Chin J Plant Ecol ›› 2020, Vol. 44 ›› Issue (7): 763-771.DOI: 10.17521/cjpe.2019.0162

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Variation in biomass allocation of Nitraria tangutorum during different phenological phases

XING Lei1,2, DUAN Na3, LI Qing-He1,2,*(), LIU Cheng-Gong1,2, LI Hui-Qing1,2, SUN Gao-Jie1,2   

  1. 1Research Institute of Forestry, Chinese Academy of Forestry, Beijing 100091, China
    2Key Laboratory of Tree Breeding and Cultivation, National Forestry and Grassland Administration, Beijing 100091, China
    3Experimental Center of Desert Forestry, Chinese Academy of Forestry, Dengkou, Nei Mongol 015200, China
  • Received:2019-06-26 Accepted:2020-05-01 Online:2020-07-20 Published:2020-07-03
  • Contact: LI Qing-He: ORCID:0000-0001-8011-1322,
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China(31470622);National Key R&D Program of China(31470622);Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Nonprofit Research Institution of Chinese Academy of Forestry(31470622)


Aims The pattern of plant biomass allocation represents the plant response to the environment and is accompanied by every stage of plant life history. So it is closely related to the growth and development of plants. There have been reports on the size dependence of plant biomass allocation, but few studies have reported on its responses to different phenological phase.
Methods In this study, Nitraria tangutorum in Ulan Buh Desert was used as the research object. The biomass of different organs (root, layering, newborn stem, older stem, leaf and reproductive organ) in the flowering, fruiting and vegetative growth stages in two consecutive years of 2016 and 2017 were measured. The significant differences of slope and intercept of the fitted equation with Standardized-major-axis were respectively used to discuss the varied size dependence and the biomass allocation in different phenological phase or ages, especially between the aboveground and belowground biomass and between the support and assimilation organs.
Important findings The results showed that the effect of reproductive allocation on biomass allocation pattern of N. tangutorum is mainly reflected in the scale of relative biomass allocation (36.00%) rather than the extent of size dependence (16.67%). The reproductive growth has a greater impact on the biomass allocation pattern of newborn stems, which changes the size dependence extent among different phenological phases, but the trend is inconsistent. The reproductive growth increases the scale of relative biomass allocation to leaves and reduces that to older stems, but did not change their extent of size dependence. The biomass allocation rate in the belowground part of N. tangutorum increased with the accumulation of its biomass, but the reproductive allocation slightly decreased this rate. Nitraria tangutorum exhibited a higher rate of biomass allocation to supporting organs as plant biomass increases. Over time it is more likely for biomass to be allocated to assimilating organs.

Key words: allometric growth, size dependence, phenological phase, biomass allocation, Nitraria tangutorum