Functional evenness of N-to-P ratios of evergreen-deciduous mixtures predicts positive non-additive effect on leaf litter decomposition

Chao Guo, J. Hans C. Cornelissen, Qing Qing Zhang, En Rong Yan

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Aims: The effects of litter diversity on litter decomposition remain debated. We tested to what extent the community-weighted means (CWM; functional composition) versus Rao’s dissimilarity of litter nitrogen (N)-to-phosphorus (P) ratios explain the non-additive mixture effect on decomposition rate (k) and associated N release. Methods: We carried out a one-year field decomposition experiment with a range of five litter types ranging from three evergreens only (high N/P and low specific leaf area, SLA) to three deciduous species only (low-N/P and high-SLA), with 30:70, 50:50 and 70:30% mixtures of these two extremes in between, in subtropical forest of China. Results: There were tight hump-backed relationships of absolute k-values and N release, respectively, with the CWMSLA. The mixtures with the highest functional evenness in terms of CWMN/P caused the highest positive non-additivity on decomposition (R2 = 0.72) and N release (R2 = 0.95) rates. In contrast, the mixing effect on k or N release was weakly positively correlated with Rao’s dissimilarity of N/P (R2 = 0.38 and 0.27 respectively). Conclusions: Our results provide a strong framework for predicting litter decomposition rates and associated N release versus immobilization in mixtures of deciduous versus evergreen species based on their differences in initial stoichiometry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to) 299–309
JournalPlant and Soil
Volume436
Issue number1-2
Early online date10 Jan 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019

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leaf litter
plant litter
litter
decomposition
degradation
leaf area
stoichiometry
immobilization
effect
phosphorus
China
nitrogen
rate
experiment

Keywords

  • Biogeochemical cycling
  • Evergreen broadleaf forest
  • Functional diversity and composition
  • Leaf traits
  • Species diversity
  • Stoichiometry

Cite this

@article{902aa42a9e1e4141b112add23f96c548,
title = "Functional evenness of N-to-P ratios of evergreen-deciduous mixtures predicts positive non-additive effect on leaf litter decomposition",
abstract = "Aims: The effects of litter diversity on litter decomposition remain debated. We tested to what extent the community-weighted means (CWM; functional composition) versus Rao’s dissimilarity of litter nitrogen (N)-to-phosphorus (P) ratios explain the non-additive mixture effect on decomposition rate (k) and associated N release. Methods: We carried out a one-year field decomposition experiment with a range of five litter types ranging from three evergreens only (high N/P and low specific leaf area, SLA) to three deciduous species only (low-N/P and high-SLA), with 30:70, 50:50 and 70:30{\%} mixtures of these two extremes in between, in subtropical forest of China. Results: There were tight hump-backed relationships of absolute k-values and N release, respectively, with the CWMSLA. The mixtures with the highest functional evenness in terms of CWMN/P caused the highest positive non-additivity on decomposition (R2 = 0.72) and N release (R2 = 0.95) rates. In contrast, the mixing effect on k or N release was weakly positively correlated with Rao’s dissimilarity of N/P (R2 = 0.38 and 0.27 respectively). Conclusions: Our results provide a strong framework for predicting litter decomposition rates and associated N release versus immobilization in mixtures of deciduous versus evergreen species based on their differences in initial stoichiometry.",
keywords = "Biogeochemical cycling, Evergreen broadleaf forest, Functional diversity and composition, Leaf traits, Species diversity, Stoichiometry",
author = "Chao Guo and Cornelissen, {J. Hans C.} and Zhang, {Qing Qing} and Yan, {En Rong}",
year = "2019",
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Functional evenness of N-to-P ratios of evergreen-deciduous mixtures predicts positive non-additive effect on leaf litter decomposition. / Guo, Chao; Cornelissen, J. Hans C.; Zhang, Qing Qing; Yan, En Rong.

In: Plant and Soil, Vol. 436, No. 1-2, 03.2019, p. 299–309.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Functional evenness of N-to-P ratios of evergreen-deciduous mixtures predicts positive non-additive effect on leaf litter decomposition

AU - Guo, Chao

AU - Cornelissen, J. Hans C.

AU - Zhang, Qing Qing

AU - Yan, En Rong

PY - 2019/3

Y1 - 2019/3

N2 - Aims: The effects of litter diversity on litter decomposition remain debated. We tested to what extent the community-weighted means (CWM; functional composition) versus Rao’s dissimilarity of litter nitrogen (N)-to-phosphorus (P) ratios explain the non-additive mixture effect on decomposition rate (k) and associated N release. Methods: We carried out a one-year field decomposition experiment with a range of five litter types ranging from three evergreens only (high N/P and low specific leaf area, SLA) to three deciduous species only (low-N/P and high-SLA), with 30:70, 50:50 and 70:30% mixtures of these two extremes in between, in subtropical forest of China. Results: There were tight hump-backed relationships of absolute k-values and N release, respectively, with the CWMSLA. The mixtures with the highest functional evenness in terms of CWMN/P caused the highest positive non-additivity on decomposition (R2 = 0.72) and N release (R2 = 0.95) rates. In contrast, the mixing effect on k or N release was weakly positively correlated with Rao’s dissimilarity of N/P (R2 = 0.38 and 0.27 respectively). Conclusions: Our results provide a strong framework for predicting litter decomposition rates and associated N release versus immobilization in mixtures of deciduous versus evergreen species based on their differences in initial stoichiometry.

AB - Aims: The effects of litter diversity on litter decomposition remain debated. We tested to what extent the community-weighted means (CWM; functional composition) versus Rao’s dissimilarity of litter nitrogen (N)-to-phosphorus (P) ratios explain the non-additive mixture effect on decomposition rate (k) and associated N release. Methods: We carried out a one-year field decomposition experiment with a range of five litter types ranging from three evergreens only (high N/P and low specific leaf area, SLA) to three deciduous species only (low-N/P and high-SLA), with 30:70, 50:50 and 70:30% mixtures of these two extremes in between, in subtropical forest of China. Results: There were tight hump-backed relationships of absolute k-values and N release, respectively, with the CWMSLA. The mixtures with the highest functional evenness in terms of CWMN/P caused the highest positive non-additivity on decomposition (R2 = 0.72) and N release (R2 = 0.95) rates. In contrast, the mixing effect on k or N release was weakly positively correlated with Rao’s dissimilarity of N/P (R2 = 0.38 and 0.27 respectively). Conclusions: Our results provide a strong framework for predicting litter decomposition rates and associated N release versus immobilization in mixtures of deciduous versus evergreen species based on their differences in initial stoichiometry.

KW - Biogeochemical cycling

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KW - Leaf traits

KW - Species diversity

KW - Stoichiometry

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