A Whole-plant, Open, Gas-exchange System for Measuring Net Photosynthesis of Potted Woody Plants

in HortScience
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  • 1 Department of Horticulture, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824

Chambers were constructed to measure gas exchange of entire potted grapevines (Vitis vinifera L.). The plant enclosures were constructed from Mylar film, which is nearly transparent to photosynthetically active radiation. Maintaining a slight, positive, internal pressure allowed the Mylar chambers to inflate like balloons and required no other means of support. The whole-plant, gas-exchange chamber design and construction were simple and inexpensive. They were assembled easily, equilibrated quickly, and did not require cooling. They allowed for the measurement of many plants in a relatively short period. This system would enable the researcher to make replicated comparisons of treatment influences on whole-plant CO2 assimilation throughout the growing season. While CO2 measurement was the focus of this project, it would be possible to measure whole-plant transpiration with this system.

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