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Alnus subcordata and Acer velutinum are two valuable, dominant, and endemic species in the Hyrcanian forests. There are fast-growing species and significant diffuse-porous hardwood in afforestation and reforestation. One-year old seedlings of both species were exposed to four water shortage treatments (100, 75, 50 and 25% of field capacity (FC)) for 12 weeks. Thereafter, their morphological characteristics such as height and basal area, total and organ biomass (root, stem, and leaf), leaf area (LA), specific leaf area (SLA), leaf area ratio (LAR), as well as physiological and biochemical characteristics such as relative water content (RWC), content of chlorophyll, free proline and malondialdehyde (MDA), and superoxide dismutase (SOD) and peroxidase (POD) activity were measured. The results showed that when exposed to reduced water availability, plant height, basal diameter, total and organ biomass, LA, LAR, RWC and chlorophyll content decreased, but their proline concentration, MDA content, SOD, and POD activity increased in both species. The root to shoot ratio (R/S) and root mass ratio (RMR) increased at 50 and 25% FC treatments in A. subcordata, whereas no significant difference was found in A. velutinum under drought treatments. SLA increased significantly at 50% FC in A. velutinum and decreased in A. subcordata under drought treatments compared to control treatment. A. velutinum showed more proline content, RWC, POD, and lower increase in MDA content than A. subcordata under moderate treatment. Therefore, A. velutinum appears to possess a better mechanism to cope with drought stress.


Alnus subcordata Acer velutinum antioxidant enzymes biomass growth water deficit

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How to Cite
Ravanbakhsh, M., Babakhani, B., Ghasemnezhad, M., Serpooshan, F., & Biglouie, M. H. (2023). Acer velutinum Bioss. (velvet maple) seedlings are more tolerant to water deficit than Alnus subcordata C.A. Mey. (Caucasian alder) seedlings. Acta Botanica Croatica, 82(1).


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