Winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) seedlings of three cultivars differing in frost resistance were used to study cooling-induced changes in the bioelectric potential. Measurements were performed with nonfreezing graphite–glycerol electrodes in the regime of monitoring. Upon a gradual change in air temperature from 20 to –15°C at the rates of 20 and 2°C/h, the bioelectric potential underwent abrupt transitions at certain moments, indicating changes in the physiological condition of plants. The time required for the achievement of these critical states, as well as the survival of plants after thawing, depended both on the temperature and the cooling rate. Apparently, these characteristics were related to the dynamics of phase transitions of water. Cultivar-specific features were manifested in the different abilities of plants to maintain free water in a supercooled state. It is supposed that the critical points are related to the cold resistance of colloid systems and to the temperature lethal for plants.
Russian Journal of Plant Physiology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 8, 2004
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