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Article

Single-Species Artificial Grasslands Decrease Soil Multifunctionality in a Temperate Steppe on the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau

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State Key Laboratory of Soil Erosion and Dryland Farming on the Loess Plateau, Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Northwest A&F University, Yangling, Xianyang 712100, China
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Qinghai Provincial Key Laboratory of Restoration Ecology in Cold Regions, Northwest Institute of Plateau Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xining 810008, China
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State Key Laboratory of Plateau Ecology and Agriculture, Qinghai University, Xining 810016, China
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Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Water Resources, Yangling, Xianyang 712100, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Alwyn Williams
Agronomy 2021, 11(11), 2092; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11112092
Received: 17 September 2021 / Revised: 8 October 2021 / Accepted: 15 October 2021 / Published: 20 October 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant-Soil-Microbe Interactions in Natural Soils)
Artificial grasslands have been regarded as an effective method to improve grass production and quality, especially on the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau. Soil ecosystem multifunctionality (EMF) plays an important role in sustainable regional development. However, few studies have investigated the impacts of artificial grasslands on soil EMF. Here, we constructed single-species artificial grasslands in a natural temperate steppe and investigated soil microbial communities, abiotic factors (soil moisture and pH), and functions related to biogeochemical cycles to explore (1) how the transformation from temperate steppe to artificial grasslands affected soil EMF and (2) the roles of species and phylogenetic microbial diversities, microbial community composition, and abiotic factors in driving differences in soil EMF. Our results showed that artificial grasslands decreased soil EMF regardless of planting species; that the bacterial and fungal community composition contributed more to soil EMF prediction than species and phylogenetic diversities; and that microbial phylogenetic diversities were negatively associated with soil EMF. Soil pH played an important role in the effects of artificial grasslands on soil EMF—artificial grasslands increased soil pH, which was negatively associated with soil EMF. Overall, the benefits of establishing artificial grasslands, for example, higher grass production and quality, might be at the expense of soil EMF. Further studies should explore mixed-species artificial grasslands. View Full-Text
Keywords: artificial grasslands; soil microbial diversity; ecosystem multifunctionality; microbial sequencing artificial grasslands; soil microbial diversity; ecosystem multifunctionality; microbial sequencing
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MDPI and ACS Style

Chen, K.; Zhou, H.; Lu, B.; Wu, Y.; Wang, J.; Zhao, Z.; Li, Y.; Wang, M.; Zhang, Y.; Chen, W.; Liu, G.; Xue, S. Single-Species Artificial Grasslands Decrease Soil Multifunctionality in a Temperate Steppe on the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau. Agronomy 2021, 11, 2092. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11112092

AMA Style

Chen K, Zhou H, Lu B, Wu Y, Wang J, Zhao Z, Li Y, Wang M, Zhang Y, Chen W, Liu G, Xue S. Single-Species Artificial Grasslands Decrease Soil Multifunctionality in a Temperate Steppe on the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau. Agronomy. 2021; 11(11):2092. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11112092

Chicago/Turabian Style

Chen, Kelu, Huakun Zhou, Bingbing Lu, Yang Wu, Jie Wang, Ziwen Zhao, Yuanze Li, Mei Wang, Yue Zhang, Wenjing Chen, Guobin Liu, and Sha Xue. 2021. "Single-Species Artificial Grasslands Decrease Soil Multifunctionality in a Temperate Steppe on the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau" Agronomy 11, no. 11: 2092. https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy11112092

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