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Arboriculture & Urban Forestry Online
Volume 27, Issue 5 — September 2001

Measurement of the Salinity and Freezing Tolerance of Crataegus Genotypes Using Chlorophyll Fluorescence    (View PDF)

Glynn C. Percival and Gillian A. Fraser

Abstract: The effect of increasing salinity and freezing stress singly and in combination on a range of chlorophyll fluorescence parameters in foliar tissue of six Crataegus genotypes was examined. In general, increased stress reduced fluorescence values and absorption, trapping and electron transport energy fluxes per leaf reaction center and cross section, with decreased sigmoidicity of OJIP curves as a measure of the plastoquinone pool, reflecting decreased energy fluxes. Based on percentage reduction in a performance index from controls compared to stress-treated values, plants were ranked in order of tolerant > intermediate > sensitive. Use of this Pip ranking criteria enabled the distinguishing of marked differences in foliar salt/freezing hardiness between the Crataegus species used. Interpretation of the photochemical data showed that salinity and freezing affects both the acceptor and donor side of Photosystem II, while OJIP observations provided information regarding structural and functional changes in the leaf photosynthetic apparatus of the test species. It is concluded that chlorophyll fluorescence offers a rapid screening technique for assessing foliar salinity and freezing tolerance of woody perennials.

Keywords: Chlorophyll fluorescence; OJIP; salinity tolerance; freezing tolerance; Photosystem II; Crataegus; stress.

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