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Seasonal and Diurnal Patterns and Rates of Nitrogen Fixation by Young Red Alder

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Annual and diurnal N2 fixation by red alder was monitored using the acetylene (C2H2) reduction method. Two- and three-year-old red alder, which had naturally seeded on spoil materials from a coal mine near Centralia, Washington, were used in this study. Dinitrogen (C2H2) fixation occurred during a 7-month period which corresponded to the growing season for alder. Mean C2H2 reduction for the period was 27.5 moles/g dry nodule/hr. Maximum rates of fixation occurred in May and June. Diurnal patterns showed highest rates at midday, with midday rates being four to six times greater than night rates. Total N fixed for the growing season averaged 7.7 g N/tree, which represented approximately 70 percent of the total N accumulated by the plant during the growing season. At a stand density of 8,000 trees/ha, which is the average stand density of the area sampled, annual N fixed was estimated at 62 kg/ha. Forest Sci. 25:371-380.

Keywords: Alnus rubra; acetylene reduction; fertilization; nutrient cycling

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Forest Scientist, Western Washington Research & Extension Center, Puyallup, Washington

Publication date: June 1, 1979

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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