Chin J Plant Ecol ›› 2019, Vol. 43 ›› Issue (4): 352-364.DOI: 10.17521/cjpe.2018.0326

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Ecological stoichiometric characteristics of shrubs and soils in different forest types in Qinghai, China

YANG Wen-Gao1,ZI Hong-Biao1,CHEN Ke-Yu1,ADE Lu-Ji1,HU Lei1,WANG Xin1,WANG Gen-Xu2,WANG Chang-Ting1,*()   

  1. 1 Institute of Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, Southwest University for Nationalities, Chengdu 610041, China
    2 Key Laboratory of Mountain Surface Processes and Ecological Regulation of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu 610041, China
  • Received:2018-12-31 Revised:2019-04-02 Online:2019-04-20 Published:2019-08-29
  • Contact: WANG Chang-Ting
  • Supported by:
    Supported by the Natural National Science Foundation of China(31870407);Supported by the Natural National Science Foundation of China(31370542);the Key R&D Projects in Sichuan Province(2018SZ0333);the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities(2018NZD13)


AimsAs a dominant understory layer, shrubs is important in the material turnover and nutrient circulation of forested ecosystems. It is essential to explore stoichiometric characteristics of carbon (C), nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) of the shrubs and their driving factors, including microenvironments and soil nutrients.
MethodsThe leaves, branches, roots of the shrubs and the soils they rooted were sampled from seven dominant forest types of Qinghai, China, and the tissue contents of C, N and P were examined. One-way ANOVA was used to explored the difference of the shrubs and the soils among the forest types using, respectively. Redundancy analysis (RDA) was used to analyze the effects of soils and environmental factors on the stoichiometric characteristics of C, N and P of shrubs.
Important findings Our results showed that there were no significant differences in the P content and C:P of the leaves, branches and roots among all the seven dominant forest types, while the N content and N:P of shrubs in the Populus davidiana, Sabina chinensis and Picea asperata forests were significantly higher than those in Betula platyphylla, Populus tomentosa, Betula albosinensis and Picea wilsonii forests, while the C:N ratios were the other way around. The shrubs in Sabina chinensis forest were limited by the soil P content, but that in the other six forest types was limited by the soil N content. The contents of soil organic C (SOC) and soil total N (TN) were significantly different among the seven forest types, while the soil total P (TP) was not. Correlation analysis showed that the N content, the C:N and N:P of understory shrub tissues (leaves, branches and roots) were significantly correlated with soil TN content, soil C:N and N:P, while tissue P contents and the C:P ratios were correlated with soil TP contents. Redundancy analysis (RDA) showed that the stoichiometric characteristics of C, N and P the understory shrub layer were synthetically affected by soils and environmental factors, of which the soil C:N, altitude, mean annual temperature and mean annual precipitation were the main influence factors.

Key words: ecological stoichiometry, forest ecosystem, forest type, shrub layer, environmental factor, Qinghai