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Sustainability 2017, 9(6), 1019; doi:10.3390/su9061019

Effects of Understory Liana Trachelospermum jasminoides on Distributions of Litterfall and Soil Organic Carbon in an Oak Forest in Central China

1
International Joint Research Laboratory for Global Change Ecology, State Key Laboratory of Cotton Biology, School of Life Sciences, Henan University, Kaifeng 475004, Henan, China
2
Yellow River Conservancy Technical Institute, Kaifeng 475004, Henan, China
3
Faculty of Forestry and Environmental Management, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, NB E3B5J1, Canada
4
Luoyang Institute of Science and Technology, Luoyang 471023, Henan, China
5
International Center for Bamboo and Rattan, Beijing 100102, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 4 April 2017 / Revised: 6 June 2017 / Accepted: 9 June 2017 / Published: 14 June 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecological Restoration for Sustainable Forest Management)
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Abstract

Liana constitutes an important structural and functional component in many forest ecosystems and has profound impacts on forest carbon (C) cycling. However, whether and how liana regulates spatial distributions of litterfall and soil organic C are still poorly understood. To address this critical knowledge gap, we investigated litterfall composition and soil physicochemical characteristics in stands with different densities of liana (Trachelospermum jasminoides (Lindl.) Lem.). Both fresh and decomposed leaf litters were greater in the stands with high density of the liana species T. jasminoides. More liana covered stands also had higher soil respiration rate, soil organic C, and total nitrogen than those with less liana. The findings demonstrate that understory liana can regulate litterfall distribution and thus soil organic C, suggesting that the influences of understory liana on belowground ecological processes should be considered while assessing the role of liana in forest ecosystems. View Full-Text
Keywords: soil organic carbon; litter biomass; liana biomass; soil respiration; oak forest soil organic carbon; litter biomass; liana biomass; soil respiration; oak forest
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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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Liu, Y.; Shang, Q.; Zhang, B.; Zhang, K.; Luan, J. Effects of Understory Liana Trachelospermum jasminoides on Distributions of Litterfall and Soil Organic Carbon in an Oak Forest in Central China. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1019.

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