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Hydraulic and biomechanical optimization in Norway spruce trunk wood– A review

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Chapter Summary

This chapter gives an interdisciplinary update of the present knowledge on hydraulic and biomechanical determinants of wood structure within and among trunks of Norway spruce, which is one of Europe's economically most important forest tree species. One of the most interesting findings of Rosner et al. was that maximum hydraulic conductivity in young Norway spruce trunks is not only positively related to tracheid length and pit dimensions but also strongly to spiral grain. New applications in tree physiological research such as neutron radiography and acoustic emission feature analysis together with assessment of dimensional changes during dehydration helped to fill some gaps in the knowledge on hydraulic vulnerability within an annual ring of Norway spruce trunkwood. Gaining more knowledge on structure-function relationships within tree trunks enables the development of easily assessable and fast methods to estimate a tree's susceptibility to drought stress and helps selecting more suitable provenances or clones.

Keywords: acoustic emission feature analysis; biomechanical determinants; hydraulic conductivity; neutron radiography; Norway Spruce Trunkwood



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