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Forskningsartikel2000Vetenskapligt granskad

Root dynamics in a semi-natural grassland in relation to atmospheric carbon dioxide enrichment, soil water and shoot biomass

Sindhoj, E; Hansson, AC; Andrén, O; Kätterer, T; Marissink, M; Pettersson, R


Plant responses to increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations have been studied intensively. However, the effects of elevated CO2 on root dynamics, which is important for global carbon budgets as well as for nutrient cycling in ecosystems, has received much less attention. We used minirhizotrons inside open-top chambers to study the effects of elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration on root dynamics in a nutrient-poor semi-natural grassland in central Sweden. We conducted our investigation over three consecutive growing seasons during which three treatments were applied at the site: Elevated (approximate to 700 mu mol mol(-1)) and ambient (approximate to 360 mu mol mol(-)1) chamber levels of CO2 and a control, without a chamber. During 1997, a summer with two dry periods, the elevated treatment compared with ambient had 25% greater mean root counts, 65% greater above-ground biomass and 15% greater soil moisture. The chambers seemed responsible for changes in root dynamics, whereas the elevated CO2 treatment in general increased the absolute sum of root counts compared with the ambient chamber. In 1998, a wet growing season, there were no significant differences in shoot biomass or root dynamics and both chamber treatments had lower soil moisture than the control. We found that as seasonal dryness increased, the ratio of elevated - ambient shoot biomass production increased while the root to shoot ratio decreased. We conclude that this grasslands response to elevated CO2 is dependent on seasonal weather conditions and that CO2 enrichment will most significantly increase production in such a grassland when under water stress.


elevated CO2; minirhizotrons; open-top chambers; roots; soil moisture; water-use efficiency

Publicerad i

Plant and Soil
2000, Volym: 223, nummer: 1-2, sidor: 255-265

      SLU författare

    • Sindhöj, Erik

      • Institutionen för markvetenskap, Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet
      • Andrén, Olof

        • Institutionen för markvetenskap, Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet
          • Marissink, Mark

            • Institutionen för ekologi och växtproduktionslära, Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet
            • Pettersson, Roger

              • Institutionen för ekologi och växtproduktionslära, Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet

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