The morphological and functional organization of the needles of Scotch pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and Siberian fir (Abies sibirica Ledeb.), which differ in their light requirement were studied. The characteristic properties of the high-light-requiring pine included high rates of apparent photosynthesis and dark respiration, high assimilation number, numerous folds in mesophyll cell walls, and increased partial volume of intercellular spaces and hyaloplasm in the mesophyll. In the needles of shade-enduring fir, the higher efficiency of photosynthesis at low light intensities depended on the higher number of membranes and higher pigment content in the chloroplasts. The low assimilation number in fir indicated a shortage of photosynthetic reaction centers. The relative volume of the vascular cylinder and the vascular bundles in the needles and the partial volume of chloroplasts in the hyaloplasm, are considered as indices of the rate of assimilate export from mesophyll cells and their possible damping at different levels of structural organization.
Russian Journal of Plant Physiology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 10, 2004
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