|نسخه تمام متن
|12 صفحه PDF
- A novel approach to spatial complexity assessment is introduced.
- A primeval forest exhibits exceptional soil diversity and spatial complexity.
- Soil wetness is a crucial factor responsible for most of spatial complexity.
- Weathering and leaching are spatially correlated with the gradient of soil wetness.
- The pattern of rock fragments content in soils appears random.
Soil diversity and complexity is influenced by a variety of factors, and much recent research has been focused on interpreting or modeling complexity based on soil-topography relationships, and effects of biogeomorphic processes. We aimed to (i) describe local soil diversity in one of the oldest forest reserves in Europe, (ii) employ existing graph theory concepts in pedocomplexity calculation and extend them by a novel approach based on hypothesis testing and an index measuring graph sequentiality (the extent to which soils have gradual vs. abrupt variations in underlying soil factors), and (iii) reveal the main sources of pedocomplexity, with a particular focus on geomorphic controls.A total of 954 soil profiles were described and classified to soil taxonomic units (STU) within a 46Â ha area. We analyzed soil diversity using the Shannon index, and soil complexity using a novel graph theory approach. Pairwise tests of observed adjacencies, spectral radius and a newly proposed sequentiality index were used to describe and quantify the complexity of the spatial pattern of STUs. This was then decomposed into the contributions of three soil factor sequences (SFS), (i) degree of weathering and leaching processes, (ii) hydromorphology, and (iii) proportion of rock fragments.Six Reference Soil Groups and 37 second-level soil units were found. A significant portion of pedocomplexity occurred at distances shorter than the 22Â m spacing of neighbouring soil profiles. The spectral radius (an index of complexity) of the pattern of soil spatial adjacency was 14.73, to which the individual SFS accounted for values of 2.0, 8.0 and 3.5, respectively. Significant sequentiality was found for degree of weathering and hydromorphology. Exceptional overall pedocomplexity was particularly caused by enormous spatial variability of soil wetness, representing a crucial soil factor sequence in the primeval forest. Moreover, the soil wetness gradient was partly spatially correlated with the gradient of soil weathering and leaching, suggesting synergistic influences of topography, climate, (hydro)geology and biomechanical and biochemical effects of individual trees. The pattern of stony soils, random in most respects, resulted probably from local geology and quaternary biogeomorphological processes. Thus, while geomorphology is the primary control over a very locally complex soil pattern, microtopography and local disturbances, mostly related to the effects of individual trees, are also critical. Considerable local pedodiversity seems to be an important component of the dynamics of old-growth mixed temperate mountain forests, with implications for decreasing pedodiversity in managed forests and deforested areas.
Journal: Geomorphology - Volume 273, 15 November 2016, Pages 280-291