Seasonal dynamics and compartmentation of nutrients in a grassland meadow in lowland England.

Published online
20 Dec 1984
Content type
Journal article
Journal title
Journal of Applied Ecology

Dickinson, N. M.

Publication language


Nutrient compartmentation was studied in grassland consisting predominantly of Agrostis tenuis [=A. capillaris], Holcus lanatus and Anthoxanthum odoratum at 2 sites in Staffordshire. Total nutrients in above- and below-ground components of the vegetation were greatest during the growing season. The efficiency of nutrient cycling was limited by the accumulation of nutrients in surface litter; nutrient release in the 2nd yr was exploited by forbs, although Ca, Mg and Zn were retained in the litter. <6% of total ecosystem nutrients entered the vegetation, except for Ca and Zn which showed higher values. It was concluded that nutrients are poorly conserved and exploited in grassland meadows.

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