J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2003, Vol. 45 ›› Issue (12): 1413-1420.

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Behavior of Carbon and Nutrients Within Two Types of Leaf Litter During 3.5-year Decomposition

TIAN Xing-Jun, SUN Shu-Cun, MA Ke-Ping, AN Shu-Qing   


A litter bag study of needle (Abies veitchii Lindl. and A. mariesi Mast.) and leaf litter (Betula ermanii Cham. and B. corylifolia Regal. et Maxim.) conducted in a coniferous forest of Mt. Ontake, Japan showed the similar qualities of two type litters in later stages (after the 30th month). Although the difference in remaining mass between the two litters was larger in later stage of decomposition and initial concentration of nutrients was different. The concentrations of carbon (C) fraction and nutrients between the two types of litter tended to similar in the later stages. The similar concentration trend of nutrients was due to different mechanisms. Nitrogen (N) was due to immobilization of fungi and binding with lignin. K and Mg were leaching elements. They were very easily affected in leaching process. In the later stage, they reached a similar concentration because of a balance with the soil concentration. Ca is a construction element, so its behavior has closely related to that of C fractions. Moreover, C fractions were lignified or humuified and remained similar in later stage, Ca was also became similar in concentration in the later stage.


Key words: itter quality, decomposition, nutrients, C fraction, Abies , Betula

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