Factors affecting soil organic carbon in a Phyllostachys edulis
Received: 1 October 2017 / Accepted: 6 February 2018
Ó Northeast Forestry University and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018
Abstract Phyllostachys edulis plays an important role in
maintaining carbon cycling. We examined the effects of
soil properties on organic carbon content in a P. edulis
forest on Dagang Mountain, Jiangxi Province, China.
Based on correlation and stepwise multiple regression
analyses, the effects of seven soil factors on organic carbon
and their sensitivities to change were studied using path
and sensitivity analyses. The results revealed differences in
the interconnections and intensities of soil factors on
organic carbon. Soil porosity, ﬁeld capacity, and ammo-
nium nitrogen levels were the main factors affecting
organic carbon in the ecosystem. Soil porosity had a strong
direct effect on organic carbon content and a strong indirect
effect through ﬁeld capacity. Field capacity and ammo-
nium nitrogen levels mainly affected organic carbon
directly. Field capacity, soil porosity, and ammonium
nitrogen content, as well as bulk density, b-glucosidase
activity, and invertase activity, were sensitive factors.
Polyphenol oxidase activity was insensitive. Our study
provides a theoretical basis for understanding the effects of
soil factors on organic carbon, which can be utilised to
improve P. edulis forest management strategies and pro-
mote carbon sequestration capacities.
Keywords Phyllostachys edulis Á Soil organic carbon Á
Impact factor Á Path analysis Á Sensitivity analysis
Soil organic carbon (SOC) is an important component and
indicator of soil quality, but also has considerable inﬂuence
on the global carbon cycle (Post et al. 1990; Lal 2004;
Wang et al. 2010). Phyllostachys edulis, a traditional
Chinese bamboo species, accounts for 70% of the bamboo
resource in China. Given its rapid growth, this species has a
powerful carbon sink capacity and thereby plays an
important role in maintaining the regional carbon balance
(Zhou et al. 2009, 2011a, b; Prentice et al. 2011; Du et al.
2012; Li et al. 2015). Previous studies have indicated that
the total carbon storage of a P. edulis forest is 156.57 t
, of which SOC storage accounts for 72.5% (Zhang
et al. 2014). The SOC storage in Huitong County, Hunan
Province, is estimated to be 115.56 t ha
(Xiao et al.
2009). Thus, understanding the role of SOC in P. edulis
ecosystems is important for understanding the regional
Some studies have been conducted on factors inﬂuenc-
ing SOC in these ecosystems. For example, Huang et al.
(2014) found that altitudinal gradients and air temperatures
are important factors affecting the total carbon content of
the soil in Taiwan plantations. Additionally, Li et al. (2013)
determined that long-term centralized management reduces
the total organic carbon storage. Further, Liu et al. (2011)
concluded that soil CO
has seasonal changes with routine,
Project funding: This study was supported by the Science and
Technology Basic Work Special (No. 2014FY120700).
The online version is available at http://www.springerlink.com
Corresponding editor: Chai Ruihai.
& Wei Dai
College of Forestry, Beijing Forestry University, Qinghua
East Road No. 35, Haidian District, Beijing 100083, China
Research Institute of Forest Ecology, Environment and
Protection, Chinese Academy of Forestry, Beijing Summer
Palace and the Red Flag, Haidian District, Beijing 100091,
J. For. Res.