Root anatomy, morphology, and longevity among root orders in Vaccinium corymbosum (Ericaceae)

Luis R. Valenzuela-Estrada, Vivianette Vera-Caraballo, Leah E. Ruth, David Eissenstat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

131 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Understanding root processes at the whole-plant or ecosystem scales requires an accounting of the range of functions within a root system. Studying root traits based on their branching order can be a powerful approach to understanding this complex system. The current study examined the highly branched root system of the ericoid plant, Vaccinium corymbosum L. (highbush blueberry) by classifying its root orders with a modified version of the morphometric approach similar to that used in hydrology for stream classification. Root anatomy provided valuable insight into variation in root function across orders. The more permanent portion of the root system occurred in 4th- and higher-order roots. Roots in these orders had radial growth; the lowest specific root length, N:C ratios, and mycorrhizal colonization; the highest tissue density and vessel number; and the coarsest root diameter. The ephemeral portion of the root system was mainly in the first three root orders. First- and 2nd-order roots were nearly anatomically identical, with similar mycorrhizal colonization and diameter, and also, despite being extremely fine, median lifespans were not very short (115-120 d; estimated with minirhizotrons). Our research underscores the value of examining root traits by root order and its implications to understanding belowground processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1506-1514
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of botany
Volume95
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2008

Fingerprint

Ericaceae
Blueberry Plants
Vaccinium corymbosum
anatomy
Anatomy
Hydrology
Ecosystem
root system
root systems
Growth
Research
colonization

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Genetics
  • Plant Science

Cite this

Valenzuela-Estrada, Luis R. ; Vera-Caraballo, Vivianette ; Ruth, Leah E. ; Eissenstat, David. / Root anatomy, morphology, and longevity among root orders in Vaccinium corymbosum (Ericaceae). In: American journal of botany. 2008 ; Vol. 95, No. 12. pp. 1506-1514.
@article{45a37c2683324ba6a9b3ea3dbdf09040,
title = "Root anatomy, morphology, and longevity among root orders in Vaccinium corymbosum (Ericaceae)",
abstract = "Understanding root processes at the whole-plant or ecosystem scales requires an accounting of the range of functions within a root system. Studying root traits based on their branching order can be a powerful approach to understanding this complex system. The current study examined the highly branched root system of the ericoid plant, Vaccinium corymbosum L. (highbush blueberry) by classifying its root orders with a modified version of the morphometric approach similar to that used in hydrology for stream classification. Root anatomy provided valuable insight into variation in root function across orders. The more permanent portion of the root system occurred in 4th- and higher-order roots. Roots in these orders had radial growth; the lowest specific root length, N:C ratios, and mycorrhizal colonization; the highest tissue density and vessel number; and the coarsest root diameter. The ephemeral portion of the root system was mainly in the first three root orders. First- and 2nd-order roots were nearly anatomically identical, with similar mycorrhizal colonization and diameter, and also, despite being extremely fine, median lifespans were not very short (115-120 d; estimated with minirhizotrons). Our research underscores the value of examining root traits by root order and its implications to understanding belowground processes.",
author = "Valenzuela-Estrada, {Luis R.} and Vivianette Vera-Caraballo and Ruth, {Leah E.} and David Eissenstat",
year = "2008",
month = "12",
day = "1",
doi = "10.3732/ajb.0800092",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "95",
pages = "1506--1514",
journal = "American Journal of Botany",
issn = "0002-9122",
publisher = "Botanical Society of America Inc.",
number = "12",

}

Root anatomy, morphology, and longevity among root orders in Vaccinium corymbosum (Ericaceae). / Valenzuela-Estrada, Luis R.; Vera-Caraballo, Vivianette; Ruth, Leah E.; Eissenstat, David.

In: American journal of botany, Vol. 95, No. 12, 01.12.2008, p. 1506-1514.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Root anatomy, morphology, and longevity among root orders in Vaccinium corymbosum (Ericaceae)

AU - Valenzuela-Estrada, Luis R.

AU - Vera-Caraballo, Vivianette

AU - Ruth, Leah E.

AU - Eissenstat, David

PY - 2008/12/1

Y1 - 2008/12/1

N2 - Understanding root processes at the whole-plant or ecosystem scales requires an accounting of the range of functions within a root system. Studying root traits based on their branching order can be a powerful approach to understanding this complex system. The current study examined the highly branched root system of the ericoid plant, Vaccinium corymbosum L. (highbush blueberry) by classifying its root orders with a modified version of the morphometric approach similar to that used in hydrology for stream classification. Root anatomy provided valuable insight into variation in root function across orders. The more permanent portion of the root system occurred in 4th- and higher-order roots. Roots in these orders had radial growth; the lowest specific root length, N:C ratios, and mycorrhizal colonization; the highest tissue density and vessel number; and the coarsest root diameter. The ephemeral portion of the root system was mainly in the first three root orders. First- and 2nd-order roots were nearly anatomically identical, with similar mycorrhizal colonization and diameter, and also, despite being extremely fine, median lifespans were not very short (115-120 d; estimated with minirhizotrons). Our research underscores the value of examining root traits by root order and its implications to understanding belowground processes.

AB - Understanding root processes at the whole-plant or ecosystem scales requires an accounting of the range of functions within a root system. Studying root traits based on their branching order can be a powerful approach to understanding this complex system. The current study examined the highly branched root system of the ericoid plant, Vaccinium corymbosum L. (highbush blueberry) by classifying its root orders with a modified version of the morphometric approach similar to that used in hydrology for stream classification. Root anatomy provided valuable insight into variation in root function across orders. The more permanent portion of the root system occurred in 4th- and higher-order roots. Roots in these orders had radial growth; the lowest specific root length, N:C ratios, and mycorrhizal colonization; the highest tissue density and vessel number; and the coarsest root diameter. The ephemeral portion of the root system was mainly in the first three root orders. First- and 2nd-order roots were nearly anatomically identical, with similar mycorrhizal colonization and diameter, and also, despite being extremely fine, median lifespans were not very short (115-120 d; estimated with minirhizotrons). Our research underscores the value of examining root traits by root order and its implications to understanding belowground processes.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=57349165846&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=57349165846&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.3732/ajb.0800092

DO - 10.3732/ajb.0800092

M3 - Article

C2 - 21628158

AN - SCOPUS:57349165846

VL - 95

SP - 1506

EP - 1514

JO - American Journal of Botany

JF - American Journal of Botany

SN - 0002-9122

IS - 12

ER -