, Volume 67, Issue 3, pp 659-670
Date: 17 Jan 2014

Moderate Warming in Microcosm Experiment Does Not Affect Microbial Communities in Temperate Vineyard Soils

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Changes in the soil microbial community structure can lead to dramatic changes in the soil ecosystem. Temperature, which is projected to increase with climate change, is commonly assumed to affect microbial communities, but its effects on agricultural soils are not fully understood. We collected soil samples from six vineyards characterised by a difference of about 2 °C in daily soil temperature over the year and simulated in a microcosm experiment different temperature regimes over a period of 1 year: seasonal fluctuations in soil temperature based on the average daily soil temperature measured in the field; soil temperature warming (2 °C above the normal seasonal temperatures); and constant temperatures normally registered in these temperate soils in winter (3 °C) and in summer (20 °C). Changes in the soil bacterial and fungal community structures were analysed by automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis (ARISA). We did not find any effect of warming on soil bacterial and fungal communities, while stable temperatures affected the fungal more than the bacterial communities, although this effect was soil dependent. The soil bacterial community exhibited soil-dependent seasonal fluctuations, while the fungal community was mainly stable. Each soil harbours different microbial communities that respond differently to seasonal temperature fluctuations; therefore, any generalization regarding the effect of climate change on soil communities should be made carefully.