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Forests 2017, 8(6), 183; doi:10.3390/f8060183

Characteristics of Fine Roots of Pinus massoniana in the Three Gorges Reservoir Area, China

1
Key Laboratory of Forest Ecology and Environment, State Forestry Administration; Research Institute of Forest Ecology, Environment and Protection, Chinese Academy of Forestry, Beijing 100091, China
2
Co-Innovation Center for Sustainable Forestry in Southern China, Nanjing Forestry University, Nanjing 210037, China
Y.S. and N.W. contributed equally to this study.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Isabella Børja and Brian D. Strahm
Received: 1 May 2017 / Revised: 19 May 2017 / Accepted: 22 May 2017 / Published: 25 May 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Forest Fine Roots in Changing Climate)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1618 KB, uploaded 25 May 2017]   |  

Abstract

Several studies have focused on fine roots characteristics because they provide a major pathway for nutrient cycling and energy flow in forest ecosystems. However, few studies have evaluated changes in fine root characteristics according to their diameter. Pinus massoniana forests are the main vegetative component in the Three Gorges Reservoir area and play an important role in providing forest resources and ecological services. Pinus massoniana fine roots were sorted into 0–0.5, 0.5–1, and 1–2 mm diameter classes, and their fine root standing biomass (FRB), necromass, annual production and decomposition rates were determined and correlated with soil characteristics. These fine roots in three diameter classes significantly differed in their initial carbon (C), C/N ratio, FRB, necromass, annual C and N production and decomposition rate. The production and decomposition of these different diameter classes varied significantly with soil variables including soil temperature, moisture, calcium and ammonium concentration but the strength of these interactions varied dependent on diameter class. The very fine roots had a faster decomposition ratio than larger fine roots due to the lower N content, higher C/N ratio and higher sensitivity to soil environmental factors. These results clearly indicate heterogeneity among fine roots of different diameters, and these variations should be taken into account when studying fine root characteristics and their role in the C cycle. View Full-Text
Keywords: Pinus massoniana; fine root; size class; root decomposition rate; The Three Gorges Reservoir Area Pinus massoniana; fine root; size class; root decomposition rate; The Three Gorges Reservoir Area
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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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Shen, Y.; Wang, N.; Cheng, R.; Xiao, W.; Yang, S.; Guo, Y.; Lei, L.; Zeng, L.; Wang, X. Characteristics of Fine Roots of Pinus massoniana in the Three Gorges Reservoir Area, China. Forests 2017, 8, 183.

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