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Stabilization of organic matter in temperate soils : Mechanisms and their relevance under different soil conditions - a review

Title data

von Lützow, Margit ; Kögel-Knabner, Ingrid ; Ekschmitt, Klemens ; Matzner, Egbert ; Guggenberger, Georg ; Marschner, Bernd ; Flessa, Heinz:
Stabilization of organic matter in temperate soils : Mechanisms and their relevance under different soil conditions - a review.
In: European Journal of Soil Science. Vol. 57 (2006) Issue 4 . - pp. 426-445.
ISSN 1351-0754
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2389.2006.00809.x

Abstract in another language

Mechanisms for C stabilization in soils have received much interest recently due to their relevance in the global C cycle. Here we review the mechanisms that are currently, but often contradictorily or inconsistently, considered to contribute to organic matter (OM) protection against decomposition in temperate soils: (i) selective preservation due to recalcitrance of OM, including plant litter, rhizodeposits, microbial products, humic polymers, and charred OM; (ii) spatial inaccessibility of OM against decomposer organisms due to occlusion, intercalation, hydrophobicity and encapsulation; and (iii) stabilization by interaction with mineral surfaces (Fe-, Al-, Mn-oxides, phyllosilicates) and metal ions. Our goal is to assess the relevance of these mechanisms to the formation of soil OM during different stages of decomposition and under different soil conditions. The view that OM stabilization is dominated by the selective preservation of recalcitrant organic components that accumulate in proportion to their chemical properties can no longer be accepted. In contrast, our analysis of mechanisms shows that: (i) the soil biotic community is able to disintegrate any OM of natural origin; (ii) molecular recalcitrance of OM is relative, rather than absolute; (iii) recalcitrance is only important during early decomposition and in active surface soils; while (iv) during late decomposition and in the subsoil, the relevance of spatial inaccessibility and organo-mineral interactions for SOM stabilization increases. We conclude that major difficulties in the understanding and prediction of SOM dynamics originate from the simultaneous operation of several mechanisms. We discuss knowledge gaps and promising directions of future research.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Additional notes: BAYCEER9878
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Chair Soil Ecology
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Former Professors > Chair Soil Ecology - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Egbert Matzner
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Faculties
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences
Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Research Centres
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 500 Science
Date Deposited: 11 Sep 2015 06:33
Last Modified: 11 Sep 2015 06:33
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/19184