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Wolverhampton Intellectual Repository and E-Theses > School of Applied Sciences > Research Centre in Applied Sciences  > Plant and Environmental Research Group > Factors relating to soil fertility and species diversity in both semi-natural and created meadows in the West Midlands of England

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2436/9864
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Title: Factors relating to soil fertility and species diversity in both semi-natural and created meadows in the West Midlands of England
Authors: McCrea, Alison R.
Trueman, Ian C.
Fullen, Michael A.
Citation: European Journal of Soil Science, 55(2): 335-348
Publisher: Blackwell
Issue Date: 2004
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2436/9864
DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2389.2004.00606.x
Additional Links: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/118804786/abstract
Abstract: The post-war decline in the area and diversity of neutral meadows in Britain, resulting from agricultural intensification, has prompted schemes to restore and create new habitats. Their success relies on understanding the relations between soil fertility and species diversity. We have investigated these relations, using multivariate analysis, in 28 semi-natural meadows and eight artificially created urban meadows. Mineralizable nitrogen was the most important soil characteristic in the semi-natural sites; the more N the soil contained the fewer were the species characteristic of traditional meadows. Both potassium and total magnesium favoured diversity, perhaps because their deficiency in many traditionally managed meadows jeopardizes the survival of broad-leaved species in competition with grasses. Available lead, at sub-lethal concentrations and measured as a Pb:Ca ratio, appeared to favour diversity in the semi-natural sites, possibly by inhibiting the uptake of P by competitive grasses and allowing the less competitive species associated with diversity to flourish. The main differences between the soils of the artificial and the semi-natural meadows were that the former contained more extractable P and less mineralizable N and organic matter. It seems that large soil phosphorus concentrations may be the main reason why relatively few species colonize or survive in grassland on many urban soils.
Type: Article
Language: en
Description: Metadata only
Keywords: Soil fertility
Species diversity
West Midlands
Meadows
Biodiversity
UK
ISSN: 13510754
13652389
Appears in Collections: Plant and Environmental Research Group

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