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Phenotypic response of common beech and sessile oak provenances to long-lasting drought in interaction with different phosphorus concentrations in the soil (PhenoInter) - HRZZ project

Phenotypic response of common beech and sessile oak provenances to long-lasting drought in interaction with different phosphorus concentrations in the soil(PhenoInter)

Project funded by: Croatian science fundation – HRZZ

Project code: IP-2020-02-5204

Hosting institution: University of Zagreb, Faculty of forestry and wood technology

Duration of the project: 1st January 2021 – 31st December 2024

Total project budget: 88.586,66 EUR

SHORT DESCRIPTION AND PURPOSE OF THE PROJECT

In recent decades, european forest ecosystems are increasingly exposed to elevated air temperatures and long-lasting drought as constituent components of climate change. It is currently considered that climate change in the future will further burden forest ecosystems by reducing their productivity and overall biodiversity, which ultimately could result in the change of current species ratio in mixed forest stands across Europe. In addition, under the influence of climate change in interaction with acidification of forest soils and increased atmospheric nitrogen deposits in the last 20 years in whole Europe there is an obstruction of optimal nutrition of forest trees with phosphorus (P), indicated by decline in P concentrations. Therefore, the research of the physiological role of P in the metabolism of forest trees is steadily rising and is currently considered as an "state of the art" research problem in the field of ecology and forestry. Namely, currently still most of knowledge about the physiological role of P as plant nutrient that participates in the mechanism of mitigating negative consequences of drought stress and/or increasing the drought tolerance of plants has arisen from research on agricultural crops. However, adoption of P (including other mineral nutrients), its use and recycling in long-living forest trees is much more complex compared to one-year crops. Despite of that, there is relatively little data on the impact of drought stress on the nutrition of forest trees with P. Available results suggest that adequate nutrition of forest trees with P could mitigate the negative consequences of drought stress and/or increase its tolerance to drought. These indications are based on the physiological role of P in regulating photosynthesis and glycolysis and thus controlling the assimilation of CO2 and the later use of carbohydrates for biomass production. In addition, adequate plant nutrition with P positively affects the ability to protect and repair damaged photosynthetic apparatus caused by oxidative stress induced by drought stress. Common beech and sessile oak across Europe, (including the Republic of Croatia), form mixed forest communities that grow on a wide spectrum of forest soils, distinguished by different moisture and nutritional status, including different concentrations of easily accessible P in the soil. According to current knowledge, under the influence of climate change, and increasingly frequent dry periods, sessile oak could become more competitive compared to common beech due to deeper rooting, xeromorphic leaf structure and rapid recovery of CO2 assimilation after droughts. However, current knowledge about the role of P in the metabolism of sessile oaks is very limited, and the genetic diversity of both species in the area of Southeastern Europe (including the Republic of Croatia) has hardly been investigated. Accordingly, this project proposal would start a systematic study of the intraspecies adaptive variations in response to drought stress of common beech and sessile oak provenances from southeastern Europe.

 

 

PROJECT GOALS

According to the project's purpose, its objectives are follows:

  • To determine the influence of increased P concentration in soil on tolerance of common beech and sessile oak to drought stress.
  • To determine if there is a local adaptation of the common beech and sessile oak provenances to drought stress, as well as genotypic differences in drought tolerance under the influence of increased P concentration in the soil.
  • To determine if there are so-called memory effects (after effects) caused by drought stress in common beech and sessile oak, i.e. the influence of increased P concentration in the soil on such effects.

 

PROJECT TEAM

  • Doc. dr. sc. Krunoslav Sever (project leader), e-mail: ksever@sumfak.hr
  • Doc. dr. sc. Daniel Krstonošić (associate)
  • Doc. dr. sc. Ida Katičić Bogdan (associate)
  • Doc. dr. sc. Tomislav Karažija (associate)
  • Prof. dr. sc. Željko Škvorc (associate)
  • Prof. dr. sc. Saša Bogdan (associate)
  • Prof. dr. sc. Jozo Franjić (associate)

CONTACT

University of Zagreb, Faculty of forestry and wood technology, Svetošimunska 25, 1000 Zagreb

Telefon: +385 (0)1 2352 555, Fax: +385 (0)1 2318 616

e-mail: sumarski-fakultet@zg.t-com.hr

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