Water flow and hydraulic characteristics of Japanese red pine and oak trees.
To assess the characteristics of water flow in a tree and the contribution of the stem water storage to transpiration, some field observations were carried out in two natural forests: a Japanese red pine (Pinus densiflora Sieb. et Zucc.) forest and an oak (Quercus mongolica Fish) forest. Water potentials of leaf, stem, root and soil water, sap flow rate, volumetric water content of the stem and micrometeorological factors were measured during the observation periods. Clear diurnal variations in volumetric water content of a stem were observed. It was confirmed that water storage in the stem contributed to the transpiration process. This contribution appeared when the difference in water potential between the root and stem was more than 0.3 MPa. The stem water storage was extracted by the driving force due to the difference of the response of the root and stem water potential to change in the leaf water potential in daytime. The stem capacitance of 1.44 kg MPa-1 for the Japanese red pine and 0.44 kg MPa-1 for the oak were evaluated from the variation in the water storage in the stem and the difference of water potential between root and stem. Evaluations of the water budget were made for each test stand. The results indicated that the contribution of water storage in the stem to transpiration accounted for 10 to 20% of the daily transpiration.