Chin J Plant Ecol ›› 2019, Vol. 43 ›› Issue (8): 672-684.DOI: 10.17521/cjpe.2019.0068

Special Issue: 植被生态学

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

How enclosure influences restored plant community changes of different initial types in Horqin Sandy Land

WANG Ming-Ming1,2,LIU Xin-Ping1,3,*(),HE Yu-Hui4,ZHANG Tong-Hui1,3,WEI Jing5,Chelmge 1,2,SUN Shan-Shan1,2   

  1. 1Naiman Desertification Research Station, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
    2University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
    3Urat Desert-grassland Research Station, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Science, Lanzhou 730000, China
    4Gaolan Station of Agricultural and Ecological Experiment, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Science, Lanzhou 730000, China
    5Key Laboratory for Urban Habitat Environmental Science and Technology, Peking University Shenzhen Graduate School, Shenzhen, Guangdong 518000, China
  • Received:2019-03-26 Revised:2019-07-23 Online:2019-08-20 Published:2020-01-03
  • Contact: LIU Xin-Ping
  • Supported by:
    National Key R&D Program of China(2017YFC0506706);National Key R&D Program of China(2016YFC0500907);National Natural Science Foundation of China(41801076);Nei Mongol Autonomous Region Science and Technology Major Project(Y749BJ1001);Science and Technology Poverty Alleviation Program of Chinese Academy of Sciences


Aims Enclosure is one of the important measures for vegetation restoration of degraded sandy land. Understanding the plant community change of different initial types in long-term state of enclosing is vital for us to understand the vegetation restoration process or re-vegetation in sandy land. This paper aims to analyze the changes of plant communities and its comparative responses to long-term enclosure (2005-2017) of mobile dunes (enclosed in 2005), fixed dunes (enclosed in 1985) and sandy grassland (enclosed in 1997), in relation to soil seed bank, soil nutrient and precipitation and air temperature.
Methods The species composition, height, coverage and above-ground biomass were measured by quadrats in every year during 2005-2017. The soil organic carbon, soil nutrient and soil seed bank were measured by soil cores from the above quadrats in 2008 and 2017. Detrended correspondence analysis (DCA) and canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) were used to explore the relationship between plant community species composition and soil seed bank soil nutrients and soil moisture.
Important findings The results showed that the vegetation coverage and community species richness of mobile dune was significantly increased, but the community biomass had no obvious trend. The biomass of fixed dune community, shrubs, semi-shrubs and the perennial legume functional group dominances decreased significantly, but the dominance of the annual and perennial forbs increased significantly. The annual forbs were the dominant functional group, and community species richness and perennial grass dominances decreased significantly. The soil seed bank had no remarkable change in the three enclosed sandy land communities during 2008-2017, while the seed richness significantly increased in mobile dunes, and that of the fixed dunes and grassland presented downward trends. The soil available nitrogen and available phosphorus were increased significantly. Regression analysis showed the annual variation of plant community biomass was significantly affected by air temperature and precipitation, but there was a little effect on the inter-annual variation of plant community biomass and species richness. Detrended correspondence analysis (DCA) displayed that there was a high similarity between soil seed bank and plant community, and typical correlation analysis (CCA) results showed that grassland community species composition was closely related to soil nutrients. However, fixed dune community species composition was mainly related to soil moisture. In summary, the fixed dune plant community enclosed for 33 years and the sandy grassland plant community enclosed for 21 years present degraded trends, while the mobile dune plant community enclosed for 11 years is slowly recovering, thus, long-term enclosure is not always conducive to the restoration of degraded sandy land vegetation. We suggested that the influence of degradation degree of vegetation, soil nutrients and moisture, soil seed bank and precipitation should be synthetically considered when we set the duration of enclosure for restoration.

Key words: sandy land, enclosure, vegetation restoration, community features, influencing factors