Regulation of canopy conductance and transpiration and their modelling in irrigated grapevines

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Journal Article
Functional Plant Biology, 2003, 30 (6), pp. 689 - 698
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Whole-vine transpiration was estimated for well-watered nine-year-old Sultana grapevines (Vitis vinifera L. cv. Sultana) from xylem sap flow measured with Granier's heat-dissipation probes. Canopy conductance of the grapevine was calculated by inverting the Penman Monteith equation. Transpiration from grapevine canopies was strongly controlled by the canopy conductance. Canopy conductance decreased exponentially with increasing vapour pressure deficit (VPD) except in the morning when solar radiation was less than 200 W m^2 and the canopy conductance was predominantly limited by the solar radiation. A non-linear model of canopy conductance as a function of the solar radiation and VPD explained > 90% of the variation observed in canopy conductance. Under contrasting VPD conditions (daytime maximum of 3 kPa vs 8 kPa), grapevines were able to regulate their canopy conductance from 0.006 to 0.001 m s-1 to maintain a near constant transpiration. Whole-canopy transpiration calculated from modelled canopy conductance using the PenmanMonteith equation was highly correlated with the measured transpiration (sap flow) values over the range of 0-0.20 mm h-1 (R2 > 0.85). Cross-validation shows that these mechanistic models based on solar radiation and VPD provide good predictions of canopy conductance and transpiration under the conditions of the study.
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