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Histology of ageing norway spruce picea abies l. karst. needles


Histology of ageing norway spruce picea abies l. karst. needles



Angewandte Botanik 62(1-2): 9-20



Structural changes in the tissue of 1 to 8 year old needles from Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) were studied by light- and electron microscopy. The mesophyll of ageing needles showed granulation of tannins and an increasing number of Ca-oxalate crystals. Up to seven year old needles had chloroplasts with a prominent thylakoid system; only slight and infrequent swelling of thylakoid membranes was observed. The number of grana thylakoids decreased during the ageing, whereas that of plastoglobuli increased. More intensive degenerations in the chloroplasts such as a distinct swelling of thylakoid membranes and loss of grana structure occurred in the oldest and second oldest needles exclusively. Within the vascular bundle, from two years age onwards, one layer of new sieve cells is formed each year, while the oldest layer of sieve cells collapses. In the youngest four needle series, sieve cells close to the cambium revealed slightly pectinized, lamellar, and thick walls. It is assumed that the thickness of these cell walls is correlated with the function of the sieve cells. Cell layers of this zone were connected laterally with the Strasburger cells. In aged needles, sieve cells in layers adjacent to the cambium hat thinner, pectinized walls even in layers adjacent to the cambium. These structural changes indicate that in senescent needles the functions cease earlier in the phloem than in the mesophyll. Apparently the mesophyll of the oldest two needle series does not contribute to the trees' supply of carbohydrates.

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Accession: 005580537

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