University of Oulu

Jouni Kilpeläinen, Timo Domisch, Tarja Lehto, Leena Finér, Pedro J. Aphalo, Ilkka Leinonen, Aija Ryyppö, Tapani Repo. Root and shoot phenology and root longevity of Norway spruce saplings grown at different soil temperatures. Canadian Journal of Forest Research, 2019, 49:1441-1452,

Root and shoot phenology and root longevity of Norway spruce saplings grown at different soil temperatures

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Author: Kilpeläinen, Jouni1; Domisch, Timo1; Lehto, Tarja2;
Organizations: 1Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke), Natural Resources, P.O. Box 68, FI-80101 Joensuu, Finland
2School of Forest Sciences, University of Eastern Finland, P.O. Box 111, FI-80101 Joensuu, Finland
3Department of Biosciences, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 65, FI-00014 University of Helsinki, Finland
4Department of Rural Economy, Environment and Society, Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC), West Mains Road, Edinburgh EH9 3JG, UK
5Unit for Strategy and Science Policy, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 8000, FI-90014 University of Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.7 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Canadian Science Publishing, 2019
Publish Date: 2020-02-13


Tree roots comprise a huge carbon pool. Their dynamics are driven by environmental factors and thereby affected by climate change. We studied the effects of soil temperature on root and shoot phenology and their linkages in Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.). Saplings were grown in controlled-environment rooms for three simulated growing seasons (GS1, GS2, and GS3). Soil-temperature treatments of 9, 13, 18, and 21 °C were applied during GS2. Root growth was monitored with minirhizotrons and commenced in all treatments simultaneously. Temporal growth patterns of short and long roots were usually bimodal. Root growth was very low during the coldest treatment of GS2 but increased during GS3 as an aftereffect. During GS3, growth of short roots continued later after colder treatments than warmer treatments. Reduced sink strength of roots and increased carbohydrate accumulation into needles at 9 °C during GS2 probably enabled compensatory root growth under restored temperatures during GS3. Soil temperature did not affect shoot phenology, and root and shoot phenology varied between growing seasons; thus, the linkage of root and shoot phenology was inconsistent. In warmer soil, root longevity was shorter and turnover rate was higher than in colder soil. This can further affect soil carbon dynamics and ecosystem carbon cycling in boreal forest ecosystems.

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Series: Canadian journal of forest research
ISSN: 0045-5067
ISSN-E: 1208-6037
ISSN-L: 0045-5067
Volume: 49
Issue: 11
Pages: 1441 - 1452
DOI: 10.1139/cjfr-2019-0190
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 411 Agriculture and forestry
Copyright information: Copyright remains with the author(s) or their institution(s). The final authenticated version is available online at