Influence of microclimate gradients on soil characteristics within tree-fall gaps in the Andrews Experimental Forest, 1997

  • Creator(s): Robert P. Griffiths
  • PI(s): Robert P. Griffiths
  • Originator(s): Robert P. Griffiths
  • Other researcher(s):
  • Dates of data collection: Jul 1 1997 - Jul 24 1997
  • Data collection status: Study collection is completed and no new collection is planned
  • Data access: Online
  • Access constraint: If data used in publication, the Griffiths and Filan will be listed as a coauthors. Whenever these data are presented in whatever form, the PI will be acknowledged.
  • Last update: Feb 8 2002 (Version 2)
<Citation>     <Acknowledgement>     <Disclaimer>    
Griffiths, R. 2002. Influence of microclimate gradients on soil characteristics within tree-fall gaps in the Andrews Experimental Forest, 1997. Long-Term Ecological Research. Forest Science Data Bank, Corvallis, OR. [Database]. Available: Accessed 2023-12-11.
Data were provided by the HJ Andrews Experimental Forest research program, funded by the National Science Foundation's Long-Term Ecological Research Program (DEB 2025755), US Forest Service Pacific Northwest Research Station, and Oregon State University.
While substantial efforts are made to ensure the accuracy of data and documentation, complete accuracy of data sets cannot be guaranteed. All data are made available "as is". The Andrews LTER shall not be liable for damages resulting from any use or misinterpretation of data sets.

This was the second in a series of tree-fall gap studies conducted at the HJA addressing the effects of tree-fall gaps on forest soil characteristics. The first looked at the effects of gap size on changes in soil carbon cycling within the gap along N-S transects. The present study compares the effects of gaps on soil properties along both N-S and E-W transects to better differentiate between microclimate and vegetation effects within the gaps. The third study expanded the number of variables studied and sampling intensity. By using the same grid system as Dr. Andy Gray in his vegetation survey work, we were able to relate below-ground processes with above-ground vegetation.

Soil properties in eight, 7 year-old tree-fall gaps were compared with soils in the surrounding old-growth Douglas-fir forest. Soil characteristics were measured along two transects; one running north and south and the other east and west. This study was an extension of one done two years earlier by Shirley King (see Gap1 - study code SP017). In that study, there were significant differences in soil properties not only between soils collected in and out of gaps but also by orientation within the gap. More specifically, soils in the north end of the larger gaps were significantly different from those in the south.

This study was designed confirm the previous findings that soils within gaps were different than those in the surrounding forest. In addition, we wanted to determine if there were also E/W differences. If there were none, then we could conclude that microclimate gradients were effecting these soils because the microclimate gradient along E/W transects should be much less than that found along N/S transects. We chose to measure soil characteristics at 2-meter intervals using this same basic design used by Shirley King in the Gap1 study. E/W and N/S transects were established in all of the gaps that were studied in Gap1 with the transects extending one radius into the surrounding forest.

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