University of Tasmania
PES67039 Quentin et al 2010 - Insect vs Artifical defoliation on physiology of E glob.pdf (271.47 kB)

Do artificial and natural defoliation have similar effects on physiology of Eucalyptus globulus Labill. seedlings?

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posted on 2023-05-17, 04:35 authored by Quentin, A, Elizabeth Pinkard, Christopher BeadleChristopher Beadle, Wardlaw, TJ, Anthony O'Grady, Paterson, SC, Caroline MohammedCaroline Mohammed
Artificial defoliation is often used to simulate defoliation by herbivory and is usually considered a good indication of a plant’s response to a given type of damage. However, the findings of studies directly comparing the two defoliation types are inconsistent. • Here, the short term effects of artificial and insect defoliation by larvae of Paropsisterna agricola on growth, biomass allocation and photosynthetic capacity of Eucalyptus globulus seedlings were compared in a glasshouse experiment. The artificial defoliation was carried out to closely resemble the spatial patterns observed for insect defoliation. • Height and diameter increments were reduced as a result of insect defoliation, whereas artificial defoliation had no significant effect on height. Increased photosynthetic capacity was observed in response to both treatments, but the magnitude of this increase was larger in insect- than in artificially-defoliated seedlings. Significant reductions in foliar carbohydrate content and total biomass were noticeable in artificially-defoliated seedlings. Although the foliar carbohydrate levels also decreased across the crown zones following insect defoliation treatment, seedlings allocated a large amount of their biomass in the branches of the damaged zone. • Despite our best endeavours to simulate insect defoliation in the artificial treatment, the latter may not reflect accurately the full strength of the effects. However, artificial and insect defoliation were similar in their direction of the responses they caused in E. globulus seedlings.


Publication title

Annals of Forest Science








Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA)


E D P Sciences

Place of publication

7, Ave Du Hoggar, Parc D Activites Courtaboeuf, Bp 112, Les Ulis Cedexa, France, F-91944

Rights statement

Copyright © EDP Sciences, 2010

Repository Status

  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Forestry not elsewhere classified

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