, Volume 40, Issue 1, pp 37–55 | Cite as

The biogeochemistry of phosphorus after the first century of soil development on Rakata Island, Krakatau, Indonesia

  • William H. Schlesinger
  • L.A. Bruijnzeel
  • Mark B. Bush
  • Emily M. Klein
  • Kimberly A. Mace
  • Jane A. Raikes
  • R.J. Whittaker


This study examined the accumulation of organic carbon (C) and fractions ofsoil phosphorus (P) in soils developing in volcanic ash deposited in the1883 eruption of Krakatau. Organic C has accumulated at rates of 45 to 127g/m2/yr during 110 years of soil development, resulting inprofiles with as much as 14 kgC/m2. Most soil P is found inthe HCl-extractable forms, representing apatite. A loss of HCl-extractableP from the surface horizons is associated with a marked accumulation ofNaOH-extractable organic P bound to Al. A bioassay with hill rice suggeststhat P is limiting to plant growth in these soils, perhaps as a result ofthe rapid accumulation of P in organic forms.

Krakatau organic carbon soil phosphorus volcanic ash 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • William H. Schlesinger
    • 1
    • 2
  • L.A. Bruijnzeel
    • 3
  • Mark B. Bush
    • 4
  • Emily M. Klein
    • 2
  • Kimberly A. Mace
    • 1
  • Jane A. Raikes
    • 2
  • R.J. Whittaker
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of BotanyDuke UniversityDurhamUSA
  2. 2.Nicholas School of the EnvironmentDuke UniversityThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Faculty of Earth SciencesVrije UniversiteitHV AmsterdamThe Netherlands
  4. 4.Department of Biological SciencesFlorida Institute of TechnologyMelbourneUSA
  5. 5.School of GeographyUniversity of OxfordOxfordU.K

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