Physical effects of dust on leaf physiology of cucumber and kidney bean plants

Environ Pollut. 1995;89(3):255-61. doi: 10.1016/0269-7491(94)00075-o.


The physical effects of dust accumulating on leaf surfaces, on leaf physiology, such as photosynthesis, transpiration, stomatal conductance and leaf temperature of cucumber and kidney bean plants were investigated by the use of chemically inert dust. It was found that dust decreased stomatal conductance in the light, and increased it in the dark by plugging the stomata, when the stomata were open during dusting. When dust of smaller particles was applied, the effect was greater. However, the effect was negligible when the stomata were closed during dusting. The dust decreased the photosynthetic rate by shading the leaf surface. The dust of smaller particles had a greater shading effect. Moreover, it was found that the additional absorption of incident radiation by the dust increased the leaf temperature, and consequently changed the photosynthetic rate in accordance with its response curve to leaf temperature. The increase in leaf temperature also increased the transpiration rate.