Leaf Age Affects Gas Exchange in Okra

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  • 1 Agricultural Research Station, Fort Valley State College, Fort Valley, GA 31030-3298

Two studies were conducted to assess the effects of leaf aging on gas exchange in okra [Abelmoschus esculentus (L.) Moench] leaves. Gas exchange was measured at 6- to 10-day intervals starting 15 days after leaf emergence (DFE) and continuing until senescence at 50 DFE. Rates of transpiration (E), stomatal conductance (gs) and CO2 exchange (CER) increased as leaves matured up to ≈25 DFE, about full leaf expansion. Transpiration rate, gs, and CER declined after 25 DFE and as leaves aged further. Internal leaf CO2 concentration (Ci) was higher in old than young leaves. This study suggests that the most efficient okra canopy would maximize exposure of 25-day-old leaves to sunlight.

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