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PLoS One. 2014 Apr 15;9(4):e94966. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0094966. eCollection 2014.

Patterns of biomass and carbon distribution across a chronosequence of Chinese pine (Pinus tabulaeformis) forests.

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  • 1College of Forestry, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing, China.

Erratum in

  • PLoS One. 2014;9(7):e104464.


Patterns of biomass and carbon (C) storage distribution across Chinese pine (Pinus tabulaeformis) natural secondary forests are poorly documented. The objectives of this study were to examine the biomass and C pools of the major ecosystem components in a replicated age sequence of P. tabulaeformis secondary forest stands in Northern China. Within each stand, biomass of above- and belowground tree, understory (shrub and herb), and forest floor were determined from plot-level investigation and destructive sampling. Allometric equations using the diameter at breast height (DBH) were developed to quantify plant biomass. C stocks in the tree and understory biomass, forest floor, and mineral soil (0-100 cm) were estimated by analyzing the C concentration of each component. The results showed that the tree biomass of P. tabulaeformis stands was ranged from 123.8 Mg·ha-1 for the young stand to 344.8 Mg·ha-1 for the mature stand. The understory biomass ranged from 1.8 Mg·ha-1 in the middle-aged stand to 3.5 Mg·ha-1 in the young stand. Forest floor biomass increased steady with stand age, ranging from 14.9 to 23.0 Mg·ha-1. The highest mean C concentration across the chronosequence was found in tree branch while the lowest mean C concentration was found in forest floor. The observed C stock of the aboveground tree, shrub, forest floor, and mineral soil increased with increasing stand age, whereas the herb C stock showed a decreasing trend with a sigmoid pattern. The C stock of forest ecosystem in young, middle-aged, immature, and mature stands were 178.1, 236.3, 297.7, and 359.8 Mg C ha-1, respectively, greater than those under similar aged P. tabulaeformis forests in China. These results are likely to be integrated into further forest management plans and generalized in other contexts to evaluate C stocks at the regional scale.

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