Centre for Plant Success Webinar Series: Cade Kane
6 April @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Abscisic acid can augment, but is not essential for autumnal leaf senescence
Senescence vividly marks the onset of the final stages of the life of a leaf, yet the triggers and drivers of this process are still not fully understood. The hormone abscisic acid (ABA) is an important regulator of leaf senescence in model herbs, but the function of this hormone has not been widely tested in deciduous trees. Here we investigate the importance of ABA as a driver of leaf senescence in winter deciduous trees. In four diverse species we tracked leaf gas exchange, water potential, chlorophyll content, and foliage ABA levels from the end of summer until leaves were abscised or died. We found that no change in ABA levels occurred at the onset of chlorophyll decline or throughout the duration of leaf senescence. To test whether ABA could enhance leaf senescence we girdled the branches to disrupt ABA export in the phloem. Girdling increased foliage ABA levels in two of the species, and this increase triggered an accelerated rate of chlorophyll decline in these species. We conclude that an increase in ABA level may augment leaf senescence in winter deciduous species but that it is not essential for this annual process.
This event is open to Centre Members only. If you are a Centre Member who would like to attend, please contact email@example.com for the Zoom invitation.