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Observations and models of emissions of volatile terpenoid compounds from needles of ponderosa pine trees growing in situ: control by light, temperature and stomatal conductance.

  • Author(s): Harley, Peter
  • Eller, Allyson
  • Guenther, Alex
  • Monson, Russell K
  • et al.

Terpenoid emissions from ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa subsp. scopulorum) were measured in Colorado, USA over two growing seasons to evaluate the role of incident light, needle temperature, and stomatal conductance in controlling emissions of 2-methyl-3-buten-2-ol (MBO) and several monoterpenes. MBO was the dominant daylight terpenoid emission, comprising on average 87% of the total flux, and diurnal variations were largely determined by light and temperature. During daytime, oxygenated monoterpenes (especially linalool) comprised up to 75% of the total monoterpenoid flux from needles. A significant fraction of monoterpenoid emissions was dependent on light and 13CO2 labeling studies confirmed de novo production. Thus, modeling of monoterpenoid emissions required a hybrid model in which a significant fraction of emissions was dependent on both light and temperature, while the remainder was dependent on temperature alone. Experiments in which stomata were forced to close using abscisic acid demonstrated that MBO and a large fraction of the monoterpene flux, presumably linalool, could be limited at the scale of seconds to minutes by stomatal conductance. Using a previously published model of terpenoid emissions, which explicitly accounts for the physicochemical properties of emitted compounds, we were able to simulate these observed stomatal effects, whether induced experimentally or arising under naturally fluctuation conditions of temperature and light. This study shows unequivocally that, under naturally occurring field conditions, de novo light-dependent monoterpenes comprise a significant fraction of emissions in ponderosa pine. Differences between the monoterpene composition of ambient air and needle emissions imply a significant non-needle emission source enriched in Δ-3-carene.

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