Using Video Thermal Image Analysis to Monitor Stomatal Opening in Fruit Crops

in HortScience
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  • 1 Dept. of Horticulture, Michigan State Univ., East Lansing, MI 48824

This study demonstrates that thermal image analysis can be used to localize stomatal opening and closing on leaves of apple, and cherry. An attached leaf was placed in an environmental chamber used for gas exchange and leaf temperature was monitored with cromel-constantan thermocouples, (0.08 mm) pressed against the underside of the leaf, or with an Inframetrics 600 thermal image analyzer that was focused on the upper side of the leaf. Radiation was monitored in the 8–12 μm range and the image was recorded on video tape. A two-degree temperature difference due to stomatal opening was detected. Stomatal opening as monitored by gas exchange was correlated significantly with leaf temperature. Under steady state conditions, stomata from cherry oscillated at 20-minute intervals. Stomata opened and closed uniformly. Factors investigated were light, carbon dioxide, ABA, and water stress. In all cases changes in temperature correlated with stomatal opening and closing. Response time to a change in environment was less than 10 minutes. The practical implications of this study are discussed.

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