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    Plants have long been cultivated to improve quality of life in dense human settlements, mitigating the environmental stresses of urban living. Urban landscape elements include gardens, trees and lawns designed to provide aesthetic and functional benefits to local residents, as well as urban natural areas that reflect the native biome vegetation. Different types of informal green space are typically found in interstitial urban areas wherever plants find space, light, water and nutrients to grow (Rupprecht and Byrne, 2014). A growing body of literature evaluates the health and well- being benefits of these diverse types of intentional and unintentional urban nature, and advocates for their inclusion in sustainable urban design (Konijnendijk et al., 2013; Kowarik, 2018; Threlfall and Kendal, 2018). But how does the urban environment impact plant physiological function, whether cultivated or not, native or introduced species, across the range of habitats found within a metropolitan area? And how might those impacts affect the ability of urban plants to perform the ecosystem services desired by urban residents? Plant ecophysiology (or physiological plant ecology) is a field of study concerned with the function and performance of plants under constraints imposed by their growing environment.

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    Sonti, Nancy Falxa. 2021. Urban plant ecophysiology. In: Barbosa, Pedro, ed. Urban ecology: it’s nature and challenges. Boston, MA: CABI Publishing: 67-84. Chapter 4.​

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