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Seasonal variations of leaf photosynthesis in italian rye grass lolium multiflorum and orchard grass dactylis glomerata



Seasonal variations of leaf photosynthesis in italian rye grass lolium multiflorum and orchard grass dactylis glomerata



Grassland Science 26(3): 297-304



Leaf photosynthesis of Italian ryegrass, L. multiflorum Lam., and orchardgrass, D. glomerata L., were measured to estimate seasonal variations, changes following the aging processes of the leaf, responses to light intensities of various leaf positions, and effects of low temperature on photosynthesis in early spring. In Italian ryegrass, leaf photosynthetic rates were higher at the seedling stage in late autumn and at the growing stage in next spring. In winter, leaf photosynthetic rates were significantly correlated with the mean daily air temperature during 10 days preceding the measurements. Dark respiration rates of leaves were somewhat higher in winter compared with those in other seasons. In orchardgrass, leaf photosynthetic rates were highest in spring, followed by those in autumn. In spring, leaf photosynthetic rates were significantly correlated with mean daily air temperature during 10 days preceding the measurements. The leaf photosynthetic rates in winter reached the highest level 3-5 wk after the full expansion of the leaf and then tended to decline with aging. In spring or early summer, leaf photosynthetic rates reached to the highest level 1-2 wk after expansion and declined rapidly thereafter. The photosynthetic rates of upper leaves were higher than those of lower ones at high light intensities (60 and 20 klx), but were not different at low light (7 klx) except for Italian ryegrass measured in May. Leaf photosynthetic activities of both Italian ryegrass and orchardgrass suffered serious damage at -4.degree. C/48 h treatment and were killed by -6.degree. C/48 h treatment. With a 1 wk exposure to 10.degree. C as pretreatment, leaf photosynthetic activities recovered almost completely after 2 or 3 days of -2.degree. C/48 h treatment. With a 15.degree. C pretreatment the recovery of leaf photosynthetic activities was still limited to .apprx. 20-50% at 1 wk after treatment.

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