Microbial Enzymatic Activities and Community-Level Physiological Profiles (CLPP) in Subsoil Layers Are Altered by Harvest Residue Management Practices in a Tropical Eucalyptus grandis Plantation
Harvest residue management is a key issue for the sustainability of Eucalyptus plantations established on poor soils. Soil microbial communities contribute to soil fertility by the decomposition of the organic matter (OM), but little is known about the effect of whole-tree harvesting (WTH) in comparison to stem only harvesting (SOH) on soil microbial functional diversity in Eucalyptus plantations. We studied the effects of harvest residue management (branches, leaves, bark) of Eucalyptus grandis trees on soil enzymatic activities and community-level physiological profiles in a Brazilian plantation. We measured soil microbial enzymatic activities involved in OM decomposition and we compared the community level physiological profiles (CLPP) of the soil microbes in WTH and SOH plots. WTH decreased enzyme activities and catabolic potential of the soil microbial community. Furthermore, these negative effects on soil functional diversity were mainly observed below the 0–5 cm layer (5–10 and 10–20 cm), suggesting that WTH can be harmful to the soil health in these plantations.
KeywordsTropical forest soil Forest residue management Eucalyptus grandis Enzyme activities CLPP
We would like to thank the two anonymous reviewers for their helpful corrections and comments contributing to improve this article.
This work was supported by a grant overseen by the French National Research Agency (ANR) as part of the “Investissements d’Avenir” program (ANR-11-LABX-0002-01, Laboratory of Excellence ARBRE). FM holds a PhD fellowship awarded by the Région Lorraine and the Laboratory of excellence ARBRE (BRIDGE project). We acknowledge the staff of the Itatinga Experimental Station (ESALQ-USP), and Eder Araujo da Silva and Floragro for their technical support for the sampling. This site belongs to the SOERE F-ORE-T network, which is supported annually by ECOFOR, AllEnvi and the French national research infrastructure ANAEE (http://www.anaeefrance.fr/fr/).
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Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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