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- Author or Editor: Sylvain Dubé x
Photosynthesis, a major determinant in growth and survival of plants, is very sensitive to the energy balance of the processes triggered by the physico-chemical environment. It is, therefore, an excellent indicator of the plants' physiological state. Fundamental events in photosynthesis can be studied non-invasively and non-destructively by examining there-emission of absorbed light energy as chlorophyll a fluorescence. In this study we present digitized consecutive images of fluorescence of intact leaves of Arabidopsis sp. The relative intensity and kinetics of fluorescence of several AOI (areas of interests) of each image have been analyzed and compared. We demonstrate the feasibility of this technique for studying the physiology of light adaptations (state-transitions) of several organisms simultaneously and its applicability in indentifying mutants. Implications of this technique to the horticulture industry will be discussed.
Tomato production represents >70% of all greenhouse vegetables produced in Quebec, Canada. To obtain high yields and high quality fruit, an adequate control of greenhouse environmental characteristics, including the vapor pressure deficit (VPD), is necessary. Our study examines four VPD treatments (0.5 kPa day and night, 0.8 kPa day and night, 0.8 kPa day 0.5 kPa night, and automatic VPD management according to transpiration) and three photoperiods [12 h, 14 h, and variable-12 h (summer) 16 h (winter)] on growth, yield, and photosynthetic capacity of tomato plants. Greenhouse temperature was maintained at 22C day/18C night. Pure CO2 was injected into the greenhouse to maintain a constant atmospheric concentration of 800 ppm throughout the experiment. Growth, yield, and leaf mineral composition were determined monthly for each treatment during the experiment. The photosynthetic rate of the 5th and 10th leaves also were measured in addition to the content of chlorophyll a and b. Our results indicated an increase in total yield and photosynthetic rate under a VPD of 0.8 kPa during day and night. An increase in leaf mineral concentration also was noted in plants grown under high VPD. Differences in yield and photosynthetic capacity were not found between the three photoperiods studied. However, there was a tendency to have higher yields under longer photoperiods.
Two cultivars of lamb's lettuce (Valerianella sp L. cvs. Valgros et Vit) and one cultivar of spinach (Spinacea oleracea L. cv. Martine RZ Fl) were subjected to supplemental lighting treatments provided by high-pressure sodium lamps (HPS, PL 90, P.L. Lighting Systems). The PAR level was 50 μmol– m–2 · s–1. Seedlings were subjected to three photoperiods (natural, 12, and 16 h). The experiment was conducted from Jan. until Apr. 1994. The fresh weight of plants grown under supplemental light was higher than plants grown under natural light. Nitrate concentration was lower in the leaves of plants grown under supplemental light while nitrate reductase activity (NRA) was increased. The cultivar Valgros was more productive than Vit, but accumulated more nitrates. At harvest, the fresh weight of Valgros plants grown under 12- and 16-h photoperiods were 30% and 50% higher, respectively, than those grown under natural photoperiod. The fresh weight of Vit grown under 16 h of supplemental light was 30% higher than under natural photoperiod. The lowest nitrate concentrations in plants were obtained under a 16-h photoperiod and the highest NRA were obtained with the same treatment. Compared to that obtained under natural photoperiod, the fresh weight of spinach shoots was 40% higher when seedlings were lighted for 12 h and almost 100% under 16 h. The lowest nitrate accumulation in spinach was found for plants grown under 16 h supplemental lighting.
Growing tomato and pepper plants under continuous light causes negative effects such as leaf chlorosis and deformities, and decreased growth and yield. Such effects are more pronounced on tomato plants. Our general objectives are to identify the physiological process(es) responsible for these negative effects and to explain the difference in sensitivity of tomato and pepper plants to continuous light. The specific objective of this experiment was to determine the effects of continuous light and light spectral composition on photosynthesis and related processes of tomato and pepper plants. Tomato and pepper plants were place on 7 June 1994 in growth chambers under photoperiod treatments of 12 h [high-pressure sodium (HPS) lamps], 24 h (HPS lamps), and 24 h [metal halide (MH) lamps]. For all treatments, FPP was 350 μmol·m–2·s–1, temperatures were 21C (day) and 17C (night), and RH was 70%. Every 2 weeks (7 June until 2 Aug.), tomato and pepper leaf samples were harvested and frozen in liquid nitrogen for subsequent measurements of starch content (Robinson et al, 1988, Plant Physiol.), sucrose phosphate synthase activities (Dali et al., 1992, Plant Physiol.) and chlorophyll and carotenoid content (determination on HPLC). A system that measured gas exchange and chlorophyll fluorescence of fresh leaf samples was used to determine the photosynthetic rate and quantum yield of CO2 fixation and electron transport. Development of the negative effects of continuous light on plants was monitored. Light spectral composition of the two types of lamps was measured using a spectroradiometer. Results show that, under continuous light, pepper plants were less-efficient than tomato plants in using light for CO2 fixation, but were more efficient in dissipating the extra energy received. This may explain why pepper plants are less sensitive to continuous light than tomato plants. MH lamps caused more-severe chloroses on tomato leaves than HPS plants. We believe that the higher proportion of UV-light provided by MH lamps may be related to this effect. Detailed results will be presented.