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Research article2011Peer reviewedOpen access

Differences in soil properties in adjacent stands of Scots pine, Norway spruce and silver birch in SW Sweden

Hansson, Karna; Olsson, Bengt A.; Olsson, Mats; Johansson, Ulf; Kleja, Dan Berggren


Soil properties were compared in adjacent 50-year-old Norway spruce, Scots pine and silver birch stands 26 growing on similar soils in south-west Sweden. The effects of tree species were most apparent in the 27 humus layer and decreased with soil depth. At 20–30 cm depth in the mineral soil, species differences 28 in soil properties were small and mostly not significant. Soil C, N, K, Ca, Mg, and Na content, pH, base sat- 29 uration and fine root biomass all significantly differed between humus layers of different species. Since 30 the climate, parent material, land use history and soil type were similar, the differences can be ascribed to 31 tree species. Spruce stands had the largest amounts of carbon stored down to 30 cm depth in mineral soil 32 (7.3 kg C m??2), whereas birch stands, with the lowest production, smallest amount of litterfall and lowest 33 C:N ratio in litter and humus, had the smallest carbon pool (4.1 kg C m??2), with pine intermediate 34 (4.9 kg C m??2). Similarly, soil nitrogen pools amounted to 349, 269, and 240 g N m??2 for spruce, pine, 35 and birch stands, respectively. The humus layer in birch stands was thin and mixed with mineral soil, 36 and soil pH was highest in the birch stands. Spruce had the thickest humus layer with the lowest pH


Betula pendula; Carbon; Nitrogen; Soil pH; Picea abies; Pinus sylvestris

Published in

Forest Ecology and Management
2011, Volume: 262, number: 3, article number: 12639
Publisher: Elsevier