The effect of simulated dust storm on wood development and leaf stomata in Quercus brantii L

Document Type: Research Paper

Authors

Department of Forest Sciences, Ilam University, Ilam, Iran

Abstract

      Dust storms are increasingly threatening the forest ecosystem in Western Iran. Due to its coverage of vast area of Zagros forest, the Quercus brantii is at the front line of the attack. Most tree deaths in this forest are from this species. This study aims to investigate the effect of simulated dust on wood development and leaf stomata from seedlings of Persian oak. The oak seedlings were put in a chamber and dusted from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. at three different days with an interval of 12 days. They were under three increasing concentrations of dust (5000, 7000, and 9000 mg/m3). Leaf and wood samples of about 10 seedlings were collected, and the leaf stomatal features, growth ring and vessel features of both treated and untreated seedlings were examined. The results showed no variations in stomatal features except for pore aperture. As for wood features, growth ring, vessel number and diameter considerably changed. In treated seedlings, the growth ring and vessel diameter were smaller and the number of vessels was higher than in the untreated seedlings. No detection of differences in stomatal features could be tracked due to the short-period of treatment. The usual seedlings’ annual growth could be altered by treatment affecting on both annual growth ring and vessel features. To sum up, it can be concluded that dust storm has strong effect on seedling’s growth as can limit wood formation

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