Are N and S deposition altering the mineral composition of Norway spruce and Scots pine needles in Finland?

Sebastiaan Luyssaert*, Mika Sulkava, Hannu Raitio, Jaakko Hollmén

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Data from a large-scale foliar survey were used to calculate the extent to which N and S deposition determined the mineral composition of Scots pine and Norway spruce needles in Finland. Foliar data were available from 367 needle samples collected on 36 plots sampled almost annually between 1987 and 2000. A literature study of controlled experiments revealed that acidifying deposition mediates increasing N and S concentrations, and decreasing Mg:N and Ca:Al ratios in the needles. When this fingerprint for N and S elevated deposition on tree foliage was observed simultaneously with increased N and S inputs, it was considered sufficient evidence for assuming that acidifying deposition had altered the mineral composition of tree needles on that plot in the given year. Evidence for deposition-induced changes in the mineral composition of tree foliage was calculated on the basis of a simple frequency model. In the late eighties the evidence was found on 43% of the Norway spruce and 27% of Scots pine plots. The proportion of changed needle mineral composition decreased to below 8% for both species in the late nineties.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-17
Number of pages13
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
Volume138
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2005

Keywords

  • Acidifying deposition
  • Foliar analysis
  • Forest nutrition
  • Nutrition profile

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