Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1007/s11104-018-3573-1
Licence creative commons licence
Title (Primary) Biocontrolled soil nutrient distribution under the influence of an oxalogenic-oxalotrophic ecosystem
Author Pons, S.; Bindschedler, S.; Sebag, D.; Junier, P.; Verrecchia, E.; Cailleau, G.
Source Titel Plant and Soil
Year 2018
Department UMB
Volume 425
Issue 1–2
Page From 145
Page To 160
Language englisch
Keywords Gradient; Nutrient dynamics; Oxalate; Soil pH; Tropical ecosystem

Background and Aims

The oxalate-carbonate pathway (OCP) has been observed in acidic tropical soils with low alkaline cation content where compartments are transient and fed by the rapid turnover of organic matter. By acting on edaphic parameters, the OCP may influence soil nutrient distribution. This study aims at assessing the influence of the OCP on soil nutrients within an agroforestry system associated to oxalogenic iroko trees.


Soil nutrient distribution was studied in a 30 m long and 1 m deep transect starting at the iroko tree towards the vegetation surrounding it.


Processes controlling nutrient distributions varied with both distance and depth. The tree drastically impacted edaphic variables, in the first instance pH. Changes in pH generated gradients of calcium and magnesium, both of the exchangeable and the total fraction. In contrast, total phosphorus and potassium distribution were mostly influenced by depth.


This downward gradient fits the “plant cycling model” that explains the effect of vegetation on the recharge of soil nutrients. This is the first example of the effect of the OCP on soil nutrient distribution. Considering that the OCP is not restricted to the iroko tree, this study highlights a more general pattern of forest dynamics developed on highly weathered tropical soils.

Persistent UFZ Identifier
Pons, S., Bindschedler, S., Sebag, D., Junier, P., Verrecchia, E., Cailleau, G. (2018):
Biocontrolled soil nutrient distribution under the influence of an oxalogenic-oxalotrophic ecosystem
Plant Soil 425 (1–2), 145 - 160 10.1007/s11104-018-3573-1