Sensitivity of Deciduous Forest Phenology to Environmental Drivers: Implications for Climate Change Impacts Across North America

Bijan Seyednasrollah, Adam M. Young, Xiaolu Li, Thomas Milliman, Toby Ault, Steve Frolking, Mark Friedl, Andrew D. Richardson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Projected changes in temperature and precipitation are expected to influence spring and autumn vegetation phenology and hence the length of the growing season in many ecosystems. However, the sensitivity of green-up and senescence to climate remains uncertain. We analyzed 488 site years of canopy greenness measurements from deciduous forest broadleaf forests across North America. We found that the sensitivity of green-up to temperature anomalies increases with increasing mean annual temperature, suggesting lower temperature sensitivity as we move to higher latitudes. Furthermore, autumn senescence is most sensitive to moisture deficits at dry sites, with decreasing sensitivity as mean annual precipitation increases. Future projections suggest North American deciduous forests will experience higher sensitivity to temperature in the next 50 years, with larger changes expected in northern regions than in southern regions. Our study highlights how interactions between long-term and short-term changes in the climate system influence green-up and senescence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2019GL086788
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume47
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 16 2020

Keywords

  • Bayesian
  • Climate Change
  • Deciduous Forests
  • Modeling
  • Phenology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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