Skip to Main Content
Decomposition and nutrient release from fresh and dried pine roots under two fertilizer regimesAuthor(s): Kim H. Ludovici; Lance W. Kress
Source: Can. J. for. Res., Vol. 36: 105-111
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
PDF: View PDF (740 KB)
DescriptionRoot decomposition and nutrient release are typically estimated from dried root tissues; however, it is unlikely that roots dehydrate prior to decomposing. Soil fertility and root diameter may also affect the rate of decomposition. This study monitored mass loss and nutrient concentrations of dried and fresh roots of two size classes (<2 and 2-5 mm) over a 12-month period in fertilized and control plots in a 13-year-old loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) plantation. Nutrient content was calculated and used to assess the effects of fertilization, root size, and initial condition (hydration) on nutrient release rates. Roots that grew and decomposed in fertilized plots had higher concentrations and greater total release of N, P, K, and Mg than roots in control plots, but C concentrations and mass loss rate were not significantly different between roots in fertilized plots and those in control plots. Very fine roots (<2 mm) had higher concentrations of N, P, and Ca and faster release rates for C, N, and K than fine roots (2-5 mm), resulting in greater total release of C and N. Roots dried prior to decomposition decayed and released C, K, Ca, and Mg at a faster rate than fine roots. Results indicate that using dried root tissues will overestimate fine root decomposition and nutrient cycling rates.
- You may send email to email@example.com to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationLudovici, Kim H.; Kress, Lance W. 2006. Decomposition and nutrient release from fresh and dried pine roots under two fertilizer regimes. Can. J. for. Res., Vol. 36: 105-111
- Loblolly pine needle decomposition and nutrient dynamics as affected by irrigation, fertilization, and substrate quality
- Vitality and chemistry of roots of red spruce in forest floors of stands with a gradient of soil Al/Ca ratios in the northeastern United States
- Liming Influences Growth and Nutrient Balances in Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum) Seedlings on an Acidic Forest Soil
XML: View XML