Root biomass studies of old-growth Douglas-fir Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/k0698b13z

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  • Root biomass studies were conducted in an old-growth stand of conifers in the western Cascades of Oregon. The root systems of three Douglas-firs (Pseudotsuga menziesii var. menziesii (Mirb. ) Franco) with diameters at breast height of 94, 110, and 135 cm were excavated and weighed to provide a basis for regression equations for estimating the biomass of roots larger than 10 mm in diameter in the stand. The biomass of small roots was estimated from soil core samples taken within the stand. The total root biomass in the stand sampled was estimated as 210 t/ha. The contribution of small roots to this total amount was estimated as 11. 3 t/ha. Nutrient analyses were performed on root samples from both the excavated root systems and the soil cores. Results were used for projecting the nutrient capital contained in the roots of the old-growth stand. Data from previous investigations of root biomass were compared with results of the present study. A double logarithmic plot of root system biomass on stem diameter at breast height shows a linear relationship. Closer examination suggests that the variation in the root system biomass to diameter relationship within a given species is comparable to the variation between different species. Fine root biomass, estimated as 9. 7 t/ha, falls within the range of values found by- other investigators.
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