Biogeochemical mass balance assessments of calcium status in southeastern forests indicate that losses through harvesting and soil leaching often exceed inputs from atmospheric deposition and weathering. Many forest soils of the southeastern United States are particularly sensitive because these soils and the underlying saprolite from which these soils are derived are largely depleted of weatherable calcium. At most of the intensively studied sites in the southeastern United States, it is estimated that calcium depletion has already reduced or will likely reduce exchangeable soil calcium reserves to less than the estimated requirement for a merchantable forest stand in 150 years or less. At most sites, calcium uptake into merchantable wood equals or exceeds soil leaching losses. Chronic atmospheric deposition of sulfate and nitrate and declining atmospheric deposition of calcium are likely to accelerate calcium depletion. The southeastern U.S. regional distribution of soil calcium pools and calcium fluxes (deposition and uptake in merchantable wood) indicates that the depletion status of the intensively studied sites is representative of a substantially larger area. Where weathering inputs are insufficient to replace leaching and uptake losses, there is a potential for a regional problem in forest nutrition over the long term.
Additional publication details
|Publication Subtype||Journal Article|
|Title||The potential for calcium depletion in forest ecosystems of southeastern United States: Review and analysis|
|Series title||Global Biogeochemical Cycles|
|Contributing office(s)||New England Water Science Center|
|State||Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia|