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Productivity, water-use efficiency and tolerance to moderate water deficit correlate in 33 poplar genotypes from a Populus deltoides × Populus trichocarpa F1 progeny

Abstract : Genotypic variability for productivity, wateruse efficiency and leaf traits in 33 genotypes selected from an F1 progeny of Populus deltoides Bartr. ex Marsh • Populus trichocarpa L. was explored under optimal and moderate water-deficit conditions. Saplings of the 33 genotypes were grown in a two-plot open field at INRA Orle´ ans (France) and coppiced every year. A moderate water deficit was induced during two successive years on one plot by withholding irrigation, while the second one remained irrigated (control). Stem biomass and leaf structure (e.g., specific leaf area and leaf area) were measured in 2004 and 2005 and functional leaf traits (e.g., carbon isotope discrimination, D) were measured only in 2004. Tolerance to water deficit was estimated at genotype level as the ability to limit losses in biomass production in water deficit versus control trees. Stem biomass, leaf structure and D displayed a significant genotypic variability whatever the irrigation regime. For all traits, genotype ranks remained stable across years for similar irrigation conditions. Carbon isotope discrimination scaled negatively with productivity and leaf nitrogen content in controls. The most productive genotypes were the least tolerant to moderate water deficit. No relationship was evidenced between D and the level of tolerance to water deficit. The relationships between traits evidenced in this collection of P. deltoides • P. trichocarpa F1 genotypes contrast with the ones that were previously detected in a collection of P. deltoides • Populus nigra L. cultivars tested in the same field trial.
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Romain Monclus, Marc Villar, Cécile Barbaroux, Catherine Bastien, Régis Fichot, et al.. Productivity, water-use efficiency and tolerance to moderate water deficit correlate in 33 poplar genotypes from a Populus deltoides × Populus trichocarpa F1 progeny. Tree Physiology, Oxford University Press (OUP): Policy B - Oxford Open Option B, 2009, 29 (11), pp.1329-1339. ⟨10.1093/treephys/tpp075⟩. ⟨hal-02667912⟩

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