J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2007, Vol. 49 ›› Issue (11): 1573-1579.DOI: 10.1111/j.1774-7909.2007.00576.x

Special Issue: Ecology and Global Changes

• Bioenergy Plants • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Relationships among the Stem, Aboveground and Total Biomass across Chinese Forests

Dong-Liang Cheng, Gen-Xuan Wang, Tao Li, Qing-Long Tang and Chun-Mei Gong   

Abstract: Forest biomass plays a key role in the global carbon cycle. In the present study, a general allometric model was derived to predict the relationships among the stem biomass MS, aboveground biomass MA and total biomass MT, based on previously developed scaling relationships for leaf, stem and root standing biomass. The model predicted complex scaling exponents for MT and/or MA with respect to MS. Because annual biomass accumulation in the stem, root and branch far exceeded the annual increase in standing leaf biomass, we can predict that MT MA MS as a simple result of the model. Although slight variations existed in different phyletic affiliations (i.e. conifers versus angiosperms), empirical results using Model Type II (reduced major axis) regression supported the model's predictions. The predictive formulas among stem, aboveground and total biomass were obtained using Model Type I (ordinary least squares) regression to estimate forest biomass. Given the low mean percentage prediction errors for aboveground (and total biomass) based on the stem biomass, the results provided a reasonable method to estimate the biomass of forests at the individual level, which was insensitive to the variation in local environmental conditions (e.g. precipitation, temperature, etc.).

Key words: aboveground biomass, allometry, forest, isometric scaling, plant biomass allocation patterns, stem biomass, total biomass.

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