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Modulation of photosynthate supply by CO2 elevation affects the post‐head‐emergence frost‐induced grain yield loss in wheat

Li, Xiangnan, Li, Yafei, Zhu, Xiancan, Liu, Shengqun, Liu, Fulai
Journal of agronomy and crop science 2019 v.205 no.1 pp. 54-64
carbon dioxide, developmental stages, filling period, frost, grain yield, tillers, vegetative growth, wheat
Post‐head‐emergence frost (PHEF) has a detrimental impact on grain yield of wheat, and an enhanced photosynthate supply could alleviate the negative impact. However, modulation of photosynthate availability at different growth stages may exert different effects on the plant physiology and grain yield. The objective of this study was to investigate the roles of the enhanced photosynthate supply by growing the plants at elevated [CO₂] (800 ppm) during different growth stages on yield performance of wheat exposed to PHEF. The results showed that the PHEF caused a high grain yield loss in wheat, and an increase in photosynthate supply during the reproductive growth stage mitigated the negative impact, whereas that at vegetative growth stage exacerbated the negative impact of PHEF. The opposite effects exerted by the enhanced photosynthate supply at vegetative stage versus at reproductive stage on yield performance could be associated with its distinguished roles in influencing plant physiology at the two growth stages. The positive effect of the increased photosynthate supply at reproductive stage was due to an improved grain filling and regeneration of effective tillers upon recovery from frost, whereas the negative effects of the enhanced photosynthate supply at vegetative growth stage were primarily due to an accelerated early vegetative growth that increased the sensibility of the plants to PHEF.