Patterns of climatic variables are likely to change significantly in the coming century, with important but poorly-understood consequences for plant communities. This experiment determined how seeds of P. sylvestris collected from different elevations in two geographical regions performed when placed in simulated moisture stress conditions. Eight provenances from two regions (Norway and France) were chilled for zero and four weeks at 4±1°C and then germinated at 10 and 20°C, at water potentials of -0.3, -0.6 and -0.9 MPa. Moisture stress resulted in delayed germination and reduced germination capacity, and there was no germination at a water potential of -0.9 MPa. Provenances from high elevations were the most susceptible to moisture stress.
Key words: Moisture stress, water potentials, simulated moisture conditions, germination capacity, temperature effects.
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