Honey mesquite transpiration along a vertical site gradient.

Cuomo, C.J.
Ansley, R.J.
Jacoby, P.W.
Sosebee, R.E.
Rangeland Ecology & Management / Journal of Range Management Archives
Publication Year: 
Honey mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa Torr.) occurs on a variety of sites varying in soil depth and moisture availability. The objective of this study was to compare water use by honey mesquite on upland, lowland, and riparian sites which were assumed to represent increasing levels of available soil moisture within a single watershed. Effects of the upland and lowland sites were evaluated in 1985. The riparian site was evaluated with the other 2 sites in 1986. Soil moisture and average daily transpiration were greater (P < 0.05) on the upland than on the lowland site from mid-May to July in both years, and from mid-August through September 1986. These differences were attributed mainly to soil surface characteristics which created greater infiltration on the upland site. The riparian site was near an ephemeral stream and had a water table as shallow as 1.5 m. Soil water content was much greater for this site compared to the other 2 sites throughout 1986. Mesquite transpiration was greater on the riparian site than on the other sites during July 1986, when seasonal vapor pressure deficit was at maximum. However, transpiration was less on the riparian site than on the upland site during May and June 1986. Soil temperature was significantly lower on the riparian than on the upland site and potentially inhibited transpiration on the riparian site in May and June. The study demonstrated a positive relationship between water availability and transpiration by mesquite but did not support the hypothesis that water availability or transpiration was lowest on upland sites.
Document Type: 
Journal Issue/Article
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