Chin J Plant Ecol ›› 2023, Vol. 47 ›› Issue (7): 1032-1042.DOI: 10.17521/cjpe.2022.0130

• Research Articles • Previous Articles    

Effects of mild fire on soil respiration rate and abiotic factors in coastal sandy plantation

SHEN Jian1,2, HE Zong-Ming1,2,*(), DONG Qiang1, GAO Shi-Lei1,2, LIN Yu3   

  1. 1College of Forestry, Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, Fuzhou 350002, China
    2Chinese Fir Engineering Technology Research Center of the State Forestry and Grassland Administration, Fuzhou 350002, China
    3Minhou Baisha State-Owned Forest Farm of Fujian Province, Fuzhou 350100, China
  • Received:2022-04-11 Accepted:2022-12-03 Online:2023-07-20 Published:2023-07-21
  • Contact: *HE Zong-Ming(
  • Supported by:
    The National Key R&D Program of China(2016YFD0600300);The Natural Science Foundation of Fujian Province(2021J011045)


Aims This study aimed to explore change in soil respiration and its components after mild fire, as well as its influence on forest environmental factors, which could provide a scientific basis for the estimation of the soil carbon emission of coastal sandy plantation under the condition of forest fire disturbance.

Methods We conducted an experiment in the Casuarina equisetifolia plantation burnt area and the control plot to measure the total soil respiration rate (RS) and heterotrophic respiration rate (RH) in the coastal areas of southern Fujian from September 2019 to August 2020, using the LI-8100 soil carbon flux automatic measurement system. Meanwhile, the soil temperature at the depth of 10 cm (T10), soil volumetric water content at the depth of 10 cm (W10), and soil physical and chemical properties at the depth of 0-10 cm were measured, in order to explore the effects of mild fire on soil RS, RH and abiotic factors.

Important findings There were significant differences in soil respiration rate and its components between the burned area and the control area. Our results showed that the annual average soil RS and RH in the burned area were (2.37 ± 0.65) and (2.05 ± 0.63) μmol·m-2·s-1, respectively. In contrast, the annual average soil RS and RH in the control plot were (2.86 ± 1.08) and (2.51 ± 1.08) μmol·m-2·s-1, respectively. Soil respiration rate and its components were significantly correlated with soil temperatures in the two plots, except soil RH in the control plot, but their relationships with soil moisture did not reach a significant level. There was significant positive correlation of soil respiration rate with dissolved organic carbon content, microbial biomass nitrogen content and dissolved organic nitrogen content, but significant negative correlation with microbial biomass carbon content. Overall, we found that mild burning inhibited soil respiration and its components in C. equisetifolia plantation, indicating that fire disturbance had an important impact on soil respiration and carbon cycle in forest ecosystems.

Key words: forest fire disturbance, soil respiration, heterotrophic respiration, soil temperature, soil water content