Seasonal Variation of Carbon and Nitrogen Emissions from Turfgrass
American Journal of Climate Change
The role of turfgrasses in C and N cycling in the southeastern U.S. has not been well documented. The objectives of this research were to determine the characterization of chemical quality, clipping decomposition rates, and C and N release from warmand cool-season turfgrasses. The study was conducted for 46 weeks in 2012 in Auburn, AL. Four warm season turfgrasses were used included (bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers. × C. transvaalensis Burtt Davy], centipedegrass (Eremochloa
... (Munro) Hack), St. Augustinegrass (Stenotaphrum secundatum (Walter) Kuntze), zoysiagrass (Zoysia japonica Steud.), and one cool season turfgrass (tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreb)). Litter was placed into nylon bags at an oven dry rate of 3.6 Mg•ha −1 . Litter bags were retrieved after 0, 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 24, 32, and 46 weeks, and analyzed for total C and N. A double exponential decay model was used to describe mass, C, and N loss. Results indicated that tall fescue decomposition occurred rapidly compared to warm season turfgrasses. Litter mass loss measured after 46 weeks was determined to be 61.7%, 73.7%, 72.2%, 86.8%, and 45.4% in bermudagrass, centipedegrass, St. Augustinegrass, tall fescue, and zoysiagrass respectively. Zoysiagrass litter had a higher lignin concentration, while tall fescue had the lowest lignin. Over 46 weeks' release of C was in the order: zoysiagrass > bermudagrass = centipedegrass = St. Augustinegrass > tall fescue, and release of N was in the order zoysiagrass > centipedegrass > bermudagrass = St. Augustinegrass > tall fescue. Our study concluded that, zosiagrass is a better choice for home lawns.