Journal of Soils and Sediments

, Volume 19, Issue 1, pp 263–274 | Cite as

Spatial characteristics of ecological stoichiometry and their driving factors in farmland soils in Poyang Lake Plain, Southeast China

  • Xi Guo
  • Yefeng JiangEmail author
Soils, Sec 3 • Remediation and Management of Contaminated or Degraded Lands • Research Article



The main objective of this study was to understand the spatial characteristics of the ecological stoichiometry of carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and phosphorous (P) and their driving factors in farmland soils.

Materials and methods

Data were obtained from 7223 sampling sites of farmland topsoil (0–20 cm) collected by the soil testing and formulated fertilization project in 2012. Soil organic C was determined by potassium dichromate (K2Cr2O7) oxidation with heating in an oil bath. Total N was analyzed using an automatic Kjeldahl nitrogen analyzer. Total P was determined using HClO4–H2SO4 digestion followed by a Mo–Sb colorimetric assay.

Results and discussion

The mean soil C/N, C/P, and N/P ratios were 11.76, 38.06, and 3.37, respectively and showed moderate variations. The spatial autocorrelation distances were larger for C/N and smaller for C/P and N/P. The nugget/sill ratios for soil C/N, C/P, and N/P were 79.43, 52.09, and 55.73%, respectively. Soil C/P and N/P ratios showed a similar spatial distribution with high heterogeneity, whereas the C/N ratio distribution was relatively smooth. Both C/N and N/P ratios were driven by N application rate, but the C/P ratio was more influenced by straw returning pattern.


The ecological stoichiometry of C, N, and P was affected by elevation, latitude, soil pH, soil type, parent material, straw returning pattern, and N application rate in farmland soils in Poyang Lake Plain. Soil C/N and N/P ratios were mainly limited by total N, whereas the soil C/P ratio was mainly limited by total P.


Carbon–nitrogen–phosphorus Ecological stoichiometry Farmland ecosystem Poyang Lake Plain Spatial distribution 


Funding information

This work was supported by the National Key R&D Program of China (2017YFD0301603).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Academy of Land Resource and EnvironmentJiangxi Agricultural UniversityNanchangChina
  2. 2.Key laboratory of Poyang Lake Watershed Agricultural Resources and Ecology of Jiangxi ProvinceNanchangChina

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