Research article

Effect of light intensities on the photosynthetic characteristics of Abies holophylla seedlings from different provenances

Z. Yao, C. Xu , Y. Chai, H. Wei

Z. Yao
Key Laboratory for Silviculture and Conservation of Ministry of Education, Beijing Forestry University, No.35 Tsinghua East Road, Beijing 100083, China
C. Xu
Key Laboratory for Silviculture and Conservation of Ministry of Education, Beijing Forestry University, No.35 Tsinghua East Road, Beijing 100083, China. Email: chyxubjfu@gmail.com
Y. Chai
Key Laboratory for Silviculture and Conservation of Ministry of Education, Beijing Forestry University, No.35 Tsinghua East Road, Beijing 100083, China
H. Wei
Research Group of Urban Forests and Wetlands, Key Laboratory of Wetland Ecology & Environment, Northeast Institute of Geography and Agroecology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, No.4888 Shengbei Street, Changchun 130102, Jilin, China

Online First: November 26, 2014
Yao, Z., Xu, C., Chai, Y., Wei, H. 2014. Effect of light intensities on the photosynthetic characteristics of Abies holophylla seedlings from different provenances. Annals of Forest Research DOI:10.15287/afr.2014.266


The photosynthetic characteristics of Abies holophylla seedlings from six provenances under four artificial light intensities in a greenhouse (full light, 75.08%, 55.42%, and 30.38% of full light) were studied to explore the underlying genetic differences in foliar photosynthesis. Varying light intensities significantly affected the foliar photosynthetic parameters of A. holophylla seedlings from six provenances. As the light intensity dropped, the foliar CO2 assimilation capacity of A. holophylla seedlings sharply decreased, and the foliar light utilization capacity significantly increased. Analysis of genetic variation showed highly significant differences in terms of CO2 assimilation capacity, light utilization capacity, and respiration depletion of A. holophylla seedlings among different provenances under different light intensities. The variations were mainly controlled by the genetic factors of the provenance itself. The obtained results revealed that different sensitivities of A. holophylla seedlings from different provenances in response to changed light intensities elicited significant differences in foliar photosynthesis among different provenances. The relationships between sensitivities and annual temperature difference, mean temperature in January, and mean annual evaporation of provenance were found to be the most closely related, which indicated that temperature range and effective precipitation of provenance were the main factors that affected photosynthetic plasticity of A. holophylla seedlings. 


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  • Z. Yao
  • C. Xu
  • Y. Chai
  • H. Wei
  • Z. Yao
  • C. Xu
  • Y. Chai
  • H. Wei