Nutrient Cycling at Higher Altitudes

  • Saranya Packialakshmi Jeyakumar
  • Biplab Dash
  • Anup Kumar Singh
  • Deep Chandra Suyal
  • Ravindra Soni
Part of the Rhizosphere Biology book series (RHBIO)


Altitude in simple terms is the height above the mean sea level, but it is not as simple as it sounds. The altitude has a significant influence on properties and processes of ecosystem. Altitude determines the biomes by determining the temperature and precipitation imposing an impact on the vegetation. As altitude increases, there is decrease in temperature leading to more diverse and sparse vegetation as well as at higher altitudes, the soils are frozen most of the time. The changing climatic conditions influence the plant and soil nutrient cycles along the increasing gradient. Nutrient cycling at higher altitude differs significantly from those in lower altitudes because of the changing climatic conditions, precipitation patterns, vegetation, and parent rock type. The key nutrients C, N, P, and K of soils at higher altitude differ significantly from those that are present on plains. There is a steady increase in soil organic C and microbial biomass. The total soil N and the microbial biomass N also increase. This implies that there exists a significant difference in the microbiome responsible for the turnover of nutrient cycling events. A comprehensive knowledge on higher altitude nutrient dynamics will bolster our understanding on how the nutrient cycling occurs, difference in the microbiome, organic carbon deposition, and microbial activity in permanently frozen soils.


Soil nutrients High altitude regions Nutrient cycling Microbiome Microbial diversity 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Saranya Packialakshmi Jeyakumar
    • 1
  • Biplab Dash
    • 1
  • Anup Kumar Singh
    • 2
  • Deep Chandra Suyal
    • 3
  • Ravindra Soni
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Agricultural MicrobiologyUniversity of Agricultural Sciences, GKVKBangaloreIndia
  2. 2.Department of MicrobiologyIndira Gandhi Krishi Vishwavidyalaya (IGKV)RaipurIndia
  3. 3.Department of MicrobiologyEternal UniversitySirmaurIndia

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