Heartwood/sapwood profile and the tradeoff between trunk and crown increment in a natural forest: the case study of a tropical tree (Dicorynia guianensis Amsh., Fabaceae)

Lehnebach Romain, Morel Hélène, Bossu Julie, Le Moguédec Gilles, Amusant Nadine, Beauchêne Jacques, Nicolini Eric-André. 2017. Heartwood/sapwood profile and the tradeoff between trunk and crown increment in a natural forest: the case study of a tropical tree (Dicorynia guianensis Amsh., Fabaceae). Trees, 31 (1) : pp. 199-214.

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Quartile : Q2, Sujet : FORESTRY

Abstract : Sapwood (SW) and heartwood (HW) are two functionally distinct classifications of wood in perennial stems for which quantities can vary greatly in tropical trees. Numerous positive correlations have been found between the radial growth rate (RGR) and SW quantity; however, variations in the SW/HW quantities have not been studied in light of the ontogenetic variation of RGR. Wood core sampling, intensive measurements of tree structure (number of branches, stem volumes), and radial growth monitoring were performed on an abundant and highly exploited tree species in French Guiana (Dicorynia guianensis) to investigate the relationship between RGR, SW/HW quantity, tree structure, and their variations on the course of a tree's ontogeny. SW area and RGR followed the same pattern of variation throughout tree development, both increasing first and reaching a steady state after 50 cm DBH (diameter at breast height). After this value, we observed a strong increase in both the HW area and HW volume increment, concomitant with a more rapid increase in crown volume. The stabilization of RGR for trees with DBH > 50 cm was related not to a tree's decline but rather to an increasing wood allocation to the crown, confirming that RGR at breast height is a poor indicator of whole-tree growth for bigger individuals. We also confirmed that HW formation is an ontogenetic process managing SW quantity that is continuously and increasingly produced within the crown as the tree grows. This study highlights the effect of growth-mediated ontogenetic changes on the localization of water and carbohydrate storage within a tree, resulting from SW and HW dynamics throughout tree ontogeny. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés Agrovoc : Bois, Bois de coeur, Aubier, Croissance, Accroissement du diamètre, Arbre forestier, Forêt tropicale humide, Tronc, Houppier, Teneur en eau, séquestration du carbone, Ramification, Développement biologique

Mots-clés géographiques Agrovoc : Guyane française

Mots-clés complémentaires : Dicorynia guianensis

Mots-clés libres : Tropical tree, Sapwood, Heartwood, Growth allocation, Ontogeny, Dicorynia guianensis

Classification Agris : K50 - Processing of forest products
F62 - Plant physiology - Growth and development

Champ stratégique Cirad : Axe 2 (2014-2018) - Valorisation de la biomasse

Agence(s) de financement européenne(s) : European Regional Development Fund

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Lehnebach Romain, Université de Montpellier (FRA)
  • Morel Hélène, CIRAD-ES-UMR Ecofog (GUF)
  • Bossu Julie, CNRS (FRA)
  • Le Moguédec Gilles, INRA (FRA)
  • Amusant Nadine, CIRAD-ES-UMR Ecofog (GUF)
  • Beauchêne Jacques, CIRAD-ES-UMR Ecofog (GUF) ORCID: 0000-0003-4578-3670
  • Nicolini Eric-André, CIRAD-BIOS-UMR AMAP (GUF)

Source : Cirad-Agritrop (

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