Inorganic and organic phosphorus fractions in peat from drained mires in northern Finland
Soil samples from 15 eutrophic, 26 herb-rich, 15 tall-sedge, and 11 low-sedge drained peatland sites were analysed for easily soluble and aluminum, iron, and calcium bound phosphorus (P) using the Chang and Jackson sequential fractionation method. Compared to earlier investigations, where only total and easily soluble P contents (e.g. NH4OAc or dilute H2SO4 extractable P) in peat have been analysed, significantly higher differences between sites were observed. The eutrophic sites were characterized by four to six-fold greater Ca-bound organic P and two to three-fold greater Ca-bound inorganic P contents than on the other three site type groups, whereas the average Al-bound inorganic P content of the eutrophic sites was only one-third of that at the other site types. Substantial differences between sites were also observed for Fe-bound inorganic P, i.e. two to four-fold greater Fe-P contents were measured at the herb-rich sites compared with the other three site type groups. The stand volume growth in the 67 studied drained peatland sites correlated significantly with Al-bound organic P and Fe-bound inorganic and organic P. The study showed that a detailed fractionation and discrimination of different forms of soil P is important in increasing the understanding of the relationship between P availability and vegetation community types and stand growth on drained peatlands.
Received 22 April 2004 Accepted 18 August 2004 Published 31 December 2004