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Wood performs several essential functions in plants, including mechanically supporting aboveground tissue, storing water and other resources, and transporting sap. Woody tissues are likely to face physiological, structural and defensive trade-offs. How a plant optimizes among these competing functions can have major ecological implications, which have been(More)
Shifts in rainfall patterns and increasing temperatures associated with climate change are likely to cause widespread forest decline in regions where droughts are predicted to increase in duration and severity. One primary cause of productivity loss and plant mortality during drought is hydraulic failure. Drought stress creates trapped gas emboli in the(More)
A trade-off between growth and mortality rates characterizes tree species in closed canopy forests. This trade-off is maintained by inherent differences among species and spatial variation in light availability caused by canopy-opening disturbances. We evaluated conditions under which the trade-off is expressed and relationships with four key functional(More)
Within the last decade the study of phenology has taken on new importance because of its contribution to climate-change research.However, phenology data sets spanningmany years are rare in the tropics,making it difficult to evaluate possible responses of tropical communities to climate change. Here we use two data sets (1970–1983 and 1990–2002) to describe(More)
Woody stems comprise a large biological carbon fraction and determine water transport between roots and leaves; their structure and function can influence both carbon and hydrological cycles. While angiosperm wood anatomy and density determine hydraulic conductivity and mechanical strength, little is known about interrelations across many species. We(More)
The carbon flux from woody debris, a crucial uncertainty within global carbon-climate models, is simultaneously affected by climate, site environment and species-based variation in wood quality. In the first global analysis attempting to explicitly tease out the wood quality contribution to decomposition, we found support for our hypothesis that, under a(More)
In wood, lateral transport of water and minerals occurs readily in ‘integrated’ trees but is more restricted in ‘sectored species’. Dye distribution and a novel hydraulic technique are used to quantify species-specific differences in sectoriality in three temperate hardwoods, Betula papyrifera , Acer saccharum and Quercus rubra. Sectoriality was related to(More)
Rates of molecular evolution have a central role in our understanding of many aspects of species' biology. However, the causes of variation in rates of molecular evolution remain poorly understood, particularly in plants. Here we show that height accounts for about one-fifth of the among-lineage rate variation in the chloroplast and nuclear genomes of(More)
Recent studies suggest that regeneration following large-scale disturbance in Kibale National Park, Uganda, is slow or possibly arrested. Here, data is provided on the growth and mortality of seedlings in the forest understory, treefall gaps, and in large gaps that suggest that this pattern of arrested succession can be attributed partially to the fact that(More)