The main purpose of this work is to show the influence of vegetation in the storage and stabilisation of organic carbon in semi-arid Juniperus thurifera
) forest soil in central Spain. The variability of the organic matter storage with factors such as sex, trunk diameter and the protection of the canopy of the tree has been analysed. The distribution of the soil organic carbon (SOC) into different fractions has also been determined, in order to estimate the stability of the organic matter. The results show that the SOC concentration has no dependence on the sex of the tree, but it increases with the diameter of the trunk and under the protection of the tree canopy. This study found that the organic matter of the J. thurifera
forest soil has a high proportion of recalcitrant organic fraction, humin, which suggests that, given its organic matter stability, J. thurifera
forest soils could be a real carbon sink. Consequently, the conservation of this type of old forest ecosystem is important for promoting carbon sequestration.
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