Nowak-Dyjeta, K and Giertych, MJ and Thomas, P and Iszkulo, G (2017) Males and females of Juniperus communis L. and Taxus baccata L. show different seasonal patterns of nitrogen and carbon content in needles. Acta Physiologiae Plantarum, 39 (8). ISSN 0137-5881

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Abstract

Genders of dioecious species often show secondary sexual dimorphisms (not directly related to the sex organs), which may be related to reproductive demand for resources during the year. Our working hypothesis stated that phenology influences yearly sex-specific pattern of foliar nitrogen concentration in dioecious species. The concentration of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) of last year’s needles (on part of twigs where strobili are bearing) was measured in 1-month intervals from March to November in Taxus baccata L. and Juniperus communis L. separately for males and females. Seasonal C concentration of needles was unrelated to gender, probably due to storage elsewhere in the plants. Needles of J. communis females had higher N concentration in March and April but this dropped to the same level as males after flowering and vegetative growth began. This suggests that females of J. communis, a species of N-poor habitats, have a long-term strategy of N storage. Nitrogen concentration was not different between the sexes during the rest of the growing season. In T. baccata, N concentration was higher in males throughout the analysed period, but the highest differences were in the period of intensive shoot elongation and radial growth. The high demand for N in the period of intensive growth and female cone maturation may result in restrictions in the vegetative growth of females. The results indicate that the time (phenology) and species-specific strategy significantly affect the concentration of N in females and males.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the final published version of the article (version of record). It first appeared online via Springer at http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11738-017-2489-3 - please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Dioecy, Sexual dimorphism, Phenology, N storage
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Divisions: Faculty of Natural Sciences > School of Life Sciences
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 07 Sep 2017 10:44
Last Modified: 07 Sep 2017 11:02
URI: http://eprints.keele.ac.uk/id/eprint/3999

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