Informace o publikaci

Physiological meaning of bimodal tree growth-climate response patterns



Rok publikování 2024
Druh Článek v odborném periodiku
Časopis / Zdroj International Journal of Biometeorology
Fakulta / Pracoviště MU

Přírodovědecká fakulta

Klíčová slova Climate change; Dendrochronology; Global warming; Forest ecology; Tree rings
Popis Correlation coefficients are widely used to identify and quantify climate signals in proxy archives. Significant relationships between tree-ring chronologies and meteorological measurements are typically applied by dendroclimatologists to distinguish between more or less relevant climate variation for ring formation. While insignificant growth-climate correlations are usually found with cold season months, we argue that weak relationships with high summer temperatures not necessarily disprove their importance for xylogenesis. Here, we use maximum latewood density records from ten treeline sites between northern Scandinavia and southern Spain to demonstrate how monthly growth-climate correlations change from narrow unimodal to wide bimodal seasons when vegetation periods become longer and warmer. Statistically meaningful relationships occur when minimum temperatures exceed ‘biological zero’ at around 5° C. We conclude that the absence of evidence for statistical significance between tree growth and the warmest summer temperatures at Mediterranean sites is no evidence of absence for the physiological importance of high summer temperatures for ring formation. Since correlation should never be confused with causation, statistical values require mechanistic understanding, and different interpretations are needed for insignificant correlations within and outside the growing season.

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