Ecological Research

, Volume 27, Issue 2, pp 445–452 | Cite as

Effects of environmental factors upon variation in soil respiration of a Zoysia japonica grassland, central Japan

  • Tomoharu Inoue
  • Hiroshi Koizumi
Original Article


The effects of environmental factors on seasonal and annual variations in soil respiration were examined in the cool temperate Zoysia japonica grassland of Japan. Field measurements of soil respiration were conducted using a closed chamber method with an infrared gas analyzer at monthly intervals in the snow-free seasons from May 2007 to December 2009. There was an exponential relationship between soil respiration and soil temperature, and the soil temperature accounted for 85–86% of seasonal soil respiration variability. Moreover, a positive linear relationship between soil respiration and soil water content was detected in summer (R 2 = 0.55, p < 0.001), but not in spring or autumn. Annual soil respiration was estimated at 755, 719, and 1,037 g C m−2 year−1 in 2007, 2008, and 2009, respectively. These interannual variations in soil respiration might be influenced by the strength of precipitation during rainy seasons and the timing of each snow-melt. Our results suggest that the effects of rainfall and snow-melt events on soil respiration might be important factors to understand carbon dynamics in grassland ecosystem in Japan.


Soil CO2 flux Long-term measurement Controlling factors Precipitation Snow melt 



We thank K. Kurumado and Y. Miyamoto (Takayama Field Station of River Basin Research Center, Gifu University) for their assistance in our field observations. We also thank Dr. S. Nagai (Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology) and Dr. S. Yoshitake (Waseda University) for helpful discussion. We also thank the two anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments on the manuscript. This study was supported by KAKENHI (JSPS, No. 20310015, to H. Koizumi) and JSPS-NRF-NSFC A3 Foresight Program.


  1. Ball BC, Scott A, Parker JP (1999) Field N2O, CO2 and CH4 fluxes in relation to tillage, compaction and soil quality in Scotland. Soil Till Res 53:29–39CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bekku Y, Koizumi H, Nakadai T, Iwaki H (1995) Measurement of soil respiration using closed-chamber method—an IRGA technique. Ecol Res 10:369–373CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Cao GM, Tang YH, Mo WH, Wang YA, Li YN, Zhao XQ (2004) Grazing intensity alters soil respiration in an alpine meadow on the Tibetan plateau. Soil Biol Biochem 36:237–243CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Carlyle JC, Than UB (1988) Abiotic controls of soil respiration beneath an 18-year-old Pinus-radiata stand in southeastern Australia. J Ecol 76:654–662CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Dhital D, Muraoka H, Yashiro Y, Shizu Y, Koizumi H (2010a) Measurement of net ecosystem production and ecosystem respiration in a Zoysia japonica grassland, central Japan, by the chamber method. Ecol Res 25:483–493CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Dhital D, Yashiro Y, Ohtsuka T, Noda H, Shizu Y, Koizumi H (2010b) Carbon dynamics and budget in a Zoysia japonica grassland, central Japan. J Plant Res 123:519–530PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Frank AB, Liebig MA, Hanson JD (2002) Soil carbon dioxide fluxes in northern semiarid grasslands. Soil Biol Biochem 34:1235–1241CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Fukuyama M, Shimamura M, Ushiyama M, Oikawa M (1983) Characteristics of short-creeping grass sward I. Relationship between management and productivity in single sward. Bull Natl Grassl Res Inst 25:98–110 (in Japanese with English summary)Google Scholar
  9. Fukuyama M, Shimamura M, Ushiyama M, Oikawa M (1985) Characteristics of short-creeping grass sward III. Relationship between grassland management, productivity and competition among species in mixed sward. Bull Natl Grassl Res Inst 31:93–107 (in Japanese with English summary)Google Scholar
  10. Harper CW, Blair JM, Fay PA, Knapp AK, Carlisle JD (2005) Increased rainfall variability and reduced rainfall amount decreases soil CO2 flux in a grassland ecosystem. Global Change Biol 11:322–334CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hashimoto S, Tanaka N, Kume T, Yoshifuji N, Hotta N, Tanaka K, Suzuki M (2007) Seasonality of vertically partitioned soil CO2 production in temperate and tropical forest. J For Res 12:209–221CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hashimoto T, Miura S, Ishizuka S (2009) Temperature controls temporal variation in soil CO2 efflux in a secondary beech forest in Appi Highlands, Japan. J For Res 14:44–50CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Houghton RA, Woodwell GM (1989) Global climatic-change. Sci Am 260:36–44CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Hu R, Hatano R, Kusa K, Sawamoto T (2004) Soil respiration and net ecosystem production in an onion field in central Hokkaido, Japan. Soil Sci Plant Nutr 50(1):27–33CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Ishida R (1990) General remarks on the research works of Japanese lawn grass (Zoysia japonica steud.) and Zoysia type grasslands in Japan. J Japan Grassl Sci 36(2):210–217 (in Japanese with English summary)Google Scholar
  16. Ito D, Takahashi K (1997) Seasonal changes in soil respiration rate in a mulberry field. J Agric Meteorol 53(3):209–215CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Jia B, Zhou G, Wang Y, Wang F, Wang X (2006) Effects of temperature and soil water-content on soil respiration of grazed and ungrazed Leymus chinensis steppes, Inner Mongolia. J Arid Environ 67:60–76CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Jia B, Zhou G, Yuan W (2007) Modeling and coupling of soil respiration and soil water content in fenced Leymus chinensis steppe, Inner Mongolia. Ecol Model 201:157–162CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Kao WY, Chang KW (2009) Soil CO2 efflux from a mountains forest-grassland ecosystem in central Taiwan. Bot Stud Int J 50:337–342Google Scholar
  20. Kirita H (1971) Studies of soil respiration in warm-temperate evergreen broadleaf forests of southwestern Japan. Jap J Ecol 21:230–244 (in Japanese with English summary)Google Scholar
  21. Koizumi H, Kontturi M, Mariko S, Nakadai T, Bekku Y, Mela T (1999) Soil respiration in three soil types in agricultural ecosystems in Finland. Acta Agric Scand Sect B-Soil Plant Sci 49:65–74Google Scholar
  22. Lee MS, Nakane K, Nakatsubo T, Mo WH, Koizumi H (2002) Effects of rainfall events on soil CO2 flux in a cool temperate deciduous broad-leaved forest. Ecol Res 17:401–409CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Lee N, Koo J, Noh NJ, Kim J, Son Y (2010) Seasonal variation in soil CO2 efflux in evergreen coniferous and broad-leaved deciduous forests in a cool-temperate forest, central Korea. Ecol Res 25:609–617CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Liang N, Nakadai T, Hirano T, Qu L, Koike T, Fujinuma Y, Inoue G (2004) In situ comparison of four approaches to estimating soil CO2 efflux in a northern larch (Larix kaempferi Sarg.) forest. Agr For Meteorol 123:97–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Liu XZ, Wan SQ, Su B, Hui DF, Luo YQ (2002) Response of soil CO2 efflux to water manipulation in a tallgrass prairie ecosystem. Plant Soil 240:213–223CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Luo Y, Zhou X (2006) Soil respiration and the environment. Academic Press, San DiegoGoogle Scholar
  27. Mielnick PC, Dugas WA (2000) Soil CO2 flux in a tallgrass prairie. Soil Biol Biochem 32:221–228CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Ministry of the Environment (ed) (2009) For coexistence of people and nature. Ministry of the Environment, Government of Japan, TokyoGoogle Scholar
  29. Mitamura T, Ogawa Y, Okamoto K, Teshima M, Agata W, Kamata E (1985) Studies on Zoysia type grassland VI. The effect of fertilizer application on the standing crop and vegetation of Zoysia type grassland. Bull Natl Grassl Res Inst 30:91–104 (in Japanese with English summary)Google Scholar
  30. Nakadai T, Koizumi H, Bekku Y, Totsuka T (1996) Carbon dioxide evolution of an upland rice and barley, double cropping field in central Japan. Ecol Res 11:217–227CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Nakane K (1975) Dynamics of soil organic matter in different parts on a slope under evergreen oak forest. Jap J Ecol 25:206–216 (in Japanese with English summary)Google Scholar
  32. Numata M (1969) Progressive and retrogressive gradient of grassland vegetation measured by degree of succession. Vegetatio 19:96–127Google Scholar
  33. Numata M (1987) Temperate forests and grasslands in Japan. Shukutoku Univ Bull 21:27–44Google Scholar
  34. Ogawa Y, Koyama N, Sindou K (1996) Characteristics of combined use of native and improved pastures for beef cow grazing on hilly land in the Aso area, Kyushu. Bull Kyushu Agr Expt Sta 30:13–43 (in Japanese with English summary)Google Scholar
  35. Ohashi M, Gyokusen K, Saito A (2000) Contribution of root respiration to total soil respiration in a Japanese cedar (Cryptomeria japonica D. Don) artificial forest. Ecol Res 15:323–333CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Ohtsuka T, Saigusa N, Koizumi H (2009) On linking multiyear biometric measurements of tree growth with eddy covariance-based net ecosystem production. Global Change Biol 15:1015–1024CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Qi YC, Dong YS, Liu LX, Liu XR, Peng Q, Xiao SS, He YT (2010) Spatial-temporal variation in soil respiration and its controlling factors in three steppes of Stipa L. in Inner Mongolia, China. Sci China Earth Sci 53:683–693CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Raich JW, Potter CS (1995) Global patterns of carbon-dioxide emissions from soils. Global Biogeochem Cycle 9:23–36CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Raich JW, Schlesinger WH (1992) The global carbon-dioxide flux in soil respiration and its relationship to vegetation and climate. Tellus Ser B Chem Phys Meteorol 44:81–99CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Raich JW, Tufekcioglu A (2000) Vegetation and soil respiration: Correlations and controls. Biogeochemistry 48:71–90CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Rochette P, Desjardins RL, Pattey E (1991) Spatial and temporal variability of soil respiration in agricultural fields. Can J Soil Sci 71:189–196CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Saigusa N, Yamamoto S, Murayama S, Kondo H (2005) Inter-annual variability of carbon budget components in an AsiaFlux forest site estimated by long-term flux measurements. Agric For Meteorol 134:4–16CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Schlesinger WH, Andrews JA (2000) Soil respiration and the global carbon cycle. Biogeochemistry 48:7–20CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Shibata H, Hiura T, Tanaka Y, Takagi K, koike T (2005) Carbon cycling and budget in a forested basin of southwestern Hokkaido, northern Japan. Ecol Res 20:325–331CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Tufekcioglu A, Ozbayram AK, Kucuk M (2009) Soil respiration in apple orchards, poplar plantations and adjacent grassland in Artvin, Turkey. J Environ Biol 30(5):815–820PubMedGoogle Scholar
  46. Wang W, Feng J, Oikawa T (2009) Contribution of root and microbial respiration to soil CO2 efflux and their environmental controls in a humid temperate grassland of Japan. Pedosphere 19(1):31–39CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Wipf S (2010) Phenology, growth, and fecundity of eight subarctic tundra species in response to snowmelt manipulations. Plant Ecol 207:53–66CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Wipf S, Rixen C (2010) A review of snow manipulation experiments in Arctic and alpine tundra ecosystems. Polar Res 29:95–109CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Yazaki Y, Mariko S, Koizumi H (2004) Carbon dynamics and budget in a Miscanthus sinensis grassland in Japan. Ecol Res 19:511–520CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Yim MH, Joo SJ, Shutou K, Nakane K (2003) Spatial variability of soil respiration in a larch plantation: estimation of the number of sampling points required. For Ecol Manage 175:585–588CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Ecological Society of Japan 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Advanced Science and EngineeringWaseda UniversityShinjukuJapan
  2. 2.Faculty of Education and Integrated Arts and SciencesWaseda UniversityShinjukuJapan

Personalised recommendations