Experiments of the efficacy of tree ring blue intensity as a climate proxy in central and western China

Yonghong Zheng, Huanfeng Shen, Rory Abernethy, Rob Wilson*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

To investigate the potential value of tree ring blue intensity as a robust climate proxy in central and western China, four species from five sites were assessed. As well as latewood inverted blue intensity, we also examined earlywood blue intensity. To explore the sensitivity of using different extraction parameter settings using the software CooRecorder, seven percentile (P) variant settings for earlywood blue intensity and latewood inverted blue intensity were used, namely P50 : 50, P60 : 40, P70 : 30, P80 : 20, P85 : 15, P90 : 10, and P95 : 5. Age-dependent spline was used for all, and the positive trends were not retained. Correlation analysis was applied between the tree ring parameter chronologies and monthly/seasonal mean temperature, precipitation, and self-calibrated Palmer drought severity index variables. Linear regression was also used to further highlight the potential of developing climate reconstructions using these species. Only subtle differences were found between the different percentile extraction variants. As has been shown for many other Northern Hemisphere studies, latewood inverted blue intensity expresses a strong positive relationship with growing-season temperatures (the two southern sites explain almost 56 % of the temperature variance when combined). However, the low latitude of these sites shows an exciting potential for regions south of 30 N that are traditionally not targeted for temperature reconstructions. Earlywood blue intensity also shows good potential to reconstruct hydroclimate parameters in some humid areas.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3481-3490
Number of pages10
JournalBiogeosciences
Volume20
Issue number16
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21 Aug 2023

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