Variability in root production, phenology, and turnover rate among 12 temperate tree species

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

76 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The timing of fine root production and turnover strongly influences both the seasonal potential for soil resource acquisition among competing root systems and the plant fluxes of root carbon into soil pools. However, basic patterns and variability in the rates and timing or fine root production and turnover are generally unknown among perennial plants species. We address this shortfall using a heuristic model relating root phenology to turnover together with three years of minirhizotron observations of root dynamics in 12 temperate tree species grown in a common garden. We specifically investigated how the amount and the timing of root production differ among species and how they impact estimates of fine root turnover. Across the 12 species, there was wide variation in the timing of root production with some species producing a single root flush in early summer and others producing roots either more uniformly over the growing season or in multiple pulses. Additionally, the pattern and timing of root production appeared to be consistent across years for some species but varied in others. Root turnover rate was related to total root production (P < 0.001) as species with greater root production typically had faster root turnover rates. We also found that, within species, annual root production varied up to a threefold increase between years, which led to large interannual differences in turnover rate. Results from the heuristic model indicated that shifting the pattern or timing of root production can impact estimates of root turnover rates for root populations with life spans less than one year while estimates of root turnover rate for longer lived roots were unaffected by changes in root phenology. Overall, we suggest that more detailed observations of root phenology and production will improve fidelity of root turnover estimates. Future efforts should link patterns of root phenology and production with whole-plant life history traits and variation in annual and seasonal climate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2224-2235
Number of pages12
JournalEcology
Volume95
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2014

Fingerprint

phenology
turnover
fine root
rate
heuristics
perennial plant
soil resources

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Cite this

@article{7240987e409e4c1a84382e16fa8a8d76,
title = "Variability in root production, phenology, and turnover rate among 12 temperate tree species",
abstract = "The timing of fine root production and turnover strongly influences both the seasonal potential for soil resource acquisition among competing root systems and the plant fluxes of root carbon into soil pools. However, basic patterns and variability in the rates and timing or fine root production and turnover are generally unknown among perennial plants species. We address this shortfall using a heuristic model relating root phenology to turnover together with three years of minirhizotron observations of root dynamics in 12 temperate tree species grown in a common garden. We specifically investigated how the amount and the timing of root production differ among species and how they impact estimates of fine root turnover. Across the 12 species, there was wide variation in the timing of root production with some species producing a single root flush in early summer and others producing roots either more uniformly over the growing season or in multiple pulses. Additionally, the pattern and timing of root production appeared to be consistent across years for some species but varied in others. Root turnover rate was related to total root production (P < 0.001) as species with greater root production typically had faster root turnover rates. We also found that, within species, annual root production varied up to a threefold increase between years, which led to large interannual differences in turnover rate. Results from the heuristic model indicated that shifting the pattern or timing of root production can impact estimates of root turnover rates for root populations with life spans less than one year while estimates of root turnover rate for longer lived roots were unaffected by changes in root phenology. Overall, we suggest that more detailed observations of root phenology and production will improve fidelity of root turnover estimates. Future efforts should link patterns of root phenology and production with whole-plant life history traits and variation in annual and seasonal climate.",
author = "{Luke McCormack}, M. and Adams, {Thomas S.} and Smithwick, {Erica A.H.} and Eissenstat, {David M.}",
year = "2014",
month = "8",
doi = "10.1890/13-1942.1",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "95",
pages = "2224--2235",
journal = "Ecology",
issn = "0012-9658",
publisher = "Ecological Society of America",
number = "8",

}

Variability in root production, phenology, and turnover rate among 12 temperate tree species. / Luke McCormack, M.; Adams, Thomas S.; Smithwick, Erica A.H.; Eissenstat, David M.

In: Ecology, Vol. 95, No. 8, 08.2014, p. 2224-2235.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Variability in root production, phenology, and turnover rate among 12 temperate tree species

AU - Luke McCormack, M.

AU - Adams, Thomas S.

AU - Smithwick, Erica A.H.

AU - Eissenstat, David M.

PY - 2014/8

Y1 - 2014/8

N2 - The timing of fine root production and turnover strongly influences both the seasonal potential for soil resource acquisition among competing root systems and the plant fluxes of root carbon into soil pools. However, basic patterns and variability in the rates and timing or fine root production and turnover are generally unknown among perennial plants species. We address this shortfall using a heuristic model relating root phenology to turnover together with three years of minirhizotron observations of root dynamics in 12 temperate tree species grown in a common garden. We specifically investigated how the amount and the timing of root production differ among species and how they impact estimates of fine root turnover. Across the 12 species, there was wide variation in the timing of root production with some species producing a single root flush in early summer and others producing roots either more uniformly over the growing season or in multiple pulses. Additionally, the pattern and timing of root production appeared to be consistent across years for some species but varied in others. Root turnover rate was related to total root production (P < 0.001) as species with greater root production typically had faster root turnover rates. We also found that, within species, annual root production varied up to a threefold increase between years, which led to large interannual differences in turnover rate. Results from the heuristic model indicated that shifting the pattern or timing of root production can impact estimates of root turnover rates for root populations with life spans less than one year while estimates of root turnover rate for longer lived roots were unaffected by changes in root phenology. Overall, we suggest that more detailed observations of root phenology and production will improve fidelity of root turnover estimates. Future efforts should link patterns of root phenology and production with whole-plant life history traits and variation in annual and seasonal climate.

AB - The timing of fine root production and turnover strongly influences both the seasonal potential for soil resource acquisition among competing root systems and the plant fluxes of root carbon into soil pools. However, basic patterns and variability in the rates and timing or fine root production and turnover are generally unknown among perennial plants species. We address this shortfall using a heuristic model relating root phenology to turnover together with three years of minirhizotron observations of root dynamics in 12 temperate tree species grown in a common garden. We specifically investigated how the amount and the timing of root production differ among species and how they impact estimates of fine root turnover. Across the 12 species, there was wide variation in the timing of root production with some species producing a single root flush in early summer and others producing roots either more uniformly over the growing season or in multiple pulses. Additionally, the pattern and timing of root production appeared to be consistent across years for some species but varied in others. Root turnover rate was related to total root production (P < 0.001) as species with greater root production typically had faster root turnover rates. We also found that, within species, annual root production varied up to a threefold increase between years, which led to large interannual differences in turnover rate. Results from the heuristic model indicated that shifting the pattern or timing of root production can impact estimates of root turnover rates for root populations with life spans less than one year while estimates of root turnover rate for longer lived roots were unaffected by changes in root phenology. Overall, we suggest that more detailed observations of root phenology and production will improve fidelity of root turnover estimates. Future efforts should link patterns of root phenology and production with whole-plant life history traits and variation in annual and seasonal climate.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84905657796&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84905657796&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1890/13-1942.1

DO - 10.1890/13-1942.1

M3 - Article

C2 - 25230473

AN - SCOPUS:84905657796

VL - 95

SP - 2224

EP - 2235

JO - Ecology

JF - Ecology

SN - 0012-9658

IS - 8

ER -