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Nitrogen Mineralization and Nitrification Potentials Following Clearcutting in the Hoosier National Forest, Indiana

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Potential nitrogen mineralization and nitrification were examined in an age sequence of clearcut and control hardwood forests. Results of laboratory incubations indicated that nitrification was always greater in clearcut soils than in control forest soils, while mineralization was significantly greater only in a 4-year-old clearcut. Increasing moisture increased rates of mineralization and nitrification in both clearcut and control forest soils. In situ incubations indicated that warmer soil temperatures increased rates of mineralization and nitrification in the youngest clearcut. Regardless of the immediate effects of temperature and moisture, all clearcut soils produced more nitrate than control soils under identical conditions. The results of a microlysimeter experiment suggested that these differences are due to the initial population size of nitrifying bacteria. Forest Sci. 27:781-791.

Keywords: Incubation; microlysimeter; nitrapyrin; nitrogen availability

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Department of Botany, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC 27514

Publication date: December 1, 1981

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