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Type: Journal article
Title: Salinity reduces the ability of soil microbes to utilise cellulose
Author: Elmajdoub, B.
Marschner, P.
Citation: Biology and Fertility of Soils, 2013; 49(4):379-386
Publisher: Springer Verlag
Issue Date: 2013
ISSN: 1432-0789
Statement of
Bannur Elmajdoub, Petra Marschner
Abstract: An incubation experiment was conducted to determine the response of soil microbial biomass and activity to salinity when supplied with two different carbon forms. One nonsaline and three saline soils of similar texture (sandy clay loam) with electrical conductivities of the saturation extract (ECe) of 1, 11, 24 and 43 dS m ⁻¹ were used. Carbon was added at 2.5 and 5 g C kg ⁻¹ (2.5C, 5C) as glucose or cellulose; soluble N and P were added to achieve a C/N ratio of 20 and C/P ratio of 200. Soil microbial activity was assessed by measuring CO2 evolution continuously for 3 weeks; microbial biomass C and available N and P were determined on days 2, 7, 14 and 21. In all soils, cumulative respiration was higher with 5C than with 2.5C and higher with glucose than with cellulose. Cumulative respiration was highest in the nonsaline soil and decreased with increasing EC, whereas the decrease was gradual with glucose, there was a sharp drop in cumulative respiration with cellulose from the nonsaline soil to soil with EC11 with little further decrease at higher ECs. Microbial biomass C and available N and P concentrations were highest in the nonsaline soil but did not differ among the saline soils. Microbial biomass C was higher and available N was lower with 5C than with 2.5C. The C form affected the temporal changes of microbial biomass and available nutrients differentially. With glucose, microbial biomass was highest on day 2 and then decreased, whereas available N showed the opposite pattern, being lowest on day 2 and then increasing. With cellulose, microbial biomass C increased gradually over time, and available N decreased gradually. It is concluded that salinity reduced the ability of microbes to decompose cellulose more than that of glucose.
Keywords: Available N; Available P; Cellulose; Glucose; Microbial biomass; Respiration; Salinity
Rights: © Springer-Verlag 2012
RMID: 0020128255
DOI: 10.1007/s00374-012-0734-x
Appears in Collections:Agriculture, Food and Wine publications

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