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Ameliorating effect of UV-B radiation on the response of Norway spruce and Scots pine to ambient ozone concentrations

: Schnitzler, J.-P.; Langebartels, C.; Heller, W.; Liu, J.; Lippert, M.; Döhring, T.; Bahnweg, G.; Sandermann, H.


Global change biology 5 (1999), Nr.1, S.83-94 : Ill., Lit.
ISSN: 1354-1013
Fraunhofer IFU; 2002 in Helmholtz-Gesellschaft integriert
climate chambers; ozone; Picea abies; pinus sylvestries; simulated alpine climate; UV-B radiation

Elevated levels of both ozone and UV-B radiation are typical for high-altitude sites. Few studies have investigated their possible interaction on plants. This study reports interactive effects of O3 and UV-B radiation in four-year-old Norway spruce and Scots pine trees. The trees were cultivated in controlled environmental facilities under simulated climatic conditions recorded on Mt Wank, an Alpine mountain in Bavaria, and were exposed for one growing season to simulated ambient or twice-ambient ozone regimes at either near ambient or near zero UV-B radiation levels. Chlorotic mottling and yellowing of current year needles became obvious under twice-ambient O3 in both species at the onset of a high ozone episode in July. Development of chlorotic mottling in relation to accumulated ozone concentrations over a threshold of 40 nL L(exp -1) was more pronounced with near zero rather than ambient UV-B radiation levels. In Norway spruce, photosynthetic parameters at ambient CO2 concentration, measured at the end of the experiment, were reduced in trees cultivated under twice-ambient O3, irrespective of the UV-B treatment. Effects on photosynthetic capacity and carboxylation efficiency were restricted to trees exposed to near zero levels of UV-B radiation, and twice-ambient O3. The data indicate that UV-B radiation, applied together with O3, ameliorates the detrimental effects of O3. The data also demonstrate that foliar symptoms develop more rapidly in Scots pine than in Norway spruce at higher accumulated ozone concentrations.