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Sun leaves and shade leaves

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    Just a quick question I need to ask:-
    Will shade leaves photosynthesize at a faster rate than sun leaves at lower light intensities? Also what about at higher light intensities because I believe that shade leaves generally have more chlorophyll?

    Thanks in advance!
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    hey

    yeah I think you're right...
    shade leaves photosynthesize at a faster rate than sun leaves at lower light intensities. but I dont know why..I've been doing some research and it could be to do with the no. of palisade cells but I'm not sure.
    try this website
    http://www-saps.plantsci.cam.ac.uk/records/rec304.htm

    hope this helps
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    (Original post by bowers)
    Just a quick question I need to ask:-
    Will shade leaves photosynthesize at a faster rate than sun leaves at lower light intensities? Also what about at higher light intensities because I believe that shade leaves generally have more chlorophyll?

    Thanks in advance!
    Ha, when I read the title of the thread I was like- this poor person's suffering through Ecology coursework. I had to measure the leaf surface area of nettle leaves in light and dark areas in torrential downpour!

    There are many factors that affect photosynthesis, and light intensity is one of them, as it determines the light-dependent reactions. Photons of light excite electrons in causing photolysis of water which give NADPH that goes on to fix carbon in the light independent reaction. And photophosphorylation which producses ATP. So yes, intenisty increases the initial rate of phototsynthsis as there are more photons, etc.

    However, there can be limiting factors such as the avalability of CO2 and water that stop this increase. And also as you have brought up, adaptational compensations of the leaves. Shade leaves can be adapted to make the most of thier environment by having more cholorphyll (or have a larger leaf area etc), this will mean that they increase the amount of light they absorb and increase the amount of photosynthesis.

    It's bit more complex than a yes or no answer

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Updated: January 19, 2008
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