1 October 2001 Vernal Photosynthesis and Nutrient Retranslocation in Dryopteris intermedia
Jack T. Tessier
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The value of preserving wintergreen fronds into the spring by forest understory fern species is unknown. In this study, net photosynthetic rates and nitrogen and phosphorus contents were monitored in a population of Dryopteris intermedia throughout a spring season to explore potential photosynthetic and retranslocational benefits of wintergreen fronds. Net photosynthesis occurred throughout the study indicating a potential for movement of fixed carbon from wintergreen fronds to other parts of the plant. Nitrogen and phosphorus content in the old fronds did not change through spring, thus no evidence for net retranslocation of these nutrients from wintergreen fronds to the rest of the plant was obtained. Maintenance of the wintergreen fronds may simply increase retention time and thus nutrient use efficiency of limiting nutrients. Other possible benefits of wintergreen fronds exist and should be investigated.

Jack T. Tessier "Vernal Photosynthesis and Nutrient Retranslocation in Dryopteris intermedia," American Fern Journal 91(4), 187-196, (1 October 2001). https://doi.org/10.1640/0002-8444(2001)091[0187:VPANRI]2.0.CO;2
Published: 1 October 2001
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