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By L. T. Evans

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Factors Which Affect t h e Base Level of Internal W a t e r Status T h e base level of internal water s t a t u s refers not only to a nontranspir­ ing p l a n t b u t also to a situation where soil-plant equilibrium exists, with regard to soil and p l a n t water potential, so t h a t gradients favoring absorption of w a t e r h a v e been effectively eliminated. This t y p e of situa­ tion characteristically exists before sunrise, when a n overnight period h a s elapsed of sufficient duration to eliminate absorption gradients.

Conclusions References Discussion 23 28 30 30 31 T h e r e seem to be two w a y s to enter t h e r e a l m of the environment of p l a n t surfaces: one is from t h e outside of plants, passing through t h e p l a n t - a i r layer, and t h e other from t h e inside through such gates as s t o m a t a l openings. T h e former w a y is relatively familiar to physicists and micrometeorologists, while t h e l a t t e r is t h e usual w a y for p l a n t scientists specially interested in this problem.

Since most incoming solar energy is intercepted a n d partitioned a t the upper leaf surfaces, most p l a n t w a t e r evaporates from them. T r a n s p i r a t i o n therefore causes a decrease in t u r g o r pressure of the upper leaves, t h e development of water potential and hydrostatic gradients through t h e p l a n t from the evaporating surfaces of the leaves to t h e absorbing surfaces of the roots, and an unavoidable lag of w a t e r absorp­ tion behind w a t e r loss. T h e degree to which t h e absorption lag develops, which determines the diurnal p a t t e r n of turgor pressure, depends on t h e quantities of w a t e r involved in t h e two processes, each of which, while intimately related, is controlled a n d regulated b y somewhat different factors and processes.

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