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Title: An explanation for the isotopic offset between soil and stem water in a temperate tree species
Authors: Barbeta, Adrià
Gimeno, Teresa E.
Clavé, Laura
Fréjaville, Bastien
Jones, Sam P.
Delvigne, Camille
Wingate, Lisa
Ogée, Jérôme
Keywords: Fagus Sylvatica
Issue Date: 2020
metadata.dc.publisher.journal: New Phytologist
metadata.dc.relation.ispartof: Volume 227, Número 3, Pags. 766-779
Abstract: A growing number of field studies report isotopic offsets between stem water and its potential sources that prevent the unambiguous identification of plant water origin using water isotopes. We explored the causes of this isotopic offset by conducting a controlled experiment on the temperate tree species Fagus sylvatica. We measured δ2H and δ18O of soil and stem water from potted saplings growing on three soil substrates and subjected to two watering regimes. Regardless of substrate, soil and stem water δ2H were similar only near permanent wilting point. Under moister conditions, stem water δ2H was 11 ± 3‰ more negative than soil water δ2H, coherent with field studies. Under drier conditions, stem water δ2H became progressively more enriched than soil water δ2H. Although stem water δ18O broadly reflected that of soil water, soil–stem δ2H and δ18O differences were correlated (r = 0.76) and increased with transpiration rates indicated by proxies. Soil–stem isotopic offsets are more likely to be caused by water isotope heterogeneities within the soil pore and stem tissues, which would be masked under drier conditions as a result of evaporative enrichment, than by fractionation under root water uptake. Our results challenge our current understanding of isotopic signals in the soil–plant continuum. © 2020 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2020 New Phytologist Trust
metadata.dc.identifier.doi: 10.1111/nph.16564
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