Reference : Impacts of (NH4)2SO4 deposition on Norway spruce (Picea abies [L.] Karst) and Scots p...
Scientific congresses and symposiums : Unpublished conference/Abstract
Life sciences : Environmental sciences & ecology
Life sciences : Phytobiology (plant sciences, forestry, mycology...)
Impacts of (NH4)2SO4 deposition on Norway spruce (Picea abies [L.] Karst) and Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) fine roots
Carnol, Monique mailto [Université de Liège - ULiège > Département des sciences et gestion de l'environnement > Ecologie végétale et microbienne >]
Zoomer, Rik [ > > ]
Berg, Matty mailto [ > > ]
Verhoef, Herman mailto [ > > ]
Cudlin, Pavel [ > > ]
Ineson, Phil [ > > ]
'IUFRO, 18th International Meeting for Specialists in Air Pollution Effects on Forest Ecosystems – Forest Growth Responses to the Pollution Climate of the 21st Century
septembre 1998
International Union of Forest Research Organizations-IUFRO
Grande Bretagne
[en] N deposition ; forest ; roots
[en] The increased inorganic nitrogen (N) deposition in the last decades has become a major concern for the health of forests. In forest ecosystem, where N might no longer be limiting to primary production, the excess N is thought to be related to forest decline and a concept of ‘N saturation ‘ has been developed. In particular, N, in the form of NH4, in excess to plant and microbial demands could lead to soil acidification if nitrified in the soil and leached, causing loss of base cations or mobilisation of phytotoxic aluminium.
As part of the CORE project (CEC), investigating nutrient dynamics in European coniferous forest soils, we studied the effects of continuously increased (NH4)2SO4 deposition and soil characteristics on Norway spruce (Picea abies [L.] Karst) and Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) fine root biomass, vitality and chemistry with an ingrowth core technique. The same experiment was performed in a Norway spruce stand on clay soil (Grizedale, UK) and a Scots pine stand on sandy soil (Wekerom, NL), using soil from each of the two sites. Root-free ingrowth cores reproduced organic and mineral soil horizons to 15 cm depth. They were covered to exclude native throughfall and watered every 2 weeks with throughfall or throughfall with (NH4)2SO4 added to increase deposition by 75 kg ha-1 a-1 NH4+-N. The ingrowth cores were sampled after 19 months, divided into layers, roots washed and analysed for biomass, necromass, root length, root tip number (RTN), root tip vitality and fine root chemistry.
A previous field experiment had shown high soil solution Al concentrations at both sites, and an increase in NO3- and Al concentrations in response to increased (NH4)2SO4 deposition at the Grizedale site. The effects of high (NH4)2SO4 deposition depended on tree species, soil type and soil horizon. For Norway spruce, (NH4)2SO4 deposition did not result in any significant changes in root growth or vitality when growing into the native clay soil. However, when growing into the sandy soil, RTN and the proportion of dead roots were increased by N deposition. Norway spruce fine root N content was also increased in the organic horizon of both soil types. For Scots pine, (NH4)2SO4 treatment caused increased fine root Al content and a decreased Mg/Al ratio in the mineral layer of the sandy soil, with opposite effects in the clay soil. This (NH4)2SO4 treatment effect in the sandy soil for Scots pine was the only indication of a potential adverse effect of (NH4)2SO4 deposition on fine roots. Further results demonstrated the dominant importance of inherent soil characteristics and the stratification into soil horizons on fine root growth and chemical composition. For example, a negative correlation between root biomass and fine root Al content was established for Norway spruce.

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