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Lookup NU author(s): Dr John Ollerenshaw,
Dr Thomas Lyons
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Seed of winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L. cv Riband) was sown on 29 August 1992 in eight field plots. Four plots were exposed to elevated ozone (O3) concentrations on 16 days between 29 August and 2 October 1992, for 6 h day-1, and on 27 days between 29 March and 24 August 1993, for 7 h day-1. Mean daily O3 concentrations were ~30 and 80 nmol mol-1 in ambient and fumigated plots, respectively. Plants were sampled on 5 November (1992), 14 January, 16 February, 1 April, 25 May, 23 June and 24 August (1993). No visible symptoms of O3 damage or premature senescence were observed at any time over the course of the experiment. Exposure to elevated O3 decreased the above ground biomass by reducing plant density and individual plant relative growth rate. However, there was no significant influence of the pollutant on the growth of the root relative to the shoot. Assessment of yield characteristics at the final harvest revealed an O3-induced decrease in the number of grains per ear, as a result of fewer grains per spikelet and an increase in the number of infertile florets per spikelet. No significant effects of the pollutant on the number of ears per plant, spikelets per ear, or 1000 grain weight were found. As a result of the combined effects on the number of grains per ear and the decrease in plant density and growth rate, O3 exposure reduced grain and straw yields (tonnes ha-1) by 13 and 8%, respectively. However, no significant change in the partitioning of dry matter between the grain and the straw was observed in fumigated plots. The findings are discussed within the context of United Nation Economic Commission for Europe critical level guidelines for the protection of crop yields, in relation to their application to winter-sown crops. Copyright (C) 1999 Elsevier Science Ltd.
Author(s): Ollerenshaw JH, Lyons T
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: Environmental Pollution
Print publication date: 01/07/1999
ISSN (print): 0269-7491
ISSN (electronic): 1873-6424
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