iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry


Shrub encroachment alters topsoil C:N:P stoichiometric ratios in a high-altitude forest cutover

Defeng Feng (1-2), Weikai Bao (1)   

iForest - Biogeosciences and Forestry, Volume 11, Issue 5, Pages 594-599 (2018)
doi: https://doi.org/10.3832/ifor2803-011
Published: Sep 25, 2018 - Copyright © 2018 SISEF

Short Communications

The effect of shrub encroachment on soil carbon (C): nitrogen (N): phosphorus (P) stoichiometric ratios are largely still unknown. We investigated this effect and the effect of shrub size in a high altitude forest cutover among four common shrub species: Cerasus trichostoma, Ribes glaciale, Rosa omeiensis and Salix sphaeronymphe. The difference in topsoil C:N ratio between meadows and shrub islands was greatly influenced by shrub species and plant sizes. Topsoil N:P and C:P ratios were always higher in shrub islands than in meadows, irrespective of shrub species and plant size. The expansion of shrubs merely increased the topsoil C:N ratio beneath Cerasus and Rosa, and increased the topsoil N:P and C:P ratios beneath the four shrub species. The increase in stoichiometric ratio followed an identical pattern among the four shrub species as shrub size increased. There were always higher topsoil C:P and N:P ratios beneath Ribes than under the other shrub species with the same plant size. This study clearly suggests that the effect of shrub islands on soil C:N:P stoichiometric ratios was dependent on shrub species and size. Our results are conducive to clarifying the currently confusion in secondary successional trends of soil C:N:P stoichiometry.


Plant Species, Shrub Islands, Shrub Size, Soil Stoichiometry

Authors’ address

Defeng Feng
Weikai Bao
CAS Key Laboratory of Mountain Ecological Restoration and Bioresource Utilization & Ecological Restoration and Biodiversity Conservation Key Laboratory of Sichuan Province, Chengdu Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu, 610041 Sichuan (China)
Defeng Feng
Research Institute of Resource Insects, Chinese Academy of Forestry, Kunming, 650224 Yunnan (China)

Corresponding author

Weikai Bao


Feng D, Bao W (2018). Shrub encroachment alters topsoil C:N:P stoichiometric ratios in a high-altitude forest cutover. iForest 11: 594-599. - doi: 10.3832/ifor2803-011

Academic Editor

Francesco Ripullone

Paper history

Received: Mar 30, 2018
Accepted: Jul 03, 2018

First online: Sep 25, 2018
Publication Date: Oct 31, 2018
Publication Time: 2.80 months

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