A novel dendroecological method finds a non-linear relationship between elevation and seasonal growth continuity on an island with trade wind-influenced water availability

Journal article


Publication Details

Author(s): Weigel R, Irl S, Treydte K, Beierkuhnlein C, Berels J, Field R, Miranda JC, Steinbauer A, Steinbauer M, Jentsch A
Journal: AoB Plants
Publication year: 2019
Volume: in press
ISSN: 2041-2851


Abstract

Climatic seasonality drives ecosystem processes (e.g. productivity) and
influences plant species distribution. However, it is poorly understood
how different aspects of seasonality (esp. regarding temperature and
precipitation) affect growth continuity of trees in climates with low
seasonality because seasonality is often only crudely measured. On
islands, exceptionally wide elevational species distribution ranges
allow the use of tree rings to identify how growth continuity and
climate–growth relationships change with elevation. Here we present a
novel dendroecological method to measure stem growth continuity based on
annual density fluctuations (ADFs) in tree rings of Pinus canariensis
to indicate low climatic seasonality. The species ranges from 300 to
more than 2000 m a.s.l. on the trade wind-influenced island of La Palma
(Canary Islands), where we measured three decades of tree-ring data of
100 individuals distributed over ten sites along the entire elevational
range. The successfully implemented ADF approach revealed a major shift
of stem growth continuity across the elevational gradient. In a
remarkably clear pattern, stem growth continuity (percentage of ADFs)
showed a hump-shaped relationship with elevation reaching a maximum at
around 1000 m a.s.l.. Low- to mid-elevation tree growth was positively
correlated with the Palmer Drought Severity Index PDSI
(indicating aridity) and sea surface temperature (indicating trade
wind-influenced moderation of water supply), while high elevation tree
growth was positively correlated with winter temperature (indicating a
cold induced dormancy period). We conclude that ADFs are a useful method
to measure stem growth continuity in low-seasonality climates. Growth
of Pinus canariensis on the Canary Islands is more frequently
interrupted by winter cold at high elevations and by summer drought at
low elevations than in the trade wind-influenced mid elevations, where
growth sometimes continues throughout the year. Climate
change-associated alterations in trade wind cloud formation might cause
non-analogue growth limitations for many unique island species.


FAU Authors / FAU Editors

Steinbauer, Manuel Prof. Dr.
Professur für System-Paläobiologie


External institutions
Eidg. Forschungsanstalt für Wald, Schnee und Landschaft WSL
Universität Bayreuth
Universität Greifswald
University of Nottingham


How to cite

APA:
Weigel, R., Irl, S., Treydte, K., Beierkuhnlein, C., Berels, J., Field, R.,... Jentsch, A. (2019). A novel dendroecological method finds a non-linear relationship between elevation and seasonal growth continuity on an island with trade wind-influenced water availability. AoB Plants, in press. https://dx.doi.org/doi.org/10.1093/aobpla/ply070

MLA:
Weigel, Robert, et al. "A novel dendroecological method finds a non-linear relationship between elevation and seasonal growth continuity on an island with trade wind-influenced water availability." AoB Plants in press (2019).

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Last updated on 2018-27-11 at 16:08