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Dissolved components in precipitation water percolated through forest litter
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences.
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Natural Sciences.
2000 (English)In: European Journal of Soil Science, ISSN 1351-0754, E-ISSN 1365-2389, Vol. 51, no 4, 667-677 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Leaves lying on the forest floor are a major source of dissolved organic substances in soil and surface waters, and these substances have important effects in those environments. We used zero-tension lysimeters to study the chemical characteristics of water percolating through litter from various species of forest trees. The leaching rates were greatest in the autumn and declined rapidly thereafter, especially for deciduous litter. During an annual cycle, 2.5-17% of the initial contents of the carbon in the litter was recovered as dissolved organic carbon in percolates. Humus-like substances, hydrophilic acids and hydrophilic neutral compounds constituted the major fractions of dissolved C. Leachates from deciduous leaf litter were only partly biodegradable, and those from spruce needles were scarcely biodegradable. Low molecular weight organic acids constituted 0-12% of the dissolved organic carbon in the percolates of the first autumn sampling and decreased over time. Acetic and formic acids were present at the largest concentrations, up to 30 μmol 1-1 per g litter, and gluconic, pyruvic, fumaric, oxalic and citric acids were also frequent in significant concentrations. Among the aromatic acids, ρ-hydroxybenzoic acid was identified in four out of five autumn samples. The organic components in litter leachates are important for the microbial activity in soil and surface waters. The organic acids enhance weathering and translocation of metals by their ability to form complexes. Litter is also a source of inorganic ions in soil solutions. The dominant cations in the percolates were K+, Ca2+ and Mg2+, and spruce litter also yielded large quantities of Al and Fe.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2000. Vol. 51, no 4, 667-677 p.
Keyword [en]
DOC forest litter
National Category
Chemical Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-2657DOI: 10.1046/j.1365-2389.2000.00339.xISI: 000165610900011Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-0033675988Local ID: 2038OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-2657DiVA: diva2:27689
Available from: 2008-09-30 Created: 2008-09-30 Last updated: 2016-10-08Bibliographically approved

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Van Hees, P.A.W.Lundström, Ulla
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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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