Physiological responses of Acer rubrum, Quercus rubrum, and Populus grandidentata to water stress

Project Overview
Project Abstract: 
Understanding how different trees respond physiologically to changes in soil moisture is essential for the development of reliable climate change models. Present modeling approaches fail to model the adaptive and spatiotemporally varying patterns of soil root water uptake, especially in heterogeneous soil moisture environments, leading to early prediction of water-constrained transpiration, and it is unclear how plant root status responds to vertically heterogeneous soil moisture conditions in the root zone and different transpiration demands. It is necessary to conduct in situ studies of root water potential, especially for plants that live in heterogenous environments. This work, at the University of Michigan Biological Station (UMBS) Ameriflux site, will contribute to such understanding by inferring information on species-level responses to changing atmospheric (above-surface) and hydrologic (below-surface) conditions by measuring how leaf water potential, photosynthesis, and leaf conductance vary on diurnal and seasonal scales with soil moisture.
Investigator Info
Investigators: 
Funding agency: 
NSF-REU
Years research project active: 
2011