Selected physiological parameters of creeping willow [Salix repens subsp. arenaria (L.) Hiit.]: a shrubby plant inhabiting degraded industrial areas
Marta Śliwa , Paweł Kaszycki , Paulina Supel , Andrzej Kornas , Adriana Kaproń , Ulrich Lüttge , Zbigniew Miszalski
AbstractThe study was aimed at characterizing main adaptive changes in Salix arenaria exposed to harsh conditions of a desert-like environment. It was clearly shown that the plant was capable of adapting most of its photosynthesis parameters to enable efficient vegetative performance. A closer look at plant anatomical structures made it possible to better define the changes developed by plants populating sandy habitats as compared with the vegetation sites located in the nearby forest. The desert environment generated physiological stress of water availability and increased the plants’ water use efficiency (WUE) during photosynthesis. All the collected data indicate that the photochemical apparatus in S. arenaria inhabiting desert areas got slightly adapted to strong light and drought, which involved some photoinhibition mechanism and the reduction of the reaction center (RC) size (photosystem II, PSII), while keeping the plant photochemical activity at a similar level. Determination of microbial frequency in the sandy soil of the desert-growing plants showed microbiota population high enough as not to hamper plant growth. The root zones of both the desert-growing and control plants provided favorable conditions enabling populous microbial proliferation, particularly biostimulated during the spring season. The arbuscular mycorrhiza was also shown to be well developed and independent of the original plant habitat (desert or forest).
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