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Title: Retention of phosphorus in highly weathered soils under a lowland Amazonian forest ecosystem

Author: McGroddy, M. E.; Silver, W. L.; de Oliveira, Jr. R. C.; de Mello, W. Z.; Keller, M.;

Date: 2008

Source: Journal of Geophysical Research. 113(GO4012):doi:10.1029/2008JG000756

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: The low available phosphorus (P) pools typical of highly weathered tropical forest soils are thought to result from a combination of export of phosphorus via erosion and leaching as well as chemical reactions resulting in physically and chemically protected P compounds. Despite the low apparent P availability, these soils support some of the highest terrestrial net primary productivity globally. We followed different P fractions after P additions to two soil types, sandy loam and sandy clay, over 1 year in a lowland Amazonian forest. Of all the soil P fractions measured, only the NaHCO3 and NaOH extractable fractions showed a significant increase following P additions, and this occurred only in sandy clays (+ 56.9 ± 15.1 kg ha!1 and + 2.8 ± 1.5 kg ha!1, respectively). Our results indicate that intermediate rather than recalcitrant pools are the dominant fate of added P over an annual timescale even in fine-textured soils. Fine root and forest floor P pools increased more in the sandy loams following P additions suggesting a larger biotic P sink in these soils. Leaching of inorganic P from the surface soils was an unexpected and significant fate of added P in both soil types (9 ± 3% in the sandy loams, 2 ± 1% in the sandy clays). Significantly more of the added P was retained in the sandy clay soils than in the sandy loams (69 ± 20% versus 33 ± 7%) over the 1-year period.

Keywords: primary productivity, leaching, phosphorous, nutrient cycling, soils, Amazon, tropical forest

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McGroddy, M. E.; Silver, W. L.; de Oliveira, Jr., R. C.; de Mello, W. Z.; Keller, M. 2008. Retention of phosphorus in highly weathered soils under a lowland Amazonian forest ecosystem. Journal of Geophysical Research. 113(GO4012):doi:10.1029/2008JG000756.


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