OJE  Vol.4 No.3 , March 2014
Growth and Development of Cyperus papyrus in a Tropical Wetland
Abstract: Relative growth rate (RGR) is an important parameter in plant growth models. However, no field measurements of RGR have been made in Cyperus papyrus (papyrus) wetlands. In this study, the growth dynamics of aerial shoots were investigated in a tropical papyrus wetland. The aim was to estimate temporal changes in the growth rates, and also establish the effect of water level and temperature change on total culm number, culm recruitment and senescence. Dry weights of shoots during their life cycle were determined using a non-destructive method after establishment of relationship between culm diameter and dry weight. Measurements were made over period of seven months. During the course of the measurements, culm density significantly increased from 16.1 to 35.9 culms.m-2. There were significant changes in both culm recruitment and senescence. Maximum RGR of developing culms was 1.04 g g-1 d-1. Using a culm density of 27 per m-2, productivity range was 16.74 to 37.37 g m-2 d-1. There was an inverse and significant relationship between rate of change in leaf weight ratio (LWR) and RGR of the culms. In conclusion, RGR of the aerial shoot development was controlled by rate of change in LWR from 41 to 156 days of growth. There was a strong and negative influence of water level fluctuation on total culm density.
Cite this paper: Opio, A. , Jones, M. , Kansiime, F. and Otiti, T. (2014) Growth and Development of Cyperus papyrus in a Tropical Wetland. Open Journal of Ecology, 4, 113-123. doi: 10.4236/oje.2014.43013.

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