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Forests 2017, 8(10), 373; doi:10.3390/f8100373

Seasonal Variations in Carbon, Nitrogen and Phosphorus Concentrations and C:N:P Stoichiometry in the Leaves of Differently Aged Larix principis-rupprechtii Mayr. Plantations

1
College of Natural Resources and Environment, Northwest A & F University, Yangling 712100, China
2
Wolfson College, University of Oxford, Oxford OX2 6UD, UK
3
Institute of Biomedical and Environmental Science & Technology, University of Bedfordshire, Luton LU1 3JU, UK
4
Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Ministry of Water Resources, Yangling 712100, China
5
College of Life Science, Northwest A & F University, Yangling 712100, China
6
College of Biological Science and Engineering, Beifang University of Nationalities, Yinchuan 750021, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 10 August 2017 / Revised: 27 September 2017 / Accepted: 28 September 2017 / Published: 30 September 2017
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Abstract

The concentrations and stoichiometry of certain elements (carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus) are critical to the maintenance of plant functional and environmental adaptation during plant growth. We explore how the concentrations of C, N and P and the ratios of C:N, C:P, and N:P in the leaves of differently aged Larix principis-rupprechtii Mayr. plantations changed with growing season and stand age from 2012 to 2015 in the Qinling Mountains, China. The results showed that the element concentration and stoichiometric ratios in leaves were significantly affected by sampling month, stand age and sampling year; and multiple correlations with stand age were observed in different growing seasons. Compared to global element concentrations and stoichiometry in plants, the leaves of larch stands in the study region had higher C and P concentrations and C:N and C:P ratios but lower N concentrations and N:P ratios than global levels. The leaf N:P ratios of all of the larch stands were generally less than 14, suggesting that the growth of larch stands was limited by N in the study region. Our study facilitates the management and restoration of forest plantation and provides a valuable contribution to the global pool of leaf nutrition and stoichiometry data. View Full-Text
Keywords: Larix principis-rupprechtii Mayr.; carbon; nitrogen and phosphorus; stoichiometry; Qinling Mountains; stand age Larix principis-rupprechtii Mayr.; carbon; nitrogen and phosphorus; stoichiometry; Qinling Mountains; stand age
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Li, H.; Crabbe, M.J.C.; Xu, F.; Wang, W.; Niu, R.; Gao, X.; Zhang, P.; Chen, H. Seasonal Variations in Carbon, Nitrogen and Phosphorus Concentrations and C:N:P Stoichiometry in the Leaves of Differently Aged Larix principis-rupprechtii Mayr. Plantations. Forests 2017, 8, 373.

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