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Evaluation of centrifugal methods for measuring xylem cavitation in conifers, diffuse­ and ring­porous angiosperms

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • • A centrifugal method is used to measure ‘vulnerability curves’ which show the loss of hydraulic conductivity in xylem by cavitation. Until recently, conductivity was measured between bouts of centrifugation using a gravity-induced head. Now, conductivity can be measured during centrifugation. This ‘spin’ method is faster than the ‘gravity’ technique, but correspondence between the two has not been evaluated. • The two methods were compared on the same stem segments for two conifer, four diffuse-porous, and four ring-porous species. • Only 17 of 60 conductivity measurements differed, with differences in the order of 10%. When different, the spin method gave higher conductivities at the beginning of the curve and lower at the end. Pressure at 50% loss of conductivity, and mean cavitation pressure, were the same in 14 of 20 comparisons. When different, the spin method averaged 0.32 MPa less negative. Ring-porous species showed a precipitous initial drop in conductivity by both techniques. This striking pattern was confirmed by the air-injection method and native embolism measurements. • Close correspondence inspires confidence in both methods, each of which has unique advantages. The observation that ring-porous species operate at only a fraction of their potential conductivity at midday demands further study.

  • Date created
    2008
  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Type of Item
    Article (Published)
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/R3C53FG0S
  • License
    © 2008 Y. Li et al. This version of this article is open access and can be downloaded and shared. The original author(s) and source must be cited.
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  • Citation for previous publication
    • Li, Y., Sperry, J., Taneda, H., Bush, S., and Hacke, U. (2008). Evaluation of centrifugal methods for measuring xylem cavitation in conifers, diffuse­ and ring­porous angiosperms. New Phytologist, 177(2), 558-568.
  • Link to related item
    http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1469-8137.2007.02272.x