Biology and Fertility of Soils

, Volume 55, Issue 7, pp 751–763 | Cite as

Warming changes soil N and P supplies in model tropical forests

  • Zhiyang Lie
  • Wei Lin
  • Wenjuan Huang
  • Xiong Fang
  • Chumin Huang
  • Ting Wu
  • Guowei Chu
  • Shizhong Liu
  • Ze Meng
  • Guoyi Zhou
  • Juxiu LiuEmail author
Original Paper


Few studies have examined the responses of soil nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) and the related microbial activities to warming in P-limited tropical forests. In this study, we investigated soil NO3–N and exchangeable NH4+–N, available P, microbial biomass, enzyme activities, and nutrients of litter and leaf in response to 5-year warming by translocating model forest ecosystems with open top chambers from the altitude of 300 m to 30 m in tropical China. The average soil temperature increased in the wet and dry seasons by 1.2 and 1.0 °C in 0–40 cm, respectively. The warming induced higher P availability and lower NO3–N concentration in both wet and dry seasons. Warming had negative effects on acid phosphomonoesterase (AP) activity but positive effects on β–1,4–N–acetylglucosaminidase (NAG) activity in the two seasons. Litter inputs and litter and leaf P increased but litter and leaf C/P and N/P decreased under warming. In the 0–40-cm soil layer, warming had stronger effects on soil P availability, AP activity, and litter P but weaker impacts on soil NO3–N concentration and NAG activity in the wet season than in the dry season. Our results indicated that warming mitigated P limitation and increased N consumption in tropical forests.


Warming Phosphorus limitation Nitrogen consumption Microbial biomass Enzyme activities Tropical forest 



We thank the editor for spending much valuable time to evaluate this manuscript and providing us many thoughtful and constructive comments.

Funding information

This study was jointly funded by Science and Technology Innovation Project of Guangdong Province Forestry (Grant No. 2019KJCX023), the Science and Technology Programs of Guangzhou City (Grant No. 201903010021), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 31570482 and 31670487), Key Research Program of Frontier Sciences, CAS (Grant No. Y621231001) and the Guangdong Hundred, Thousand and Ten Thousand Talents Program.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Vegetation Restoration and Management of Degraded Ecosystems, South China Botanical GardenChinese Academy of SciencesGuangzhouChina
  2. 2.Center for Plant Ecology, Core Botanical GardenChinese Academy of SciencesGuangzhouChina
  3. 3.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  4. 4.Foshan Research Institute of ForestryFoshanChina
  5. 5.Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal BiologyIowa State UniversityAmesUSA
  6. 6.Fujian Provincial Key Laboratory of Soil Environmental Health and Regulation, College of Resources and EnvironmentFujian Agriculture and Forestry UniversityFuzhouChina

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