Effects of forest structure on litter production, soil chemical composition and litter-soil interactions

Elivane Salete Capellesso, Kellin Luana Scrovonski, Elisabete Maria Zanin, Luiz Ubiratan Hepp, Cimélio Bayer, Tanise Luisa Sausen
2016 Acta Botânica Brasílica  
Litter production in forest ecosystems is a major indicator of primary productivity because litter helps incorporate carbon and nutrients from plants into the soil and is directly involved in plant-soil interactions. To our knowledge, few studies have investigated the relationship between species diversity and ecosystem processes in subtropical forest fragments. In this work, we determined forest structural parameters and assessed seasonal leaf litter input, leaf decomposition rate, litter
more » ... n rate, litter quality and soil characteristics in two subtropical Atlantic Forest fragments. Litter production was greater in the native fragment with the higher species diversity (FN1). Th e two native fragments (FN1 and FN2) diff ered in basal area, volume and dominance in the upper stratum, which were positively correlated with litter production in FN1 but negatively correlated in FN2. Soil in FN1 exhibited higher contents of organic C, available phosphorus and exchangeable calcium, and the leaf litter had a higher C:N ratio. Although these results are consistent with a plant-soil feedback, which suggests the presence of a complementary eff ect, the dominance of certain families in subtropical forest fragments results in a selection eff ect on litter productivity and decomposition.
doi:10.1590/0102-33062016abb0048 fatcat:iebt2fbtojhibgtq3mduzxtgjy