Current issue: 53(4)
In soil profiles from a series of uplands of different site types bulk density, density of solids and porosity of soil were clearly related to soil organic matter content and its distribution in the soil profile. Soil organic matter contents were also strongly correlated to effective cation exchange capacity (CEC) and soil acidity. Site fertility was primarily related to the fine fraction (ø<0.06 mm) content in the C horizon and related properties (i.e. CEC). In the humus layer, the content of exchangeable bases and base saturation most strongly related to site fertility.
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A close relationship between photosynthetic capacity and nitrogen concentration of leaves is known to exist. In conifers, nitrogen also affects the pattern of mutual shading within a shoot, which is a basic unit used in studying photosynthesis of coniferous trees. These effects of needle nitrogen concentration on photosynthetic capacity and mutual shading of needles were analysed for Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) shoots taken from five young stands growing on sites of different fertility. The effect of nitrogen concentration on needle photosynthesis was studied based on measurements of the photosynthetic radiation response of shoots from which two thirds of the needles were removed in order to eliminate the effect of within shading.
An increase of one percentage unit in nitrogen concentration of needles increased the photosynthetic capacity of needles by 25 mg CO2 dm-2h-1. The effect of nitrogen on within-shoot shading was quantified in terms of the silhouette area to total needle area ratio of a shoot (STAR), which determines the relative interception rate per unit of needle area on the shoot. Although nitrogen promoted needle growth, an increase in nitrogen concentration decreased the within-shoot shading. This effect resulted from a decrease in needle density on the shoot and an increased needle angle with increasing nitrogen content.
The PDF includes an abstract in Finnish.
The ash content has been found to correlate with the fertility of peatlands. Relationship between height of 80-year-old stands and ash content of peat in topmost 30 cm layer was examined in Lithuanian conditions. On drained peatlands with ash content of peat from 3% to 8% pine stands increase in height. Ash content of peat being about 7% Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) stands on drained sites are found to be of equal height. Ash content of peat more than 8–9% has no significant effect on growth of pine or spruce stands. Birch (Betula verrucosa (B. Pendula Roth.) and Betula pubescens Erhrh.), stands are less sensitive to ash content of peat compared with other species. Black alder (Alnus glutinosa L. Gaertn.) stands occurred in sites with ash content of peat more than 8–10%. The height of the stands become equal both in drained and undrained sites in the cases where ash content of peat is about 16–18%. Ash (Fraxinus exelsior L.) stands attain high productivity on drained sites with ash content of peat about 20%.
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Growth capacity of peatlands after draining depends largely on quality of the surface peat. The future growth capacity can be determined with considerable accuracy by the vegetation of the peatland. The aim of this study was to draw guidelines to identify the fertility of a peatland and its potential for draining based on its vegetation.
Certain species and plant associations were identified to describe the fertility of different peatland types. Brown mosses indicate an abundant nutrient content of the site, certain herbs moderately abundant nutrient content, sedges (Carex sp.) moderate nutrient content, shrubs poor nutrient content and vegetation indicating an oligotrophic peatland indicates excessively poor nutrient content. The article includes detailed descriptions of the vegetation of different peatland types.
Supplementary features, such as thin peat, flooded parts or abundance of Spangnum fuscum can be used as additional indications to determine the drainability of the site. The article describes an identification tool to determine the drainability of a peatland based on vegetation and the supplementary features of the peatland.
The article includes a summary in English.