Actinidia kolomikta leaf colour and optical characteristics
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Actinidia kolomikta (Rupr. & Maxim.) Maxim. leaves showed dramatic colour changes during plant growth phases, and we studied structure and optical properties of variegated leaves. Leaf surface cells were smooth, and there were no surface appendages (wax or trichomes) observed in variegated leaves. Palisade tissue cells in white and pink leaves were looser and contained relatively fewer chloroplasts. White leaves contained many intercellular spaces between the epidermal and mesophyll cells or within the palisade cell layer. Variegated leaves had three distinct radiation reflection patterns: a bright white area, a spotted pattern, and a polygonal pattern. Reflectance at 450–1100 nm from the adaxial surface of white leaves was greater than that of green leaves, but anthocyanin accumulation in pink leaves decreased the reflectance at 500–600 nm. When variegated leaves turned green, the reflectance at 500–600 nm increased. On abaxial surfaces, the reflectance of variegated leaves was similar to green leaves at 450–700 nm. In conclusion, reflection patterns and the formation of variegated leaves of A. kolomikta were significantly correlated with the leaf anatomy. The white and pink colours of leaves were a result of an internal reflection between air spaces and cells in the leaves, chlorophyll deficiency in palisade tissue, and anthocyanin accumulation. Variegated leaves turned green when the chlorophyll content in palisade tissue increased.
Additional key wordsanthocyanin chlorophyll leaf anatomy reflectance spectrum characteristics variegated leaves
anthocyanin reflectance index
chlorophyll normalized difference vegetation index
carotenoid reflectance index
scanning electron microscopy
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