Stomatal Distribution, Density and Conductance of Three Perennial Grasses Native to the Southern True Prairie of Texas
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Stomatal distribution within Schizachyrium scoparium (C4), Bothriochloa saccharoides (C4) and Stipa leucotricha (C3), was highly variable among species and between leaf surfaces. The greater proportion of stomata occurred on the abaxial (lower) surface of the 2 C4species (99 and 95%), but on the adaxial (upper) surface of the C3species (83%). A 180 twist at the base of Stipa leaf blades effectively oriented the leaf surface with the greatest proportion of stomata in a position comparable to the abaxial surfaces of the C4species. Leaf involution in response to water stress protected leaf surfaces with the greater proportion of stomata in only the C3species. The tendency toward functional hypostomaty (gas exchange from only the abaxial surface) in these perennial grasses suggests that efficient water use functions as a stronger selective agent than maximum CO2conductance in this environment. -from Authors
American Midland Naturalist
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Anderson, V. J., & Briske, D. D.
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