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TamarixA Case Study of Ecological Change in the American West$
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Anna Sher and Martin F. Quigley

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199898206

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199898206.001.0001

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Tamarix and Salinity

Tamarix and Salinity

An Overview

(p.123) 8 Tamarix and Salinity

Michelle K. Ohrtman

Ken D. Lair

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores the effect of Tamarix on environmental salinity, including the physiological adaptations for salt tolerance by Tamarix and how it may enhance environmental salt loading. There are many sources of salts in riparian systems of the American West, where Tamarix is dominant. High levels of environmental salinity have natural origins in ambient geochemistry, fluvial dynamics, and landscape-scale response to naturally occurring drought conditions. Adverse impacts to native riparian vegetation from increases in soil and groundwater salinity are well documented. The chapter discusses salt secretion, salt transport, and salt compartmentalization in Tamarix, along with the capacity of Tamarix to take up and sequester salts compared to co-occurring halophytes with similar mechanisms for salt tolerance. It also reviews the ecological literature that focuses on the relationship between Tamarix and elevated salinity.

Keywords:   environmental salinity, salt tolerance, Tamarix, salt loading, salt secretion, salt transport, salt compartmentalization, halophytes

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