3 years ago

Labile and recalcitrant components of organic matter of a Mollisol changed with land use and plant litter management: An advanced 13C NMR study

Shui-hong Yao, Yue-ling Zhang, Ya Han, Xiao-zeng Han, Jing-dong Mao, Bin Zhang

Publication date: 10 April 2019

Source: Science of The Total Environment, Volume 660

Author(s): Shui-Hong Yao, Yue-Ling Zhang, Ya Han, Xiao-Zeng Han, Jing-Dong Mao, Bin Zhang


Soil organic matter (SOM) changes with land use and soil management, yet the controlling factors over the chemical composition of SOM are not fully understood. We applied quantitative 13C nuclear magnetic resonance and spectral editing techniques to measure chemical structures of SOM from different land use types. The land use types included a native grassland (nGL), a crop land with straw burning in the field (bCL), a restored grassland (rGL) and a cropland with straw removed out of the field (rCL) for 28 years. The abundances of OCH groups from carbohydrates were higher in the SOMs of the nGL and rGL than in those of the rCL and bCL, while the abundances of OCH3 and aromatic CO groups from lignin were higher in the SOMs of the three-ever cultivated lands (rGL, rCL and bCL) than in that of the nGL. Although aromatic CC groups were most dominant in the Mollisols, they did not consistently decrease after the burnings of straw were ceased in the fields of the rCL and rGL compared to the bCL with continuous burning. In addition, the COO groups were bound with the aromatic CC groups in all the land use types, and the sizes of the aromatic clusters were affected by the land use types. The labile and recalcitrant components were correlated with SOC contents the mineral-associated and particular SOM in a contrasting way. Our results suggested that the chemical composition of SOM in the Mollisol depended on land use types, and that labile and recalcitrant components might be protected through mineral associations and aggregation, respectively. The most abundant aromatics in the Mollisols might not just be pyrogenic and could be oxidized to different extents, depending on field drainage conditions.

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