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39 votes

Is the amount of the soil reduced when plants grow?

The vast majority of the mass of a plant is carbon-based which is obtained directly from the air via photosynthesis. So trees are, in a loose sense, solidified air! And most of the mass that comes ...
lemon's user avatar
  • 451
7 votes

Is the amount of the soil reduced when plants grow?

The soil is the source of a small quantity of vital elements like magnesium (component of the chlorophyll), phosphorus (DNA), sulphur (some proteins) and more. As the plant grows, these are removed ...
Martín-Blas Pérez Pinilla's user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

Why does frost increase soil fertility?

I found this article on why frost increase soil fertility - specifically nutrient density in the soil. 101 years old! The Occurrence of Bacteria in Frozen Soil E. C. Harder Botanical Gazette Vol. ...
Willk's user avatar
  • 2,964
4 votes

Spruce growing high up in a maple trunk: Can a partially rotted trunk completely sustain another tree?

Well, holes in rotting trees are not only going to contain rotten tree matter (aka compost :p), but they will also slowly gather fallen leaves, dead insects, dirt, dust and other debris. Even ...
theforestecologist's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Spruce growing high up in a maple trunk: Can a partially rotted trunk completely sustain another tree?

Note This answer makes the presumption that the crotch in the maple's trunk is indeed a breach through its bark, and does reach the inner woody tissues. The heartwood of most trees consists of the ...
can-ned_food's user avatar
3 votes

Is the amount of the soil reduced when plants grow?

As said in other answers, CO2 is pulled from the air, and H2O is constantly resupplied. Then there is Nitrogen, which is either taken from the ground, or from the air, depending on the plant. ...
PlasmaHH's user avatar
  • 157
3 votes

Odds of finding superbug in soil?

What is the deepest place in the crust that has been found to harbor life? The deepest living animal: That award goes to the "Devil Worm" (Halicephalobus ...
theforestecologist's user avatar
3 votes

Spruce growing high up in a maple trunk: Can a partially rotted trunk completely sustain another tree?

In the Hoh Rainforest in Olympic National park, there are many "nurse trees" and "nurse logs"; the latter are trees that have fallen and now act as a nutrient source for smaller trees growing on them. ...
anongoodnurse's user avatar
2 votes

Odds of finding superbug in soil?

It's an interesting question and I hope this answer doesn't seem flippant, because that is not my intention. The odds of finding a microorganism that has never encountered humans (or any mammal) but ...
canadianer's user avatar
  • 17.8k
2 votes

What bacteria shed harvestable energy from root zone organic matter?

Short answer It is known that a great variety of soil micro-organisms is able to use solid anodes as electron acceptor for their metabolism, thus creating some electrical current. Geobacter spp., ...
Flo's user avatar
  • 707
2 votes

What is the standard method for measuring soil and substrate acidity

Soil should first be processed by drying the soil to ensure a standard "dry" sample is analyzed. 55$^o$C in drying ovens for 24 hours works for most non-water-zone soils, but more time at 50 ...
theforestecologist's user avatar
2 votes

Help to identify this large, slow-growing mushroom?

This fungus is known as a puffball, although that is no longer a taxanomic order. Some of these fungi don't have small openings through which the spores disperse, but they burst open when the spores ...
RHA's user avatar
  • 3,685
2 votes

What is carbon in the soil?

It refers to organic carbon, i.e. the carbon present in proteins, carbohydrates and other molecules as consequence of the metabolism of living creatures. Carbon rich soil is an indication that ...
alec_djinn's user avatar
  • 3,108
2 votes
Accepted

Why do soil bacteria produce nitrous oxide as a result of anhydrous ammonia fertilizer application?

Addressing the first part of your question: Is it common for most soil bacteria to make significant quantities of nitrous oxide after ammonia is added, or is there only a small subset of ...
Istrel's user avatar
  • 229
2 votes

What options are available for high-throughput isolation and identification of microbes from soil?

Hard to know what you would consider "high-throughput", but it might be worth checking out the work by Kim Lewis at Northeastern University — see for example his 2020 Perspective in Cell1. ...
tyersome's user avatar
  • 5,598
2 votes
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Giving a sign to Pressure Potential, Osmotic Potential And Other Similar Quantities

I think you already know the sign convention in calculating the water potential: the addition of solutes lowers the potential (negative vector), while an increase in pressure increases the potential (...
Bipasha's user avatar
  • 964
2 votes

Alternative to distilled water for pH test

The h2co3 content of unadulterated rain is 15 micromoles of H+/Kg at room temp. The pHBC of average field soil from a 3000km transect in asia varied from 10 to 188 - mmol-kg-ph unit... from 40 ...
bandybabboon's user avatar
  • 10.4k
1 vote

scientific reasons behind a a sudden yet temporary growth sprout of the plant when the soil has No depth?

Normally a seed would germinate (start to grow) when there is enough damp and warmth beneath the surface of the soil, and the shoot would push upwards at the same time as the root pushes downwards. ...
Jiminy Cricket.'s user avatar
1 vote

Alternative to distilled water for pH test

Rainwater might not be the best option. Rain water is naturally acidic due to the reaction of CO2 forming some weak carbonic acid [see here for explanation]. Source: Wikipedia As a result, pH ...
theforestecologist's user avatar
1 vote

Recommendation for book about soil and their food webs

I really enjoyed reading "Essential Soil Science" by M.R Ashman and G.Puri. https://g.co/kgs/SCjpSi Seems to be easy to get online as a pdf as well.
Hannah's user avatar
  • 193
1 vote
Accepted

Recommendation for book about soil and their food webs

A very good resource can be found here: http://esdac.jrc.ec.europa.eu/content/global-soil-biodiversity-atlas If you focus on soil analysis this resource could be helpful: http://www.geokniga.org/...
CuriousIndeed's user avatar
1 vote

Why do soil bacteria produce nitrous oxide as a result of anhydrous ammonia fertilizer application?

if I give you a can of anhydrous ammonia, and I drop in a match, it will blow up, yielding nitrous oxides. it is an exothermic energy releasing reaction. bacteria figured this out, and use this same ...
4D Neuron's user avatar
  • 360
1 vote

What is carbon in the soil?

If you take an average soil sample, it contains lots of organic matter, unless it is completely mineral like desert sand. Oganic matter always has C, H, O elements, and often N. Peat bogs for example, ...
bandybabboon's user avatar
  • 10.4k
1 vote

Why does frost increase soil fertility?

From the introduction (bottom of page 167 and top of page 168) of the paper you linked (Masters and McMillan 2001) We use newly available worldwide climate data to quantify the prevalence of ...
Remi.b's user avatar
  • 68.3k
1 vote

Watering plants with soaked forest soil

You are thinking about something like "compost tea". http://www.homecompostingmadeeasy.com/composttea.html The problem is that a random piece of forest soil may or may not be rich in nutrients. If ...
Willk's user avatar
  • 2,964
1 vote

Relation between biomass and radius of roots system

Your question specifically asks for an equation which gives root radius and your sample equation is for typical root length, neither of which I'm aware of. However, there is a known relation between ...
nicfit's user avatar
  • 138
1 vote

Requirements for soil sample transportation over long distance

We did a soil sampling expedition around farms in the UK a few years ago. We took with us some insulated plastic picnic drinks cool boxes, and a lot of pre-frozen camping freezer blocks. We bagged ...
Jay Moore's user avatar
  • 827

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