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Experiments in soil biology and biochemistry
The preparation of soil for measurement of properties such as microbial biomass P involves the removal of plant roots. Any soil attached to the roots root-attached soil is also removed. In a very poorly drained silty clay loam under grassland we found that the root-attached soil contained more than twice the quantity of bicarbonate extractable P than the bulk soil. Discarding this root-attached soil could potentially result in underestimation of bicarbonate extractable P. We also showed that preferential inclusion of deeper soil due to variability of root density with depth is likely to result in underestimation of soil bicarbonate extractable P in fumigated and unfumigated soil samples. Additionally we investigated a conventional and alternative rapid soil preparation technique that might affect the accuracy of measurement of soil bicarbonate extractable P as part of a microbial biomass P measurement.
The uncertainty associated with how projected climate change will affect global C cycling could have a large impact on predictions of soil C stocks. The purpose of our study was to determine how various soil decomposition and chemistry characteristics relate to soil organic matter SOM temperature sensitivity. The Q 10 values calculated from the CO 2 respired during a long-term incubation using the Q q method showed decomposition of the more resistant fraction to be more temperature sensitive with a Q q of 1. We compared the fit of soil respiration data using a two-pool model active and slow with first-order kinetics with a three-pool model and found that the two and three-pool models statistically fit the data equally well. The three-pool model changed the size and rate constant for the more resistant pool. The size of the active pool in these soils, calculated using the two-pool model, increased with incubation temperature and ranged from 0.