Variations of wood δ13C and water-use efficiency of Abies alba during the last century

Didier Bert, Steven Leavitt, Jean Luc Dupouey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

143 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Variations of intrinsic water-use efficiency during the last century were investigated based on analysis of δ13C in tree rings of Abies alba from the Jura Mountains (eastern France). To separate the effects related to the age of the tree at the time the tree ring was formed from effects due to environmental changes, analyzed wood samples were extracted from a very large sample set including different tree ages and calendar dates of wood formation. For the first 75 yr of the life of Abies alba, δ13C of wood holocellulose increases with the age of the tree from -24.4‰ at age 15 to approximately -22.5‰ at age 75. Between the ages of 75 and 150 values remain constant at -22.5‰. Consequently, the effect of the tree age on isotopic discrimination has to be taken into account in studies on the long-term environmental effects on δ13C in tree rings. Divergent trends of δ13C during the last century were observed between tree rings formed at age 40 and bulk air data. The isotopic discrimination A varied insignificantly around a mean of 17.3‰ between the 1860s and the 1930s. It then decreased to 15.8‰ from the 1930s to the 1980s. Using these results and classical models of carbon discrimination, we calculated that the intrinsic water-use efficiency (A/g(w), the ratio of CO2 assimilation rate to stomatal conductance for water vapor), integrated over the year, has increased by 30% between the 1930s and the 1980s. These results, obtained at the level of mature trees, are consistent with the physiological effects of increasing CO2 concentrations as observed in controlled experiments on young seedlings. They are consistent with the strong increases in radial growth observed for Abies alba in western Europe over the past decades. However, other long-term environmental changes such as increasing nitrogen deposition could cause similar effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1588-1596
Number of pages9
JournalEcology
Volume78
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1997

Fingerprint

Abies alba
tree age
water use efficiency
growth rings
tree ring
carbon dioxide
dendrochronology
Western European region
water vapor
stomatal conductance
assimilation (physiology)
environmental change
France
mountains
sampling
air
seedlings
carbon
nitrogen
environmental effect

Keywords

  • δC/C ratio
  • Abies alba
  • CO fertilization
  • Dendrochronology
  • Isotopic discrimination
  • Long-term trend
  • Radial growth
  • Stable-carbon isotopes
  • Tree rings
  • Water-use efficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology

Cite this

Variations of wood δ13C and water-use efficiency of Abies alba during the last century. / Bert, Didier; Leavitt, Steven; Dupouey, Jean Luc.

In: Ecology, Vol. 78, No. 5, 1997, p. 1588-1596.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Bert, Didier ; Leavitt, Steven ; Dupouey, Jean Luc. / Variations of wood δ13C and water-use efficiency of Abies alba during the last century. In: Ecology. 1997 ; Vol. 78, No. 5. pp. 1588-1596.
@article{5976398a0e354823968f1dc4083b4367,
title = "Variations of wood δ13C and water-use efficiency of Abies alba during the last century",
abstract = "Variations of intrinsic water-use efficiency during the last century were investigated based on analysis of δ13C in tree rings of Abies alba from the Jura Mountains (eastern France). To separate the effects related to the age of the tree at the time the tree ring was formed from effects due to environmental changes, analyzed wood samples were extracted from a very large sample set including different tree ages and calendar dates of wood formation. For the first 75 yr of the life of Abies alba, δ13C of wood holocellulose increases with the age of the tree from -24.4‰ at age 15 to approximately -22.5‰ at age 75. Between the ages of 75 and 150 values remain constant at -22.5‰. Consequently, the effect of the tree age on isotopic discrimination has to be taken into account in studies on the long-term environmental effects on δ13C in tree rings. Divergent trends of δ13C during the last century were observed between tree rings formed at age 40 and bulk air data. The isotopic discrimination A varied insignificantly around a mean of 17.3‰ between the 1860s and the 1930s. It then decreased to 15.8‰ from the 1930s to the 1980s. Using these results and classical models of carbon discrimination, we calculated that the intrinsic water-use efficiency (A/g(w), the ratio of CO2 assimilation rate to stomatal conductance for water vapor), integrated over the year, has increased by 30{\%} between the 1930s and the 1980s. These results, obtained at the level of mature trees, are consistent with the physiological effects of increasing CO2 concentrations as observed in controlled experiments on young seedlings. They are consistent with the strong increases in radial growth observed for Abies alba in western Europe over the past decades. However, other long-term environmental changes such as increasing nitrogen deposition could cause similar effects.",
keywords = "δC/C ratio, Abies alba, CO fertilization, Dendrochronology, Isotopic discrimination, Long-term trend, Radial growth, Stable-carbon isotopes, Tree rings, Water-use efficiency",
author = "Didier Bert and Steven Leavitt and Dupouey, {Jean Luc}",
year = "1997",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "78",
pages = "1588--1596",
journal = "Ecology",
issn = "0012-9658",
publisher = "Ecological Society of America",
number = "5",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Variations of wood δ13C and water-use efficiency of Abies alba during the last century

AU - Bert, Didier

AU - Leavitt, Steven

AU - Dupouey, Jean Luc

PY - 1997

Y1 - 1997

N2 - Variations of intrinsic water-use efficiency during the last century were investigated based on analysis of δ13C in tree rings of Abies alba from the Jura Mountains (eastern France). To separate the effects related to the age of the tree at the time the tree ring was formed from effects due to environmental changes, analyzed wood samples were extracted from a very large sample set including different tree ages and calendar dates of wood formation. For the first 75 yr of the life of Abies alba, δ13C of wood holocellulose increases with the age of the tree from -24.4‰ at age 15 to approximately -22.5‰ at age 75. Between the ages of 75 and 150 values remain constant at -22.5‰. Consequently, the effect of the tree age on isotopic discrimination has to be taken into account in studies on the long-term environmental effects on δ13C in tree rings. Divergent trends of δ13C during the last century were observed between tree rings formed at age 40 and bulk air data. The isotopic discrimination A varied insignificantly around a mean of 17.3‰ between the 1860s and the 1930s. It then decreased to 15.8‰ from the 1930s to the 1980s. Using these results and classical models of carbon discrimination, we calculated that the intrinsic water-use efficiency (A/g(w), the ratio of CO2 assimilation rate to stomatal conductance for water vapor), integrated over the year, has increased by 30% between the 1930s and the 1980s. These results, obtained at the level of mature trees, are consistent with the physiological effects of increasing CO2 concentrations as observed in controlled experiments on young seedlings. They are consistent with the strong increases in radial growth observed for Abies alba in western Europe over the past decades. However, other long-term environmental changes such as increasing nitrogen deposition could cause similar effects.

AB - Variations of intrinsic water-use efficiency during the last century were investigated based on analysis of δ13C in tree rings of Abies alba from the Jura Mountains (eastern France). To separate the effects related to the age of the tree at the time the tree ring was formed from effects due to environmental changes, analyzed wood samples were extracted from a very large sample set including different tree ages and calendar dates of wood formation. For the first 75 yr of the life of Abies alba, δ13C of wood holocellulose increases with the age of the tree from -24.4‰ at age 15 to approximately -22.5‰ at age 75. Between the ages of 75 and 150 values remain constant at -22.5‰. Consequently, the effect of the tree age on isotopic discrimination has to be taken into account in studies on the long-term environmental effects on δ13C in tree rings. Divergent trends of δ13C during the last century were observed between tree rings formed at age 40 and bulk air data. The isotopic discrimination A varied insignificantly around a mean of 17.3‰ between the 1860s and the 1930s. It then decreased to 15.8‰ from the 1930s to the 1980s. Using these results and classical models of carbon discrimination, we calculated that the intrinsic water-use efficiency (A/g(w), the ratio of CO2 assimilation rate to stomatal conductance for water vapor), integrated over the year, has increased by 30% between the 1930s and the 1980s. These results, obtained at the level of mature trees, are consistent with the physiological effects of increasing CO2 concentrations as observed in controlled experiments on young seedlings. They are consistent with the strong increases in radial growth observed for Abies alba in western Europe over the past decades. However, other long-term environmental changes such as increasing nitrogen deposition could cause similar effects.

KW - δC/C ratio

KW - Abies alba

KW - CO fertilization

KW - Dendrochronology

KW - Isotopic discrimination

KW - Long-term trend

KW - Radial growth

KW - Stable-carbon isotopes

KW - Tree rings

KW - Water-use efficiency

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0030859621&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0030859621&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:0030859621

VL - 78

SP - 1588

EP - 1596

JO - Ecology

JF - Ecology

SN - 0012-9658

IS - 5

ER -