Bayreuther Institut für Terrestrische Ökosystemforschung
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The role of different root zones in ion and water uptake of mature spruce trees


From 01/1998 to 12/2000

Principal Investigator: Egbert Matzner
Staff: Axel Göttlein, Julia Lindenmair
Grant: 0339476 C Grundlagen zur nachhaltigen Entwicklung von Ökosystemen bei veränderter Umwelt

To verify and quantify water and ion uptake by older suberized roots, root chambers for field experiments were developed. At the Coulissenhieb experimental plot (Waldstein) 8 chambers were installed at a mature Norway spruce including different roots varying in diameter from 0.2 to 3.7 cm. After filling the chambers with a nutrient solution, changes in water volume and ion concentration were recorded for several weeks throughout the growing season. In order to locate ion uptake, first experiments using stable isotopes (44Ca, 41K, 25Mg) as tracers were carried out. After two weeks of labelling the roots were cut, and the distribution of stable isotopes in the root tissue was determined. Furthermore micro suction cups were used to in situ characterize soil solution chemistry in the rhizosphere of 4 roots of different ages (diameter 0,7-5,9 cm) in high spatial and temporal resolution.

The results of the root chamber experiments showed measurable water uptake for all roots studied. The daily rates varied from 2-25 µl/cm2 root surface and decreased with increasing root diameter. During the experiment Al concentrations in the chambers were decreasing. K concentrations strongly increased, indicating leaching from the roots. With stable isotope labelling 25Mg could be detected significantly in xylem of two root samples.

List of publications of this Project

Göttlein, A; Lindenmair, J; Kuhn, AJ: Experimental approaches for studying rhizosphere chemistry and nutrient uptake of tree roots by in-situ methods in Horst, WJ et al.: Plant Nutrition - Food Security and Sustainability of Agro-Ecosystems, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 536-537 (2001) -- Details
Lindenmair, J; Matzner, E; Göttlein, A; Kuhn, AJ; Schröder, WH: Ion exchange and water uptake of coarse roots of mature Norway spruce trees (Picea abies L. Karst.) in Horst, WJ et al.: Plant Nutrition - Food Security and Sustainability of Agro-Ecosystems, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 568-569 (2001) -- Details
Göttlein, A; Adler, J; Blasek, R: Siliziumcarbid - eine Alternative zur Aluminiumoxid-Saugkerze?, Journal of Plant Nutr. Soil Sci., (2000) 163, 559-560 (2000) -- Details
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