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Shifts in the temperature-sensitive periods for spring phenology in European beech and pedunculate oak clones across latitudes and over recent decades.

Abstract : Spring phenology of temperate trees has advanced worldwide in response to global warming. However, increasing temperatures may not necessarily lead to further phenological advance, especially in the warmer latitudes because of insufficient chilling and/or shorter daylength. Determining the start of the forcing phase, i.e. when buds are able to respond to warmer temperatures in spring, is therefore crucial to predict how phenology will change in the future. In this study, we used 4,056 leaf-out date observations during the period 1969-2017 for clones of European beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) and pedunculate oak (Quercus robur L.) planted in 63 sites covering a large latitudinal gradient (from Portugal ~ 41°N to Norway ~ 63°N) at the International Phenological Gardens in order to (i) evaluate how the sensitivity periods to forcing and chilling have changed with climate warming, and (ii) test whether consistent patterns occur along biogeographical gradients, i.e. from colder to warmer environments. Partial Least Squares regressions suggest that the length of the forcing period has been extended over the recent decades with climate warming in the colder latitudes but has been shortened in the warmer latitudes for both species, with a more pronounced shift for beech. We attribute the lengthening of the forcing period in the colder latitudes to earlier opportunities with temperatures that can promote bud development. In contrast, at warmer or oceanic climates, the beginning of the forcing period has been delayed, possibly due to insufficient chilling. However, in spite of a later beginning of the forcing period, spring phenology has continued to advance at these areas due to a faster satisfaction of heat requirements induced by climate warming. Overall, our results support that ongoing climate warming will have different effects on the spring phenology of forest trees across latitudes due to the interactions between chilling and forcing requirements and photoperiod.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, May 26, 2020 - 6:35:38 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, July 8, 2021 - 3:52:43 AM

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Bénédicte Wenden, Mahendra Mariadassou, Frank-M Chmielewski, Yann Vitasse. Shifts in the temperature-sensitive periods for spring phenology in European beech and pedunculate oak clones across latitudes and over recent decades.. Global Change Biology, Wiley, 2020, 26, pp.1808-1819. ⟨10.1111/gcb.14918⟩. ⟨hal-02622770⟩

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