Biomass and Humus

  • Hans Jenny
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 37)


Starting with rock, water, and air, only the blue-green algae and the purple bacteria are able to put together a viable combination of C, H, O, and N atoms in the form of biomass. The higher plants assimilate carbon dioxide of the air but depend on microbes to supply available nitrogen. All soil organisms respire and consume plant materials, directly or indirectly. During metabolic conversion dark humus substances appear and accumulate in the soil. The path from greenery to blackness is reconnoitered in ensuing sections.


Soil Organic Matter Humic Acid Mineral Soil Soil Respiration Forest Floor 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans Jenny
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plant and Soil Biology, College of Natural ResourcesUniversity of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA

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