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The feedback between plant litterfall and nutrient cycling processes plays a major role in the regulation of nutrient availability and net primary production in terrestrial ecosystems. While several studies have examined site-specific feedbacks between litter chemistry and nitrogen (N) availability, little is known about the interaction between climate,(More)
We examined the 30-yr cumulative effects of prescribed fires at intervals of 1, 2, 3, and 4 yr in a loblolly and longleaf pine forest in the Coastal Plain of South Carolina. The fine fraction of the forest floor (Oe + Oa horizons) contained much more carbon and nitrogen per unit area in the control plots (1.7 and 0.05 kg/m2 , respectively) than in the 1-yr(More)
The nitrogen (N) cycle of forest ecosystems is understood relatively well, and few scientists expect that major revisions will be necessary; most current work on N cycling focuses on improving the precision estimates of pools and fluxes, or measuring the magnitudes of well-known pools in response to management or disturbances. However, in the past few(More)
Forests with nitrogen-fixing trees (N–fixers) typically accumulate more carbon (C) in soils than similar forests without N–fixing trees. This difference may develop from fundamentally different processes, with either greater accumulation of recently fixed C or reduced decomposition of older soil C. We compared the soil C pools under N–fixers with(More)
Phosphorus availability in soils is controlled by both the sizes of P pools and the transformation rates among these pools. Rates of gross P mineralization and immobilization are poorly known due to the limitations of available analytical techniques. We developed a new method to estimate P transformation rates in three forest soils and one grassland soil(More)
Forest growth is important both economically (yielding billions of dollars of annual revenues) and ecologically (with respect to ecosystem health and global carbon budgets). The growth of all forests follows a predictable general trend with age. In young forests, it accelerates as canopies develop; it then declines substantially soon after full canopy leaf(More)
Patterns of nitrogen (N) accumulation and turnover in riparian systems in semi-arid regions are poorly understood, particularly in those ecosystems that lack substantial inputs from nitrogen fixing vegetation. We investigated sources and fluxes of N in chronosequences of riparian forests along the regulated Green River and the free-flowing Yampa River in(More)
Studies to identify gaps in the protection of habitat for speciesof concern have been inconclusive and hampered by single-scale orpoor multi-scale sampling methods, large minimum mapping units(MMU's of 2 ha to 100 ha), limited and subjectively selected fieldobservations, and poor mathematical and ecological models. Weovercome these obstacles with improved(More)
The release of carbon as CO2 from belowground processes accounts for about 70% of total ecosystem respiration. Insights about factors controlling soil CO2 efflux are constrained by the challenge of apportioning sources of CO2 between autotrophic tree roots (and mycorrhizal fungi) and heterotrophic microorganisms. In some temperate conifer forests, the(More)