Patterns of leaf morphological variation in Quercus frainetto Ten. growing on different soil types in Serbia
Keywords:Hungarian oak, Quercus frainetto, leaf size, leaf shape, soil type
- Foliar morphology is defined by the way plants adapt to different habitats.
- Morphological variation of leaf size and shape of the Hungarian oak (Quercus frainetto) growing on different soil types was determined.
- Individuals growing on nutrient-poor, shallow soils, had smaller leaves with greater lobation.
- The observed differences suggest that the levels of soil productivity influence different variation patterns of the leaf.
Abstract: Leaf morphology is at a certain level defined by the ways in which plants adapt to different habitats, especially in large trees. In this study, morphological variations in leaf size and shape of the Hungarian oak (Quercus frainetto Ten.) growing on different soil types (lithic leptosol, vertisol, cambisol) were investigated in the central part of Serbia (Šumadija). The information on soil type was obtained using a digitalized soil map of the Republic of Serbia, while leaf traits were characterized by geometric morphometric methods. Landmark analysis and leaf measurements showed significant differences among the analyzed groups, with individuals growing on nutrient-poor, shallow soils having smaller leaves with greater lobation. The observed differences suggest that the levels of soil productivity influence variations in leaf patterns. More studies on a larger sample size and along a broader spatial scale are needed to fully understand the differences in the patterns of leaf morphological variation in Q. frainetto.
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