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  1. Abstract

    Vegetation phenology is a key control on water, energy, and carbon fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems. Because vegetation canopies are heterogeneous, spatially explicit information related to seasonality in vegetation activity provides valuable information for studies that use eddy covariance measurements to study ecosystem function and land-atmosphere interactions. Here we present a land surface phenology (LSP) dataset derived at 3 m spatial resolution from PlanetScope imagery across a range of plant functional types and climates in North America. The dataset provides spatially explicit information related to the timing of phenophase changes such as the start, peak, and end of vegetation activity, along with vegetation index metrics and associated quality assurance flags for the growing seasons of 2017–2021 for 10 × 10 km windows centred over 104 eddy covariance towers at AmeriFlux and National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) sites. These LSP data can be used to analyse processes controlling the seasonality of ecosystem-scale carbon, water, and energy fluxes, to evaluate predictions from land surface models, and to assess satellite-based LSP products.

     
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  2. Abstract

    Evapotranspiration (ET) is a significant ecosystem flux, governing the partitioning of energy at the land surface. Understanding the seasonal pattern and magnitude ofETis critical for anticipating a range of ecosystem impacts, including drought, heat‐wave events, and plant mortality. In this study, we identified the relative controls of seasonal variability inET, and how these controls vary among ecosystems. We used overlapping AmeriFlux and PhenoCam time series at a daily timestep from 20 sites to explore these linkages (# site‐years >100), and our study area covered a broad climatological aridity gradient in the U.S. and Canada. We focused on disentangling the most important controls of bulk surface conductance (Gs) and evaporative fraction (EF = LE/[H + LE]), whereLEandHrepresent latent and sensible heat fluxes, respectively. Specifically, we investigated how vegetation phenology varied in importance relative to meteorological variables (vapor pressure deficit and antecedent precipitation) as a driver ofGsandEFusing path analysis, a framework for quantifying and comparing the causal linkages among multiple response and explanatory variables. Our results revealed that the drivers ofGsandEFseasonality varied significantly between energy‐ and water‐limited ecosystems. Specifically, precipitation had a much higher effect in water‐limited ecosystems, while seasonal patterns in canopy greenness emerged as a stronger control in energy‐limited ecosystems. Given that phenology is expected to shift under future climate, our findings provide key information for understanding and predicting how phenology may impact 21st‐century hydroclimate regimes and the surface‐energy balance.

     
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  3. Abstract

    Projected changes in temperature and precipitation are expected to influence spring and autumn vegetation phenology and hence the length of the growing season in many ecosystems. However, the sensitivity of green‐up and senescence to climate remains uncertain. We analyzed 488 site years of canopy greenness measurements from deciduous forest broadleaf forests across North America. We found that the sensitivity of green‐up to temperature anomalies increases with increasing mean annual temperature, suggesting lower temperature sensitivity as we move to higher latitudes. Furthermore, autumn senescence is most sensitive to moisture deficits at dry sites, with decreasing sensitivity as mean annual precipitation increases. Future projections suggest North American deciduous forests will experience higher sensitivity to temperature in the next 50 years, with larger changes expected in northern regions than in southern regions. Our study highlights how interactions between long‐term and short‐term changes in the climate system influence green‐up and senescence.

     
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