Tensile strength and water potential are both factors that are essential to the life and survival of a plant. Tensile strength is a measure of the amount of force that a plant can undergo before tissue damage and breakage occur. The primary objective of this study was to examine the correlation between tensile strength and leaf hydration status, or water potential. The water potential of leaves of a monocot grass native to North America, Elymus Glaucus, commonly known as blue wildrye, was measured using the Scholander-Hammel Pressure Chamber. The tensile strength of hydrated and of dehydrated leaves was measured using an Instron. Results showed that there was no strong correlation between the leaves of Elymus Glaucus’s water potential and tensile strength. However, the data showed a pattern that suggested that dehydrated leaves, which have a lower water potential, tend to have a higher tensile strength than that of hydrated leaves.
Corbett, Chelsie; Hong, Uri; and Davis, Scott, "The Effect of Hydration Status on Tensile Strength of the Leaves of Elymus Glaucus" (2011). Pepperdine University, Featured Research. Paper 30.