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Viewing leaf structure and evolution from a hydraulic perspective
- Brodribb, Tim J., Feild, Taylor S., Sack, Lawren
- Functional plant biology 2010 v.37 no.6 pp. 488-498
- plants, leaves, plant vascular system, plant-water relations, evolution, sap flow, evapotranspiration, hydrologic cycle, climatic factors, translocation (plant physiology), plant anatomy
- More than 40000km³ year⁻¹ of water flows through the intricate hydraulic pathways inside leaves. This water not only sustains terrestrial productivity, but also constitutes nearly 70% of terrestrial evapotranspiration, thereby influencing both global and local climate (Chapin et al. 2002). Thus, the central role played by leaf vascular systems in terrestrial biology provides an important context for research into the function and evolution of water transport in leaves. Significant progress has been made recently towards understanding the linkages between anatomy and water transport efficiency in leaves, and these discoveries provide a novel perspective to view the evolution of land plants.