Water hyacinth blooming in the lake
As mentioned on the previous tutorial about still water plants, the method of transpiration as a whole is altered in freshwater plants, due to the abundance of water in their external environment, or in the case of some, uptake of water from a wet environment, but loss of water via their leaves in the open-air environment.
An example of transpiration problems for such plants is as follows:
On top of the need for plants to maintain a suitable water concentration in plant cells, they also require various nutrients that are found in the nutrient-rich soil and the surrounding waters. In addition to the carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen required for photosynthesis, plants require a range of macro-elements, notably magnesium (Mg), nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K). Some of these elements, notably the gases, are readily available in the atmosphere, while carbon dioxide is produced from decomposing organic matter. Other elements are readily available in the soil, with nutrients becoming available from decomposing matter adding to the fertility of the surrounding soil. Oxygen becomes available from the photosynthetic activities of plants, which provide the link between oxygen and carbon dioxide concentrations in the area.
The availability of such elements will affect the productivity of the plants in the freshwater ecosystem and the combined productivity of the ecosystem as a whole. Evidently, the environmental factors of the freshwater ecosystem has great bearing on how plants survive in the community. The following tutorial introduces flowing water communities, which bring new and dithering factors into the equation for possible species occupying the area.
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