Tree response to experimental watershed acidification

N. K. Jensen, E. J. Holzmueller, Pamela J Edwards, M. Thomas Van Gundy, D. R. DeWalle, K. W.J. Williard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Forest ecosystems in the Eastern USA are threatened by acid deposition rates that have increased dramatically since industrialization. We utilized two watersheds at the Fernow Experimental Forest in West Virginia to examine long-term effects of acidification on ecological processes. One watershed has been treated with ammonium sulfate (approximately twice the ambient deposition rate) since 1989 to simulate elevated acidic deposition, while the other served as a control. Prior to treatment, both watersheds were similar in age and species composition. Ten dominant overstory Prunus serotina and Liriodendron tulipifera trees were selected and cored from each watershed to measure bolewood concentrations of essential elements through time. In addition, changes in tree species basal area were analyzed utilizing 50 long-term growth plots. Results of this experiment show lower calcium and magnesium concentration and increased acidic cation concentration for both species in the treated watershed, indicating a negative treatment effect. Growth response, measured through relative growth rates of cored trees and changes in basal area from growth plots, was not as conclusive and appeared to differ by species. The resulting difference in species response indicates that acidification sensitivity is something that land managers should consider when managing forests affected by acidification.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2034
JournalWater, Air, and Soil Pollution
Volume225
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

Fingerprint

Acidification
Watersheds
acidification
watershed
Deposition rates
basal area
acid deposition
overstory
Ammonium Sulfate
ammonium sulfate
growth response
industrialization
Ecosystems
Magnesium
forest ecosystem
Cations
Calcium
magnesium
Managers
cation

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Ecological Modeling
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Pollution

Cite this

Jensen, N. K., Holzmueller, E. J., Edwards, P. J., Van Gundy, M. T., DeWalle, D. R., & Williard, K. W. J. (2014). Tree response to experimental watershed acidification. Water, Air, and Soil Pollution, 225(7), [2034]. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11270-014-2034-6
Jensen, N. K. ; Holzmueller, E. J. ; Edwards, Pamela J ; Van Gundy, M. Thomas ; DeWalle, D. R. ; Williard, K. W.J. / Tree response to experimental watershed acidification. In: Water, Air, and Soil Pollution. 2014 ; Vol. 225, No. 7.
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Jensen, NK, Holzmueller, EJ, Edwards, PJ, Van Gundy, MT, DeWalle, DR & Williard, KWJ 2014, 'Tree response to experimental watershed acidification', Water, Air, and Soil Pollution, vol. 225, no. 7, 2034. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11270-014-2034-6

Tree response to experimental watershed acidification. / Jensen, N. K.; Holzmueller, E. J.; Edwards, Pamela J; Van Gundy, M. Thomas; DeWalle, D. R.; Williard, K. W.J.

In: Water, Air, and Soil Pollution, Vol. 225, No. 7, 2034, 01.01.2014.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Jensen NK, Holzmueller EJ, Edwards PJ, Van Gundy MT, DeWalle DR, Williard KWJ. Tree response to experimental watershed acidification. Water, Air, and Soil Pollution. 2014 Jan 1;225(7). 2034. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11270-014-2034-6