Non-structural carbohydrate concentrations in tree organs vary across biomes and leaf habits, but are independent of the fast-slow plant economic spectrum

Jorge Andres Ramirez, Dylan Craven, David Herrera, Juan Manuel Posada, Bjorn Reu, Carlos A. Sierra, Guenter Hoch, Ira Tanya Handa, Christian Messier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Carbohydrate reserves play a vital role in plant survival during periods of negative carbon balance. Under a carbon-limited scenario, we expect a trade-offs between carbon allocation to growth, reserves, and defense. A resulting hypothesis is that carbon allocation to reserves exhibits a coordinated variation with functional traits associated with the ‘fast-slow’ plant economics spectrum. We tested the relationship between non-structural carbohydrates (NSC) of tree organs and functional traits using 61 angiosperm tree species from temperate and tropical forests with phylogenetic hierarchical Bayesian models. Our results provide evidence that NSC concentrations in stems and branches are decoupled from plant functional traits. while those in roots are weakly coupled with plant functional traits. In contrast, we found that variation between NSC concentrations in leaves and the fast-slow trait spectrum was coordinated, as species with higher leaf NSC had trait values associated with resource conservative species, such as lower SLA, leaf N, and leaf P. We also detected a small effect of leaf habit on the variation of NSC concentrations in branches and roots. Efforts to predict the response of ecosystems to global change will need to integrate a suite of plant traits, such as NSC concentrations in woody organs, that are independent of the ‘fast-slow’ plant economics spectrum and that capture how species respond to a broad range of global change drivers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1375958
JournalFrontiers in Plant Science
Volume15
DOIs
StatePublished - 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Plant Science

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Non-structural carbohydrate concentrations in tree organs vary across biomes and leaf habits, but are independent of the fast-slow plant economic spectrum'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this