Chin J Plant Ecol ›› 2017, Vol. 41 ›› Issue (7): 738-748.DOI: 10.17521/cjpe.2017.0088

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Age of arboreous Tamarix austromongolica and its growth response to environment in Tongde County of Qinghai, China

Ou-Ya FANG1,*(), Heng-Feng JIA2, Hong-Yan QIU1, Hai-Bao REN1   

  1. 1State Key Laboratory of Vegetation and Environmental Change, Institute of Botany, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100093, China
    2College of Biology and Pharmacy, China Three Gorges University, Yichang, Hubei 443002, China
  • Received:2017-04-02 Accepted:2017-06-16 Online:2017-07-10 Published:2017-08-21
  • Contact: Ou-Ya FANG
  • About author:KANG Jing-yao(1991-), E-mail:


Aims The objectives were to identify the age of the arboreous Tamarix austromongolica in the flood plain area of the Qinghai Plateau and clarify the response patterns of T. austromongolica’s growth to the environmental factors. We focused on social issues about whether the T. austromongolica should be protected and how to protect in the reservoir area of a hydropower station. Methods In this study, arboreous T. austromongolica in both reservoir submerged and non-submerged areas were sampled and measured based on the dendrochronology method. The ages were estimated based on the geometrical characteristics of the pith and the identified age of the inner ring. The correlation and response analysis showed the relationship between T. austromongolica’s growth and environmental factors. Important findings We accurately determined the age and historical growth dynamics of the T. austromongolica with large diameter at breast height (DBH). The results showed a special accretion phenomenon in arboreous T. austromongolica, which accelerated the DBH increasing, i.e. no direct relationship existed between the plants’ DBH and ages of the individuals. Radial growth of T. austromongolica, increased rapidly in the 1970s and 1980s and began to stabilize in the late 1980s, and mainly responded to the runoff in July and August of the Yellow River. Increasing runoff would promote the radial growth of T. austromongolica. The growth of the immaturate plant showed significant negative correlation with the wind speed in the growing season. The results will be of theoretical significance to the formation of the special morphology of the T. austromongolica, and will provide scientific practical guidance in designing the protection schemes.

Key words: Tamarix austromongolica, arboreous, tree ring, runoff, wind speed