Dust Deposition, Stomatal Conductance and Leaf Temperature


Effect of Dust Deposition on Stomatal Conductance and Leaf Temperature of Cotton in Northwest China

by Zia-Khan S., Spreer W., Pengnian Y., Zhao X., Othmanli H., He X., Müller J. (2015)

Shamaila Zia-Khan 1,

Wolfram Spreer 1,2,

Yang Pengnian 3,

Xiaoning Zhao 4,

Hussein Othmanli 4,

Xiongkui He 5

Joachim Müller 1

1 Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Tropics and Subtropics Group, Universität Hohenheim, Garbenstraße 9, Stuttgart 70593, Germany;


2 Faculty of Agriculture, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand

3 College of Hydraulic and Civil Engineering, Xinjiang Agricultural University, Urumqi 830052, China; E-Mail: ypn10@sina.com

4 Institute of Soil Science and Land Evaluation, Universität Hohenheim, Emil-Wolff-Str. 27, Stuttgart 70593, Germany; E-Mails: xiaoningzhao2012@gmail.com (X.Z.); h.othmanli@uni-hohenheim.de (H.O.)

5 College of Science, Centre for Chemicals Application Technology, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100083, China; E-Mail: xiongkui_he@yahoo.com.cn


in Water 2015, 7, 116-131; doi:10.3390/w7010116 –



The Xinjiang Region in Northwest China is known as the “dust center” of the Eurasian mainland. Dust on the leaf surface affects overall plant development. While emphasis was on studying the impacts of industrial dust particles on crop development, the effect of natural dust deposition on the physiological parameters of cotton had not been studied before.

The objective of this study was to examine the effects of dust deposits on cotton leaves and to estimate their impact on crop development and yield.

For this purpose, an experiment was set up having two treatments and a control. In Treatment 1, cotton leaves were cleaned with water at three-day intervals or after a natural dust fall. In Treatment 2, 100 g·m−2 of dust was applied at 10-day intervals. The control received neither additional dust nor cleaning.

In all of the treatments, stomatal conductance, leaf temperature, biomass and yield were measured.

The results show a 28% reduction in yield and 30% reduction in stomatal conductance of the dust treatment compared to the control treatment.

This indicates blocking of the stomata on the top of the leaf surface. In addition, the canopy temperature of the dust-applied leaves was always higher than the control and treatment.


Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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