What can crop stable isotopes ever do for us? An experimental perspective on using crop carbon stable isotope values for reconstructing water availability in semi-arid and arid environments.

Flohr, P., Muldner, G., Jenkins, E. L., Williams, H., Jamjoum, K. and Nuimat, S., 2019. What can crop stable isotopes ever do for us? An experimental perspective on using crop carbon stable isotope values for reconstructing water availability in semi-arid and arid environments. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany. (In Press)

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Abstract

This study re-assesses and refines the use of crop carbon stable isotopes (Δ13C) to reconstruct past water availability. Durum wheat, six-row barley, and sorghum were experimentally grown at three crop growing stations in Jordan for up to three years under five different irrigation regimes: 0% (rainfall only), 40%, 80%, 100%, and 120% of the crops’ optimum water requirements. Results show large variation in carbon stable isotopes for crops that received similar amounts of water, either as absolute water input or as percentage of crop requirements. We conclude that C3 crop carbon stable isotope composition can therefore be best interpreted in terms of extremely high values showing an abundance of water versus low values indicating water-stress. Values in between these extremes are problematic and best interpreted in conjunction with other proxies. C4 crop isotopes were not found to be useful for the reconstruction of water availability.

Item Type:Article
ISSN:0939-6314
Uncontrolled Keywords:plant carbon stable isotopes; experimental crop growing; water availability; water management
Group:Faculty of Science & Technology
ID Code:31527
Deposited By: Unnamed user with email symplectic@symplectic
Deposited On:06 Dec 2018 15:47
Last Modified:06 Dec 2018 15:47

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