The effect of handling on photosynthesis, transpiration, respiration, and nitrogen and carbohydrate content of populations of Lolium perenne

Edwin Kraus, Chris Kollöffel, Hans Lambers

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Two populations of perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) S23, selected for contrasting rates of yield and mature leal dark respiration, were used in this study. Since previous work showed that yield decreased severely in population GL66 due to mechanical perturbation, possible effects on respiration rates were examined. Apart from a transient increase in population GL72, there was no effect on the respiration rate but mechanical perturbation did affect other processes. Handling caused transpiration ratesinthe light to increas for GL72, and in the dark to decrease for GL66. In the logger term, the nitrogen content decreased in handled plants grown at high density. These results emphasize that handling plants should be reduced to a minimum since it might have major effect on several processes. It is concluded that the original selection for the Lolium population was indeed on contrasting rates in yield and respiration. Furthermore it is argued that the existence of low‐ and high‐yielding genotypes can be attributed to the dissimilar responses of different genotypes to mechanical influence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)631-638
Number of pages8
JournalPhysiologia Plantarum
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1994
Externally publishedYes


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