Stoichiometric shifts in surface soils over broad geographical scales

evidence from China's grasslands

Yuanhe Yang*, Jingyun Fang, Chengjun Ji, Arindam Datta, Pin Li, Wenhong Ma, Anwar Mohammat, Haihua Shen, Huifeng Hu, Benjamin O. Knapp, Pete Smith

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

35 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aim The identification of stoichiometric flexibility is crucial for understanding carbon-nitrogen-phosphorus (C-N-P) interactions and ecosystem dynamics under a changing environment. However, current evidence of stoichiometric flexibility mainly comes from manipulation experiments, with little evidence from large-scale observations.

Location Alpine and temperate grasslands across northern China.

Methods Using soil profiles derived from a historical national soil inventory and a contemporary regional soil survey across China's grasslands, we examined temporal changes in topsoil C:N:P ratios over recent decades.

Results Topsoil C: N ratios of five major grassland types exhibited some flexibility but did not show significant changes over the sampling interval. Non-significant changes in topsoil C: N ratios were observed both in alpine grasslands on the Tibetan Plateau and in temperate grasslands on the Inner Mongolian Plateau. Consistent with the relatively stable C: N ratios, the slope of the soil C-N stoichiometric relationship did not differ significantly between the two sampling periods. Soil N: P ratios in the surface layer increased significantly over the sampling interval, however, with an overall increase of 0.60 (95% confidence interval 0.58-0.62). A larger increase in soil N: P ratio was found in temperate grasslands on the Inner Mongolian Plateau than in alpine grasslands on the Tibetan Plateau. Moreover, the slope of the soil N-P stoichiometric relationship in these grassland ecosystems became steeper over the sampling interval.

Main conclusions These results demonstrate the stability of topsoil C: N stoichiometry but variability in N: P stoichiometry over broad geographical scales, highlighting that soil C and N are tightly coupled, but N and P tend to be decoupled under a changing environment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)947-955
Number of pages9
JournalGlobal Ecology and Biogeography
Volume23
Issue number8
Early online date20 Apr 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014

Keywords

  • carbon-nitrogen-phosphorus interactions
  • carbon:nitrogen:phosphorus ratio
  • ecological stoichiometry
  • grassland ecosystems
  • soil inventory
  • stoichiometric flexibility
  • terrestrial ecosystems
  • nitrogen deposition
  • elevated CO2
  • microbial biomass
  • inorganic carbon
  • global change
  • phosphorus
  • limitation
  • decomposition
  • patterns

Cite this

Stoichiometric shifts in surface soils over broad geographical scales : evidence from China's grasslands. / Yang, Yuanhe; Fang, Jingyun; Ji, Chengjun; Datta, Arindam; Li, Pin; Ma, Wenhong; Mohammat, Anwar; Shen, Haihua; Hu, Huifeng; Knapp, Benjamin O.; Smith, Pete.

In: Global Ecology and Biogeography, Vol. 23, No. 8, 08.2014, p. 947-955.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Yang, Y, Fang, J, Ji, C, Datta, A, Li, P, Ma, W, Mohammat, A, Shen, H, Hu, H, Knapp, BO & Smith, P 2014, 'Stoichiometric shifts in surface soils over broad geographical scales: evidence from China's grasslands', Global Ecology and Biogeography, vol. 23, no. 8, pp. 947-955. https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.12175
Yang, Yuanhe ; Fang, Jingyun ; Ji, Chengjun ; Datta, Arindam ; Li, Pin ; Ma, Wenhong ; Mohammat, Anwar ; Shen, Haihua ; Hu, Huifeng ; Knapp, Benjamin O. ; Smith, Pete. / Stoichiometric shifts in surface soils over broad geographical scales : evidence from China's grasslands. In: Global Ecology and Biogeography. 2014 ; Vol. 23, No. 8. pp. 947-955.
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abstract = "Aim The identification of stoichiometric flexibility is crucial for understanding carbon-nitrogen-phosphorus (C-N-P) interactions and ecosystem dynamics under a changing environment. However, current evidence of stoichiometric flexibility mainly comes from manipulation experiments, with little evidence from large-scale observations.Location Alpine and temperate grasslands across northern China.Methods Using soil profiles derived from a historical national soil inventory and a contemporary regional soil survey across China's grasslands, we examined temporal changes in topsoil C:N:P ratios over recent decades.Results Topsoil C: N ratios of five major grassland types exhibited some flexibility but did not show significant changes over the sampling interval. Non-significant changes in topsoil C: N ratios were observed both in alpine grasslands on the Tibetan Plateau and in temperate grasslands on the Inner Mongolian Plateau. Consistent with the relatively stable C: N ratios, the slope of the soil C-N stoichiometric relationship did not differ significantly between the two sampling periods. Soil N: P ratios in the surface layer increased significantly over the sampling interval, however, with an overall increase of 0.60 (95{\%} confidence interval 0.58-0.62). A larger increase in soil N: P ratio was found in temperate grasslands on the Inner Mongolian Plateau than in alpine grasslands on the Tibetan Plateau. Moreover, the slope of the soil N-P stoichiometric relationship in these grassland ecosystems became steeper over the sampling interval.Main conclusions These results demonstrate the stability of topsoil C: N stoichiometry but variability in N: P stoichiometry over broad geographical scales, highlighting that soil C and N are tightly coupled, but N and P tend to be decoupled under a changing environment.",
keywords = "carbon-nitrogen-phosphorus interactions, carbon:nitrogen:phosphorus ratio, ecological stoichiometry, grassland ecosystems, soil inventory, stoichiometric flexibility, terrestrial ecosystems, nitrogen deposition, elevated CO2, microbial biomass, inorganic carbon, global change, phosphorus, limitation, decomposition, patterns",
author = "Yuanhe Yang and Jingyun Fang and Chengjun Ji and Arindam Datta and Pin Li and Wenhong Ma and Anwar Mohammat and Haihua Shen and Huifeng Hu and Knapp, {Benjamin O.} and Pete Smith",
note = "We thank members of the Peking University Sampling Campaign Team for their help with fieldwork and also appreciate Ian Wright and three anonymous referees for their thoughtful comments on an earlier draft of the manuscript. This study was sponsored by the National Basic Research Program of China on Global Change (2014CB954001 and 2010CB950600), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31322011, 41371213 and 31021001) and the Thousand Young Talents Program.",
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TY - JOUR

T1 - Stoichiometric shifts in surface soils over broad geographical scales

T2 - evidence from China's grasslands

AU - Yang, Yuanhe

AU - Fang, Jingyun

AU - Ji, Chengjun

AU - Datta, Arindam

AU - Li, Pin

AU - Ma, Wenhong

AU - Mohammat, Anwar

AU - Shen, Haihua

AU - Hu, Huifeng

AU - Knapp, Benjamin O.

AU - Smith, Pete

N1 - We thank members of the Peking University Sampling Campaign Team for their help with fieldwork and also appreciate Ian Wright and three anonymous referees for their thoughtful comments on an earlier draft of the manuscript. This study was sponsored by the National Basic Research Program of China on Global Change (2014CB954001 and 2010CB950600), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31322011, 41371213 and 31021001) and the Thousand Young Talents Program.

PY - 2014/8

Y1 - 2014/8

N2 - Aim The identification of stoichiometric flexibility is crucial for understanding carbon-nitrogen-phosphorus (C-N-P) interactions and ecosystem dynamics under a changing environment. However, current evidence of stoichiometric flexibility mainly comes from manipulation experiments, with little evidence from large-scale observations.Location Alpine and temperate grasslands across northern China.Methods Using soil profiles derived from a historical national soil inventory and a contemporary regional soil survey across China's grasslands, we examined temporal changes in topsoil C:N:P ratios over recent decades.Results Topsoil C: N ratios of five major grassland types exhibited some flexibility but did not show significant changes over the sampling interval. Non-significant changes in topsoil C: N ratios were observed both in alpine grasslands on the Tibetan Plateau and in temperate grasslands on the Inner Mongolian Plateau. Consistent with the relatively stable C: N ratios, the slope of the soil C-N stoichiometric relationship did not differ significantly between the two sampling periods. Soil N: P ratios in the surface layer increased significantly over the sampling interval, however, with an overall increase of 0.60 (95% confidence interval 0.58-0.62). A larger increase in soil N: P ratio was found in temperate grasslands on the Inner Mongolian Plateau than in alpine grasslands on the Tibetan Plateau. Moreover, the slope of the soil N-P stoichiometric relationship in these grassland ecosystems became steeper over the sampling interval.Main conclusions These results demonstrate the stability of topsoil C: N stoichiometry but variability in N: P stoichiometry over broad geographical scales, highlighting that soil C and N are tightly coupled, but N and P tend to be decoupled under a changing environment.

AB - Aim The identification of stoichiometric flexibility is crucial for understanding carbon-nitrogen-phosphorus (C-N-P) interactions and ecosystem dynamics under a changing environment. However, current evidence of stoichiometric flexibility mainly comes from manipulation experiments, with little evidence from large-scale observations.Location Alpine and temperate grasslands across northern China.Methods Using soil profiles derived from a historical national soil inventory and a contemporary regional soil survey across China's grasslands, we examined temporal changes in topsoil C:N:P ratios over recent decades.Results Topsoil C: N ratios of five major grassland types exhibited some flexibility but did not show significant changes over the sampling interval. Non-significant changes in topsoil C: N ratios were observed both in alpine grasslands on the Tibetan Plateau and in temperate grasslands on the Inner Mongolian Plateau. Consistent with the relatively stable C: N ratios, the slope of the soil C-N stoichiometric relationship did not differ significantly between the two sampling periods. Soil N: P ratios in the surface layer increased significantly over the sampling interval, however, with an overall increase of 0.60 (95% confidence interval 0.58-0.62). A larger increase in soil N: P ratio was found in temperate grasslands on the Inner Mongolian Plateau than in alpine grasslands on the Tibetan Plateau. Moreover, the slope of the soil N-P stoichiometric relationship in these grassland ecosystems became steeper over the sampling interval.Main conclusions These results demonstrate the stability of topsoil C: N stoichiometry but variability in N: P stoichiometry over broad geographical scales, highlighting that soil C and N are tightly coupled, but N and P tend to be decoupled under a changing environment.

KW - carbon-nitrogen-phosphorus interactions

KW - carbon:nitrogen:phosphorus ratio

KW - ecological stoichiometry

KW - grassland ecosystems

KW - soil inventory

KW - stoichiometric flexibility

KW - terrestrial ecosystems

KW - nitrogen deposition

KW - elevated CO2

KW - microbial biomass

KW - inorganic carbon

KW - global change

KW - phosphorus

KW - limitation

KW - decomposition

KW - patterns

U2 - 10.1111/geb.12175

DO - 10.1111/geb.12175

M3 - Article

VL - 23

SP - 947

EP - 955

JO - Global Ecology and Biogeography

JF - Global Ecology and Biogeography

SN - 1466-822X

IS - 8

ER -