Soil Organic Carbon and Its Fractions Across Vegetation Types: Effects of Soil Mineral Surface Area and Microaggregates


Wu, Qingbiao; Wang, Xiaoke; Ouyang, Zhiyun

Journal or Book Title: Pedosphere

Keywords: carbon fractions; microaggregates; soil mineral surface area; soil organic carbon; vegetation

Volume/Issue: 19/2

Page Number(s): 258-264

Year Published: 2009


Soil organic carbon (SOC) can act as a sink or source of atmospheric carbon dioxide; therefore, it is important to understand the amount and composition of SOC in terrestrial ecosystems, the spatial variation in SOC, and the underlying mechanisms that stabilize SOC. In this study, density fractionation and acid hydrolysis were used to assess the spatial variation in SOC, the heavy fraction of organic carbon (HFOC), and the resistant organic carbon (ROC) in soils of the southern Hulun Buir region, northeastern China, and to identify the major factors that contribute to this variation. The results showed that as the contents of clay and silt particles (0–50 μm) increased, both methylene blue (MB) adsorption by soil minerals and microaggregate contents increased in the 0–20 and 20–40 cm soil layers (P <0.05). Although varying with vegetation types, SOC, HFOC, and ROC contents increased significantly with the content of clay and silt particles, MB adsorption by soil minerals, and microaggregate content (P <0.05), suggesting that soil texture, the MB adsorption by soil minerals, and microaggregate abundance might be important factors influencing the spatial heterogeneity of carbon
contents in soils of the southern Hulun Buir region.

Type of Publication: Journal Article