Plant Litter - Decomposition, Humus Formation, Carbon Sequestration - 2nd edition

Edited by Berg, B., McClaugherty, C., 
Springer  2008  

Hardcover  338pp  ISBN 9783540749226      £153.00
This fully revised and updated 2nd edition of Plant Litter focuses on decomposition processes in natural terrestrial systems such as boreal and temperate forests. The availability of several long-term studies from these forest types allows a more in-depth approach to the later stages of decomposition as well as to humus formation. It further briefly explores how processes are modified due to anthropogenic influences. Earlier findings are re-evaluated in light of recent research and with relevance to current areas of investigation. New concepts that modify or go beyond those already presented are covered and a new chapter on patterns of decomposition and accumulation on a regional scale was introduced.

Contents: Introduction.- Decomposition as a process.- Decomposer organisms.- Initial litter chemical composition.- Changes in substrate composition during decomposition.- Chemical constituents as rate-regulating: initial variation and changes during decomposition.- Climatic environment.- Influence of soil and plant community factors.- Decomposition of fine root and woody litter.- Models that describe litter decomposition.- Decomposition and ecosystem function.- Human activities that influence decomposition.- Estimating carbon sequestration rates on a regional scale.- Appendix I. Glossary.- Appendix II. Scientific names of vascular plants.- Appendix III. Site descriptions.- Appendix IV. A data base for litter chemical composition, and limit values for decomposition

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