Aluminum in soil solutions from a subalpine spruce-fir forest at Whiteface Mountain, New York

Journal of Environmental Quality
By: , and 



Direct or indirect Al toxicity has been suggested as a principal factor in forest tree declines. We monitored ambient soil solutions in undisturbed and experimentally manipulated soils from a fir [Abies balsamea (L.) Mill.]-spruce forest on Whiteface Mountain, NY, in order to characterize soil solution Al concentrations over a range of acid anion loadings. Under both natural and experimental conditions total Al and labile Al concentrations rarely exceeded values (180–250 µmol L−1) associated with reduced root growth in red spruce (Picea rubens Sarg.). Over a 2-yr period ambient soil solutions averaged 76 and 46 µmol L−1 total Al in the organic and mineral horizons, respectively. The highest monthly mean concentrations occurred in winter. Disturbance-induced NO3 accumulation and simulated acid rain applications produced higher peak Al values in experimental plots than were observed in undisturbed and untreated plots. Although soils of the fir-spruce zone exhibited the potential to yield solutions with phytotoxic Al concentrations, it appears that such concentrations are both spatially and temporally limited and infrequently present a direct stress to root growth in red spruce.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Aluminum in soil solutions from a subalpine spruce-fir forest at Whiteface Mountain, New York
Series title Journal of Environmental Quality
DOI 10.2134/jeq1992.00472425002100030007x
Volume 21
Issue 3
Year Published 1992
Language English
Publisher ACSESS
Contributing office(s) New England Water Science Center
Description 8 p.
First page 345
Last page 352
Country United States
State New York
Other Geospatial Mount Esther, White Face Mountain
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