Oscillations in stomatal conductance of hybrid poplar leaves in the light and dark

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Cycling of stomatal conductance in three hybrid poplar (Populus sp.) cultivars was observed under a variety of conditions. Illumination of plants kept previously in the dark induced very large oscillations with a period of about 40 min and large oscillations with a shorter period (< 10 min) were superimposed on the longer cycles. During these oscillations, large changes in conductance could occur very rapidly (1.0 cm s−1 in 3 min). Plants in constant light also displayed both long and short term cycles in conductance, but these were smaller in amplitude than those induced by sudden illumination. Stomatal oscillations were also observed in darkness and after darkening of previously illuminated plants. These oscillations had shorter (< 30 min) and less regular periods than those observed in the light. Such cycling in the dark is rare. Cycling of the two leaf surfaces was sometimes in synchrony in the light, and more so after a perturbation. Little synchrony between the two surfaces was observed in the dark. Stomatal movements of different leaves on a plant were usually relatively independent. Transient stomatal opening occurred following leaf excision in the light or dark, and often after sudden darkening of intact leaves. Also, stomata of intact leaves sometimes transiently closed following illumination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)541-548
Number of pages8
JournalPhysiologia Plantarum
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1984


  • Leaf conductance
  • Populus
  • stomatal cycling


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