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Belowground biomass, production, and carbon cycling in mature Norway spruce, Maine, U.S.A.

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Two 55-year-old stands of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) were sampled to determine belowground biomass, production and decomposition of fine and small roots, litterfall and litter decay rates, soil respiration rates, and carbon cycling patterns. Mean biomass of live fine (<1 mm) Norway spruce roots to a soil depth of 40 cm was 359 ash-free dry g·m–2, whereas biomass of live fine + small roots (<= 3 mm) amounted to 561 g·m–2. Mean root production averaged 297 g·m–2·year–1 for roots <1 mm and 418 g·m–2·year–1 for roots <= 3 mm. By comparison, needle litter production was 205 g·m–2·year–1. Norway spruce roots <= 3 mm decomposed at a rate of 9.5% of total root mass per month during the growing season, compared with a needle litter annual decay rate of 22.3%·year–1. A partial carbon budget for Norway spruce indicated that annual needle litterfall mass was 98 g C·m–2·year–1, and annual carbon release from fresh litter decay was approximately 22 g·C·m–2·year–1. During the growing season, monthly CO2 flux from soil respiration was 69 g C·m–2·month–1, belowground C allocation to net production of roots <= 3 mm was 33.5 g C·m–2·month–1, and C release from decomposition of roots <= 3 mm was 31 g C·m–2·month–1. These values were also extrapolated to annual estimates of C fluxes.

Deux peuplements d'épicéa commun (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) âgés de 55 ans ont été échantillonnés afin de déterminer la biomasse hypogée, la production et la décomposition des racines fines et des petites racines, la chute des litières et leur taux de décomposition, les taux de respiration du sol ainsi que les patrons de recyclage du carbone. La biomasse moyenne des racines fines (<1 mm) vivantes d'épicéa commun à une profondeur de 40 cm avait une masse sèche sans cendre de 359 g·m–2, tandis que la biomasse des racines fines et des petites racines (<= 3 mm) se chiffrait à 561 g·m–2. La production moyenne de racine était de 297 g·m–2·an–1 pour les racines <1 mm et 418 g·m–2·an–1 pour les racines <= 3 mm. En comparaison, la production annuelle de litière de feuilles était de 205 g·m–2·an–1. Les racines <= 3 mm d'épicéa commun se décomposaient à un taux mensuel de 9,5 % durant la saison de croissance tandis que le taux annuel de décomposition était de 22,3 % pour la litière de feuilles. Un bilan partiel du carbone pour l'épicéa commun indique que la chute de litière de feuilles représente 98 g C·m–2·an–1 et qu'approximativement 22 g C·m–2·an–1 de carbone sont libérés par la décomposition de la litière fraîche. Durant la saison de croissance, le flux mensuel de CO2 provenant de la respiration du sol était de 69 g C·m–2·mois–1, l'allocation hypogée de C à la production nette de racines <= 3 mm était de 33,5 g C·m–2·mois–1, et la libération de C due à la décomposition des racines <= 3 mm était de 31 g C·m–2·mois–1. Ces valeurs ont aussi été extrapolées pour estimer les flux annuels de C.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 2003

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