Deacidification effect of the litter layer on forest soil during snowmelt runoff––laboratory experiment and its basic formularization for simulation modeling

Department of Basic Science and Environment, ESAC--Polytechnic Institute of Coimbra, Bencanta, 3040-316 Coimbra, Portugal.
Chemosphere (Impact Factor: 3.34). 03/2004; 54(8):1163-9. DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2003.10.025
Source: PubMed


The forest soil ecosystem can buffer and neutralize acidic airborne pollutants to some extent, but extensive acidification degrades the soil ecosystem. Several investigations have shown that surface flows often show particularly low pH values in rivers and lakes during snowmelt and that this acidification phenomenon takes place in a short time frame. Acid water from snowmelt first makes contact with the litter layer in the soil ecosystem. Therefore, a laboratory experiment was performed to study the impact of forest litter on the chemical composition of the water solution. The experiment presented in this paper confirmed that deacidification with a little leachate of organic matter is caused by cation exchange not only in upper mineral soil but also in the litter layer and that leachate of labile Al is restrained in the presence of litter. An attempt was made to incorporate these factors into the biogeochemical module of the model (ILWAS) to accurately estimate damage by acidification.

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    • "A plethora of studies have examined throughfall aluminum chemistry (e.g., Cronan 1980; David and Driscoll 1984; Turner et al. 1985; Bergkvist 1987; Rustad and Cronan 1995; Eisalou et al. 2013) and litter leachate aluminum chemistry (e.g., Pedersen and Bille- Hansen 1999; Kikuchi 2004; Kopacek et al. 2010; Eisalou et al. 2013); however, far less work has examined stemflow aluminum chemistry, even though stemflow is an important process for elemental cycling in some forests (Herwitz 1986; Levia and Frost 2003; Germer et al. 2012). Nikodem et al. (2010) found that stemflow inputs had a detectable effect on aluminum content near the base of trees through simulating the spatial redistribution of precipitation which revealed increased aluminum leakage around the tree stem. "
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    ABSTRACT: Ca/Al molar ratios are commonly used to assess the extent of aluminum stress in forests. This is among the first studies to quantify Ca/Al molar ratios for stemflow. Ca/Al molar ratios in bulk precipitation, throughfall, stemflow, litter leachate, near-trunk soil solution, and soil water were quantified for a deciduous forest in northeastern MD, USA. Data were collected over a 3-year period. The Ca/Al molar ratios in this study were above the threshold for aluminum stress (<1). Fagus grandifolia Ehrh. (American beech) had a median annual stemflow Ca/Al molar ratio of 15.7, with the leafed and leafless values of 12.4 and 19.2, respectively. The corresponding Ca/Al molar ratios for Liriodendron tulipifera L. (yellow poplar) were 11.9 at the annual time scale and 11.9 and 13.6 for leafed and leafless periods, respectively. Bayesian statistical analysis showed no significant effect of canopy state (leafed, leafless) on Ca/Al molar ratios. DOC was consistently an important predictor of calcium, aluminum, and Ca/Al ratios. pH was occasionally an important predictor of calcium and aluminum concentrations, but was not a good predictor of Ca/Al ratio in any of the best-fit models (of >500 examined). This study supplies new data on Ca/Al molar ratios for stemflow from two common deciduous tree species. Future work should examine Ca/Al molar ratios in stemflow of other species and examine both inorganic and organic aluminum species to better gauge the potential for, and understand the dynamics of, aluminum toxicity in the proximal area around tree boles.
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    • "Naturally, data on the acidity of the litter mainly as an organogenic horizon of automorphous soils and its other properties are given in many modern Russian and foreign publications (Karpachevskii, 1977, 1983; Karpachevskii et al., 1980; Bgantsova, 1991; Bogatyy rev, 1993, 1996; Kikuchi, 2004; Lukina et al., 2005, 2008; Berg and McClaugherty, 2008, and many othh ers). At the same time, the litters of swampy and waterr logged forests remain relatively little studied. "
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    ABSTRACT: The general potential, exchange, and actual (pH) acidities were investigated in the litter of the succession row of swamp birch woods. Their variabilities constitute, respectively, 75.9–174.4, 3.7–25.8 mmol (+)/100 g of the sampling, 3.7–5.5. For the first time, using the methods of geostatistics, their spatial variability was analyzed and the contributions of the trend, autocorrelation component, and the radius of the spatial correlation were estimated. It was established that in combination with the woody plants detritus, which is uniformly distributed along the ecological profile, the specific composition of the grass-moss tier, which corresponds to the humidity of edaphon, forms the picture of the spatial structure of acid properties of the litter. It was noted that the prime cause of variability consists in the particularities of the water regime of the habitats of swamp birch woods.
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