After three months, there is evidence of a relationship between vegetation removal,
% Ash and decomposition (Figs. 4 & 5). Although there is a correlation, this
relationship is still not statistically significant. If this relationship becomes stronger it
would suggest that soil deposition facilitates decomposition in arid systems.
Discussion & Future Directions
· To explore the relationship between soil deposition and decomposition further,
litter bag collections will continue for remainder the planned 48 month experiment at
6, 12, 24, 36 and 48 months.
·Because data presented here are from the 3 month collections it is not surprising to
see a lack of statistical significance. It is, however interesting to see a trend in
decomposition and % ash with relation to the grass removal.
·We will also aim to conduct experiments in controlled environments manipulating
UV, soil flux and microbial communities.
·The goal of this project is to help untangle a portion of the decomposition
conundrum in arid lands and use the results along with results of other studies to aid
in the parameterization of specialized drylands decomposition models.
·Understanding the drivers of decomposition in drylands will help us understand how
nutrients and carbon are cycling in these changing ecosystems.
·Additional projects that explore influences of vegetation structure and a soil-litter