Title: Seasonal divergence in the interannual responses of Northern Hemisphere vegetation activity to variations in diurnal climate
Citation: SCIENTIFIC REPORTS vol. 6 p. 19000
Publication Year: 2015
JRC N°: JRC96608
ISSN: 2045-2322
URI: http://www.nature.com/articles/srep19000?trendmd-shared=0
DOI: 10.1038/srep19000
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Seasonal asymmetry in the interannual variations in the daytime and nighttime climate in the Northern Hemisphere (NH) is well documented, but its consequences for vegetation activity remain poorly understood. Here, we investigate the interannual responses of vegetation activity to variations of seasonal mean daytime and nighttime climate in NH (>30 °N) during the past decades using remote sensing retrievals, FLUXNET and tree ring data. Despite a generally significant and positive response of vegetation activity to seasonal mean maximum temperature (Tmax) in ~22–25% of the boreal (>50 °N) NH between spring and autumn, spring-summer progressive water limitations appear to decouple vegetation activity from the mean summer Tmax, particularly in climate zones with dry summers. Drought alleviation during autumn results in vegetation recovery from the marked warming-induced drought limitations observed in spring and summer across 24–26% of the temperate NH. Vegetation activity exhibits a pervasively negative correlation with the autumn mean minimum temperature, which is in contrast to the ambiguous patterns observed in spring and summer. Our findings provide new insights into how seasonal asymmetry in the interannual variations in the mean daytime and nighttime climate interacts with water limitations to produce spatiotemporally variable responses of vegetation growth.
JRC Directorate:Sustainable Resources

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