Variations in leaf water status and drought tolerance of dominant tree species growing in multi-aged tropical forests in Thailand.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Large-scale abandoned agricultural areas in Southeast Asia resulted in patches of forests of multiple successions and characteristics, challenging the study of their responses to environmental changes, especially under climatic water stress. Here, we investigated seasonal variation in leaf water status and drought tolerance of dominant tree species in three multi-aged tropical forests, ranging from 5 to > 200 years old, with contrasting soil moisture in Thailand. Seasonal variation in leaf water status differed among the forests with trees in young and intermediate sites demonstrating larger differences between seasons than the old-growth forest. Although vulnerability to embolism curves revealed that trees in old-growth forest were potentially more sensitive to declining leaf water status than others, they were predicted to lose < 5% of their hydraulic capacity as opposed to 13% for the trees in the younger sites. Our results suggest that the responses to water stress of tree species in different forest ages greatly vary with a tendency of trees in younger sites to be more resilience than those in older sites. Such information would benefit the selection of tree species that could adapt well to specific environments, thus improving the strategies for managing forests of different ages under a warmer future.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Unawong, W; Yaemphum, S; Nathalang, A; Chen, Y; Domec, J-C; Tor-Ngern, P

Published Date

  • April 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 12 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 6882 -

PubMed ID

  • 35477746

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC9044374

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2045-2322

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2045-2322

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1038/s41598-022-10988-1


  • eng