Sciences in Cold and Arid Regions ›› 2021, Vol. 13 ›› Issue (4): 326-336.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1226.2021.20025.

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Ecophysiological responses to drought stress in Populus euphratica

ChunYan Zhao1,2,JianHua Si1,2(),Qi Feng1,2,TengFei Yu1,2,Huan Luo1,3,Jie Qin1,3   

  1. 1.Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China
    2.Key Laboratory of Ecohydrology of Inland River Basin, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, Gansu 730000, China
    3.University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2020-04-22 Accepted:2020-10-21 Online:2021-08-31 Published:2021-08-19
  • Contact: JianHua Si


Ecophysiological responses to drought stress of Populus euphratica in Alashan Desert Eco-hydrology Experimental Research Station were investigated. Results show that under mild and moderate drought stress, stomatal length, aperture, area and density is likely to decrease in the early days, but afterwards this is likely to recovery with treatment over the passage of treatment time. Under severe drought stress, these properties appear to decline continuously. However, after 45 days of drought-stress treatment, the decline is not as noticeable as before, indicating that Populus euphratica could possibly reduce water evaporation by shutting down the stoma, leading to an improvement in its water use efficiency with better survival under drought stress conditions. The leaf area first decreases, and then increases under mild and moderate drought stress conditions, with the average values under different degree of stress found to be approximately 129.52, 120.08, 116.63 and 107.28 cm2, respectively. Under moderate stress conditions, the leaf water potential appears to show a continuous decline where the average values under different degree of stress are found to be -1.27, -1.85, -4.29 and -4.80 MPa, respectively. In terms of proline content, the results demonstrate that this factor appears to increase significantly under moderate and severe drought stress conditions. Especially under severe drought stress condition, the content is found to be more than 700 μg/g. Ranging over average values of 14.64 and 15.90 nmol/g under moderate and severe drought stress, respectively, Malondialdehyde content is found to increase quite rapidly under moderate and severe drought stress conditions at first, which then appears to decrease gradually with the treatment over time.

Key words: stomatal morphology, drought stress, Malondialdehyde, proline, Populus euphratica

Figure 1

An example for stomata of P. euphratica under different degrees of drought stress (ND = no drought stress; LD = mild drought stress; MD = moderate drought stress; SD = severe drought stress)"

Figure 2

Temporal changes in environmental variables during the experimental phase in 2016 (daily means ± standard deviation)"

Figure 3

Changes in P. euphratica stomatal, aperture, area and density under different degrees of drought stress (ND = no drought stress; LD = mild drought stress; MD = moderate drought stress; SD = severe drought stress)"

Figure 4

Changes in leaf area and leaf water potential of P. euphratica during the experimental period (ND = no drought stress; LD = mild drought stress; MD = moderate drought stress; SD = severe drought stress)"

Figure 5

Change in malondialdehyde (MDA) and proline content of P. euphratica during the experimental period (ND = no drought stress; LD = mild drought stress; MD = moderate drought stress; SD = severe drought stress)"

Figure 6

The response relationship between soil water content and stomatal length, aperture, area and density, leaf area, leaf water potential, proline content and MDA content of P. euphratica (ND = no drought stress; LD = mild drought stress; MD = moderate drought stress; SD = severe drought stress)"

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