Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub
    Author(s): Cassandra M. Kurtz; Jessica A. Savage; I-Yu Huang; Jeannine Cavender-Bares
    Date: 2013
    Source: Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society. 140(2): 145-156.
    Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
    Station: Northern Research Station
    PDF: Download Publication  (462.91 KB)


    Climate change is of increasing concern in coastal forests where rising sea levels could lead to dramatic shifts in ecosystem composition. To investigate how inundation may impact coastal ecosystems, we examined the sensitivity of Quercus virginiana Mill., a dominant tree in the southeastern U.S., to increased soil salinity and examined whether high salinity could increase its susceptibility to freezing damage (-10 °C). In a greenhouse, we examined the effect of three salt treatments (0-6 ppt) on acorn development and sapling physiology. We examined samples collected from two populations: inland Florida (FL) and coastal North Carolina (NC). We found that higher salt concentrations did not affect acorn germination, but did retard emergence. In the sapling stage, high salinity was more detrimental to plants from the FL population, causing greater declines in photosynthetic rates, water use efficiency, and dark quantum yield. FL plants also demonstrated a lower freezing tolerance than NC plants but freezing temperatures did not exacerbate effects of salt stress. Our data demonstrate important population-level differences in the salt and freezing tolerance of Q. virginiana. Since salt tolerance is important to the recruitment, growth, and survival of coastal Quercus species, this research can help with future conservation and management of this important species.

    Publication Notes

    • Check the Northern Research Station web site to request a printed copy of this publication.
    • Our on-line publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat.
    • During the capture process some typographical errors may occur.
    • Please contact Sharon Hobrla, if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    Kurtz, Cassandra M.; Savage, Jessica A.; Huang, I-Yu; Cavender-Bares, Jeannine. 2013. Consequences of salinity and freezing stress for two populations of Quercus virginiana Mill. (Fagaceae) grown in a common garden. Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society. 140(2): 145-156.


    chlorophyll fluorescence, freeze tolerance, Quercus virginiana, salt tolerance

    Related Search

    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page