (Dr Anthony O'Grady)
UTAS Author:Mitchell, PJM (Dr Patrick Mitchell)
UTAS Author:Pinkard, E (Dr Elizabeth Pinkard)
ID Code:116696
Year Published:2013
Web of Science® Times Cited:33
Deposited By:Plant Science
Deposited On:2017-05-17
Last Modified:2017-05-17

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