A ~2500-tree common garden consisting of Tamarix cuttings sourced from 18 populations was planted in the winter of 2015. The garden was established in Yuma at the University of Arizona's Yuma Agricultural Center using cuttings from source populations ranging in elevation from 50 m to 1800 m, occurring in locations from southern Utah to southwestern Arizona.
These broadly distributed source populations, growing in a common location, provides a unique opportunity to study how sensitive this recently established non-native trees species is to drought and extreme heat. Information on climate sensitivity will help researchers better evaluate the impacts climate change may have on the productivity and fitness of Tamarix in the southwestern US. In 2016, our team took intensive measurements of plant water use (from stem sap flux), carbon uptake, labile carbon storage biomass allocation and foliage / reproductive phenology. Stay tuned for future results from research conducted at the experimental common garden.
Funding support provided by the US Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture (Award number 2015-67013-23138)