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May 1st, 2015

B conserve water

  • Adaptive Value:
    • Better Water Use Efficiency than C3 plants under arid conditions due to opening stomata at night when transpiration rates are lower (no sunlight, lower temperatures, lower wind speeds, etc.).
    • May CAM-idle. When conditions are extremely arid, CAM plants can just leave their stomata closed night and day. Oxygen given off in photosynthesis is used for respiration and CO2 given off in respiration is used for photosynthesis. This is a little like a perpetual energy machine, but there are costs associated with running the machinery for respiration and photosynthesis so the plant cannot CAM-idle forever. But CAM-idling does allow the plant to survive dry spells, and it allows the plant to recover very quickly when water is available again (unlike plants that drop their leaves and twigs and go dormant during dry spells).
  • CAM plants include many succulents such as cactuses and agaves and also some orchids and bromeliads

reference /more reading

http://wc.pima.edu/Bfiero/tucsonecol109/plants/plants_photosynthesis.htm


May 1st, 2015

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