What is it about?

How exactly trees grow is an open question with important implications because the exact mechanism will determine how much trees will grow in a changing environment. We used an innovative chilling experiment to show that wood growth reacts strongly to carbon supply under current environmental conditions, but is not simply a function of carbon assimilation, as often assumed. In fact, we present multiple lines of evidence suggesting that trees down-regulate photosynthesis when growth becomes supply-saturated.

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Why is it important?

Trees are by some measures the dominant form of life on Earth and they provide important services to humans, such as sequestering carbon when they grow. Better understanding how and why they grow is therefore important to be able to protect and opssibly enhance those services in the long-run.

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This page is a summary of: Insights into source/sink controls on wood formation and photosynthesis from a stem chilling experiment in mature red maple, New Phytologist, August 2022, Wiley, DOI: 10.1111/nph.18421.
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