Next Article in Journal
The Composition and Diversity of Soil Bacterial and Fungal Communities Along an Urban-To-Rural Gradient in South China
Previous Article in Journal
Aboveground Biomass Response to Release Treatments in a Young Ponderosa Pine Plantation
Open AccessArticle

Effects of Vegetation Restoration on the Distribution of Nutrients, Glomalin-Related Soil Protein, and Enzyme Activity in Soil Aggregates on the Loess Plateau, China

1
State Key Laboratory of Soil Erosion and Dryland Farming on Loess Plateau, Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China
2
Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ministry Water Resources, Yangling 712100, China
3
College of Forestry, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China
4
Shaanxi Key Laboratory of Land Consolidation, Chang’an University, Xi’an 710000, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2019, 10(9), 796; https://doi.org/10.3390/f10090796
Received: 28 July 2019 / Revised: 7 September 2019 / Accepted: 9 September 2019 / Published: 12 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Forest Ecology and Management)
Research Highlights: Soil enzymes have a significant impact on the production of glomalin-related soil protein (GRSP), directly and indirectly affecting the nutrient metabolism balance, but there is little available information on ecological stoichiometry in soil aggregates. Background and Objectives: Vegetation restoration changes community structure and species composition in ecosystems, thus changing the physicochemical properties of soil. Soil aggregate is the most basic physical structure of the soil. Therefore, in order to understand dynamic changes in soil aggregate nutrients as vegetation restoration progresses, we set out to investigate the nutrient distribution and utilization in aggregates, and how enzymes respond to the nutrient changes in achieving a nutritional balance along successive stages of vegetation restoration. Materials and Methods: We collected and analyzed soil from plots representing six different stages of a vegetation restoration chronosequence (0, 30, 60, 100, 130, and 160 years) after farmland abandonment on the Loess Plateau, China. We investigated soil nutrient stoichiometry, GRSP, and enzyme stoichiometry in the different successional stages. Results: The results revealed that soil organic carbon, total nitrogen, enzyme activity, and GRSP increased with vegetation recovery age, but not total phosphorus, and not all enzymes reached their maximum in the climax forest community. The easily extractable GRSP/total GRSP ratio was the largest at the shrub community stage, indicating that glomalin degradation was the lowest at this stage. Ecological stoichiometry revealed N-limitation decreased and P-limitation increased with increasing vegetation restoration age. Soil enzymes had a significant impact on the GRSP production, directly and indirectly affecting nutrient metabolism balance. Conclusions: Further study of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi to identify changes in their category and composition is needed for a better understanding of how soil enzymes affect their release of GRSP, in order to maintain a nutrient balance along successive stages of vegetation restoration. View Full-Text
Keywords: ecological stoichiometry; nutrient limitation; soil enzymes; arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi ecological stoichiometry; nutrient limitation; soil enzymes; arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Qiao, L.; Li, Y.; Song, Y.; Zhai, J.; Wu, Y.; Chen, W.; Liu, G.; Xue, S. Effects of Vegetation Restoration on the Distribution of Nutrients, Glomalin-Related Soil Protein, and Enzyme Activity in Soil Aggregates on the Loess Plateau, China. Forests 2019, 10, 796.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map

1
Back to TopTop