Morphology, biomass and nutrient status of fine roots of Scots pine ( Pinus sylvestris) as influenced by seasonal fluctuations in soil moisture and soil solution chemistry Article Received: 22 April 2004 Accepted: 20 July 2004 DOI:
Cite this article as: Vanguelova, E.I., Nortcliff, S., Moffat, A.J. et al. Plant Soil (2005) 270: 233. doi:10.1007/s11104-004-1523-6 Abstract
A field monitoring study was carried out to follow the changes of fine root morphology, biomass and nutrient status in relation to seasonal changes in soil solution chemistry and moisture regime in a mature Scots pine stand on acid soil. Seasonal and yearly fluctuations in soil moisture and soil solution chemistry have been observed. Changes in soil moisture accounted for some of the changes in the soil solution chemistry. The results showed that when natural acidification in the soil occurs with low pH (3.5–4.2) and high aluminium concentration in the soil solution (>3–10 mg l
−1), fine root longevity and distribution could be affected. However, fine root growth of Scots pine may not be negatively influenced by adverse soil chemical conditions if soil moisture is not a limiting factor for root growth. In contrast, dry soil conditions increase Scots pine susceptibility to soil acidification and this could significantly reduce fine root growth and increase root mortality. It is therefore important to study seasonal fluctuations of the environmental variables when investigating and modelling cause-effect relationships. Keywords aluminium fine roots Pinus sylvestris podzol seasonality soil acidification soil moisture References Bartsch, N 1987 Responses of root systems of young Pinus sylvestris and Pinus abies plants to water deficits and soil acidity Can. J. For. Res. 17 805 812 Google Scholar Boxman, D 1988 Effects of excess nitrogen on the nutritional state of trees Nilsson, J eds. Critical loads for sulphur and nitrogen UNECE Workshop Sweden Google Scholar Cronan, C S, Grigal, D F 1995 Use of calcium/aluminum ratios as indicators of stress in forest ecosystems J. Environ. Qual. 24 209 226 Google Scholar Dahlgren, R A, Vogt, K A, Ugolini, F C 1991 The influence of soil chemistry on fine root aluminum concentrations and root dynamics in a subalpine Spodosol in Washington State, USA Plant Soil 133 117 129 CrossRef Google Scholar
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