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Sample records for loess plateau northwest

  1. [Responses of soil enzyme activities to re-vegetation in gully Loess Plateau of Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Li, Lin-Hai; Qiu, Li-Ping; Meng, Meng

    2012-12-01

    In combining field investigation with laboratory analysis, this paper studied the distribution characteristics of soil enzyme activities along the soil profiles and natural slopes with different re-vegetation treatments in gully Loess Plateau, aimed to assess the responses of the soil enzyme activities to re-vegetation. In the study area, the activities of soil urease, invertase and alkaline phosphatase along natural slopes were highly varied, but the activity of soil catalase was in adverse. The profile distribution of the soil enzyme activities varied significantly with vegetation type, and with increasing soil depth, the activities of soil urease, invertase and alkaline phosphatase decreased while the catalase activity increased. There existed significant positive correlation among the three hydrolases activities. The activities of the three hydrolases were all significantly negatively correlated with soil physical properties and positively correlated with soil chemical properties, while the soil catalase activity was positively correlated with soil moisture content and pH and negatively correlated with other soil physiochemical properties. It was suggested that the activities of soil urease, invertase and alkaline phosphatase in gully Loess Plateau could be used as the sensitive indicators for the soil responses to the re-vegetation in the Plateau, and re-vegetation could improve the biological properties in both surface and deeper soil layers.

  2. [Decomposition of different plant litters in Loess Plateau of Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Li, Yun; Zhou, Jian-Bin; Dong, Yan-Jie; Xia, Zhi-Min; Chen, Zhu-Juin

    2012-12-01

    Taking the litters of species Hippophae rhamnoides, Medicago sativa, Populus simonii, Robinia pseudoacaci, Salix psammophila, and Stipa bungeana in the Loess Plateau of Northeast China as test objects, and by using mesh bags, this paper studied the dynamic changes of the litters mass, carbon, and nitrogen during decomposition after buried in the field in semiarid region. The litters buried were from one, two, or three of the plant species, and mixed thoroughly with equal proportion of masses. During decomposition, the mass loss rate, total carbon and nitrogen release rates, and total soluble carbon and nitrogen contents of different litters were higher at the early than at the later decomposition stage. After 412 d decomposition, the average mass loss rate of the litters was in the order of mixed litters of three plant species > mixed litters of two plant species > one plant species litter. By the end of this experiment, the average release rates of the litter total carbon and nitrogen ranked as one plant species litter > mixed litters of two plant species > mixed litters of three plant species, the litter soluble organic carbon content was mixed litters of two plant species > mixed litters of three plant species > one plant species litter, while the litter soluble total nitrogen content was mixed litters of three plant species > mixed litters of two plant species > one plant species litter. Correlation analysis showed that the litter mass loss rate had definite correlation with the litter soluble organic matter, especially soluble organic carbon. From the viewpoint of mass loss rate, the mixture of the litters of P. simonii, H. rhamnoide, and M. sativa was the optimum. It was suggested that in the process of returning farmland into forestland and grassland in the gully and valley region of Loess Plateau, it would be required to rationally increase plant species diversity to improve soil fertility.

  3. [Characteristics of rainfall interception by Caragana korshinskii and Hippophae rhamnoides in Loess Plateau of Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Jian, Sheng-Qi; Zhao, Chuan-Yan; Fang, Shu-Min; Yu, Kai; Wang, Yang; Liu, Yi-Yue; Zheng, Xiang-Lin; Peng, Shou-Zhang

    2012-09-01

    From May to October 2011, an investigation was conducted on the effects of rainfall and its intensity on the canopy interception, throughfall, and stemflow of Caragana korshinskii and Hippophae rhamnoides, the main shrub species commonly planted to stabilize soil and water in the Anjiagou catchment of Loess Plateau. A total of 47 rainfall events were observed, most of which were featured with low intensity, and the total amount and average intensity of the rainfalls were 208.9 mm and 2.82 mm x h(-1), respectively. As a whole, the rainfall events of 2-10 mm and 0.1-2 mm x h(-1) had the highest frequency. The canopy interception, throughfall, and stemflow of C. korshinski were 58.5 mm (28%), 124.7 mm (59.7%), and 25.7 mm (12.3%), while those of H. rhamnoides were 17.6 mm (8.4%), 153. 1 mm (73.3%), and 38.2 mm (18.3%), respectively. Regression analysis showed that the canopy interception, throughfall, and stemflow of the two shrub species all had significant positive correlations with the rainfall amount, and had exponent or power correlations with the rainfall amount and the maximum rainfall intensity in 10 minutes.

  4. [Water stability of biological soil crusts in hilly regions of Loess Plateau, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Yang, Kai; Zhao, Yun-Ge; Ma, Xin-Xin

    2012-01-01

    By using an improved wet sieving method, this paper studied the water stability of biological soil crusts with different biological components and biomass in the hilly regions of Loess Plateau. The water stability of the biological soil crusts was related to the crusts' biological components. Moss-dominated crust had significantly higher water stability than cyanobacteria-dominated crust. After 390 shakings, the thickness- and mass losses of moss-dominated crust were only 47.3% and 40.1% of those of cyanobacteria-dominated crust, respectively. Moss-dominated crust had the highest water stability when the moss coverage was up to 60%, and the thickness- and mass losses were 22.7% and 28.6% of those of cyanobacteria-dominated crust (no moss coverage), respectively. The horizontal stability of the biological soil crusts was significantly higher than the vertical stability. After 390 shakings, the area loss of moss-dominated crust was only 6.4% of thickness loss. The biological soil crusts had a layer structure with strong stability in horizontal direction, which increased the crusts' resistance against wind- and water erosion.

  5. [Characteristics of seed rain on abandoned slopes in the hilly-gullied Loess Plateau, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Yu, Wei-jie; Chen, Yu; Jiao, Ju-ying; Wang, Dong-li; Wang, Zhi-jie; Wei, Yan-hong; Kou, Meng; Yin, Qiu-long

    2015-02-01

    The objective of this study was to analyze the dynamic characteristics of seed rain on abandoned slopes in the hilly-gullied Loess Plateau region and identify the relationship between seed rain and standing vegetation. Three abandoned slopes were chosen as sampling sites in Zhifanggou watershed. Thirty traps were installed at each site to collect seed rain from October 2010 to April 2013. Standing vegetation was surveyed to identify dominant species in August 2011 and 2012, respectively. Thirty-seven species belonging to seventeen families were identified in the seed rain, and the dominant species, i.e., Lespedeza davurica, Astragalus scaberrimus, Setaria viridis, Cleistogenes squarrosa, Stipa bungeana, Bothriochloa ischcemum, Artemisia scoparia, A. gmelinii, and Heteropappus altaicus, took up to 95.8% of the total seed rain. Three species in seed rain were not found in the standing vegetation. The Sorensen similarity index between seed rain and standing vegetation was 0.77. Seed rain densities were 3737 and 6449 seeds · m(-2) in May 2011-April 2012 and May 2012-April 2013, respectively, and alternate bearing existed. During the study period, seed rain from different positions varied from 3853 to 37923 seeds · m(-2) and belonged to 7-15 species. The results indicated the space limitation of seed dispersal. Seed rain densities were in the middle of the pack compared with similar ecosystems in other studies. High temporal and spatial heterogeneity of seed rain was observed because of rainfall, microtopography and so on.

  6. [Effects of revegetation on organic carbon storage in deep soils in hilly Loess Plateau region of Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jin; Xu, Ming-Xiang; Wang, Zheng; Ma, Xin-Xin; Qiu, Yu-Jie

    2012-10-01

    Taking the Robinia pseudoacacia woodlands, Caragana korshinskii shrublands, and abandoned croplands with different years of revegetation in the hilly Loess Plateau region of Northwest China as test objects, this paper studied the profile distribution and accumulation dynamics of organic carbon storage in deep soil (100-400 cm), with those in 0-100 cm soil profile as the control. In 0-100 cm soil profile, the organic carbon storage decreased significantly with the increase of soil depth; while in deep soil, the organic carbon storage had a slight fluctuation. The total organic carbon storage in 100-400 cm soil profile was considerably high, accounting for approximately 60% of that in 0-400 cm soil profile. The organic carbon storage in 80-100 cm soil layer had a significant linear correlation with that in 100-200 and 200-400 cm soil layers, and among the organic carbon storages in the five layers in 0-100 cm soil profile, the organic carbon storage in 80-100 cm soil layer had the strongest correlation with that in 100-400 cm soil profile, being able to be used to estimate the organic carbon storage in deep soil in this region. The organic carbon storage in 0-20 cm soil layer in the three types of revegetation lands was significantly higher than that in slope croplands, but the organic carbon storage in deep soil had no significant difference among the land use types. The organic carbon storage in deep soil increased with the increasing years of revegetation. In R. pseudoacacia woodlands and C. korshinskii shrub lands, the average increasing rate of the organic carbon storage in 100-400 cm soil layer was 0.14 and 0.19 t x hm(-2) x a(-1), respectively, which was comparable to that in the 0-100 cm soil layer in C. korshinskii shrublands. It was suggested that in the estimation of the soil carbon sequestration effect of revegetation in hilly Loess Plateau region, the organic carbon accumulation in deep soil should be taken into consideration. Otherwise, the effect of

  7. Shade tolerance of selected afforestation species on Loess Plateau, China

    Treesearch

    Naijiang Wang; Yong Wang; Callie J. Schweitzer

    2011-01-01

    To select tree and vegetation species for afforestation on Loess Plateau of China, we tested the shade tolerance of nine tree and one vine species. We planted 3-year-old seedlings in the greenhouse of the Seedling Nursery at Northwest Agriculture and Forest University in China.

  8. [Effect of conservation tillage on weeds in a rotation system on the Loess Plateau of eastern Gansu, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yu-xin; Lu, Jiao-yun; Yang, Hui-min

    2015-04-01

    A field study was conducted to investigate the influences of no-tillage, stubble retention and crop type on weed density, species composition and community feature in a rotation system (winter wheat-common vetch-maize) established 12 years ago on the Loess Plateau of eastern Gansu. This study showed that the weed species composition, density and community feature varied with the change of crop phases. No-tillage practice increased the weed density at maize phase, while rotation with common vetch decreased the density in the no-tillage field. Stubble retention reduced the weed density under maize phase and the lowest density was observed in the no-tillage plus stubble retention field. No-tillage practice significantly increased the weed species diversity under winter wheat phase and decreased the diversity under common vetch phase. At maize phase, a greater species diversity index was observed in the no-tillage field. These results suggested that no-tillage practice and stubble retention possibly suppress specific weeds with the presence of some crops and crop rotation is a vital way to controlling weeds in a farming system.

  9. [Characteristics of evapotranspiration and crop coefficient of agroecosystems in semi-arid area of Loess Plateau, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Yang, Fu-Lin; Zhang, Qiang; Wang, Run-Yuan; Wang, Sheng; Yue, Ping; Wang, He-Ling; Zhao, Hong

    2013-05-01

    Evapotranspiration (ET) is an important component of ground surface energy balance and water balance, and closely related to water cycle. By using eddy covariance technique, this paper studied the ET characteristics of agroecosystems in the semi-arid area of Loess Plateau in growth season (from April to September), 2010, and analyzed the relationships between crop coefficient and environmental factors. During the observation period, the diurnal variation of latent heat flux (LE) in each month was similar to single-peak curve, and the peak value (151.4 W x m(-2)) occurred in August. The daytime energy partitioning manner showed a significant seasonal variation, with LE/R(n) < H/R(n) (R(n) was net radiation, and H was sensible heat flux) from April to June, and LE/R(n) > H/R(n) from July to September. The daily ET rate also showed a significant seasonal variation, with the maximum of 4.69 mm x d(-1). The wind speed (W(s)), relative humidity (RH), soil water content (theta), and atmospheric vapor pressure deficit (D) were the major factors affecting the crop coefficient K(c) which was exponentially decreased with increasing W(s), exponentially increased with increasing RH and theta, and linearly decreased with increasing D.

  10. Impact of soil moisture and winter wheat height from the Loess Plateau in Northwest China on surface spectral albedo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zhenchao; Yang, Jiaxi; Gao, Xiaoqing; Zheng, Zhiyuan; Yu, Ye; Hou, Xuhong; Wei, Zhigang

    2016-12-01

    The understanding of surface spectral radiation and reflected radiation characteristics of different surfaces in different climate zones aids in the interpretation of regional surface energy transfers and the development of land surface models. This study analysed surface spectral radiation variations and corresponding surface albedo characteristics at different wavelengths as well as the relationship between 5-cm soil moisture and surface albedo on typical sunny days during the winter wheat growth period. The analysis was conducted using observational Loess Plateau winter wheat data from 2015. The results show that the ratio of atmospheric downward radiation to global radiation on typical sunny days is highest for near-infrared wavelengths, followed by visible wavelengths and ultraviolet wavelengths, with values of 57.3, 38.7 and 4.0%, respectively. The ratio of reflected spectral radiation to global radiation varies based on land surface type. The visible radiation reflected by vegetated surfaces is far less than that reflected by bare ground, with surface albedos of 0.045 and 0.27, respectively. Thus, vegetated surfaces absorb more visible radiation than bare ground. The atmospheric downward spectral radiation to global radiation diurnal variation ratios vary for near-infrared wavelengths versus visible and ultraviolet wavelengths on typical sunny days. The near-infrared wavelengths ratio is higher in the morning and evening and lower at noon. The visible and ultraviolet wavelengths ratios are lower in the morning and evening and higher at noon. Visible and ultraviolet wavelength surface albedo is affected by 5-cm soil moisture, demonstrating a significant negative correlation. Excluding near-infrared wavelengths, correlations between surface albedo and 5-cm soil moisture pass the 99% confidence test at each wavelength. The correlation with 5-cm soil moisture is more significant at shorter wavelengths. However, this study obtained surface spectral radiation

  11. Comparison of Measured and Simulated Water Storage in Dryland Terraces of the Loess Plateau, China

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    In the mountainous regions of China, developing sustainable agriculture requires implementing conservation management practices that prevent soil erosion and conserve soil and water resources. In the semiarid northwest Loess Plateau, the primary conservation management practice is terracing, which ...

  12. [Ecological adaptability of leaf epidermis of erosion-resistant plants in hilly-gully area of Loess Plateau, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Miao, Fang; Du, Hua-Dong; Qin, Cui-Ping; Jiao, Ju-Ying

    2012-10-01

    By the temporary slide method of leaf epidermis, an observation was made on the morphological characteristics of the leaf epidermis of six erosion-resistant plant species in different soil erosion environments (gully, inter-gully, and inter-gully artificial Robinia pseudoacacia forest land) in hilly-gully area of Loess Plateau. Compared with those in the gully, the stomata aperture, stomata density, stomata index, stomata apparatus length/width plasticity, stomata apparatus area plasticity, epidermal hair density, and epidermal cell density of the leaf upper and lower epidermis of the plants in the inter-gully were 93.8% and 90.4%, 66.8% and 76.6%, 17.9% and 9.8%, 36.4% and 47.1%, 42.3% and 43.9%, 199.4% and 98.2%, and 46.5% and 50.1% higher, respectively; while in the inter-gully artificial R. pseudoacacia forest land, the same morphological indices of the leaf upper and lower epidermis of the plants were 66.7% and 106.7%, 20.5% and 45.8%, 11.9% and 11.9%, 37.9% and 41.3%, 19.8% and 21.2%, 113.1% and 52.2%, and 10.8% and 28.1% higher than those in the gully, respectively. The epidermal hair length and epidermal cell area of the leaf upper and lower epidermis of the plants in the inter-gully were 58.8% and 29.7%, and 40.3% and 37.0% lower than those in the gully, and the same morphological indices of the leaf upper and lower epidermis of the plants in the intergully artificial R. pseudoacacia forest land were respectively 25.0% and 23.6%, and 22.2% and 19.2% lower than those in the gully, respectively. The results suggested that the erosion-resistant plants in the study area were able to adapt to various soil erosion environments by increasing their leaf stomata aperture, stomata density, stomata index, stomata apparatus length/width plasticity, stomata apparatus area plasticity, epidermal hair density, and epidermal cell density, and by reducing their epidermal hair length and epidermal cell area.

  13. [Dynamic monitoring of ecological environment in loess hilly and gully region of Loess Plateau based on remote sensing: A case study on Fuxian County in Shaanxi Province. Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Li, Fen-ling; Chang, Qin-rui; Shen, Jian; Liu, Jing

    2015-12-01

    Based on the principal component analysis (PCA), four ecological evaluation indicators including vegetation index, wet index, land surface temperature and soil index were combined to evaluate the ecological environment quality of Fuxian County in hilly and gully area of Loess Plateau from year 1995 to 2014. The results showed that the RSEI integrated RS and PCA method could reveal regional ecological changes objectively and quantitatively. The level of overall regional ecological status in Fuxian County was good with a high vegetation fraction and rich biodiversity. The synthetical ecological environment quality index increased from 3.17 to 3.53 indicating the ecological environment had been improved greatly in recent 20 years. The area with best ecological environment quality was located in Niuwu town. The magnitude of change increased progressively from northwest to southeast, and the biggest change occurred in Jiaodao and Nandaode towns. From 1995 to 2014, the areas with decreased and increased ecological environment quality were 16.7% and 42.7% of the study area, respectively, and the improved regions were mainly distributed in plateau and hilly area in the center, rocky low mountainous area in northeast and the Ziwuling Nature Reserve area in southwest of the county.

  14. Accumulation, transfer, and potential sources of mercury in the soil-wheat system under field conditions over the Loess Plateau, northwest China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shengli; Nan, Zhongren; Prete, Daniel; Ma, Jianmin; Liao, Qin; Zhang, Qian

    2016-10-15

    There is limited information on accumulation, transfer, and source of mercury in wheats under field conditions over the Loess Plateau, northwest China. The present study collected 26 pairs of topsoil and whole wheat samples (roots, stems, leaves, shells, and grains) from Dongdagou stream watershed and upper Xidagou stream watershed, Baiyin City, northwest China. Hg concentrations from these samples were used to identify their relationships with soil properties, interactions with other metals, localization of Hg in the different wheat tissues, bio-concentration and transfer of Hg, and major sources of Hg in wheat. Results show that Hg levels in 11 out of 26 sampled soils (42.3% of soil samples) exceeded Hg limit of grade II soil environmental quality standards in China (1.0mg·kg(-1)). Likewise, it was also found that Hg in over 50% of wheat grain samples reached or exceeded the maximum permissible food safety levels (0.02mg·kg(-1)) according to the General Standard of Contaminants in Food in China (GB 2762-2012). The spatial distribution pattern of Hg in wheats grains was different from that in the sampled soils. Hg concentrations in different wheat tissues were highest in roots, followed by leaves, stalks, shells, and grains, respectively. Bio-concentration factors (BCF) of Hg in almost all grains samples were one or two orders of magnitude lower than that in roots, except for two wheat samples. The translocation factors (TF) of Hg in wheat tissues on average were leaves>stems>shells>grains. The spatial distribution of Hg and its correlation with other heavy metal detected simultaneously in the soil samples suggested that the Hg soil contamination was probably caused by past sewage irrigation practices and atmospheric deposition. Correlation analysis revealed that the principle source of Hg in wheat roots was very likely from Hg contaminated soils.

  15. The effects of clouds and aerosols on net ecosystem CO2 exchange over semi-arid Loess Plateau of Northwest China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jing, X.; Huang, J.; Wang, G.; Higuchi, K.; Bi, J.; Sun, Y.; Yu, H.; Wang, T.

    2010-05-01

    The impacts of clouds and atmospheric aerosols on the terrestrial carbon cycle at semi-arid Loess Plateau in Northwest China are investigated, by using the observation data obtained at the SACOL (Semi-Arid Climate and Environment Observatory of Lanzhou University) site. Daytime (solar elevation angles of larger than 50°) NEE of CO2 obtained during the midgrowing season (July-August) are analyzed with respect to variations in the diffuse radiation, cloud cover and aerosol optical depth (AOD). Results show a significant impact by clouds and aerosols on the CO2 uptake by the grassland (with smaller LAI values) located in a semi-arid region, quite different from areas covered by forests and crops. The light saturation levels in canopy are lower, with a value of about 434.8 W m-2. Thus, under overcast conditions of optically thick clouds, the CO2 uptake increases with increasing clearness index, and a maximum CO2 uptake and light use efficiency of vegetation occur with the clearness index of about 0.37 and lower air temperature. Under other sky conditions the CO2 uptake decreases with the cloudiness but the light use efficiency is enhanced, due to increase in the fraction of diffuse PAR. Additionally, under cloudy conditions, changes in the NEE of CO2 also result from the interactions of many environmental factors, especially the air temperature. In contrast to its response to changes in solar radiation, the carbon uptake shows a negative response to increased AOD. The reason for the difference in the response of the semi-arid grassland from that of the forest and crop lands may be due to the difference in the canopy's architectural structure.

  16. The effects of clouds and aerosols on net ecosystem CO2 exchange over semi-arid Loess Plateau of Northwest China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jing, X.; Huang, J.; Wang, G.; Higuchi, K.; Bi, J.; Sun, Y.; Yu, H.; Wang, T.

    2010-09-01

    The impacts of clouds and atmospheric aerosols on the terrestrial carbon cycle at semi-arid Loess Plateau in Northwest China are investigated, by using the observation data obtained at the SACOL (Semi-Arid Climate and Environment Observatory of Lanzhou University) site. Daytime (solar elevation angles of larger than 50°) net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2 obtained during the midgrowing season (July-August) are analyzed with respect to variations in the diffuse radiation, cloud cover and aerosol optical depth (AOD). Results show a significant impact by clouds on the CO2 uptake by the grassland (with smaller LAI values) located in a semi-arid region, quite different from areas covered by forests and crops. The light saturation levels in the canopy are low, with a value of about 434.8 W m-2. Thus, under overcast conditions of optically thick clouds, the CO2 uptake increases with increasing clearness index (the ratio of global solar radiation received at the Earth surface to the extraterrestrial irradiance at a plane parallel to the Earth surface), and a maximum CO2 uptake and light use efficiency of vegetation occur with the clearness index of about 0.37 and lower air temperature. Under other sky conditions, CO2 uptake decreases with cloudiness but light use efficiency is enhanced, due to increased diffuse fraction of PAR. Additionally, under cloudy conditions, changes in the NEE of CO2 also result from the interactions of many environmental factors, especially the air temperature. In contrast to its response to changes in solar radiation, the carbon uptake shows a slightly negative response to increased AOD. The reason for the difference in the response of the semi-arid grassland from that of the forest and crop lands may be due to the difference in the canopy's architectural structure.

  17. [Effects of long-term rotation on the nutritional quality of wheat grain protein on dryland of Loess Plateau, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Cai, Yan; Hao, Ming-De

    2013-05-01

    A long-term experiment was conducted on the dryland of Loess Plateau to study the effects of three typical rotation systems, including wheat-sainfoin rotation, wheat-pea rotation, and wheat-maize rotation, on the nutritional quality of wheat grain protein. Rotation system and the cropping years of rotated plants affected the nutritional quality of wheat grain protein in varying degrees. As compared with continuous wheat cropping, wheat-sainfoin rotation made the nutritional quality of wheat grain protein relatively stable, and the essential amino acid content, amino acid score, amino acid ratio coefficient, chemical score, and amino acid index of the protein all relatively high, being able to be adopted as a cropping system to product high quality protein wheat in Loess Plateau. Under wheat-pea rotation, the nutritional quality of wheat grain protein after 1-year pea cropping was relatively high, but the essential amino acid content of wheat grain protein after 2-year pea cropping was relatively low, and several essential amino acid scores and chemical score of the grain protein were lower than those under continuous wheat cropping. Furthermore, the essential amino acid index was 12.2% lower than that under continuous wheat cropping. Therefore, wheat-pea rotation showed a relatively low nutritional quality of wheat grain protein. Under wheat-maize rotation, the nutritional quality of wheat grain protein was also relatively stable, but the crude protein and essential amino acid contents and amino acid balance level were lower than those under continuous wheat cropping.

  18. A comparison of heavy mineral assemblage between the loess and the Red Clay sequences on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peng, Wenbin; Wang, Zhao; Song, Yougui; Pfaff, Katharina; Luo, Zeng; Nie, Junsheng; Chen, Wenhan

    2016-06-01

    QEMSCAN-based (Quantitative Evaluation of Minerals by Scanning Electron Microscopy) heavy mineral analysis has recently been demonstrated an efficient way to allow a rapid extraction of provenance information from sediments. However, one key issue to correctly obtain a provenance signal using this technique is to clearly separate effects of diagenetic alteration on heavy minerals in sediments, especially in fine-grained loess. Here we compare heavy mineral assemblages of bottom Quaternary loess (L33) and upper Pliocene Red Clay of three sites on the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). Two sites (Chaona and Luochuan) with similar modern climate conditions show similar heavy mineral assemblages but contain much less of the unstable heavy mineral amphibole than the drier Xifeng site. This result provides strong evidence supporting that climate-caused diagenesis is an important factor controlling heavy mineral assemblages of fine-grained loess. However, heavy mineral assemblages are similar for loess and paleosol layers deposited after 0.5 Ma on the Chinese Loess Plateau regardless of climate differences, suggesting that time is also a factor controlling heavy mineral assemblages of loess and Red Clay. Our high resolution sampling of the upper Miocene-Pliocene Chaona Red Clay sequence reveals similar heavy mineral compositions with a minor amphibole content, different from the drier Xifeng site results of the same age. This result indicates that the monsoonal climate pattern might have been maintained since the late Miocene. Furthermore, it indicates that the heavy mineral method is promising in tracing provenance for sites northwest of the Xifeng site on the Loess Plateau.

  19. [Short-term response of soil CH4 flux to simulated precipitation in a winter wheat field on the Loess Plateau, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Liu, Quan-quan; Wang, Jun; Chen, Rong-rong; Liu, Wen-zhao; Sainju, Upendra M

    2015-01-01

    To understand the short-term response of soil CH4 flux to different precipitation events in a winter wheat field on the Loess Plateau, we conducted precipitation simulation experiments during winter wheat jointing stage and summer fallow period to measure the soil CH4 flux in 0 to 72 h after precipitation simulation of 1 to 32 mm. Results showed that CH4 flux during 0 to 72 h fluctuated at 1 to 8 mm of precipitation application and peaked at 16 and 32 mm. Cumulative CH4 flux after 72 h of precipitation (CH4-C) increased linearly with the precipitation amount (P) (wheat jointing stage: CH-C=2.45P-6.09, R2=0.92, P<0.01; summer fallow: CH-C=2.43P-4.73, R2 = 0.91, P<0.01). Statistical analysis showed that CH4 flux was also correlated with soil water content and microbial biomass carbon but not with soil temperature. In the long run, small precipitation events (1-8 mm) could enhance the intensity of soil CH4 sink and such promoting effect would be weakened with further increase in precipitation amount. However, large precipitation events (≥16 mm) could change the soil function from CH4 sink to source by stimulating the activity of soil methanogens during short-term periods.

  20. Fungal and Bacterial Communities in the Rhizosphere of Pinus tabulaeformis Related to the Restoration of Plantations and Natural Secondary Forests in the Loess Plateau, Northwest China

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Hong-Xia; Wang, Chun-Yan; Tang, Ming

    2013-01-01

    Chinese pine (Pinus tabulaeformis Carr.) is widely planted for restoration in destroyed ecosystems of the Loess Plateau in China. Although soil microbial communities are important subsurface components of the terrestrial ecosystems, little is known about fungal and bacterial communities in the rhizosphere of planted and natural P. tabulaeformis forests in the region. In this study, fungal and bacterial communities in the rhizosphere of P. tabulaeformis were analyzed by nested PCR-DGGE (denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis). Diversity analysis revealed that the values of the Shannon-Wiener index (H) and the Simpson index (D) of fungal communities were higher in natural secondary forests than in plantations except for the 3-year-old site. Moreover, the values of species richness, H, and D of the bacterial communities were also higher in the former. Totally, 18 fungal and 19 bacterial DGGE band types were successfully retrieved and sequenced. The dominant fungi in the rhizosphere of P. tabulaeformis belonged to the phylum of Basidiomycota, while the dominant bacteria belonged to the phylum of Proteobacteria. Principal component analysis indicated that fungal and bacterial species were more unitary in plantations than in natural secondary forests, and the majority of them were more likely to appear in the latter. Correlation analysis showed no significant correlation between the fungal and bacterial community diversities. PMID:24459438

  1. Long-Term Effect of Crop Rotation and Fertilisation on Bioavailability and Fractionation of Copper in Soil on the Loess Plateau in Northwest China.

    PubMed

    Zang, Yifei; Wei, Xiaorong; Hao, Mingde

    2015-01-01

    The bioavailability and fractionation of Cu reflect its deliverability in soil. Little research has investigated Cu supply to crops in soil under long-term rotation and fertilisation on the Loess Plateau. A field experiment was conducted in randomized complete block design to determine the bioavailability and distribution of Cu fractions in a Heilu soil (Calcaric Regosol) after 18 years of rotation and fertilisation. The experiment started in 1984, including five cropping systems (fallow control, alfalfa cropping, maize cropping, winter wheat cropping, and grain-legume rotation of pea/winter wheat/winter wheat + millet) and five fertiliser treatments (unfertilised control, N, P, N + P, and N + P + manure). Soil samples were collected in 2002 for chemical analysis. Available Cu was assessed by diethylene triamine pentaacetic acid (DTPA) extraction, and Cu was fractionated by sequential extraction. Results showed that DTPA-Cu was lower in cropping systems compared with fallow control. Application of fertilisers resulted in no remarkable changes in DTPA-Cu compared with unfertilised control. Correlation and path analyses revealed that soil pH and CaCO3 directly affected Cu bioavailability, whereas available P indirectly affected Cu bioavailability. The concentrations of Cu fractions (carbonate and Fe/Al oxides) in the plough layer were lower in cropping systems, while the values in the plough sole were higher under grain-legume rotation relative to fallow control. Manure with NP fertiliser increased Cu fractions bound to organic matter and minerals in the plough layer, and its effects in the plough sole varied with cropping systems. The direct sources (organic-matter-bound fraction and carbonate-bound fraction) of available Cu contributed much to Cu bioavailability. The mineral-bound fraction of Cu acted as an indicator of Cu supply potential in the soil.

  2. Long-Term Effect of Crop Rotation and Fertilisation on Bioavailability and Fractionation of Copper in Soil on the Loess Plateau in Northwest China

    PubMed Central

    Zang, Yifei; Wei, Xiaorong; Hao, Mingde

    2015-01-01

    The bioavailability and fractionation of Cu reflect its deliverability in soil. Little research has investigated Cu supply to crops in soil under long-term rotation and fertilisation on the Loess Plateau. A field experiment was conducted in randomized complete block design to determine the bioavailability and distribution of Cu fractions in a Heilu soil (Calcaric Regosol) after 18 years of rotation and fertilisation. The experiment started in 1984, including five cropping systems (fallow control, alfalfa cropping, maize cropping, winter wheat cropping, and grain-legume rotation of pea/winter wheat/winter wheat + millet) and five fertiliser treatments (unfertilised control, N, P, N + P, and N + P + manure). Soil samples were collected in 2002 for chemical analysis. Available Cu was assessed by diethylene triamine pentaacetic acid (DTPA) extraction, and Cu was fractionated by sequential extraction. Results showed that DTPA-Cu was lower in cropping systems compared with fallow control. Application of fertilisers resulted in no remarkable changes in DTPA-Cu compared with unfertilised control. Correlation and path analyses revealed that soil pH and CaCO3 directly affected Cu bioavailability, whereas available P indirectly affected Cu bioavailability. The concentrations of Cu fractions (carbonate and Fe/Al oxides) in the plough layer were lower in cropping systems, while the values in the plough sole were higher under grain-legume rotation relative to fallow control. Manure with NP fertiliser increased Cu fractions bound to organic matter and minerals in the plough layer, and its effects in the plough sole varied with cropping systems. The direct sources (organic-matter-bound fraction and carbonate-bound fraction) of available Cu contributed much to Cu bioavailability. The mineral-bound fraction of Cu acted as an indicator of Cu supply potential in the soil. PMID:26694965

  3. [Effects of land use change on soil active organic carbon in deep soils in Hilly Loess Plateau region of Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Shuai; Xu, Ming-Xiang; Zhang, Ya-Feng; Wang, Chao-Hua; Chen, Gai

    2015-02-01

    Response of soil active organic carbon to land-use change has become a hot topic in current soil carbon and nutrient cycling study. Soil active organic carbon distribution characteristics in soil profile under four land-use types were investigated in Ziwuling forest zone of the Hilly Loess Plateau region. The four types of land-use changes included natural woodland converted into artificial woodland, natural woodland converted into cropland, natural shrubland converted into cropland and natural shrubland converted into revegetated grassland. Effects of land-use changes on soil active organic carbon in deep soil layers (60-200 cm) were explored by comparison with the shallow soil layers (0-60 cm). The results showed that: (1) The labile organic carbon ( LOC) and microbial carbon (MBC) content were mainly concentrated in the shallow 0-60 cm soil, which accounted for 49%-66% and 71%-84% of soil active organic carbon in the profile (0-200 cm) under different land-use types. Soil active organic carbon content in shallow soil was significantly varied for the land-use changes types, while no obvious difference was observed in soil active organic carbon in deep soil layer. (2) Land-use changes exerted significant influence on soil active organic carbon, the active organic carbon in shallow soil was more sensitive than that in deep soil. The four types of land-use changes, including natural woodland to planted woodland, natural woodland to cropland, natural shrubland to revegetated grassland and natural shrubland to cropland, LOC in shallow soil was reduced by 10%, 60%, 29%, 40% and LOC in the deep layer was decreased by 9%, 21%, 12%, 1%, respectively. MBC in the shallow soil was reduced by 24% 73%, 23%, 56%, and that in the deep layer was decreased by 25%, 18%, 8% and 11%, respectively. (Land-use changes altered the distribution ratio of active organic carbon in soil profile. The ratio between LOC and SOC in shallow soil increased when natural woodland and shrubland were

  4. [Sediment-yielding process and its mechanisms of slope erosion in wind-water erosion crisscross region of Loess Plateau, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Tuo, Deng-Feng; Xu, Ming-Xiang; Zheng, Shi-Qing; Li, Qiang

    2012-12-01

    Due to the coupling effects of wind and water erosions in the wind-water erosion crisscross region of Loess Plateau, the slope erosion in the region was quite serious, and the erosion process was quite complicated. By using wind tunnel combined with simulated rainfall, this paper studied the sediment-yielding process and its mechanisms of slope erosion under the effects of wind-water alternate erosion, and quantitatively analyzed the efffects of wind erosion on water erosion and the relationships between wind and water erosions. There was an obvious positive interaction between wind and water erosions. Wind erosion promoted the development of microtopography, and altered the quantitative relationship between the sediment-yielding under water erosion and the variation of rainfall intensity. At the rainfall intensity of 60 and 80 mm x h(-1), the sediment-yielding without wind erosion decreased with the duration of rainfall and tended to be stable, but the sediment-yielding with wind erosion decreased to a certain valley value first, and then showed an increasing trend. At the rainfall intensity of 60, 80, and 100 mm x h(-1), the sediment-yielding with the wind erosion at speeds of 11 and 14 m x s(-1) increased by 7.3%-27.9% and 23.2%-39.0%, respectively, as compared with the sediment-yielding without wind erosion. At the rainfall intensity of 120 and 150 mm x h(-1) and in the rainfall duration of 15 minutes, the sediment-yielding with and without wind erosion presented a decreasing trend, but, with the increase of rainfall duration, the sediment-yielding with wind erosion showed a trend of decreasing first and increasing then, as compared with the sediment-yielding without wind erosion. The mechanisms of wind-water alternate erosion were complicated, reflecting in the mutual relation and mutual promotion of wind erosion and water erosion in the aspects of temporal-spatial distribution, energy supply, and action mode of erosion forces.

  5. [Effects of climate warming on oil flax growth and water use efficiency in semi-arid region of Loess Plateau, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Yao, Yu-bi; Wang, Run-yuan; Yang, Jin-hu; Xiao, Guo-ju; Zhang, Xiu-yun; Yue, Ping

    2011-10-01

    By using the site-specific observation data of oil flax growth and related meteorological records in semi-arid region of Loess Plateau, this paper studied the effects of climate change on the oil flax growth, and analyzed the relationships between the oil flax water use efficiency and meteorological condition. In this region, the annual precipitation displayed a decreasing trend, and its climatic trend rate was -15.80 mm (10 a)(-1), with an annual periodic change of 3 a and 6 a, whereas the annual air temperature had an increasing trend, and its climatic trend rate was 0.36 degrees C (10 a)(-1). In crop growth period, the aridity index displayed a marked increasing trend, its climatic trend rate was 0.12 (10 a)(-1), and the aridity tendency was more obvious from the beginning of 1990s to the year 2009. From sowing to maturation, oil flax needed 120-150 d, 1700-2100 degrees C d of > or = 0 degrees C accumulated temperature, 200-250 mm precipitation, and 1000-1300 h sunshine hours. The main meteorological factors affecting the oil flax growth in the region were air temperature and precipitation. The increase of air temperature shortened the prophase vegetative growth stage, whereas the increase of air temperature and the decrease of precipitation extended the reproductive growth stage, causing the extension of the whole growth period of the oil flax. The air temperature in the oil flax whole growth period except at seeding stage and maturing stage had negative effect on the yield formation, being more obvious at squaring stage, whereas the precipitation in the whole growth period except at blooming stage had positive effect on the yield formation, being more obvious at seeding stage. The water use efficiency of the oil flax was significantly positively correlated with the air temperature and sunshine hours at seeding stage as well as the aridity index from squaring stage to maturing stage, and negatively correlated with the precipitation from squaring stage to

  6. Prehistoric vegetation on the Loess Plateau: steppe or forest?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tungsheng, Liu; Zhengtang, Guo; Wu Naiqin; Lu Houyuan

    The paper aims to assess the Holocene natural vegetation on the Loess Plateau before human reclamation, a contentious point in paleo-environmental studies. Coordinated analyses on the soils, phytolith assemblage, organic carbon isotope composition and pollen data from selected sites suggest that the Holocene vegetation on the Loess Plateau was dominated by steppe. During the mid-Holocene, corresponding to the climatic optimum, the southernmost part of the Plateau (Weinan and Xian) was covered by an open meadow steppe with the presence of some coniferous species, while the middle part of the plateau (Luochuan) was covered by steppe. Our results do not support the notion that dense forest cover had developed on the Loess Plateau during the Holocene.

  7. Soil moisture balance and magnetic enhancement in loess-paleosol sequences from the Tibetan Plateau and Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Pengxiang; Liu, Qingsong; Heslop, David; Roberts, Andrew P.; Jin, Chunsheng

    2015-01-01

    We present a first combined environmental magnetic and geochemical investigation of a loess-paleosol sequence (<55 ka) from the Chuanxi Plateau on the eastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau. Detailed comparison between the Ganzi section and the Luochuan section from the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) allows quantification of the effects of provenance and climate on pedogenic magnetic enhancement in Chinese loess. Rare earth element patterns and clay mineral compositions indicate that the Ganzi loess originates from the interior of the Tibetan Plateau. The different Ganzi and CLP loess provenances add complexity to interpretation of magnetic parameters in terms of the concentration and grain size of eolian magnetic minerals. Enhanced paleosol magnetism via pedogenic formation of ferrimagnetic nanoparticles is observed in both sections, but weaker ferrimagnetic contributions, finer superparamagnetic (SP) particles and stronger chemical weathering are found in the Ganzi loess, which indicates the action of multiple pedogenic processes that are dominated by the combined effects of mean annual precipitation (MAP), potential evapotranspiration (PET), organic matter and aluminium content. Under relatively high MAP and low PET conditions, high soil moisture favours transformation of ferrimagnetic minerals to hematite, which results in a relatively higher concentration of hematite but weaker ferrimagnetism of Ganzi loess. Initial growth of superparamagnetic (SP) particles is also documented in the incipient loess at Ganzi, which directly reflects the dynamic formation of nano-sized pedogenic ferrimagnets. A humid pedogenic environment with more organic matter and higher Al content also helps to form finer SP particles. We therefore propose that soil water balance, rather than solely rainfall, dominates the type, concentration and grain size of secondary ferrimagnetic minerals produced by pedogenesis.

  8. Soil water infiltration impacted by maize (zea mays) growth on sloping agricultural land of the loess plateau

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Increasing infiltration rates of sloping agricultural land from arid and semiarid regions not only affects water supply and precipitation transformations in soil directly, but also impacts erosion intensity. This is extremely important to the Loess Plateau regions of Northwest China, where a majorit...

  9. Excessive afforestation and soil drying on China's Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Shulei; Yang, Dawen

    2017-04-01

    Afforestation and deforestation are human disturbances to vegetation, which have profound impacts on regional eco-hydrological processes, the water and carbon cycles, and consequently, ecosystem sustainability. Since 1999, large scale revegetation has been carried out across China's Loess Plateau following the "Grain-to-Green Program" implemented by the Chinese government. This revegetation, particularly with forest, has caused negative eco-hydrological consequences, including streamflow decline and soil drying. Here, we have used "ecosystem optimality theory" and satellite observations, to assess the water balance under the climate-defined optimal and actual vegetation cover during 1982-2010 and its responses to future climate change (2011-2050) over the Loess Plateau. Results show that the current vegetation cover (0.48 on average) has already exceeded the climate-defined optimal cover (0.43 on average) in the most recent decade, especially in the middle-to-east Loess Plateau, indicating that it is the widespread over-planting, which is primarily responsible for soil drying in the area. In addition, both the optimal vegetation cover and soil moisture tend to decrease under future climate scenarios. Our findings suggest that further revegetation on the Loess Plateau should be applied with caution. To maintain a sustainable eco-hydrological environment in the region, a revegetation threshold should be urgently set, to limit future planting.

  10. Reworked loess and Yellow River sediment as the main sources of the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Licht, Alexis; Pullen, Alex; Kapp, Paul; Abell, jordan; Giesler, Dominique

    2016-04-01

    The Quaternary aeolian dust deposits of the Chinese Loess Plateau have been attributed to spring and winter monsoonal storms sweeping clastic material from the deserts of the Asian interior into central China. Recent U-Pb geochronological studies of aeolian zircons have emphasized the existence of two major wind pathways: from the north, throughout the Tengger, and Mu Us deserts during interglacials, and from the west, through the Qaidam Basin during glacials. Others have emphasized the importance of Yellow River supply in the Loess Plateau sediment budget. However, tracking dust source regions through U-Pb dating is particularly complex, given the paucity of data in many potential sources regions and the similar ages peak in the age probability distributions of western and Northern deserts in central China. Here, we present an extended dataset of U-Pb ages covering all the potential provenance areas for the aeolian dust in central Asia and including 2400 new ages from loess, paleosols, modern sand dunes and fluvial deposits. We then propose a new mixture modeling technique to statistically address the contribution of these different sources to the Loess Plateau sedimentary budget. Our contribution estimates indicate that aeolian supply is dominated (60-70 %) by reworking of Yellow River sediment. Moreover, evidence of Qaidam Basin sourced zircons (15-20 %) in both loess (glacial) and paleosols (interglacial) layers corroborates the existence of an erosive wind pathway from the west during glacials and implies that a substantial portion of the interglacial dust is recycled from older glacial loess. We propose that sediment reworking of Yellow River sediment and older loesses by wind homogenizes aeolian zircon populations on the Chinese Loess Plateau toward a glacial provenance due to higher dust accumulation rates during glacials. These findings indicate that the Loess Plateau has evolved as a more dynamic landform than previous thought where wind deflation

  11. Soil Erosion Study on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Yaxian; Guo, Shengli; Kuhn, Nikolaus

    2017-04-01

    The Chinese Loess Plateau, because of its highly erodible loess soils and hilly topography, has been extensively studied by soil scientists and geomorphologists. As a research hotspot, there are five national-level field stations across the Loess Plateau, with hundreds of erosion plots set up with various sizes, lengths, slope angles and vegetation covers. In addition, huge indoor rain simulation facilities exist in in different institutes which can provide rainfall simulations under a wide range of controlled conditions. Consequently, national-level restoration projects have achieved tremendous improvements in curbing soil erosion and improving regional agro-ecosystem, mostly by afforestation and soil rehabilitation. However, when implementing the advanced techniques and models that have been widely applied in the rest of the world, there are often regional considerations, which demand new approaches to overcome. One example are the unintentional impacts of restoration efforts, such as the establishment of apple orchards. Over 20 years, they have caused an increase in soil erodibility and lowered local ground water levels. Neither before the introduction of this landscape rehabilitation technique, nor now, has the impact of intensive fruit production been systematically studied, despite lending itself to systematic experiments. The lack of research is attributed to the general idea that trees protect soils and improve environmental services. This presentation identifies several such specific regional environmental issues associated with soil erosion on the Loess Plateau and discusses strategies to avoid missing important research questions.

  12. Loess and Loess-like Sediments on the Tibetan Plateau: New Results and Findings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehmkuhl, F.

    2014-12-01

    Aeolian, loess-like sediments distributed as mantles of silt covering the bedrock and debris are widespread depositions in the Qilain Shan and on the Tibetan Plateau (Lehmkuhl 1997). Up to now little is known about the timing and distribution of these late Quaternary sediments originated from far and local transported aeolian dust and sand. They represent valuable archives about environmental change during the late Quaternary. In addition, this fine material is important for growth of the vegetation cover and for water storage and nomadic life. Radiocarbon and luminescence dating provide information concerning their timing to the end of the last glacial cycle and especially to the Holocene, as some of them include loess-paleosol sequences. In addition, valuable information on paleoenvironmental conditions was acquired by grain-size distribution and geochemical analyses (e.g. Nottebaum et al. 2014, Lehmkuhl et. al. 2014). This contribution mainly focuses on the Qilian Shan, the northeastern and southern Tibetan Plateau. Lehmkuhl F. (1997). The spatial distribution of loess and loess-like sediments in the mountain areas of Central and High Asia, Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie, N.F., Suppl.-Bd. 111, 97-116. Lehmkuhl F., Schulte P., Zhao H., Hülle D., Protze J., Stauch G. (2014). Timing and spatial distribution of loess and loess-like sediments in the mountain areas of the northeastern Tibetan Plateau, Catena 117, 22-33. Nottebaum V., Lehmkuhl F., Stauch G., Hartmann K., Wünnemann B, Schimpf S, Lu H. (2014): Regional grain size variations in aeolian sediments along the transition between Tibetan highlands and northwestern Chinese deserts: The influence of geomorphological settings on aeolian transport pathways, Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, in press. DOI: 10.1002/esp.3590

  13. [Carbon sequestration of young Robinia pseudoacacia plantation in Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jing-qun; Su, Yin-quan; Kang, Yong-xiang; Xu, Xi-ming; Qin, Yue

    2009-12-01

    In order to understand the carbon sequestration of ecological forests in Loess Plateau, a comparative study was made on the organic carbon density (OCD) of soil, litter, and plant organs in an 8-year-old Robinia pseudoacacia plantation and nearby barren land. Comparing with the barren land, the young R. pseudoacacia plantation had a decrease (0.26 kg x m(-2)) of soil OCD, but the OCD in its litter, root system, and aboveground organs increased by 121.1%, 202.0%, and 656. 7%, respectively, with a total carbon sequestration increased by 3.3% annually, which illustrated that R. pseudoacacia afforestation on Loess Plateau had an obvious positive effect on carbon sequestration.

  14. Magnetic fabric from Red clay sediments in the Chinese Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Hujun; Zhang, Rui; Yue, Leping; Zhang, Yunxiang; Li, Jianxing

    2015-01-01

    Well-distributed eolian red clay in a wide area of northern China is believed to imply the onset of an ancient East Asian monsoon system since Late Miocene. Two continuous red clay sequences spanning the time interval 7–2.6 Ma and 11–2.6 Ma in the Chinese Loess Plateau was investigated to determine the magnetic orientation and grain alignment in the primary fabric of eolian sediments. The north-westerly orientation of the AMS of the eolian red clay sequences parallels the material transportation direction, which differs from the model that suggests that airborne dust from overlying loess-paleosol sequences were transported by the East Asian winter monsoon and fixed by the East Asian summer monsoon. Our results further reveal that present-day climate and air circulation patterns differ from those of the pre-Quaternary, and may provide evidence of a prevailing wind during deposition of the red clay. PMID:25913292

  15. Magnetic fabric from red clay sediments in the Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Gong, Hujun; Zhang, Rui; Yue, Leping; Zhang, Yunxiang; Li, Jianxing

    2015-04-27

    Well-distributed eolian red clay in a wide area of northern China is believed to imply the onset of an ancient East Asian monsoon system since Late Miocene. Two continuous red clay sequences spanning the time interval 7-2.6 Ma and 11-2.6 Ma in the Chinese Loess Plateau was investigated to determine the magnetic orientation and grain alignment in the primary fabric of eolian sediments. The north-westerly orientation of the AMS of the eolian red clay sequences parallels the material transportation direction, which differs from the model that suggests that airborne dust from overlying loess-paleosol sequences were transported by the East Asian winter monsoon and fixed by the East Asian summer monsoon. Our results further reveal that present-day climate and air circulation patterns differ from those of the pre-Quaternary, and may provide evidence of a prevailing wind during deposition of the red clay.

  16. A first paleomagnetic and rock magnetic investigation of calcareous nodules from the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, T.; Hyodo, M.; Yang, Z.; Sun, Z.

    2005-01-01

    A detailed paleomagnetic and rock magnetic investigation was carried out on calcareous nodule layers embed-ded in the loess-paleosol sequences near Baoji city, southern Chinese Loess Plateau. The anisotropy of low-field magnetic susceptibility confirms that calcareous nodules retain the primary sedimentary fabric of original de-posits. Rock magnetic properties demonstrate that calcareous nodules have the same mineralogy and grain sizes as loess-paleosol deposits. Characteristic remanent magnetizations of calcareous nodules have directions consis-tent with those of adjacent loess and paleosol deposits. The Punaruu event, previously found from loess deposits in the upper part of loess unit L13 in Weinan, southern Chinese Loess Plateau, is observed at the corresponding stratigraphic level in the calcareous nodule layer. These observations indicate that the calcareous nodule layers preserve primary remanent magnetizations of original deposits before calcification, and that they can contribute to paleomagnetic studies in the Chinese Loess Plateau.

  17. Soil carbon sequestration potential for "grain for green" project in Loess Plateau, China

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chang, R.; Fu, B.; Liu, Gaisheng; Liu, S.

    2011-01-01

    Conversion of cropland into perennial vegetation land can increase soil organic carbon (SOC) accumulation, which might be an important mitigation measure to sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. The “Grain for Green” project, one of the most ambitious ecological programmes launched in modern China, aims at transforming the low-yield slope cropland into grassland and woodland. The Loess Plateau in China is the most important target of this project due to its serious soil erosion. The objectives of this study are to answer three questions: (1) what is the rate of the SOC accumulation for this “Grain for Green” project in Loess Plateau? (2) Is there a difference in SOC sequestration among different restoration types, including grassland, shrub and forest? (3) Is the effect of restoration types on SOC accumulation different among northern, middle and southern regions of the Loess Plateau? Based on analysis of the data collected from the literature conducted in the Loess Plateau, we found that SOC increased at a rate of 0.712 TgC/year in the top 20 cm soil layer for 60 years under this project across the entire Loess Plateau. This was a relatively reliable estimation based on current data, although there were some uncertainties. Compared to grassland, forest had a significantly greater effect on SOC accumulation in middle and southern Loess Plateau but had a weaker effect in the northern Loess Plateau. There were no differences found in SOC sequestration between shrub and grassland across the entire Loess Plateau. Grassland had a stronger effect on SOC sequestration in the northern Loess Plateau than in the middle and southern regions. In contrast, forest could increase more SOC in the middle and southern Loess Plateau than in the northern Loess Plateau, whereas shrub had a similar effect on SOC sequestration across the Loess Plateau. Our results suggest that the “Grain for Green” project can significantly increase the SOC storage in Loess Plateau

  18. Soil carbon sequestration potential for "Grain for Green" project in Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Chang, Ruiying; Fu, Bojie; Liu, Guohua; Liu, Shuguang

    2011-12-01

    Conversion of cropland into perennial vegetation land can increase soil organic carbon (SOC) accumulation, which might be an important mitigation measure to sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. The "Grain for Green" project, one of the most ambitious ecological programmes launched in modern China, aims at transforming the low-yield slope cropland into grassland and woodland. The Loess Plateau in China is the most important target of this project due to its serious soil erosion. The objectives of this study are to answer three questions: (1) what is the rate of the SOC accumulation for this "Grain for Green" project in Loess Plateau? (2) Is there a difference in SOC sequestration among different restoration types, including grassland, shrub and forest? (3) Is the effect of restoration types on SOC accumulation different among northern, middle and southern regions of the Loess Plateau? Based on analysis of the data collected from the literature conducted in the Loess Plateau, we found that SOC increased at a rate of 0.712 TgC/year in the top 20 cm soil layer for 60 years under this project across the entire Loess Plateau. This was a relatively reliable estimation based on current data, although there were some uncertainties. Compared to grassland, forest had a significantly greater effect on SOC accumulation in middle and southern Loess Plateau but had a weaker effect in the northern Loess Plateau. There were no differences found in SOC sequestration between shrub and grassland across the entire Loess Plateau. Grassland had a stronger effect on SOC sequestration in the northern Loess Plateau than in the middle and southern regions. In contrast, forest could increase more SOC in the middle and southern Loess Plateau than in the northern Loess Plateau, whereas shrub had a similar effect on SOC sequestration across the Loess Plateau. Our results suggest that the "Grain for Green" project can significantly increase the SOC storage in Loess Plateau, and it is

  19. Palaeoclimatic records of the loess/palaeosol sequences of the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maher, Barbara A.

    2016-12-01

    Whether during past climate stages or into a progressively warming world, changes in precipitation constitute a key component of climatic change. Quantitative proxies for palaeo-precipitation are relatively rare. The magnetic properties of the windblown loess units and interbedded palaeosols of the famous Chinese Loess Plateau provide key palaeo-precipitation data for this populous, monsoon-dominated region. The loess/palaeosol sediments record rainfall totals, directly complementing the oxygen isotope records of Chinese speleothems. These isotopic records predominantly reflect moisture source, and hence large-scale atmospheric circulation changes. The two major Asian monsoon systems appear to display antiphase behaviour. Dominance of the Indian summer monsoon system seems associated with minimum precession/maximum northern hemisphere summer heating; dominance of the East Asian summer monsoons with maximum precession. At ∼2.8 Ma, more intense development of the East Asian winter monsoon initiated major increases in dust deposition rates, and formation of relatively unweathered loess layers. Glacial-stage loess units then interleaved with interglacial/interstadial-stage palaeosols throughout the Quaternary period. Decoupling of the loess/palaeosol rainfall records from the Chinese cave records of moisture source shows that the Indian and East Asian monsoon winds were continuously driven by precessional forcing while summer monsoonal rainfall was greatly suppressed during cool, glacial stages. The timing of these East Asian climatic transitions, the subsequent intensification of northern hemisphere glaciations, and the association between monsoon circulation changes and North Atlantic temperatures, indicates a possibly leading global role for these monsoonal changes via alterations in the poleward distribution of heat and moisture.

  20. [Assessment indicators of soil quality in hilly Loess plateau].

    PubMed

    Xu, Mingxiang; Liu, Guobin; Zhao, Yunge

    2005-10-01

    By the methods of sensitivity analysis, main component analsis and discriminant analysis, this paper screened the sensitive indicators from 32 soil attributes to assess the productivity and erosion-resistance ability of the soils in hilly Loess Plateau. The results showed that soil available phosphorus content, anti-scouring ability, infiltration coefficient, labile organic carbon content, organic matter content and urease activity were the most sensitive indicators for soil quality assessment and the main targets for soil quality management and improvement, while soil biological indicators were with high and medium sensitivity. Five soil quality factors were summed up from 29 soil chemical, physical and biological attributes, i. e., organic matter, texture, phosphorus, porosity and microstructure. Except the factor porosity, the other four factors were significantly different between different land use types. Eight indicators including soil organic matter content, infiltration coefficient, anti-scouring ability, CEC, invertase activity, mean weight diameter (MWD) of aggregates, available phosphorus, and MWD of microaggregate were identified as the assessment indicators of the soil quality in hilly Loess Plateau, with the organic matter content, infiltration coefficient and anti-scouring ability as the key indicators.

  1. Loess Plateau storage of Northeastern Tibetan Plateau-derived Yellow River sediment

    PubMed Central

    Nie, Junsheng; Stevens, Thomas; Rittner, Martin; Stockli, Daniel; Garzanti, Eduardo; Limonta, Mara; Bird, Anna; Andò, Sergio; Vermeesch, Pieter; Saylor, Joel; Lu, Huayu; Breecker, Daniel; Hu, Xiaofei; Liu, Shanpin; Resentini, Alberto; Vezzoli, Giovanni; Peng, Wenbin; Carter, Andrew; Ji, Shunchuan; Pan, Baotian

    2015-01-01

    Marine accumulations of terrigenous sediment are widely assumed to accurately record climatic- and tectonic-controlled mountain denudation and play an important role in understanding late Cenozoic mountain uplift and global cooling. Underpinning this is the assumption that the majority of sediment eroded from hinterland orogenic belts is transported to and ultimately stored in marine basins with little lag between erosion and deposition. Here we use a detailed and multi-technique sedimentary provenance dataset from the Yellow River to show that substantial amounts of sediment eroded from Northeast Tibet and carried by the river's upper reach are stored in the Chinese Loess Plateau and the western Mu Us desert. This finding revises our understanding of the origin of the Chinese Loess Plateau and provides a potential solution for mismatches between late Cenozoic terrestrial sedimentation and marine geochemistry records, as well as between global CO2 and erosion records. PMID:26449321

  2. Loess Plateau storage of Northeastern Tibetan Plateau-derived Yellow River sediment.

    PubMed

    Nie, Junsheng; Stevens, Thomas; Rittner, Martin; Stockli, Daniel; Garzanti, Eduardo; Limonta, Mara; Bird, Anna; Andò, Sergio; Vermeesch, Pieter; Saylor, Joel; Lu, Huayu; Breecker, Daniel; Hu, Xiaofei; Liu, Shanpin; Resentini, Alberto; Vezzoli, Giovanni; Peng, Wenbin; Carter, Andrew; Ji, Shunchuan; Pan, Baotian

    2015-10-09

    Marine accumulations of terrigenous sediment are widely assumed to accurately record climatic- and tectonic-controlled mountain denudation and play an important role in understanding late Cenozoic mountain uplift and global cooling. Underpinning this is the assumption that the majority of sediment eroded from hinterland orogenic belts is transported to and ultimately stored in marine basins with little lag between erosion and deposition. Here we use a detailed and multi-technique sedimentary provenance dataset from the Yellow River to show that substantial amounts of sediment eroded from Northeast Tibet and carried by the river's upper reach are stored in the Chinese Loess Plateau and the western Mu Us desert. This finding revises our understanding of the origin of the Chinese Loess Plateau and provides a potential solution for mismatches between late Cenozoic terrestrial sedimentation and marine geochemistry records, as well as between global CO2 and erosion records.

  3. Loess Plateau storage of Northeastern Tibetan Plateau-derived Yellow River sediment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nie, Junsheng; Stevens, Thomas; Rittner, Martin; Stockli, Daniel; Garzanti, Eduardo; Limonta, Mara; Bird, Anna; Andò, Sergio; Vermeesch, Pieter; Saylor, Joel; Lu, Huayu; Breecker, Daniel; Hu, Xiaofei; Liu, Shanpin; Resentini, Alberto; Vezzoli, Giovanni; Peng, Wenbin; Carter, Andrew; Ji, Shunchuan; Pan, Baotian

    2015-10-01

    Marine accumulations of terrigenous sediment are widely assumed to accurately record climatic- and tectonic-controlled mountain denudation and play an important role in understanding late Cenozoic mountain uplift and global cooling. Underpinning this is the assumption that the majority of sediment eroded from hinterland orogenic belts is transported to and ultimately stored in marine basins with little lag between erosion and deposition. Here we use a detailed and multi-technique sedimentary provenance dataset from the Yellow River to show that substantial amounts of sediment eroded from Northeast Tibet and carried by the river's upper reach are stored in the Chinese Loess Plateau and the western Mu Us desert. This finding revises our understanding of the origin of the Chinese Loess Plateau and provides a potential solution for mismatches between late Cenozoic terrestrial sedimentation and marine geochemistry records, as well as between global CO2 and erosion records.

  4. [Regional spatial patterns of water circumstances in loess plateau area based GIS].

    PubMed

    Hu, Liangjun; Shao, Ming'an

    2004-11-01

    Based on the integration of GIS and geo-synthesis analysis, the water circumstances for plant growth in the Shaanxi Loess Plateau area were studied and a map reflecting regional water circumstances at the scale of 1:500,000 was made. The results showed that the water circumstances for plant growth in the Loess Plateau area were affected by the integration of precipitation soil texture, loess deposition, geomorphology and coverage, and could be measured by sub-indicators from the mentioned aspects. The index from the view point of plant development was used for the water circumstance assessment. The water circumstances of the Loess Plateau including forest zone, shrub zone and grassland zone appeared a complex spatial mosaic structure, and the main of the plateau was suitable for forestry which meant the plateau had an expected potential for eco-restoration.

  5. Bacterial Community Responses to Soils along a Latitudinal and Vegetation Gradient on the Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Quanchao; Dong, Yanghong; An, Shaoshan

    2016-01-01

    Soil bacterial communities play an important role in nutrient recycling and storage in terrestrial ecosystems. Loess soils are one of the most important soil resources for maintaining the stability of vegetation ecosystems and are mainly distributed in northwest China. Estimating the distributions and affecting factors of soil bacterial communities associated with various types of vegetation will inform our understanding of the effect of vegetation restoration and climate change on these processes. In this study, we collected soil samples from 15 sites from north to south on the Loess Plateau of China that represent different ecosystem types and analyzed the distributions of soil bacterial communities by high-throughput 454 pyrosequencing. The results showed that the 142444 sequences were grouped into 36816 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) based on 97% similarity. The results of the analysis showed that the dominant taxonomic phyla observed in all samples were Actinobacteria, Proteobacteria, Chloroflexi, Acidobacteria and Planctomycetes. Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria were the two most abundant groups in all samples. The relative abundance of Actinobacteria increased from 14.73% to 40.22% as the ecosystem changed from forest to sandy, while the relative abundance of Proteobacteria decreased from 35.35% to 21.40%. Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria had significant correlations with mean annual precipitation (MAP), pH, and soil moisture and nutrients. MAP was significantly correlated with soil chemical and physical properties. The relative abundance of Actinobacteria, Proteobacteria and Planctomycetes correlated significantly with MAP, suggesting that MAP was a key factor that affected the soil bacterial community composition. However, along with the MAP gradient, Chloroflexi, Bacteroidetes and Cyanobacteria had narrow ranges that did not significantly vary with the soil and environmental factors. Overall, we conclude that the edaphic properties and/or vegetation

  6. Bacterial Community Responses to Soils along a Latitudinal and Vegetation Gradient on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Quanchao; Dong, Yanghong; An, Shaoshan

    2016-01-01

    Soil bacterial communities play an important role in nutrient recycling and storage in terrestrial ecosystems. Loess soils are one of the most important soil resources for maintaining the stability of vegetation ecosystems and are mainly distributed in northwest China. Estimating the distributions and affecting factors of soil bacterial communities associated with various types of vegetation will inform our understanding of the effect of vegetation restoration and climate change on these processes. In this study, we collected soil samples from 15 sites from north to south on the Loess Plateau of China that represent different ecosystem types and analyzed the distributions of soil bacterial communities by high-throughput 454 pyrosequencing. The results showed that the 142444 sequences were grouped into 36816 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) based on 97% similarity. The results of the analysis showed that the dominant taxonomic phyla observed in all samples were Actinobacteria, Proteobacteria, Chloroflexi, Acidobacteria and Planctomycetes. Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria were the two most abundant groups in all samples. The relative abundance of Actinobacteria increased from 14.73% to 40.22% as the ecosystem changed from forest to sandy, while the relative abundance of Proteobacteria decreased from 35.35% to 21.40%. Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria had significant correlations with mean annual precipitation (MAP), pH, and soil moisture and nutrients. MAP was significantly correlated with soil chemical and physical properties. The relative abundance of Actinobacteria, Proteobacteria and Planctomycetes correlated significantly with MAP, suggesting that MAP was a key factor that affected the soil bacterial community composition. However, along with the MAP gradient, Chloroflexi, Bacteroidetes and Cyanobacteria had narrow ranges that did not significantly vary with the soil and environmental factors. Overall, we conclude that the edaphic properties and/or vegetation

  7. Carbon sequestration function of check-dams: a case study of the Loess plateau in China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yafeng; Chen, Liding; Gao, Yang; Wang, Shuai; Lü, Yihe; Fu, Bojie

    2014-11-01

    Check-dams are the most common structures for controlling soil erosion in the Loess Plateau. However, the effect of check-dams on carbon sequestration, along with sediment transport and deposition, has not been assessed over large areas. In this study, we evaluated the carbon sequestration function of check-dams in the Loess Plateau. The results indicate that there were approximately 11 000 check-dams distributed in the Loess Plateau, with an estimate of the amount of sediment of 21 × 10⁹ m³ and a soil organic carbon storage amount of 0.945 Pg. Our study reveals that check-dams in the Loess Plateau not only conserve soil and water but also sequester carbon.

  8. Tetraether biomarker records from a loess-paleosol sequence in the western Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Jia, Guodong; Rao, Zhiguo; Zhang, Jie; Li, Zhiyang; Chen, Fahu

    2013-01-01

    The ubiquitous occurrence of glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (GDGTs) in soils and their ability to record temperature and environmental changes offer the prospect of independently reconstructing continental paleotemperature and paleoenvironment from the loess-paleosol sequences (LPS) from the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). In this study we present records of GDGT-derived proxies for the last 70 kyr from the Yuanbao LPS, western CLP. Temperature record reconstructed from the cyclization and methylation index of branched tetraethers (MBT-CBT) displays that the onset of deglacial warming at ~20 kyr before present (BP) precedes the strengthening of summer monsoon at ~15 kyr BP, which is in agreement in timing with previous MBT-CBT temperature records from the southeastern CLP. The maximal deglacial warming of ~10°C is slightly higher than those in the southeastern CLP, perhaps due to the higher latitude and farther inland of the study site. The Branched and Isoprenoid Tetraether (BIT) index shows higher values (0.87-0.96 range, 0.93 average) in the glacial loess and lower values (0.76-0.91 range, 0.83 average) in the Holocene paleosols, with a steady decreasing trend since the early Holocene. The decreasing trend could suggest enhanced Thaumarchaeota relative to GDGT producing bacteria activity since the early Holocene, but other possibilities, such as preferential degradation of isoprenoid GDGTs or upward increase in living archaea relative to bacteria in the paleosol profile, cannot be fully excluded. Our results thus demonstrate the need of future study on microbial community structure in soil column and differential degradation of GDGT molecules.

  9. Time-Transgressive Nature of the Magnetic Susceptibility Record across the Chinese Loess Plateau at the Pleistocene/Holocene Transition

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Yajie; Wu, Naiqin; Li, Fengjiang; Huang, Linpei; Wen, Wenwen

    2015-01-01

    The loess stratigraphic boundary at the Pleistocene/Holocene transition defined by the magnetic susceptibility (MS) has previously been assumed to be synchronous with the Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 2/1 boundary, and approximately time-synchronous at different sections across the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). However, although this assumption has been used as a basis for proxy-age model of Chinese loess deposits, it has rarely been tested by using absolute dating methods. In this study, we applied a single-aliquot regenerative-dose (SAR) protocol to the 45–63 μm quartz grain-size fraction to derive luminescence ages for the last glacial and Holocene sections of three loess sections on a transect from southeast to northwest across the CLP. Based on the 33 closely spaced optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) samples from the three sections, OSL chronologies were established using a polynomial curve fit at each section. Based on the OSL chronology, the timing of the Pleistocene/Holocene boundary, as defined by rapid changes in MS values, is dated at ~10.5 ka, 8.5 ka and 7.5 ka in the Yaoxian section, Jingchuan and Huanxian sections respectively. These results are clearly inconsistent with the MIS 2/1 boundary age of 12.05 ka, and therefore we conclude that the automatic correlation of the Pleistocene/Holocene transition, as inferred from the MS record, with the MIS 2/1 boundary is incorrect. The results clearly demonstrate that the marked changes in MS along the southeast to northwest transect are time-transgressive among the different sites, with the timing of significant paleosol development as indicated by the MS record being delayed by 3–4 ka in the northwest compared to the southeast. Our results suggest that this asynchronous paleosol development during the last deglacial was caused by the delayed arrival of the summer monsoon in the northwest CLP compared to the southeast. PMID:26186443

  10. Time-Transgressive Nature of the Magnetic Susceptibility Record across the Chinese Loess Plateau at the Pleistocene/Holocene Transition.

    PubMed

    Dong, Yajie; Wu, Naiqin; Li, Fengjiang; Huang, Linpei; Wen, Wenwen

    2015-01-01

    The loess stratigraphic boundary at the Pleistocene/Holocene transition defined by the magnetic susceptibility (MS) has previously been assumed to be synchronous with the Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 2/1 boundary, and approximately time-synchronous at different sections across the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). However, although this assumption has been used as a basis for proxy-age model of Chinese loess deposits, it has rarely been tested by using absolute dating methods. In this study, we applied a single-aliquot regenerative-dose (SAR) protocol to the 45-63 μm quartz grain-size fraction to derive luminescence ages for the last glacial and Holocene sections of three loess sections on a transect from southeast to northwest across the CLP. Based on the 33 closely spaced optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) samples from the three sections, OSL chronologies were established using a polynomial curve fit at each section. Based on the OSL chronology, the timing of the Pleistocene/Holocene boundary, as defined by rapid changes in MS values, is dated at ~10.5 ka, 8.5 ka and 7.5 ka in the Yaoxian section, Jingchuan and Huanxian sections respectively. These results are clearly inconsistent with the MIS 2/1 boundary age of 12.05 ka, and therefore we conclude that the automatic correlation of the Pleistocene/Holocene transition, as inferred from the MS record, with the MIS 2/1 boundary is incorrect. The results clearly demonstrate that the marked changes in MS along the southeast to northwest transect are time-transgressive among the different sites, with the timing of significant paleosol development as indicated by the MS record being delayed by 3-4 ka in the northwest compared to the southeast. Our results suggest that this asynchronous paleosol development during the last deglacial was caused by the delayed arrival of the summer monsoon in the northwest CLP compared to the southeast.

  11. Land surface changes enhanced drought over the Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Xianli; Liu, Meixian

    2017-04-01

    In order to prevent the severe soil-water erosion over the Loess Plateau (LP), the Chinese Government initiated large scale ecological restoration (ER) in the past half century. The ER had successfully reduced soil erosion however also changed the land surface and altered the regional water-energy balance and consequently the dryness/wetness conditions, which in turn affects the vegetation. Knowledge of the impacts of the ER on dryness/wetness conditions is essential for developing future effective ER measures. For this purpose, a new drought index, the standardized wetness index (SWI), was proposed. The SWI can represent the dryness/wetness brought by solely climate change (denoted as SWIf in this case), and the dryness/wetness brought by the joint effects of climate change and land surface change (SWI_m). A total of 13 main catchments were selected to investigate the effects of ER on dryness/wetness conditions during 1961-2009 over LP. Results showed that the overall increasing parameter n (a parameter of the Budyko formulae) could be well explained by the ER measures (R^2=1) in these catchments. The SWIf and SWIm had similar fluctuating features and exhibited downward trends. However, the SWIm had larger negative trends than the SWI_f, implying that ER actions enhanced the drought conditions over the drying LP in the past decades. Therefore, we suggest that the government should manage and maintain the existing achievements but not further expand revegetation because of unintended consequences on drought vulnerability.

  12. Trends of temperature and precipitation extremes in the Loess Plateau Region of China, 1961-2010

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Qi-xiang; Wang, Meng-ben; Fan, Xiao-hui; Zhang, Feng; Zhu, Shi-zhong; Zhao, Tian-liang

    2017-08-01

    The spatial and temporal trends of 11 (7) temperature (precipitation) extreme indices are examined for the Loess Plateau Region (LPR) and its southeast and northwest sub-regions based on daily observations at 214 meteorological stations. Results show widespread significant warming trends for all the temperature extremes except for the diurnal temperature range (DTR) and the lowest daily maximum temperature in each year (TXn) during 1961-2010. When regionally averaged, a significant warming trend is detected for all the indices except for DTR and TXn in the past 50 years. Compared with the entire LPR, a significant warming trend is detected for all the indices except for DTR and TXn over the southeast sub-region of LPR; while it is observed for all the indices over the northwest. The trends for these indices are generally stronger in the northwest than in the southeast in the past 50 years. In contrast, for precipitation indices, only a small percentage of areas show significant drying or wetting trends and, when regionally averaged, none of them displays significant trends during the past 50 years. On the sub-regional scale, however, a larger percentage of areas show significant drying trends for precipitation indices generally over the southeast relative to the entire LPR, and noticeably, the sub-regional average heavy precipitation (R10mm) and wet day precipitation (PRCPTOT) display significant decreasing trends during the past 50 years; whereas only a slightly larger percentage of areas show significant wetting trends for these indices over the northwest compared with the entire LPR, and when sub-regionally averaged, none of the indices have significant trends during the past 50 years.

  13. Climate and land use controls on soil organic carbon in the loess plateau region of China.

    PubMed

    Dang, Yaai; Ren, Wei; Tao, Bo; Chen, Guangsheng; Lu, Chaoqun; Yang, Jia; Pan, Shufen; Wang, Guodong; Li, Shiqing; Tian, Hanqin

    2014-01-01

    The Loess Plateau of China has the highest soil erosion rate in the world where billion tons of soil is annually washed into Yellow River. In recent decades this region has experienced significant climate change and policy-driven land conversion. However, it has not yet been well investigated how these changes in climate and land use have affected soil organic carbon (SOC) storage on the Loess Plateau. By using the Dynamic Land Ecosystem Model (DLEM), we quantified the effects of climate and land use on SOC storage on the Loess Plateau in the context of multiple environmental factors during the period of 1961-2005. Our results show that SOC storage increased by 0.27 Pg C on the Loess Plateau as a result of multiple environmental factors during the study period. About 55% (0.14 Pg C) of the SOC increase was caused by land conversion from cropland to grassland/forest owing to the government efforts to reduce soil erosion and improve the ecological conditions in the region. Historical climate change reduced SOC by 0.05 Pg C (approximately 19% of the total change) primarily due to a significant climate warming and a slight reduction in precipitation. Our results imply that the implementation of "Grain for Green" policy may effectively enhance regional soil carbon storage and hence starve off further soil erosion on the Loess Plateau.

  14. Net primary productivity and its spatiotemporal patterns in Loess Plateau during 1981-2000

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Huading; Gao, Zhiqiang; Shi, Jun

    2005-09-01

    Based on the GLO-PEM simulated data, net primary productivity (NPP) and its spatiotemporal patterns in Loess Plateau were studied from 1981 to 2000. Our research indicated that the distribution of annual NPP in Loess Plateau was obviously different from east to west and from south to north. The average of annual total NPP is 0.15PgC, with an annual increasing rate of 0.01%. NPP decreased in most parts of Loess Plateau, with the largest decrease in the southeast of Shanxi Province and northeast of Loess Plateau, But it increased in the area along the boundary between Shaanxi Province, Inner Mongolia Province and Lanzhou Basin in the west of Loess Plateau, The early 1990s (1991-1995) is the time with fastest NPP increase. The variation of NPP is different seasonally. It decreased mostly in winter, with an annual rate of 0.57%, and increased with an annual rate of 0.51% from April to May.

  15. Climate and Land Use Controls on Soil Organic Carbon in the Loess Plateau Region of China

    PubMed Central

    Tao, Bo; Chen, Guangsheng; Lu, Chaoqun; Yang, Jia; Pan, Shufen; Wang, Guodong; Li, Shiqing; Tian, Hanqin

    2014-01-01

    The Loess Plateau of China has the highest soil erosion rate in the world where billion tons of soil is annually washed into Yellow River. In recent decades this region has experienced significant climate change and policy-driven land conversion. However, it has not yet been well investigated how these changes in climate and land use have affected soil organic carbon (SOC) storage on the Loess Plateau. By using the Dynamic Land Ecosystem Model (DLEM), we quantified the effects of climate and land use on SOC storage on the Loess Plateau in the context of multiple environmental factors during the period of 1961–2005. Our results show that SOC storage increased by 0.27 Pg C on the Loess Plateau as a result of multiple environmental factors during the study period. About 55% (0.14 Pg C) of the SOC increase was caused by land conversion from cropland to grassland/forest owing to the government efforts to reduce soil erosion and improve the ecological conditions in the region. Historical climate change reduced SOC by 0.05 Pg C (approximately 19% of the total change) primarily due to a significant climate warming and a slight reduction in precipitation. Our results imply that the implementation of “Grain for Green” policy may effectively enhance regional soil carbon storage and hence starve off further soil erosion on the Loess Plateau. PMID:24788559

  16. Joint analysis of changes in temperature and precipitation on the Loess Plateau during the period 1961-2011

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miao, Chiyuan; Sun, Qiaohong; Duan, Qingyun; Wang, Yafeng

    2016-11-01

    The Loess Plateau is particularly sensitive to climate change owing to its fragile ecological environment and geographic features. Here, we present a comprehensive analysis of the joint probabilistic characteristics and tendencies for bivariate and trivariate precipitation and temperature indices across the plateau, based on copula theory. The results show that the southeast region of the plateau had a higher potential for flooding: the 10-year return levels for the number of days with heavy and very heavy precipitation (R10mm, R20mm) and for the maximum 5-day precipitation value (RX5day) were higher in this region. The northwest region of the plateau, however, had a higher potential for drought, as reflected in the high and increasing 10-year return levels for the number of consecutive dry days (CDD) and the number of days with low precipitation (R1mm). In a joint analysis of precipitation indices, large areas of the Loess Plateau showed a relatively high risk of concurrent extreme precipitation events. However, the risk of concurrent extreme wet and dry events did not increase over the past half century, as demonstrated by nonsignificant changes in the probability of concurrently long CDD and long consecutive wet days (CWD). A trivariate copula analysis showed that some grid locations in the southeast of the plateau had an increasing risk of extreme precipitation events occurring at a high frequency and a high intensity, and forming a large percentage of the annual precipitation. Joint analysis of precipitation and temperature indices showed that the risk of higher temperatures and longer spells of consecutive dry days had increased over the past 50 years in grid locations scattered in the northern and southern regions: there were negative trends in the bivariate return periods for warm days (TX90p) and CDD. In addition, there was a decreased probability of concurrent long spells of consecutive wet days and colder temperatures, as demonstrated by the positive

  17. Digital mapping of loess in Northwest Germany based on satellite images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagner, Bianca

    2010-05-01

    Loess maps of various scales are important input data for advanced investigations of spatial loess properties such as variation in grain size, thickness and facies or study of loess provenance. Many representations of loess distribution in Northwest Germany are based on geological maps. Mostly these maps were created at the beginning of the last century. During this time especially thin loess covers were not incorporated in favour of underlying hard rocks or other Quaternary deposits. Due to the change in mapping policy at the end of the last century much more of the unconsolidated rocks, particularly with regard to loess, were displayed on the revised or updated maps. In this study the analysis of optical remote sensing data, ranging from visible light to the infrared, was tested to create a more realistic map of the loess distribution in Northwest Germany. The investigation area includes the loess along the northern loess boundary between Helmstedt and Minden and extends to Kassel and Goettingen in the South. Here, in southern Lower Saxony, northern Hesse and eastern North Rhine-Westphalia, loess and loess derivates are widely distributed apart from river beds, valley flanks, steep slopes and higher mountain ranges. The thickness of the loess cover, that is of Weichselian, sporadic of Saalian or Elsterian age, varies between few centimetres and about 20 m. The hard rocks of the study area were influenced by tectonic and halokinetic processes resulting in a complex and small-scale pattern of folds, depressions, horsts and grabens. Satellite images of the Landsat TM and ETM+ sensors, recorded between 1985 and 2008, were used for this study. After radiometric calibration and atmospheric and geometric correction of every dataset, coniferous forest, water and areas of high urbanization were masked. Then a synthetic file was made up of all remaining pixels, preferring the pixel, displaying the purest soil or bare rock. Various digital mapping techniques e.g. band

  18. The impacts of precipitation on land- atmosphere interaction over the semi-arid Loess Plateau region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    WANG, G.; Huang, J.

    2015-12-01

    To understand the impacts of precipitation on land-atmosphere interactions over semi-arid regions, 6-year continuous measurements data in situ were analyzed to investigate the influence of precipitation on soil moisture, evapotranspiration, energy partitioning and plant growing over Loess Plateau in northwest China. Results show that annual precipitation had obvious inter-annual variability, and the variation of soil moisture; evaporation and CO2 flux were very consistently with the annual cycle and intensity of precipitation. Soil moisture is the key participant in land-atmosphere interaction. However, as the water shortage and disconnected from water table over the semi-arid region, it is much more sensitive with precipitation compensation and evaporation feedbacks. Soil water can cooling the near surface air temperature by evaporation (latent heat flux), and also as the main energy partitioning consumer of net radiation in humid area or pluvial period in arid area, yet it was water limited in arid and semi-arid region, sensible heat flux predominated net radiation for enhancing the surface air temperature. We also found that soil moisture profile significantly affected the plant physiology, which was also consistent with the annual cycle and intensity of precipitation.

  19. Long-term streamflow response to climatic variability in the Loess Plateau, China

    Treesearch

    Shenping Wang; Zhiqiang Zhang; Ge Sun; Steven G. McNulty; Huayong Zhang; Jianlao Li; Manliang Zhang

    2008-01-01

    The Loess Plateau region in northwestern China has experienced severe water resource shortages due to the combined impacts of climate and land use changes and water resource exploitation during the past decades. This study was designed to examine the impacts of climatic variability on streamflow characteristics of a 12-km2 watershed near Tianshui City, Gansu Province...

  20. Soil detachment by overland flow under different vegetation restoration models in the loess plateau of China

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Land use change has significant effects on soil properties and vegetation cover and thus probably affects soil detachment by overland flow. Few studies were conducted to evaluate the effect of restoration models on the soil detachment process in the Loess Plateau in the past decade during which a Gr...

  1. Macropore Flow and Mass Wasting of Gullies in the Loess Plateau, China

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Due to the extensive gullying from historically excessive erosion in the loess plateau of China, much of this region is being removed from cropping and converted to native grass and shrub vegetation. The effects of this conversion on soil physical properties that result in preferential flow have not...

  2. [Coupling coordinated development of ecological-economic system in Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qing-Feng; Wu, Fa-Qi; Wang, Li; Wang, Jian

    2011-06-01

    Based on system theory, a coupling coordinated development model of ecological-economic system in Loess Plateau was established, and the evaluation criteria and basic types of the coordinated development of the ecological-economic system were proposed. The county-level coupling coordinated development of the ecological-economic system was also discussed, based on the local characteristics. The interactions between the ecological and economic systems in Loess Plateau could be divided into four stages, i.e., seriously disordered development stage, mild-disordered development stage, low-level coordinated development stage, and high level well-coordinated development stage. At each stage, there existed a cyclic process of profit and loss-antagonist-running-dominant-synchronous development. The coupling development degree of the ecological-economic system in Loess Plateau was overall at a lower level, being about 62.7% of the counties at serious disorder, 30.1% of the counties at mild disorder, and 7.1% of the counties at low but coordinated level. The coupling development degree based on the model established in this study could better reflect the current social-economic and ecological environment situations, especially the status of coordination. To fully understand the coupling of ecological-economic system and to adopt appropriate development mode would be of significance to promote the county-level coordinated development in Loess Plateau.

  3. Temporal variation in soil detachment under different land uses in the Loess Plateau of China

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Measurements of temporal variations in soil detachability under different land uses are badly needed to develop new algorithms or evaluate the existing ones for temporal adjustment of soil detachability in continuous soil erosion models. Few studies were conducted in the Loess Plateau to quantify te...

  4. Terrace effects on soil erosion processes in a watershed of the loess plateau

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Terraces in crop fields are one of the most important soil and water conservation measures that affect runoff and erosion processes in a watershed. In this paper, terrace effects on soil erosion and sediment transport in the upstream and middle sections of the Weihe River basin in the Loess Plateau ...

  5. Evaluating and extending CLIGEN precipitation generation for the Loess Plateau of China

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Climate generator (CLIGEN), which is used in the United States, needs to be evaluated before used to a new region of the Loess Plateau of China. The objectives were to: (1) evaluate the reproducibility of CLIGEN in generating daily precipitation depth (R), as well as storm patterns including storm d...

  6. Evaluation of the MIKE SHE model for application in the Loess Plateau, China

    Treesearch

    Zhiqiang Zhang; Shenping Wang; Ge Sun; Steven G. McNulty; Huayong Zhang; Jianlao Li; Manliang Zhang; Eduard Klaghofer; Peter Strauss

    2008-01-01

    Quantifying the hydrologic responses to land use / land cover change and climate variability is essential for integrated sustainable watershed management in water limited regions such as the Loess Plateau in Northwestern China where an adaptive watershed management approach is being implemented. Traditional empirical modeling approach to quantifying the accumulated...

  7. Scale effects and variability of forest–water yield relationships on the Loess Plateau, China

    Treesearch

    Chao Bi; Huaxing Bi; Ge Sun; Yifang Chang; Lubo Gao

    2014-01-01

    The relationship between forests and water yield on the Loess Plateau is a concern to forest hydrologists and local governments. Most research indicates that forests reduce runoff but the degree of reduction is different at different sites. Data on precipitation, runoff depth, evapotranspiration and forest cover were collected for 67 watersheds through synthesizing...

  8. Dust provenance change of Chinese Loess Plateau during the past 7Ma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Hanzhi

    2017-04-01

    Aeolian deposit (e.g. loess, paleo-soil and Red Clay) in Chinese Loess Plateau is one of the most valuable climate archives on land in late Cenozoic. Surveying the origin of these aeolian sediments is essential for the interpretation of the climate proxies potentially over the past 25Ma. However, disputes still exist on whether or not there is shift of dust origin in tectonic time scale or glacial-interglacial time scale. Detrital zircon dating method is applied on aeolian sediments of Lantian site in south part of Chinese Loess Plateau, which is at the foot of Qinling Mountain in order to reveal the provenance evolution during the past 7Ma. The results indicate that the composition of aeolian sediments shifted at around 2.6 Ma. Detrital zircon age reveals that the tertiary Red Clay is mainly derived from the North Tibet Plateau and Qinling Mountain. This indicates that the origin area for the tertiary Red Clay is relative local. Quaternary Loess of this site is basically mixture of sediments from North Tibet Plateau and Gobi Altay Mountains. The composition of local sediments from Qinling Mountains is relatively low. Sediment in L1 layer contains the highest proportions of Gobi Altay Mountains material, which show completely different pattern from other loess sediments. Besides this, there are no consistent composition shifts between glacial and interglacial periods. The time of dust origin shift is in coincident with initiation of the Northern Hemisphere ice sheet. This suggests that the onset of the Northern Hemisphere ice sheet enhanced the surface erosion of the area of Gobi Altay Mountains. This process contributed more detrital material to be blown to the air. Furthermore, enhanced winter monsoon played an important role in the transportation of dust material. However, the reason for the unique characteristics of loess in L1 is not clear.

  9. Magnetostratigraphic age and monsoonal evolution recorded by the thickest Quaternary loess deposit of the Lanzhou region, western Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jun; Li, Jijun; Guo, Benhong; Ma, Zhenhua; Li, Xiaomiao; Ye, Xiyan; Yu, Hao; Liu, Jia; Yang, Cheng; Zhang, Shengda; Song, Chunhui; Hui, Zhengchuang; Peng, Tingjiang

    2016-05-01

    The loess-paleosol sequences of the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) are major paleoclimatic archives which document the evolution of the East Asian Monsoon (EAM) and changes in the Northern Hemisphere ice sheets during the Quaternary glacial-interglacial cycles. However, the mechanisms regulating the trend of EAM variations on a tectonic scale are unclear. The loess deposits of the western CLP, which have a close relationship with tectonics and climate, are much better-suited to exploring these mechanisms than those of the central CLP. However, studies of long-term EAM evolution from the western CLP have been hindered by the lack of long, accurately-dated sequences with high sediment accumulation rates. Here, we address this problem via high resolution magnetostratigraphic, magnetic susceptibility and grain-size analyses of a 416.2 m-long drill core located at Xijin Village, near Lanzhou. Paleomagnetic dating indicates that the basal age of the Xijin loess is ∼2.2 Ma. The χ and grain-size records reveal that the East Asian Summer Monsoon (EASM) and East Asian Winter Monsoon (EAWM) strengthened synchronously at ∼1.24 Ma. Subsequently, during interglacial periods, the EASM began to penetrate, and then dominate, in the Lanzhou region. This was followed by two stepwise uptrends, commencing at ∼0.87 and ∼0.62 Ma, which resulted in an increasingly moist interglacial climate in the region. We suggest that the uplift of the Tibetan Plateau was largely responsible for these three stepwise enhancements of the EASM. Overall, however, the long-term trend of strengthening in EAWM in the area may have been primarily caused by long-term global cooling from the Late Pliocene onwards.

  10. Heavy-mineral analysis and provenance of Yellow River sediments around the China Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Baotian; Pang, Hongli; Gao, Hongshan; Garzanti, Eduardo; Zou, Yu; Liu, Xiaopeng; Li, Fuqiang; Jia, Yunxia

    2016-09-01

    In its upper-middle reaches the Yellow River has high sand contents after traversing through large areas of desert and the China Loess Plateau. Understanding riverbed sediment composition in the channel is critical for the interpretation of the potential provenance, aeolian sand transport and the linkage between the Loess Plateau and the Yellow River. To address these issues, we collected 52 samples from the modern riverbed, proximal deserts, and major tributaries and used analyses of grain size, grain morphology, and heavy-mineral compositions, to establish the spatial distribution and characteristics of source regions and riverbed sediments. The heavy-mineral assemblages demonstrate significant variations for the different sections of the Yellow River. The riverbed samples from the upper reach are dominated by opaque minerals (limonite and magnetite), amphibole and epidote, with minor zircon, tourmaline and rutile. Riverbed sediments from the middle reach are garnet-rich, reflecting the widespread distribution of Mesozoic sandstones. This variability closely reflects the source regions. Our data show that seasonal tributaries (the ;Ten Great Gullies;) carrying detritus from the Ordos Plateau may account for the localized high garnet concentrations in the Inner Mongolia section of the upper reach. Scanning electron microscope (SEM) imaging of quartz grains show that the river sediments are characterized by composite microtextures acquired in both fluvial and eolian environments of the Hedong, Ulan Buh and Kubuq Deserts. The mineralogical composition in the upper reach (Lanzhou-Yinchuan) is similar to that of sediments in the Loess Plateau and Northeast Tibet Plateau (Western Lanzhou). However, the composition differs markedly from that in the Inner Mongolia section of the upper and middle reaches. This variation indicates that in the upper reach the Northeast Tibet Plateau contributes significant volumes of sediment to the Yellow River and Loess Plateau, but

  11. Simulation for Artificial Forest Succession in Hilly-gully Area of Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, J., Jr.; Zhao, Z.; Yang, Y.

    2015-12-01

    The wide and large afforestation caused the great changes of surface albedo, water cycles, soil compositions and regional climate conditions on the Loess Plateau. There was increasing evidence showed that many problems had been occurred since ecological protection program began. Whether the artificial forest would adapt to environmental conditions on Loess Plateau is still controversial. In this paper, LANDIS-II, a spatially explicit model which included extension modules such as succession, disturbance, seed propagation, forest management, carbon dynamics and climate change, was applied to simulate dynamic natural succession of forests for coming 300 years in hilly-gully area of Loess Plateau. The results showed that (1) During the advancement of succession, the study area was occupied by different communities and appeared different succession stage successively under the condition of without considering the disturbance; (2) The current artificial forest has changed from 93.31% of Robinia pseudoacacia to exit the forest community in 50 years; (3) Platycladus oriental was the dominant species of coniferous trees and Populus davidiana was the dominant species of deciduous trees; (4)During the late succession stage, Platycladus oriental replaced Pinus tabulaeformis becoming the largest areal proportion of dominant tree species. The simulating of the natural succession in hilly-gully area of Loess Plateau forests at large space and long term scales, could provide a scientific basis for rational allocation of forest resources and forest management. In addition, our work clarifies the challenges and opportunities for the application of the model in the artificial forest and in hilly-gully area of Loess Plateau, China.

  12. [Mechanisms of grass in slope erosion control in Loess sandy soil region of Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Zhao, Chun-Hong; Gao, Jian-En; Xu, Zhen

    2013-01-01

    By adopting the method of simulated precipitation and from the viewpoint of slope hydrodynamics, in combining with the analysis of soil resistance to erosion, a quantitative study was made on the mechanisms of grass in controlling the slope erosion in the cross area of wind-water erosion in Loess Plateau of Northwest China under different combinations of rainfall intensity and slope gradient, aimed to provide basis to reveal the mechanisms of vegetation in controlling soil erosion and to select appropriate vegetation for the soil and water conservation in Loess Plateau. The grass Astragalus adsurgens with the coverage about 40% could effectively control the slope erosion. This grass had an efficiency of more than 70% in reducing sediment, and the grass root had a greater effect than grass canopy. On bare slope and on the slopes with the grass plant or only the grass root playing effect, there existed a functional relation between the flow velocity on the slopes and the rainfall intensity and slope gradient (V = DJ(0.33 i 0.5), where V is flow velocity, D is the comprehensive coefficient which varies with different underlying surfaces, i is rainfall intensity, and J is slope gradient). Both the grass root and the grass canopy could markedly decrease the flow velocity on the slopes, and increase the slope resistance, but the effect of grass root in decreasing flow velocity was greater while the effect in increasing resistance was smaller than that of grass canopy. The effect of grass root in increasing slope resistance was mainly achieved by increasing the sediment grain resistance, while the effect of canopy was mainly achieved by increasing the slope form resistance and wave resistance. The evaluation of the soil resistance to erosion by using a conceptual model of sediment generation by overland flow indicated that the critical shear stress value of bare slope and of the slopes with the grass plant or only the grass root playing effect was 0.533, 1.672 and 0

  13. Genomic characterization and phylogenetic analysis of Chinese sacbrood virus isolated from Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Yu, H; Liu, T X; Wang, D

    2016-09-23

    The complete genomic RNA of the Chinese sacbrood virus (CSBV) strain, which infects the honeybees in the Loess plateau, was sequenced and analyzed. The CSBV-SX strain contains 8705 nucleotides, which includes a single large open reading frame (99-8681 nucleotides) encoding 2860 amino acids. A novel efficient identification method was used to investigate the samples infected by CSBV. The putative amino acid sequence alignment analysis showed that, except for some normal well characterized domains such as RNA helicase, RNA protease, and RNA-dependent RNA polymerase domains, a calicivirus coat protein domain was identified at amino acids 493-564. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that CSBV-SX was closely related to CSBV-BJ, and this result was supported by nucleotide multiple sequence alignment and protein multiple sequence alignment analysis results. These differences in the CSBV-SX strain may be related to virus adaptation to the xerothermic, low relative humidity, and strong ultraviolet radiation conditions in the Loess Plateau.

  14. Loess Plateau check dams can potentially sequester eroded soil organic carbon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Haicheng; Liu, Shuguang; Yuan, Wenping; Dong, Wenjie; Xia, Jiangzhou; Cao, Yaojun; Jia, Yanwei

    2016-06-01

    Check dams are special soil and water conservation structures in the Loess Plateau, China. They play an important role in intercepting sediments and soil organic carbon (SOC). However, the decomposition of intercepted SOC and the environmental regulations at check dams have not been investigated. We conducted several paired field experiments at both check dams and slope lands in the Yanhe Watershed of the Loess Plateau to examine the characteristics of SOC decomposition at check dams. On average, the SOC mineralization rate in slope lands was approximately three times higher than in check dams. Increased soil moisture and compaction in check dams can constrain carbon mineralization by limiting the oxygen availability of SOC and can isolate substrate carbon from heterotrophic microorganisms. Our results indicate that check dams display a considerable potential for eroded SOC sequestration via reducing the soil respiration rate and highlight the important implications of lateral carbon redistribution and human engineering projects when estimating regional or global ecosystem carbon cycles.

  15. Evapotranspiration measurement and crop coefficient estimation over a spring wheat Farmland ecosystem in the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Yang, Fulin; Zhang, Qiang; Wang, Runyuan; Zhou, Jing

    2014-01-01

    Evapotranspiration (ET) is an important component of the surface energy balance and hydrological cycle. In this study, the eddy covariance technique was used to measure ET of the semi-arid farmland ecosystem in the Loess Plateau during 2010 growing season (April to September). The characteristics and environmental regulations of ET and crop coefficient (Kc) were investigated. The results showed that the diurnal variation of latent heat flux (LE) was similar to single-peak shape for each month, with the largest peak value of LE occurring in August (151.4 W m(-2)). The daily ET rate of the semi-arid farmland in the Loess Plateau also showed clear seasonal variation, with the maximum daily ET rate of 4.69 mm day(-1). Cumulative ET during 2010 growing season was 252.4 mm, and lower than precipitation. Radiation was the main driver of farmland ET in the Loess Plateau, which explained 88% of the variances in daily ET (p<0.001). The farmland Kc values showed the obvious seasonal fluctuation, with the average of 0.46. The correlation analysis between daily Kc and its major environmental factors indicated that wind speed (Ws), relative humidity (RH), soil water content (SWC), and atmospheric vapor pressure deficit (VPD) were the major environmental regulations of daily Kc. The regression analysis results showed that Kc exponentially decreased with Ws increase, an exponentially increased with RH, SWC increase, and a linearly decreased with VPD increase. An experiential Kc model for the semi-arid farmland in the Loess Plateau, driven by Ws, RH, SWC and VPD, was developed, showing a good consistency between the simulated and the measured Kc values.

  16. Evapotranspiration Measurement and Crop Coefficient Estimation over a Spring Wheat Farmland Ecosystem in the Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Fulin; Zhang, Qiang; Wang, Runyuan; Zhou, Jing

    2014-01-01

    Evapotranspiration (ET) is an important component of the surface energy balance and hydrological cycle. In this study, the eddy covariance technique was used to measure ET of the semi-arid farmland ecosystem in the Loess Plateau during 2010 growing season (April to September). The characteristics and environmental regulations of ET and crop coefficient (Kc) were investigated. The results showed that the diurnal variation of latent heat flux (LE) was similar to single-peak shape for each month, with the largest peak value of LE occurring in August (151.4 W m−2). The daily ET rate of the semi-arid farmland in the Loess Plateau also showed clear seasonal variation, with the maximum daily ET rate of 4.69 mm day−1. Cumulative ET during 2010 growing season was 252.4 mm, and lower than precipitation. Radiation was the main driver of farmland ET in the Loess Plateau, which explained 88% of the variances in daily ET (p<0.001). The farmland Kc values showed the obvious seasonal fluctuation, with the average of 0.46. The correlation analysis between daily Kc and its major environmental factors indicated that wind speed (Ws), relative humidity (RH), soil water content (SWC), and atmospheric vapor pressure deficit (VPD) were the major environmental regulations of daily Kc. The regression analysis results showed that Kc exponentially decreased with Ws increase, an exponentially increased with RH, SWC increase, and a linearly decreased with VPD increase. An experiential Kc model for the semi-arid farmland in the Loess Plateau, driven by Ws, RH, SWC and VPD, was developed, showing a good consistency between the simulated and the measured Kc values. PMID:24941017

  17. The Characters of Dry Soil Layer on the Loess Plateau in China and Their Influencing Factors.

    PubMed

    Yan, Weiming; Deng, Lei; Zhong, Yangquanwei; Shangguan, Zhouping

    2015-01-01

    A dry soil layer (DSL) is a common soil desiccation phenomenon that generally forms at a particular depth in the soil profile because of climatic factors and poor land management, and this phenomenon can influence the water cycle and has been observed on the Loess Plateau of China and other similar regions around the world. Therefore, an investigation of the DSL formation depth (DSLFD), thickness (DSLT) and mean water content (MWDSL) on the Loess Plateau can provide valuable information. This paper synthesized 69 recent publications (1,149 observations of DSLs from 73 sites) that focused on DSLs in this region, and the results indicated that DSLs are significantly affected by climatic and vegetation factors. The mean annual precipitation had a significant positive relationship with DSLFD (p = 0.0003) and MWDSL (p<0.0001) and a negative relationship with DSLT (p = 0.0071). Crops had the lowest DSLT and highest MWDSL values compared with other vegetation types. A significant correlation was observed between the occurrence of DSLs and the years since planting for grasses, shrubs, trees and orchards, and the severity of DSLs increased with increasing planting years and wheat yield. Our results suggest that optimizing land-use management can mitigate DSL formation and development on the Loess Plateau. Understanding the dominant factors affecting DSLs will provide information for use in guidelines for the sustainable development of economies and restoration of natural environments experiencing water deficiencies.

  18. "Grain for Green" driven land use change and carbon sequestration on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Deng, Lei; Shangguan, Zhou-ping; Sweeney, Sandra

    2014-11-13

    Land-use change is widely considered to be a major factor affecting soil carbon (C) sequestration (ΔCs). This paper studied changes to soil C stocks (Cs) following the conversion of farmland to forest, shrub and grassland across the key area for implementing China's "Grain for Green"--the Loess Plateau. The results are based on a synthesis of 44 recent publications (including 424 observations at 70 sites) which has allowed us to further refine our understanding of the mechanisms driving the increase in Cs following farmland conversion. This synthesis suggests that the ΔCs potential of the Loess Plateau could reach 0.59 Tg yr(-1) based on an estimated annual average ΔCs rate of 0.29 Mg ha(-1) yr(-1). In the region's different rainfall zones both the main contributing factors and Cs dynamics varied. Across the entire Loess Plateau, Cs showed first an increasing (<5 yr) then a decreasing (6-10 yr) tendency only to increase (>10 yr) yet again. In addition, the ΔCs rates depended primarily on restoration age. This synthesis demonstrates that both the initial s Cs and the average annual temperature have a significant effect on ΔCs while the effect of land-use conversion type, rainfall zone, and average annual precipitation were minimal.

  19. Sustainable bioenergy production with little carbon debt in the Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wei; Peng, Cheng; Chen, Zhifen; Liu, Yue; Yan, Juan; Li, Jianqiang; Sang, Tao

    2016-01-01

    As a key strategy for mitigating global climate change, bioenergy production by reducing CO2 emissions plays an important role in ensuring sustainable development. However, land-use change by converting natural ecosystems into energy crop field could create a carbon debt at the beginning. Thus, the potential carbon debt calculation is necessary for determining a promising bioenergy crop production, especially in the region rich of marginal land. Here, we used high-resolution historical land-use data to identify the marginal land available and to evaluate the carbon debt of planting Miscanthus in the Loess Plateau, China. We found that there were 27.6 Mha for energy production and 9.7 Mha for ecological restoration, with total annual production of 0.41 billion tons of biomass. We also found that soil carbon sequestration and total CO2 mitigation were 9.3 Mt C year(-1) and 542 Mt year(-1), respectively. More importantly, the result showed that planting Miscanthus on marginal land in the Loess Plateau only took 0.97 years on average to repay the carbon debt. Our study demonstrated that Miscanthus production in suitable marginal land in the Loess Plateau can offer considerable renewable energy and mitigate climate change with little carbon debt. These results suggested that bioenergy production in the similar arid and semiarid region worldwide would contribute to carbon sequestration in the context of rapid climate change.

  20. The Characters of Dry Soil Layer on the Loess Plateau in China and Their Influencing Factors

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Weiming; Deng, Lei; Zhong, Yangquanwei; Shangguan, Zhouping

    2015-01-01

    A dry soil layer (DSL) is a common soil desiccation phenomenon that generally forms at a particular depth in the soil profile because of climatic factors and poor land management, and this phenomenon can influence the water cycle and has been observed on the Loess Plateau of China and other similar regions around the world. Therefore, an investigation of the DSL formation depth (DSLFD), thickness (DSLT) and mean water content (MWDSL) on the Loess Plateau can provide valuable information. This paper synthesized 69 recent publications (1,149 observations of DSLs from 73 sites) that focused on DSLs in this region, and the results indicated that DSLs are significantly affected by climatic and vegetation factors. The mean annual precipitation had a significant positive relationship with DSLFD (p = 0.0003) and MWDSL (p<0.0001) and a negative relationship with DSLT (p = 0.0071). Crops had the lowest DSLT and highest MWDSL values compared with other vegetation types. A significant correlation was observed between the occurrence of DSLs and the years since planting for grasses, shrubs, trees and orchards, and the severity of DSLs increased with increasing planting years and wheat yield. Our results suggest that optimizing land-use management can mitigate DSL formation and development on the Loess Plateau. Understanding the dominant factors affecting DSLs will provide information for use in guidelines for the sustainable development of economies and restoration of natural environments experiencing water deficiencies. PMID:26241046

  1. Prediction of aboveground grassland biomass on the Loess Plateau, China, using a random forest algorithm.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yinyin; Wu, Gaolin; Deng, Lei; Tang, Zhuangsheng; Wang, Kaibo; Sun, Wenyi; Shangguan, Zhouping

    2017-07-31

    Grasslands are an important component of terrestrial ecosystems that play a crucial role in the carbon cycle and climate change. In this study, we collected aboveground biomass (AGB) data from 223 grassland quadrats distributed across the Loess Plateau from 2011 to 2013 and predicted the spatial distribution of the grassland AGB at a 100-m resolution from both meteorological station and remote sensing data (TM and MODIS) using a Random Forest (RF) algorithm. The results showed that the predicted grassland AGB on the Loess Plateau decreased from east to west. Vegetation indexes were positively correlated with grassland AGB, and the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) acquired from TM data was the most important predictive factor. Tussock and shrub tussock had the highest AGB, and desert steppe had the lowest. Rainfall higher than 400 m might have benefitted the grassland AGB. Compared with those obtained for the bagging, mboost and the support vector machine (SVM) models, higher values for the mean Pearson coefficient (R) and the symmetric index of agreement (λ) were obtained for the RF model, indicating that this RF model could reasonably estimate the grassland AGB (65.01%) on the Loess Plateau.

  2. Adaptional evolution of trichome in Caragana korshinskii to natural drought stress on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Ning, Pengbo; Wang, Junhui; Zhou, Yulu; Gao, Lifang; Wang, Jun; Gong, Chunmei

    2016-06-01

    Caragana korshinskii is commonly employed to improve drought ecosystems on the Loess Plateau, although the molecular mechanism at work is poorly understood, particularly in terms of the plant's ability to tolerate drought stress. Water is the most severe limiting factor for plant growth on the Loess Plateau. The trichome is known to play an efficient role in reducing water loss through decreasing the rate of transpiration, so in this study, we focused on the trichome-related gene expression of ecological adaptation in C. korshinskii under low precipitation conditions. In order to explore the responses of trichomes to drought, we selected two experimental sites from wet to dry along the Loess Plateau latitude gradient for observation. Micro-phenomena through which trichomes grew denser and larger under reduced precipitation were observed using a scanning electron microscope; de novo transcriptomes and quantitative PCR were then used to explore and verify gene expression patterns of C. korshinskii trichomes. Results showed that GIS2,TTG1, and GL2 were upregulated (as key positive-regulated genes on trichome development), while CPC was downregulated (negative-regulated gene). Taken together, our data indicate that downstream genes of gibberellin and cytokinin signaling pathways, alongside several cytoskeleton-related genes, contribute to modulating trichome development to enhance transpiration resistance ability and increase the resistance to drought stress in C. korshinskii.

  3. Bacterial and Fungal Community Structures in Loess Plateau Grasslands with Different Grazing Intensities

    PubMed Central

    Huhe; Chen, Xianjiang; Hou, Fujiang; Wu, Yanpei; Cheng, Yunxiang

    2017-01-01

    The Loess Plateau of China is one of the most fragile ecosystems worldwide; thus, human production activities need to be conducted very cautiously. In this study, MiSeq high-throughput sequencing was applied to assess the relationship between bacterial and fungal community structures and changes in vegetation and soil physical and chemical properties induced by grazing, in four grasslands with different levels of grazing intensity (0, 2.67, 5.33, and 8.67 sheep/ha) in the semiarid region of the Loess Plateau. The relative abundances of the bacterial community in the grasslands with 2.67 and 5.33 sheep/ha were significantly higher than those in grasslands with 0 and 8.67 sheep/ha, and the fungal diversity was significantly lower for grasslands with 2.67 sheep/ha than for the other grasslands. Redundancy analysis (RDA) showed that plant biomass, nitrate, and total nitrogen have significant effects on bacterial community structure, whereas nitrate and total nitrogen also significantly affect fungal community structure. Variation partitioning showed that soil and plant characteristics influence the bacterial and fungal community structures; these characteristics explained 51.9 and 52.9% of the variation, respectively. Thus, bacterial and fungal community structures are very sensitive to grazing activity and change to different extents with different grazing intensities. Based on our findings, a grazing intensity of about 2.67 sheep/ha is considered the most appropriate in semiarid grassland of the Loess Plateau. PMID:28439265

  4. Bacterial and Fungal Community Structures in Loess Plateau Grasslands with Different Grazing Intensities.

    PubMed

    Huhe; Chen, Xianjiang; Hou, Fujiang; Wu, Yanpei; Cheng, Yunxiang

    2017-01-01

    The Loess Plateau of China is one of the most fragile ecosystems worldwide; thus, human production activities need to be conducted very cautiously. In this study, MiSeq high-throughput sequencing was applied to assess the relationship between bacterial and fungal community structures and changes in vegetation and soil physical and chemical properties induced by grazing, in four grasslands with different levels of grazing intensity (0, 2.67, 5.33, and 8.67 sheep/ha) in the semiarid region of the Loess Plateau. The relative abundances of the bacterial community in the grasslands with 2.67 and 5.33 sheep/ha were significantly higher than those in grasslands with 0 and 8.67 sheep/ha, and the fungal diversity was significantly lower for grasslands with 2.67 sheep/ha than for the other grasslands. Redundancy analysis (RDA) showed that plant biomass, nitrate, and total nitrogen have significant effects on bacterial community structure, whereas nitrate and total nitrogen also significantly affect fungal community structure. Variation partitioning showed that soil and plant characteristics influence the bacterial and fungal community structures; these characteristics explained 51.9 and 52.9% of the variation, respectively. Thus, bacterial and fungal community structures are very sensitive to grazing activity and change to different extents with different grazing intensities. Based on our findings, a grazing intensity of about 2.67 sheep/ha is considered the most appropriate in semiarid grassland of the Loess Plateau.

  5. Quantifying the effects of conservation practices on soil, water, and nutrients in the Loess Mesa Ravine Region of the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xiang-Zhou; Li, Mei-Juan; Liu, Bin; Kuang, Shang-Fu; Xu, Shi-Guo

    2012-05-01

    A large number of soil and water conservation programs have been implemented on the Loess Plateau of China since the 1950s. To comprehensively assess the merits and demerits of the conservation practices is of great importance in further supervising the conservation strategy for the Loess Plateau. This study calculates the impact factors of conservation practices on soil, water, and nutrients during the period 1954-2004 in the Nanxiaohegou Catchment, a representative catchment in the Loess Mesa Ravine Region of the Loess Plateau, China. Brief conclusions could be drawn as follows: (1) Soil erosion and nutrient loss had been greatly mitigated through various conservation practices. About half of the total transported water and 94.8 % of the total transported soil and nutrients, had been locally retained in the selected catchment. The soil retained from small watersheds do not only form large-scale fertile farmland but also safeguard the Yellow River against overflow. (2) Check dam was the most appropriate conservation practice on the Loess Plateau. In the selected catchment, more than 90 % of the retained soil and water were accomplished by the dam farmland, although the dam farmland occupied only 2.3 % of the total area of all conservation measures. Retention abilities of the characteristic conservation practices were in the following order: dam farmland > terrace farmland > forest land and grassland. (3) The conservation practices were more powerful in retaining sediment than in reducing runoff from the Loess Plateau, and the negative effects of the conservation practices on reducing water to the Yellow River were relatively slight.

  6. Non-Magnetic Factors Affecting Magnetic Susceptibility of the Loess-Paleosol Sequences in the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, H.; Feng, Z.

    2009-12-01

    Several different proposals have been adopted to explain the linkage between the magnetic susceptibility of loess-paleosol sequences and the associated past climate. First, the intensity of dustfall controlled the variation in the susceptibility. Second, the degree of pedogenesis controlled the variation. A third proposal states that the susceptibility signal is a result of the competing processes between pedogenic enhancement and detrital inheritance. This paper examines the acceptability as the summer monsoon proxy from nonmagnetic perspectives. Several conclusions can be drawn from our data. First, clay translocation within the Last Interglacial paleosol S1 profiles must have moved some of the magnetic minerals downward so that the susceptibility reflects only the post-translocation distribution of the magnetic susceptibility-producing minerals. Second, the best-developed paleosol S1S3 (equivalent to MIS 5e) at most of the sections studied is not well expressed by the magnetic susceptibility because this paleosol developed in underlying coarse loess (L2) and coarse textures tend to lower the susceptibility. Third, carbonate concentration is negatively correlated with the magnetic susceptibility or suppresses the magnetic susceptibility peak when the susceptibility enhancement exceeds the carbonate dilution effect. It should be stressed that the susceptibility signal and its contributors in eolian sequences can be site- and time-dependent within the Chinese Loess Plateau. A stronger eolian component northwestward and a stronger pedogenic component southeastward are the general trends, but the trends can be complicated by those site- and time-dependent factors. Therefore, a more comprehensive model is needed to more precisely address the relationship between the paleoclimate and the proxy.

  7. Spatiotemporal analysis of multiscalar drought characteristics across the Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Zhipeng; Wang, Yunqiang; Shao, Mingan; Jia, Xiaoxu; Li, Xuelin

    2016-03-01

    Drought is the most widespread and destructive hazard in arid and semiarid regions, with behaviors that become more complicated under climate change. To provide an overall view of drought conditions across the Loess Plateau of China, two multiscalar drought indices, the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) and the Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI), were used to identify the regional spatiotemporal characteristics of drought conditions from 1957 to 2012. Climatic data from 54 meteorological stations across the region were used to calculate the SPI and SPEI time series at 1-, 3-, 6-, 12- and 24-month time scales. Subregions with independent drought characteristics and the corresponding representative meteorological stations were identified by principal component analysis to facilitate regional drought monitoring. A temporal trend of drought severity over a 12-month time scale, as detected by the Mann-Kendall test, was mapped for the entire region. The intensity of the increasing trend of drought severity based on the SPEI was weaker than that based on the SPI. The area with a significant increasing trend of drought severity based on the SPEI was only found in the southwest of the region and was much smaller than that based on the SPI. The temporal behavior of drought frequency from January to December differed over different time scales and levels of drought severity. The regional distributions of the drought frequency were mapped for different months. Generally, the drought frequency spatially decreased from southeast to northwest and was higher in the middle of the winter, late spring and early summer. While the drought-hit area also changed with time, it was generally within the central and northwest areas of the region. Drought behaviors identified by the SPI and SPEI also changed with different time scales. Clear differences were also found among the drought characteristics identified by SPI, SPEI and the self-calibrated Palmer Drought

  8. Surface Energy Budget Characteristics and Surface Energy Imbalance over Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Hongyu; Zhang, Qiang; Guo, Weidong; Fu, Congbin; Shi, Jinsen

    2013-04-01

    Field observation of land-surface processes is a fundamental approach to quantitatively measure mass and energy exchanges between the land surface and the atmosphere. Chinese Loess Plateau, a unique landscape in the world, is known as a transitional zone both in terms of climate and ecosystem. Land-surface process measurement helps to better understand the aridity trend and the ecosystem change over Chinese Loess Plateau. Based on data collected at the Semi-Arid Climate and Environment Observatory of Lanzhou University (SACOL) from June 2008 to June 2010, we analyzed the characteristics of land surface radiation and energy budget in summer, as well as the surface energy imbalance issues over Chinese Loess Plateau. Main results are concluded as follows: (1)By studying impacts of different weather conditions on micrometeorological characteristics, the clouds and the precipitation contribute disturbances by about 25 to each component of energy balance. Weakening impact of clouds and precipitation on surface energy budget is much stronger than that in desert and Gobi region. Furthermore, it shows that the mean climatic characteristics in summer relatively close to those of cloudy days. (2)To investigate the land surface energy imbalance over the Loess Plateau, we estimated the heat storage associated with change of air temperature and humidity as well as the energy stored in plants due to the photosynthesis, which determines the vertical water transport and soil temperature at the shadow soil layers. The peaks of averaged diurnal variation of energy storages by air and plant photosynthesis reach 1.5 and 2.0 W m-2 respectively. In addition, the peak of diurnal variation of mean heat flux transferred by vertical water movement can reach nearly 8.0 W m-2. The closure of energy balance is improved from 88.1% to 89.6% by adding the three additional energy terms mentioned above to the energy balance equation. We found that the special climate background and vegetation

  9. Accumulation and erosion of aeolian sediments in the northeastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau and implications for provenance to the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Xiang-Jun; Xiao, Guoqiao; E, Chongyi; Li, Xiangzhong; Lai, Zhongping; Yu, Lupeng; Wang, Zhong

    2017-03-01

    The northern and northeastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP) is regarded as one important source region of the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). However, how the fine grain sediments in this region were transported to the CLP remains debatable. In this study, we dated aeolian sediments, alluviums, beach sediments, and sand wedges in the northeastern QTP using optical dating, combined with previously reported ages, explored the aeolian sediment deposition patterns in this region. The dating results shown that aeolian sediments mainly accumulated during the marine isotope stage (MIS) 3 and since the last deglaciation, alluvial sediments mainly deposited during the middle to late MIS 3 (between ∼40 ka and 22 ka), and sand wedges formed during the MIS 4 and MIS 2 cold intervals. Based on the sedimentary stratigraphic characteristics and existing optical dating chronologies, we propose that fine grain sediments in the northern and northeastern QTP were eroded and carried to the CLP by westerly wind during last glacial and stadial cold stages. However, during last interglacial and interstadial warm stages, aeolian sediments deflated from western barren lands and deserts were mainly trapped in the northeastern QTP, and some were transported to the Alax arid zone or Yinchuan-Hetao plain by rivers that flow out of QTP, then transported to the CLP by northwesterly Asian winter monsoon (AWM). This cold stage westerly wind transport, warm stage rivers plus AWM transport pattern has existed at least since the late middle Pleistocene.

  10. Ecologically asynchronous agricultural practice erodes sustainability of the Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tianming; Wu, Jianguo; Kou, Xiaojun; Oliver, Chadwick; Mou, Pu; Ge, Jianping

    2010-06-01

    Sustainability of agricultural landscapes depends largely on land-use practices. As one of the most productive and widespread agricultural soils, loess is often deep and easily eroded, posing grand challenges for environmental sustainability around the world. One prime example is the Loess Plateau of China, which has been cultivated for more than 7500 years. Based on long-term data sets, this study demonstrates that the dominant agricultural practice, winter wheat cropping, continues to be the primary driver for the massive soil erosion and landscape modifications on the Loess Plateau. This traditional farming system is asynchronous with the dynamic rhythm between natural vegetation and climate in the region. In particular, the long summer fallow period for winter wheat fields is concurrent with the heavy-rainstorm season, which greatly accelerates soil erosion. Our finding indicates that common land-use practices that have lasted for thousands of years in China are not environmentally sustainable. Agriculture in this region has relied primarily on the continuous "mining" of the soil for the past several thousand years but does not have a one-thousand-year future because of myriad environmental and socioeconomic factors associated with soil erosion. To contain soil erosion and promote sustainability on the Loess Plateau, therefore, a change in the agricultural regime is needed to make sure that current and future agricultural practices follow the vegetation-climate rhythm. In addition, to achieve environmental, economic, and social sustainability in this region, multifunctional land-use planning is required to increase landscape diversity and functions (e.g., proper arrangement of crop fields, orchards, and protected areas).

  11. Eocene Tibetan Plateau remnants preserved in the Northwest Himalaya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Beek, P. A.; van Melle, J.; Guillot, S.; Pêcher, A.; Reiners, P. W.; Nicolescu, S.; Latif, M.

    2009-04-01

    The northwest Himalaya shows strongly contrasting relief, opposing deeply incised mountain ranges characterized by extremely rapid exhumation and some of the highest peaks in the world (i.e., the Karakorum range and Nanga Parbat massif) to high-elevation, low-relief areas such as the 4000-m high Deosai plateau in northern Pakistan and the 5000-m high Tso Morari in Indian Ladakh. The origin and evolution of such plateau regions in the syntaxis of the most active continental collision in the world remain elusive. Here, we report the first low-temperature thermochronology (apatite fission-track, apatite and zircon (U-Th)/He) data from the Deosai plateau and use thermal history modelling to show that it has undergone continuous slow (≤ 200 m/Myr) denudation and has thus remained tectonically stable for the last 35 Myr at least. The inferred history of constant slow denudation of the plateau contradicts the hypothesis that widespread low-relief surfaces in the northwest Himalaya result from efficient, km-scale glacial erosion during Quaternary times; such erosion would have been recorded as a phase of rapid recent denudation that is not observed in the data. Slow continuous denudation since Eocene times, i.e. only 15-20 Myr after the onset of India-Asia collision implies that the Deosai plateau surface developed early in the Himalayan history and limits the phase of orogenic relief growth in the Ladakh-Kohistan arc to the early Paleogene. Although thermochronology data do not directly record surface uplift, the simplest explanation for the inferred constant denudation rates is that the plateau had reached its present-day elevation already during the Eocene, as a later phase of surface uplift would have triggered an erosional response that would have been recorded by the thermochronology data. We use morphological analyses to characterise such plateaux and identify them at the scale of the entire northwest Himalaya and compare our thermochronological data with

  12. Soil moisture decline due to afforestation across the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jia, Xiaoxu; Shao, Ming'an; Zhu, Yuanjun; Luo, Yi

    2017-03-01

    The Loess Plateau of China is a region with one of the most severe cases of soil erosion in the world. Since the 1950s, there has been afforestation measure to control soil erosion and improve ecosystem services on the plateau. However, the introduction of exotic tree species (e.g., R. pseudoacacia, P. tabulaeformis and C. korshinskii) and high-density planting has had a negative effect on soil moisture content (SMC) in the region. Any decrease in SMC could worsen soil water shortage in both the top and deep soil layers, further endangering the sustainability of the fragile ecosystem. This study analyzed the variations in SMC following the conversion of croplands into forests in the Loess Plateau. SMC data within the 5-m soil profile were collected at 50 sites in the plateau region via field survey, long-term in-situ observations and documented literature. The study showed that for the 50 sites, the depth-averaged SMC was much lower under forest than under cropland. Based on in-situ measurements of SMC in agricultural plots and C. korshinskii plots in 2004-2014, SMC in the 0-4 m soil profile in both plots declined significantly (p < 0.01) during the growing season. The rate of decline in SMC in various soil layers under C. korshinskii plots (-0.008 to -0.016 cm3 cm-3 yr-1) was much higher than those under agricultural plots (-0.004 to -0.005 cm3 cm-3 yr-1). This suggested that planting C. korshinskii intensified soil moisture decline in China's Loess Plateau. In the first 20-25 yr of growth, the depth-averaged SMC gradually decreased with stand age in R. pseudoacacia plantation, but SMC somehow recovered with increasing tree age over the 25-year period. Irrespectively, artificial forests consumed more deep soil moisture than cultivated crops in the study area, inducing soil desiccation and dry soil layer formation. Thus future afforestation should consider those species that use less water and require less thinning for sustainable soil conservation without

  13. Spatial analysis of Budovar stream catchment (Srem Loess Plateau, Serbia) in a tectonically active region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jovanovic, Mladjen; Rvovic, Ivan; Sorak, Rada; Petrovic, Milos

    2016-04-01

    Budovar is the far longest stream on Srem Loess Plateau, with a length of a 52 km, and catchment area of 245 km2. Budovar stream drains a quite complex landscape in terms of generally flat loess plateau, with elevations decreasing gradually southeastward - from 213 m at slopes of Fru\\vska Gora Mountain to 70,9 m at the confluence with Danube river. The youngest (Pleistocene/Holocene) sedimentary formations in the catchment vary from slope loess on Fru\\vska Gora Mtn. in upper part, through typical plateau loess in middle part, and the finest bog-sediments in tectonic depressions in lower part. These deposits lie over the bog-lake-terrestrial sediments with thickness over 100 m. According the geodetic measurements, uplift of Fru\\vska Gora Mtn., which has been the strongest during the Middle Pleistocene, is still present, with rates of up to 1 mm/y in contrast of general uplift of the area, subsidence is recorded in two distinct parts of the catchment. Spatial analysis is done using a DEM, generated in ArcGIS 10.0 from the elevation points, 10 m contours and stream coverage available in 1:25.000 topographical maps. Both longitudinal and cross-section profiles of the valley reflect the influence of tectonic distortions and climatic fluctuations. Valleys in Budovar catchment have composite character - the valleys cross-sections vary from deep incised V-shape, reversed trapezoid shape and completely flat valleys in tectonic depressions. Moreover, there is almost no correlation between the shape of cross-sectional profiles and the direction of curvature of the main valley's long axis (left/right or straight), suggesting that the tectonic activity has the key role in shaping. The width of valleys in Budovar catchment area is in sharp contrast with present stream discharge, which suggests strong climate fluctuations since Upper Pleistocene. The longitudinal profiles also shows signs of kickpoints and some short reaches with increasing elevation in the flow direction. Key

  14. Investigation of Factors Controlling the Regional-Scale Distribution of Dried Soil Layers Under Forestland on the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yunqiang; Shao, Ming'an; Liu, Zhipeng; Warrington, David N.

    2012-03-01

    The effects of drought on plants have been extensively documented in water-limited systems. However, its effects on soil are seldom considered because of the lack of comparative data on profile soil water content (SWC). A dried soil layer (DSL) within the soil profile is a typical indication of soil drought caused by climate change and/or ill-advised human practices. The regional spatial variability, dominant factors, and predictive models of DSL under forestland were explored in the present study. SWC at 0-600 cm of 125 pre-selected sites across the entire Loess Plateau was measured, and then two evaluation indices of DSL (the thickness of DSL, DSLT; SWC within the DSL, DSL-SWC) were calculated. The corresponding soil, topography, plant, and meteorology factors (a total of 28 variables) for each site were also measured. Most of the forestlands across the Plateau had DSL formation within the soil profile (102 of 125 study sites). The DSL levels were considered to be serious, with DSLT generally exceeding 300 cm with a mean DSL-SWC of only 7.9% (field capacity (FC) = 18.1%). DSLT and DSL-SWC indicated a moderate and strong spatial dependence with ranges of 69 and 513 km, respectively. Thicker DSLs were mainly distributed in the center of the Plateau, whereas thinner DSLs were observed in the southern and southeastern parts. In contrast, DSL-SWC distributions demonstrated an obvious decreasing trend from the southeast to the northwest. Dominant factors affecting DSLT under forestlands were FC, bulk density, slope gradient, slope aspect, and capillary water content; while dominant factors for DSL-SWC were FC, aridity, sand content, altitude, vegetation coverage, and evaporation. Moreover, predictive models developed by multiple regressions were relatively accurate when predicting DSLs, especially DSL-SWC. Understanding these associations with DSLs formation in forestland is helpful for efficient water resource management, silviculture, and eco-environment restoration

  15. Sedimentary basin framework of Exmouth Plateau, northwest Australia

    SciTech Connect

    Boyd, R.; Exon, N.; Williamson, P.

    1987-05-01

    The Exmouth Plateau is a marginal plateau lying off northwest Australia. Water depths range between 800 m and 4000 m, and the area shallower than 2000 m covers approximately 150,000 km/sup 2/. The plateau consists of rifted and deeply subsided continental crust, with a Phanerozoic sedimentary sequence around 10 km thick, deposited in the Canning and Carnarvon basins. The plateau is separated from the Northwest Shelf by the Kangaroo syncline and is bounded to the north, west, and south by oceanic crust of Cretaceous and Jurassic age. The present structural configuration of Exmouth Plateau was initiated by rifting in the Triassic to Middle Jurassic, followed by northwest-oriented sea floor spreading. The western margin has a normal rifted structure, while the southern margin structure was dominated by transform motion. The complex rifted and sheared northern margin contains at least one crustal block of post-breakup igneous origin. Below a rift onset unconformity of Neocomian age lies a thick Triassic paralic sequence to the south, while farther north the unconformity is of Callovian age and overlies a Jurassic sequence of Tethyan carbonates, coal measures, and volcanics. The post-breakup sequence consists of Late Jurassic-Cenomanian deltaic and shelf clastics, overlain by thin Late Cretaceous-Tertiary shallow marine to pelagic carbonates. Exmouth Plateau therefore represents classic rift to mature ocean stage development of a sediment-starved passive margin. The large fault blocks in the rifted Triassic-Jurassic sequences and large areal closures in the Cretaceous deltas encouraged petroleum exploration over the last two decades. The rifted section was shown to be gas prone, while the overlying section proved to be largely immature.

  16. Assessing and regulating the impacts of climate change on water resources in the Heihe watershed on the Loess Plateau of China

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Climate change can cause considerable changes in surface hydrology on the Loess Plateau. The objectives were to evaluate the potential impacts of climate change during 2010-2039 on surface hydrology (runoff, soil water contents and evapotranspiration) in the Heihe watershed on the Loess Plateau of C...

  17. [Relationships between soil organic carbon and environmental factors in gully watershed of the Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Wei, Xiao-Rong; Shao, Ming-An; Gao, Jian-Lun

    2008-10-01

    Understanding the distribution of organic carbon fractions in soils and their relationships with environmental factors are very important for appraising soil organic carbon status and assessing carbon cycling in the Loess Plateau. In this research, through field investigation and laboratory analysis, we studied the relationships between soil organic carbon and environmental factors in a gully watershed of the Loess Plateau. The environmental factors are landforms, land use conditions and soil types. The results showed that total soil organic carbon presented less variance, while high labile organic carbon presented greater variance. The variation coefficients of them are 34% and 43%, respectively, indicating that the variability of organic carbon in soils increased with the increasing of their activities. Total soil organic carbon, labile organic carbon, middle and high labile organic carbon were highly interrelated and presented similar distribution trend with environmental factors. Among different landforms, land uses, and soil types, the highest contents of organic carbon in different fractions were observed in plateau land, forest and farm lands, and black loessial soils, while the lowest contents of them were observed in gully bottom, grass land, and rubified soils, respectively. The relationships between organic carbon and environmental factors indicate that environmental factors not only directly influence the distribution of soil organic carbon, but also indirectly influence them through affecting the relationships among organic carbon fractions. The relationship between total organic carbon and labile organic carbon responses rapidly to environmental factors, while that between middle labile organic carbon and high labile organic carbon responses slowly to environmental factors.

  18. Can seed removal through soil erosion explain the scarcity of vegetation in the Chinese Loess Plateau?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiao, Juying; Han, Luyan; Jia, Yanfeng; Wang, Ning; Lei, Dong; Li, Linyu

    2011-09-01

    Seed removal by water erosion may explain the sparse vegetation cover in systems like the Chinese Loess Plateau, which is characterized by severe soil erosion. The seeds from 16 species found on the plateau were examined in relation to the likelihood of their removal by erosion, as tested by rainfall simulation experiments. The experiments were performed over 1-m 2 plots with slopes of 10°, 15°, 20° and 25° for 60 min at intensities of 50 mm h -1, 100 mm h -1 and 150 mm h -1, respectively. Seed loss occurred at simulated rainfall intensities of 100 mm h -1 and 150 mm h -1, with total seed loss rates of 26-33% and 59-67%, respectively. Most seeds were displaced, even at 50 mm h -1. The degrees of seed loss and displacement varied among species. These data, in combination with data from our former research on propagule, seedling and population development in these species, indicate that the species with high seed loss rates either compensate by having a soil seed bank that produces seedlings during the growing season or reproduce by vegetative propagation; the species with no seed loss are still sparsely distributed. Seed germination and seedling survival seem to be more important than seed loss in determining establishment in these regions of the Loess Plateau. Seed translocation by water erosion, however, contributes to the observed distribution of vegetation in this geographic region.

  19. Reassessment of soil erosion on the Chinese loess plateau: were rates overestimated?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Jianlin; Govers, Gerard

    2014-05-01

    Several studies have estimated regional soil erosion rates (rill and interrill erosion) on the Chinese loess plateau using an erosion model such as the RUSLE (e.g. Fu et al., 2011; Sun et al., 2013). However, the question may be asked whether such estimates are realistic: studies have shown that the use of models for large areas may lead to significant overestimations (Quinton et al., 2010). In this study, soil erosion rates on the Chinese loess plateau were reevaluated by using field measured soil erosion data from erosion plots (216 plots and 1380 plot years) in combination with a careful extrapolation procedure. Data analysis showed that the relationship between slope and erosion rate on arable land could be well described by erosion-slope relationships reported in the literature (Nearing, 1997). The increase of average erosion rate with slope length was clearly degressive, as could be expected from earlier research. However, for plots with permanent vegetation (grassland, shrub, forest) no relationship was found between erosion rates and slope gradient and/or slope length. This is important, as it implies that spatial variations of erosion on permanently vegetated areas cannot be modeled using topographical functions derived from observations on arable land. Application of relationships developed for arable land will lead to a significant overestimation of soil erosion rates. Based on our analysis we estimate the total soil erosion rate in the Chinese Loess plateau averages ca. 6.78 t ha-1 yr-1 for the whole loess plateau, resulting in a total sediment mobilisation of ca. 0.38 Gt yr-1. Erosion rates on arable land average ca. 15.10 t ha-1 yr-1. These estimates are 2 to 3 times lower than previously published estimates. The main reason why previous estimates are likely to be too high is that the values of (R)USLE parameters such as K, P and LS factor were overestimated. Overestimations of the K factor are due to the reliance of nomograph calculations, resulting

  20. Tree-ring based may-july temperature reconstruction since AD 1630 on the Western Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Song, Huiming; Liu, Yu; Li, Qiang; Gao, Na; Ma, Yongyong; Zhang, Yanhua

    2014-01-01

    Tree-ring samples from Chinese Pine (Pinus tabulaeformis Carr.) collected at Mt. Shimen on the western Loess Plateau, China, were used to reconstruct the mean May-July temperature during AD 1630-2011. The regression model explained 48% of the adjusted variance in the instrumentally observed mean May-July temperature. The reconstruction revealed significant temperature variations at interannual to decadal scales. Cool periods observed in the reconstruction coincided with reduced solar activities. The reconstructed temperature matched well with two other tree-ring based temperature reconstructions conducted on the northern slope of the Qinling Mountains (on the southern margin of the Loess Plateau of China) for both annual and decadal scales. In addition, this study agreed well with several series derived from different proxies. This reconstruction improves upon the sparse network of high-resolution paleoclimatic records for the western Loess Plateau, China.

  1. Tree-Ring Based May-July Temperature Reconstruction Since AD 1630 on the Western Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Song, Huiming; Liu, Yu; Li, Qiang; Gao, Na; Ma, Yongyong; Zhang, Yanhua

    2014-01-01

    Tree-ring samples from Chinese Pine (Pinus tabulaeformis Carr.) collected at Mt. Shimen on the western Loess Plateau, China, were used to reconstruct the mean May–July temperature during AD 1630–2011. The regression model explained 48% of the adjusted variance in the instrumentally observed mean May–July temperature. The reconstruction revealed significant temperature variations at interannual to decadal scales. Cool periods observed in the reconstruction coincided with reduced solar activities. The reconstructed temperature matched well with two other tree-ring based temperature reconstructions conducted on the northern slope of the Qinling Mountains (on the southern margin of the Loess Plateau of China) for both annual and decadal scales. In addition, this study agreed well with several series derived from different proxies. This reconstruction improves upon the sparse network of high-resolution paleoclimatic records for the western Loess Plateau, China. PMID:24690885

  2. An Experimental Simulation Method of Erosion Process on Gully Erosion in Loess Plateau in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Jianen; Zhang, Yuanxing

    2017-04-01

    In view of simulation difficultment of the field gully erosion process because of complex of rainfall runoff erosion mechanism and gully geometry a design means and experimentation technology and its verification test were given based on similarity theory and hydrodynamic principles. The basic ideas was that the erosion process of the field erosion gully was forecast by constructing similar model. The model and antetype should be in obedience to the same physical equations of rainfall, runoff, erosion, sediment transport, bed deformation and Soil water transport. The geometric, kinematical and dynamic similarity must be obeyed for these models. The primary similarity scale relation expressions were the ones of the geometric, rainfall, flow, erosion sediment transport and soil water movement similarity etc. The similarity of the hydraulic boundary was the necessary and sufficient condition between the model and the prototype. The gully prototype is one of Majiagou of Ansai county of Yanan City of Shaanxi Province in China. Its location is 36°53'55.75"N and 109°13'39.08"E. The model experiment wan carried out in State Key Laboratory of Soil Erosion and Dry land Farming On the Loess Plateau in Institute of Soil and Water Conservation of Northwest A&F University. First soil was selected by starting velocity similar. Second, the normal and scale 10 experiment model was built under complying with the similarities of geometric, rainfall, flow, erosion production sediment transport and bed deformation etc. The model hydraulic boundary from the prototype was the factor of the test process of rainfall. The experiment results indicated that the extreme rainstorm gully erosion process of the prototype could be reappeared. The equivalent rainfall process of gully prototype were that the rainfall intensity was 1.25 mm/min and the lasting time was 508 min and precipitation was 636mmn. Both the erosion amount and the erosion gully topography of the scale model were successfully

  3. Correlating check dam sedimentation and rainstorm characteristics on the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xungui; Wei, Xia; Wei, Ning

    2016-07-01

    On the Loess Plateau, China, check dams are necessary for soil and water conservation. In this study, the relationships between check dam sedimentation and storm characteristics were investigated, and rainstorm events for an area of data scarcity were reconstructed using optimal regression models. Four typical check dams of the Loess Plateau (the Shipanmao, Hualiang, No. 3 Guandigou, and No. 4 Guandigou dams) were selected for case studies. Soil profiles behind the four dams were divided into 21, 25, 31, and 31 layers, respectively. The one-to-one link between sediment layers and corresponding storm characteristics were considered based on the peak fallout of 137Cs and on the principle that higher flow corresponds to higher sediment deposition volume. Analysis showed that the layered sediment volume (V) was closely related to rainfall erosivity (R), and to the maximum rainfall intensity over 30 min (I30). A statistically significant power regression model between V and R was observed, along with an exponential regression model between V and I30. Based on the power regression model between V and R, a new approach was developed in order to reconstruct rainfall erosivity in rainfall data-scarcity areas. Different hysteresis patterns (counterclockwise, clockwise, and hybrid) at the single storm scale were observed between V and R for the Shipanmao dam deposition wedge (depositional area behind a dam), and these impacted differently on the scale reconstruction results. However, the distance between the reconstructed dams and the known dams had an even stronger influence. The scale method developed in this study was shown to perform well and was able to reconstruct rainstorm events for adjacent regions with similar climatic and geomorphological conditions. Furthermore, the results of this study have improved our understanding of single rainstorm dynamics and soil erosion mechanisms on the Loess Plateau.

  4. Analyses of relationship between Loess Plateau erosion and sunspots based on wavelet transform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, P.; Mu, X.-M.; Li, R.; Wang, F.

    2011-01-01

    Loess Plateau is one of the worst soil erosion regions in the world, which may resulted from various factors such as precipitation, land cover and land use, soil, vegetation, human intervention, as well as solar activities. The purpose of this study is to find the relationship between soil erosion and sunspot activity on the Loess Plateau, through analyses of the sunspot relative number and the long-term sediment discharge series in Longmen station in the Yellow River based on the Morlet wavelet method. In this paper, annual sediment discharge series from 1919-2008 in Longmen station and the sunspot relative number were decomposed with Complex Morlet wavelet. The results of real part, modulus and the second power of modulus showed an obvious periodic variability in sediment discharge, with 25-40 years, about 10 years, and less than 10 years scales. There are six centers of energy. From the wavelet variance, 6, 12, and 35 years periods were detected within 50-year scale, and the 35-year period is the most significant one. Similar analyses were conducted for the sunspot relative number during the same period of 1919-2008. The sunspot series showed an 11-year periodic variation, and two energy center. Then, the correlation analyses for 11-year scale were computed. From a long-term period (1919-2008) view, there is no significant correlation between the sediment discharge and the sunspot relative number; however, it is evident that the correlations exist in short-term periods. The results also indicate that the relationships between solar activities and the erosion of the Loess Plateau are complicated.

  5. [Degradation process and plant diversity of alfalfa grassland in North Loess Plateau of China].

    PubMed

    Li, Yuyua; Shao, Ming'an

    2005-12-01

    Vegetation recovery and reconstruction is the key of ecosystem restoration in the North Loess Plateau. With the Liudaogou catchment of Shenmu County, Shaanxi Province as test area, this paper studied the dynamics of the plant diversity of artificial alfalfa (Medicago sativa) grassland during its degradation process. The results showed that the degradation process of the grassland could be divided into three stages, i.e., artificial alfalfa grassland stage (1-6 yrs), transitional stage from artificial to natural grassland (6-10 yrs), and secondary natural grassland stage dominated by Stipa bungeana ( >10 yrs). In the whole degradation process from 1-to 30-yrs, 32 species belonging to 13 families and 28 genera were found, of which, 90% appeared in the initial 6-yrs. The dynamics of accumulatively appeared family, genus, and species in the vegetation succession process were well described by logarithmic function. During the process of community succession, the species richness (Gleason index and Margalef index),plant diversity (Shannon-Wiener index), and Pielou evenness index were changed with a similar tendency, i.e., increased more rapidly at the first stage, and the climax phase appeared in the second stage. The plant diversity and evenness decreased slightly, and gradually became stable later. Planting alfalfa could markedly accelerate the natural vegetation succession process in the forest-steppe ecotone of Loess Plateau, mainly due to the intensive soil water consumption of artificial grassland, which accelerated the process of soil aridification. To develop artificial grasslands in the Loess Plateau is an optimal joint between accelerating natural vegetation recovery and increasing farmers' income by stockbreeding, and is also a favorable paradigm both for the ecological and for the economic benefits in the eco-environmental construction in West China.

  6. Effect of geological vicariance on mitochondrial DNA differentiation in Common Pheasant populations of the Loess Plateau and eastern China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ying; Zhan, Xiangjiang; Wang, Ning; Chang, Jiang; Zhang, Zhengwang

    2010-05-01

    Population differentiation within species can be stimulated by various geographic and climatic factors. In this study, we analyzed the population structure of the Common Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus) in the Loess Plateau and its adjacent eastern areas (named eastern China). We sequenced mitochondrial cytochrome b and control regions of 249 samples collected from 42 populations that covered the whole Loess Plateau and eastern China. Two groups (one containing populations 1-27 and the other populations 28-42) were identified using Analysis of Molecular Variance, Spatial Analysis of Molecular Variance, median-joining network analysis and maximum-parsimony analysis. The results demonstrated that although populations were distributed continuously throughout the study area, there was clear differentiation between populations. Geographically, population differentiation was sutured along the eastern edge of the Loess Plateau. The Migration Divergence (MDIV) analysis suggested that the two groups diverged at about 0.21 million years ago, which corresponded to a period when numerous large inland paleo-lakes greatly receded across the Loess Plateau during 0.25-0.20 million years before present (Ma BP). We inferred that the rapid recession of the Loess Plateau paleo-lakes caused dramatic shifts from a relatively humid climate, to one that was significantly more arid. Such severe climate transition combined with a dry-cold starting of one of multi-cycled climate fluctuations from warm-humid to dry-cold since about 0.24-0.22 Ma BP on the Loess Plateau may have been the impetus that effectively facilitated differentiation between different pheasant populations.

  7. Evaluating the coupling effects of climate aridity and vegetation restoration on soil erosion over the Loess Plateau in China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Baoqing; He, Chansheng; Burnham, Morey; Zhang, Lanhui

    2016-01-01

    In this study, the coupling effects of climate aridity and vegetation restoration on runoff and sediment yield over the Loess Plateau were examined and characterized. To take into consideration the complexity of drought, as well as the varied strengths and weaknesses of different drought measures, two drought indices are selected to identify and evaluate drought variability. The Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data were obtained to monitor and express spatiotemporal variations in vegetation cover. The results show that most regions of the Loess Plateau experienced increasingly severe droughts over the past 40years, and these regions comprise the major source of the Yellow River sediment. Climatic drying initially occurred in the 1990s, and became statistically significant in 2000s. The increasingly severe droughts could negatively impact surface and groundwater supplies as well as soil water storage, but may also minimize surface runoff yield, which is one of the major causes of soil erosion on the Loess Plateau. Vegetation cover on the Loess Plateau was significantly improved after the implementation of "Grain for Green" project, which were helpful for controlling severe soil erosion. With the impacts of the construction of check dams, terraces and large reservoirs, runoff and sediment yield over the Loess Plateau initially exhibited downward trends between 1970 and 1990. After 1990, with the effects of the climate warming and drying, a second sharp reduction in runoff and sediment yield occurred. The coupling effects of climate aridity and vegetation restoration have led to a third significant decrease in runoff and sediment yield over the Loess Plateau after 2000. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. [Latitudinal Changes in Plant Stoichiometric and Soil C, N, P Stoichiometry in Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Li, Ting; Deng, Qiang; Yuan, Zhi-you; Jiao, Feng

    2015-08-01

    Field investigations and sampling were conducted in Loess Plateau, including Fu County, Ganquan County, Ansai County, Jingbian County and Hengshan County and Yuyang District. Our objective was to examine changes of leaf and soil stoichiometry characteristics along latitudinal gradient in Loess Plateau, and to provide references for the prediction of soil nutrient status of the ecosystem and constraints of plant nutrition elements in Loess Plateau. The results showed that (1) Across the 35.95 degrees-38.36 degrees N latitude gradient, leaf C, N and P stoichiometry were ranging from 336.95 to 477.38 mg x g(-1) for C, from 18.09 to 33.173 mg x g(-1) for N and from 1.07 to 1.73 mg x g(-1) for P, the arithmetic means were 442.9 mg x g(-1), 25.79 mg x g(-1) and 1.37 mg x g(-1), separately, the variation coefficients were 11.9%, 17.4% and 13.3%. There were obvious correlation between leaf C, N, P and latitude, leaf C, C : N ratio and C: P ratio significantly decreased with the increasing latitude, while leaf N and P significantly increased with the increasing latitude. The relationship between N: P ratio and latitude was not significant. (2) The content of soil organic C and soil total N decreased with increasing latitude and soil layer. In contrast, with the increase of latitude, soil P increased and then decreased. In the 0-10 cm, 10-20 cm soil layers, soil C: N ratio did not change significantly with latitude, while in the 20-40 cm layer, C: N ratio decreased obviously, but soil C: P and N: P ratios decreased with the increasing latitude in all soil layers. (3) Leaf C, C: N and C: P ratios were correlated to soil organic C, soil total N and soil total P in all soil layers, leaf N and P were correlated to soil organic C and soil total N, while leaf N: P ratio was not correlated to soil organic C, soil total N and soil total P. There was a certain correlation between the leaf C, N, P and latitude, however, the correlations between leaf and soil C, N, P were inconsistent

  9. Calcium Nodules as a Proxy for Quaternary Paleoclimate Change on China's Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    He, Wenming; He, Hongming; Zhu, Mingyong

    2015-01-01

    Different proxies have been used to investigate Quaternary paleoclimate change. Here, we used weathering of calcium nodules in paleosols on China's Loess Plateau as a proxy for Quaternary paleoclimate changes to provide an alternative indicator of these changes. Paleosol and carbonate nodules were collected from Luochuan and Lantian counties in Shaanxi Province, China. We found that this approach allowed quantitative reconstruction of temperature, rainfall, soil mineral composition, and the effects of weathering and leaching. The changes in carbonate content in the loess and paleosol sequences were controlled by alternating dry and wet climatic conditions. Nodule formation conditions were directly affected by the leaching and migration of elements. The loess and paleosol sequences developed calcium nodules, and their formation was closely related to the rainfall and leaching characteristics of the paleoclimate. The paleoclimate and soil minerals affected the vegetation types and directly influenced changes in the soil. During formation of the calcium nodules, the surface vegetation evolved slowly, and the number of species and quantity of vegetation both decreased.

  10. Calcium Nodules as a Proxy for Quaternary Paleoclimate Change on China’s Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    He, Wenming; He, Hongming; Zhu, Mingyong

    2015-01-01

    Different proxies have been used to investigate Quaternary paleoclimate change. Here, we used weathering of calcium nodules in paleosols on China’s Loess Plateau as a proxy for Quaternary paleoclimate changes to provide an alternative indicator of these changes. Paleosol and carbonate nodules were collected from Luochuan and Lantian counties in Shaanxi Province, China. We found that this approach allowed quantitative reconstruction of temperature, rainfall, soil mineral composition, and the effects of weathering and leaching. The changes in carbonate content in the loess and paleosol sequences were controlled by alternating dry and wet climatic conditions. Nodule formation conditions were directly affected by the leaching and migration of elements. The loess and paleosol sequences developed calcium nodules, and their formation was closely related to the rainfall and leaching characteristics of the paleoclimate. The paleoclimate and soil minerals affected the vegetation types and directly influenced changes in the soil. During formation of the calcium nodules, the surface vegetation evolved slowly, and the number of species and quantity of vegetation both decreased. PMID:26633304

  11. Prediction of Bulk Density of Soils in the Loess Plateau Region of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yunqiang; Shao, Ming'an; Liu, Zhipeng; Zhang, Chencheng

    2013-08-01

    Soil bulk density (BD) is a key soil physical property that may affect the transport of water and solutes and is essential to estimate soil carbon/nutrients reserves. However, BD data are often lacking in soil databases due to the challenge of directly measuring BD, which is considered to be labor intensive, time consuming, and expensive especially for the lower layers of deep soils such as those of the Chinese Loess Plateau region. We determined the factors that were closely correlated with BD at the regional scale and developed a robust pedotransfer function (PTF) for BD by measuring BD and potentially related soil and environmental factors at 748 selected sites across the Loess Plateau of China (620,000 km2) at which we collected undisturbed and disturbed soil samples from two soil layers (0-5 and 20-25 cm). Regional BD values were normally distributed and demonstrated weak spatial variation (CV = 12 %). Pearson's correlation and stepwise multiple linear regression analyses identified silt content, slope gradient (SG), soil organic carbon content (SOC), clay content, slope aspect (SA), and altitude as the factors that were closely correlated with BD and that explained 25.8, 6.3, 5.8, 1.4, 0.3, and 0.3 % of the BD variation, respectively. Based on these closely correlated variables, a reasonably robust PTF was developed for BD using multiple linear regression, which performed equally with the artificial neural network method in the current study. The inclusion of topographic factors significantly improved the predictive capability of the BD PTF and in which SG was an important input variable that could be used in place of SA and altitude without compromising its capability for predicting BD. Thus, the developed PTF with only four input variables (clay, silt, SOC, SG), including their common transformations and interactive terms, predicted BD with reasonable accuracy and is thus useful for most applications on the Loess Plateau of China. More attention should be

  12. A seven-million-year hornblende mineral record from the central Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    He, Tong; Liu, Lianwen; Chen, Yang; Sheng, Xuefen; Ji, Junfeng

    2017-05-24

    Previous studies of the late Cenozoic erosion rate have yielded different views-long-term stable rates or a significant increase at climate transitions-leading to uncertainty concerning the hypothesized global erosion rate controlled by either tectonic uplift or climatic changes. Here, we present a seven-million-year hornblende mineral record along the Lingtai section of the Chinese Loess Plateau. By examining the spatial distribution of hornblende minerals in seven desert basins, which are potential loess source areas, we constructed a ratio of hornblende versus total heavy minerals to reflect past changes in physical/chemical weathering strength. Our results demonstrate that the ratio has generally increased since 7 Ma, with three significant shifts recorded at 2.6 Ma, 1.4 Ma and 0.5 Ma linked to the onset, continuation and expansion of the Northern Hemisphere glaciation, respectively. Given that chemical weathering during the diagenetic history produces a trend of smoothly increasing hornblende migrating upwards, the three shifts at these boundaries can be interpreted as changes in the bedrock erosion rate on the northern Tibetan Plateau, which may be related to tectonic uplift events and incision of the Yellow River. Evidence presented here supports the idea of coupling between climate change, tectonic uplift and regional erosion.

  13. Runoff responses to afforestation in a watershed of the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Mingbin; Zhang, Lu; Gallichand, Jacques

    2003-09-01

    Afforestation has been suggested as a means of improving soil and water conservation in north-western China, especially on the Loess Plateau. Understanding of the hydrological responses to afforestation will help us develop sustainable watershed management strategies. A study was conducted during the period of 1956 to 1980 to evaluate runoff responses to afforestation in a watershed on the Loess Plateau with an area of 1·15 km2, using a paired watershed approach. Deciduous trees, including locust (locusta L.), apricot (praecox L.) and elm (ulmus L.), were planted on about 80% of a treated watershed, while a natural grassland watershed remained unchanged. It was estimated that cumulative runoff yield in the treated watershed was reduced by 32% as a result of afforestation. A significant trend was also observed that shows annual runoff reduction increases with the age of the trees planted. Reduction in monthly runoff occurred mainly from June to September, which was ascribed to greater rainfall and utilization by trees during this period. Afforestation also resulted in reduction in the volume and peak flow of storm runoff events in the treated watershed with greater reduction in peak flow. Copyright

  14. Runoff responses to afforestation in a watershed of the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, M.; Zhang, L.; Gallichand, J.

    2003-04-01

    Afforestation has been suggested as a means of imroving soil and water conservation in Northwestern China, especially in the Loess Plateau. Understanding of the hydrological responses to afforestation will help us develop sustainable watershed management strategies. A study was conducted during the period of 1956 to 1995 to evaluated runoff responses to afforestation in a watershed in the Loess Plateau, using a paired watershed approach. Deciduoud tress, including locust, apricot and elm, were planted on about 80% of a treated watershed, while a natural grassland watershed remained unchanged. It was estimated that cumulative runoff yield in the treated watershed was reduced by 32% as a result of afforestation. Asignificant trend was also observed that shows annual runoff reduction increases with the age of the trees planted. Reduction in monthly runoff occurred mainly from June to September, which was ascribed to greater rainfall and utilization by trees during this period. Afforeststion also resulted in reduction in the volume and peak flow of storm runoff events in treated watershed with greater reduction in peak flow.

  15. The WEPP Model Application in a Small Watershed in the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Han, Fengpeng; Ren, Lulu; Zhang, Xingchang; Li, Zhanbin

    2016-01-01

    In the Loess Plateau, soil erosion has not only caused serious ecological and environmental problems but has also impacted downstream areas. Therefore, a model is needed to guide the comprehensive control of soil erosion. In this study, we introduced the WEPP model to simulate soil erosion both at the slope and watershed scales. Our analyses showed that: the simulated values at the slope scale were very close to the measured. However, both the runoff and soil erosion simulated values at the watershed scale were higher than the measured. At the slope scale, under different coverage, the simulated erosion was slightly higher than the measured. When the coverage is 40%, the simulated results of both runoff and erosion are the best. At the watershed scale, the actual annual runoff of the Liudaogou watershed is 83 m(3); sediment content is 0.097 t/m(3), annual erosion sediment 8.057 t and erosion intensity 0.288 t ha(-1) yr(-1). Both the simulated values of soil erosion and runoff are higher than the measured, especially the runoff. But the simulated erosion trend is relatively accurate after the farmland is returned to grassland. We concluded that the WEPP model can be used to establish a reasonable vegetation restoration model and guide the vegetation restoration of the Loess Plateau.

  16. [Soluble organic carbon in plant litters on Loess Plateau: content and biodegradability].

    PubMed

    Wang, Chun-yang; Zhou, Jian-bin; Xia, Zhi-min; Chen, Xing-li

    2010-12-01

    The litters of eight plant species from the Loess Plateau were cut into pieces with 2 mm and 1 cm in size, and extracted with distilled water and 0.01 mol x L(-1) CaCl2 to determine the soluble organic carbon (SOC) content. In the meantime, a 7-day indoor incubation test was conducted at (25 +/- 3) degrees C to investigate their biodegradability. The SOC content and the ratio of SOC to total carbon (SOC/TC) in the litters were 18.20-156.82 g x kg(-1) and 4.21%-32.84%, respectively. Shrub litter had a slightly higher SOC content than tree litter, while grass litter had the lowest SOC content. After 7-day incubation, the biodegradation rate of SOC in the plant litters ranged from 44.5% to 80.6% (62.9% on average), and decreased in the order of shrub > tree > grass. By the end of the incubation, the proportion of soluble organic matter in solution had a significant increasing trend, which was related to the rapid biodegradation of labile composition in the litters. The higher content and higher biodegradation rate of SOC in plant litters might play important roles in nutrient cycling and energy flow during the vegetation restoration on Loess Plateau.

  17. [Effects of tillage and mulching on orchard soil moisture content and temperature in Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Huang, Jin-Hui; Liao, Yun-Cheng; Gao, Mao-Sheng; Yin, Rui-Jing

    2009-11-01

    A field experiment was conducted to study the effects of different tillage system (no-tillage, rotary tillage, and plow tillage) and mulching (straw mulch, sod mulch, and film mulch) on the orchard soil moisture content and temperature in Loess Plateau. Under different tillage system, the soil moisture content in 0-1 m layer differed significantly in May, with the sequence of no-tillage (14.28%) > rotary tillage (14.13%) > plow tillage (13.57%), but had less difference in September. Straw mulch induced significantly higher soil moisture content than sod mulch, film mulch, and no-mulch. Among the treatments tillage plus mulching, no-tillage plus straw mulch resulted in the greatest soil water storage. The average soil temperature at daytime was in order of film mulch > no-mulch > sod mulch > straw mulch, and the change range of soil temperature was no-mulch > film mulch > sod mulch > straw mulch. Soil water storage under different mulching treatments was not always negatively correlated with soil temperature, but depended on the water conservation effect and heat-preserved capacity of mulching material. Above all, the main conservation tillage system for the orchards in Loess Plateau would be no tillage plus straw mulch.

  18. An experimental method to verify soil conservation by check dams on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Xu, X Z; Zhang, H W; Wang, G Q; Chen, S C; Dang, W Q

    2009-12-01

    A successful experiment with a physical model requires necessary conditions of similarity. This study presents an experimental method with a semi-scale physical model. The model is used to monitor and verify soil conservation by check dams in a small watershed on the Loess Plateau of China. During experiments, the model-prototype ratio of geomorphic variables was kept constant under each rainfall event. Consequently, experimental data are available for verification of soil erosion processes in the field and for predicting soil loss in a model watershed with check dams. Thus, it can predict the amount of soil loss in a catchment. This study also mentions four criteria: similarities of watershed geometry, grain size and bare land, Froude number (Fr) for rainfall event, and soil erosion in downscaled models. The efficacy of the proposed method was confirmed using these criteria in two different downscaled model experiments. The B-Model, a large scale model, simulates watershed prototype. The two small scale models, D(a) and D(b), have different erosion rates, but are the same size. These two models simulate hydraulic processes in the B-Model. Experiment results show that while soil loss in the small scale models was converted by multiplying the soil loss scale number, it was very close to that of the B-Model. Obviously, with a semi-scale physical model, experiments are available to verify and predict soil loss in a small watershed area with check dam system on the Loess Plateau, China.

  19. The WEPP Model Application in a Small Watershed in the Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Han, Fengpeng; Ren, Lulu; Zhang, Xingchang; Li, Zhanbin

    2016-01-01

    In the Loess Plateau, soil erosion has not only caused serious ecological and environmental problems but has also impacted downstream areas. Therefore, a model is needed to guide the comprehensive control of soil erosion. In this study, we introduced the WEPP model to simulate soil erosion both at the slope and watershed scales. Our analyses showed that: the simulated values at the slope scale were very close to the measured. However, both the runoff and soil erosion simulated values at the watershed scale were higher than the measured. At the slope scale, under different coverage, the simulated erosion was slightly higher than the measured. When the coverage is 40%, the simulated results of both runoff and erosion are the best. At the watershed scale, the actual annual runoff of the Liudaogou watershed is 83m3; sediment content is 0.097 t/m3, annual erosion sediment 8.057t and erosion intensity 0.288 t ha-1 yr-1. Both the simulated values of soil erosion and runoff are higher than the measured, especially the runoff. But the simulated erosion trend is relatively accurate after the farmland is returned to grassland. We concluded that the WEPP model can be used to establish a reasonable vegetation restoration model and guide the vegetation restoration of the Loess Plateau. PMID:26963704

  20. Beryllium-7 atmospheric deposition and soil inventory on the northern Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Fengbao; Zhang, Bo; Yang, Mingyi

    2013-10-01

    Beryllium-7 is a potentially powerful tracer of soil erosion, but information on 7Be atmospheric deposition and associated soil inventories on the Loess Plateau of China is not readily available. In the study reported in this paper, we measured the 7Be inventories in undisturbed soil at different sampling times on the northern Loess Plateau of China for three years, between 2010 and 2012, and estimated the 7Be deposition fluxes and the daily 7Be inventories in undisturbed soil. The annual 7Be deposition fluxes during this period varied between 1303 ± 119 and 2222 ± 147 Bq m-2, with a mean of 1759 ± 416 Bq m-2. There is a marked seasonality for the 7Be deposition fluxes with the maximum in summer, approximately 50% to the annual deposition flux, and the minimum in winter, approximately 5% to the annual deposition flux. Precipitation amounts can explain more than 70% of the variation in 7Be deposition flux. 7Be deposition in the form of dustfall, dew and frost make a significant contribution to the 7Be deposition flux in the study region. The daily 7Be inventories in undisturbed soil varied markedly through time and ranged between 89.2 and 941.8 Bq m-2 with a mean of 392 ± 210 Bq m-2. They demonstrated a unimodal distribution over the year, with the highest values in August or September and the lowest in late winter or early spring.

  1. Intercropping competition between apple trees and crops in agroforestry systems on the Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Gao, Lubo; Xu, Huasen; Bi, Huaxing; Xi, Weimin; Bao, Biao; Wang, Xiaoyan; Bi, Chao; Chang, Yifang

    2013-01-01

    Agroforestry has been widely practiced in the Loess Plateau region of China because of its prominent effects in reducing soil and water losses, improving land-use efficiency and increasing economic returns. However, the agroforestry practices may lead to competition between crops and trees for underground soil moisture and nutrients, and the trees on the canopy layer may also lead to shortage of light for crops. In order to minimize interspecific competition and maximize the benefits of tree-based intercropping systems, we studied photosynthesis, growth and yield of soybean (Glycine max L. Merr.) and peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.) by measuring photosynthetically active radiation, net photosynthetic rate, soil moisture and soil nutrients in a plantation of apple (Malus pumila M.) at a spacing of 4 m × 5 m on the Loess Plateau of China. The results showed that for both intercropping systems in the study region, soil moisture was the primary factor affecting the crop yields followed by light. Deficiency of the soil nutrients also had a significant impact on crop yields. Compared with soybean, peanut was more suitable for intercropping with apple trees to obtain economic benefits in the region. We concluded that apple-soybean and apple-peanut intercropping systems can be practical and beneficial in the region. However, the distance between crops and tree rows should be adjusted to minimize interspecies competition. Agronomic measures such as regular canopy pruning, root barriers, additional irrigation and fertilization also should be applied in the intercropping systems.

  2. Aeolian dust supply from the Yellow River floodplain as recorded in the loess-palaeosol sequences from the Mangshan Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shang, Yuan; Prins, Maarten A.; Beets, Christiaan J.; Kaakinen, Anu; Lahaye, Yann; Troelstra, Simon; Dijkstra, Noortje; Wang, Bin; van Elsas, Roel; Zheng, Hongbo

    2017-04-01

    In central China, the Mangshan loess plateau is located along the southern bank of the lower reach of the Yellow River, well outside the main body of Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). It contains thick and exceptionally fast accumulated loess-paleosol sequences that provide high-resolution records of Quaternary environmental and climate change. The grain-size distributions, accumulation rates and magnetic susceptibility in the upper part (above the paleosol layer S2) of the Mangshan loess sequence shifted remarkably from its lower part, which likely indicate a change of source for Mangshan dust above S2. Unlike the loess deposits in the CLP, which have been derived from the broad area of northern China, the proximal Yellow River floodplain is considered to have served as a main source for the upper part of Mangshan loess sequence. However, so far, no final diagnostic evidence has been shown on the provenance variation of the Mangshan dust. In this study, we present multiple proxy data and zircon U-Pb ages on the Mangshan loess-paleosol sequences to investigate the dust supply for Mangshan loess. Our results show that the paleosol and loess units in the lower part of the profile (S3-S5, L3-L6) are relative thin and fine-grained and whereas the paleosol (S0-S2) and loess layers (L1 and L2) in the upper part of the sequence are significantly thicker and coarser-grained. The zircon U-Pb age distributions of Mangshan sequence show two predominant age populations: 200-350 Ma and 350-550 Ma. In the lower part of the sequence, the 350-550 Ma age population is more prominent. This is comparable with the zircon age pattern of the sediments in the lower reach of Yellow River, indicating that Yellow River sediments form a major supply for the Mangshan loess deposits at least since 650 ka BP. However, a significant increase of the 200-350 Ma age population is found in the upper part of the Mangshan sequence, likely suggesting an increased contribution of the debris from the regional

  3. Conservation Tillage on the Loess Plateau, China: Food security, Yes; Carbon sequestration, No?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuhn, Nikolaus; Hu, Yaxian; Xiao, Liangang; Greenwood, Phil; Bloemertz, Lena

    2015-04-01

    Climate change is expected to affect food security globally and increase the variability in food supply. At the same time, agricultural practices offer a great potential for mitigating and adapting to climate change. In China, food security has increased in the last decades with the number of undernourished people declining from 21% in 1990 to 12% today. However, the limited relative amount of arable land and scarce water supplies will remain a challenge. The Loess Plateau of China, located in the mid-upper reaches of the Yellow River and has an area of some 630000 km2 with a high agricultural potential. However, due to heavy summer rainstorms, steep slopes, low vegetation cover, and highly erodible soils, the Loess Plateau has become one of the most severely eroded areas in the world. Up to 70% of arable land is affected by an annual soil loss of 20-25 ton ha-1, far exceeding the threshold for sustainable use (10 ton ha-1). Rainfed farming systems are dominant on the Loess Plateau, and the farmers in this area have been exposed to a steadily increasing temperature as well as an erratic, but slightly decreasing rainfall since 1970. Therefore, adaptation of the regional agriculture is required to adapt to climate change and may be even engaged in mitigation. This study analyzed the potential contribution of conservation tillage to adaptation and mitigation of climate change on the Loess Plateau. In total, 15 papers published in English were reviewed, comparing two tillage practices, conventional tillage (CT) and conservation tillage typically represented by no-tillage (NT). Soil organic carbon (SOC) stock across soil depths as well yields and the inter-annual variations with regards to and their annual rainfall precipitation were compared for NT and CT. Our results show that: 1) The benefit of NT compared to CT in terms of increasing total SOC stocks diminishes with soil depth, questioning the use of average SOC stocks observed in topsoil to estimate the potential

  4. Holocene loess accumulation and soil development at the western edge of the Chinese Loess Plateau: implications for magnetic proxies of palaeorainfall

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maher, Barbara A.; MengYu, Hu; Roberts, Helen M.; Wintle, Ann G.

    2003-03-01

    A high-resolution Holocene sequence of loess, palaeosols and incipient soils at the western edge of the Chinese Loess Plateau, dated using optically stimulated luminescence techniques, is used to identify the respective influence of dust accumulation rate, time and climate on soil magnetic properties. Dust deposition and soil formation have both been quasi-continuous through the Holocene at this site; the soils are thus accretionary in nature. The degree of soil development (as indicated both by geochemical and magnetic properties, which correlate strongly) varied through the Holocene. Compared with the less-weathered loess units, each palaeosol is enriched in nitrogen and organic carbon, depleted of carbonate due to leaching, and displays higher values of pedogenic magnetic susceptibility, frequency-dependent susceptibility (%), remanences and magnetisation. Magnetic grain size indicators show that the pedogenic ferrimagnets are ultrafine, of single domain and superparamagnetic dimensions. Sediment accumulation rates were lowest from ˜12 to 2.5 ka, providing ample time (100 s of years) for weathering and soil formation to proceed, yet pedogenesis through this interval was relatively weak. Conversely, soil development was stronger during later intervals—when loess accumulation rates were higher, and soil-forming intervals were correspondingly shorter. In terms of Jenny's (1941) soil-forming equation, accumulation rate (and thus time), sediment source (parent material) and topography show no systematic variation between the loess and the palaeosols. Therefore, climate seems to be the key soil-forming factor which has controlled the geochemical and magnetic properties of these Holocene palaeosols.

  5. Long-term effects of fertilizer on soil enzymatic activity of wheat field soil in Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Hu, Weigang; Jiao, Zhifang; Wu, Fasi; Liu, Yongjun; Dong, Maoxing; Ma, Xiaojun; Fan, Tinglu; An, Lizhe; Feng, Huyuan

    2014-12-01

    The effects of long-term (29 years) fertilization on local agro-ecosystems in the Loess Plateau of northwest China, containing a single or combinations of inorganic (Nitrogen, N; Phosphate, P) and organic (Mature, M Straw, S) fertilizer, including N, NP, SNP, M, MNP, and a control. The soil enzymes, including dehydrogenase, urease, alkaline phosphatase, invertase and glomalin, were investigated in three physiological stages (Jointing, Dough, and Maturity) of wheat growth at three depths of the soil profile (0-15, 16-30, 31-45 cm). We found that the application of farmyard manure and straw produced the highest values of soil enzymatic activity, especially a balanced applied treatment of MNP. Enzymatic activity was lowest in the control. Values were generally highest at dough, followed by the jointing and maturity stages, and declined with soil profile depth. The activities of the enzymes investigated here are significantly correlated with each other and are correlated with soil nutrients, in particular with soil organic carbon. Our results suggest that a balanced application of fertilizer nutrients and organic manure (especially those containing P) has positive effects on multiple soil chemical parameters, which in turn enhances enzyme activity. We emphasize the role of organic manure in maintaining soil organic matter and promoting biological activity, as its application can result in a substantial increase in agricultural production and can be sustainable for many years.

  6. Response of surface processes to climatic change in the dunefields and Loess Plateau of North China during the late Quaternary

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lu, H.; Mason, J.A.; Stevens, T.; Zhou, Y.; Yi, S.; Miao, X.

    2011-01-01

    This paper draws on recent optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating to evaluate the long-held assumption that dust accumulation rates in the Loess Plateau and the extent of active aeolian sand in the dunefields to the north have varied together over time, because both are controlled by the strength of the Asian monsoons and also possibly because the dunefields are proximal loess sources. The results show there is little evidence that high rates of loess accumulation coincided with well-dated episodes of extensive dune activity in the Mu Us, Otindag, and Horqin dunefields, at 11-8ka and 1-0ka. Explanations for the apparent lack of coupling include local variation in the trapping of dust and post-depositional preservation of the loess and dune sediments, in response to varying local environmental conditions. In addition, a substantial portion of the loess may be transported directly from source areas where dust emission has somewhat different climatic and geomorphic controls than aeolian sand activity within the dunefields. The results of this study cast doubt on the use of loess accumulation rate as a palaeoclimatic proxy at millennial timescale. The dunefield and loess stratigraphic records are interpreted as primarily recording changes in effective moisture at a local scale, but the timing of late Quaternary dune activity, along with a variety of other evidence, indicates that moisture changes in many of the drylands of northern China may not be in phase with precipitation in core regions of the Asian monsoons. ?? 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  7. Topographic and climatic influences on accelerated loess accumulation since the last glacial maximum in the Palouse, Pacific Northwest, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sweeney, Mark R.; Busacca, Alan J.; Gaylord, David R.

    2005-05-01

    Topographic and climatic influences have controlled thick loess accumulation at the southern margin of the Palouse loess in northern Oregon. Juniper and Cold Springs Canyons, located on the upwind flank of the Horse Heaven Hills, are oriented perpendicular to prevailing southwesterly winds. These canyons are topographic traps that separate eolian sand on the upwind side from thick accumulations (nearly 8 m) of latest Pleistocene to Holocene L1 loess on the downwind side. Silt- and sand-rich glacial outburst flood sediment in the Umatilla Basin is the source of eolian sand and loess for the region. Sediment from this basin also contributes to loess accumulations across much of the Columbia Plateau to the northeast. Downwind of Cold Springs Canyon, Mt. St. Helens set S and Glacier Peak tephras bracket 4 m of loess, demonstrating that approximately 2500 g m -2 yr -1 of loess accumulated between about 15,400-13,100 cal yr B.P. Mass accumulation rates decreased to approximately 250 g m -2 yr -1 from 13,100 cal yr B.P. to the present. Tephrochronology suggests that the bulk of near-source Palouse loess accumulated in one punctuated interval in the latest Pleistocene characterized by a dry and windy climate.

  8. Soil microbial parameters and stability of soil aggregate fractions under different grassland communities on the Loess Plateau, China

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Over-grazing and large scale monocultures on the Loess plateau in China have caused serious soil erosion by water and wind. Grassland revegetation has been reported as one of the most effective counter measures. Therefore, we investigated soil aggregation, aggregate stability and soil microbial ac...

  9. The role of climatic and anthropogenic stresses on long-term runoff reduction from the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Feng, Xiaoming; Cheng, Wei; Fu, Bojie; Lü, Yihe

    2016-11-15

    Human intervention has strongly altered patterns of river runoff. Yet, few studies have addressed the complexity and nonlinearity of the anthropogenic stresses on runoff or their interaction with climate. We study the Loess Plateau in China, whose river runoff contributes 65% of the discharge to the middle reach of the Yellow River; this landscape has been shaped by human activity and is intensively managed. Our purpose is to characterize the interactive roles of climate and human activities in defining river runoff from the Loess Plateau. Applying a transient analysis to discover the time-varying runoff trend and impact factors, we found that the average runoff in the Loess Plateau decreased continuously during the period 1961-2009 (average rate of -0.9mmyear(-1), P<0.001). This long-term decrease in runoff mainly occurred in three stages, with transitions in 1970, 1981 and 1996. Reduced precipitation was the main reason for the decrease in runoff over the entire study period. However, human intervention played a dominant role in creating the transition points. Water yield (i.e., the ratio of runoff to precipitation) decreased following each anthropogenic transition, causing a 56% reduction in available freshwater resources during the period 1961-2009. These findings highlight the need for studies that address the dynamic and nonlinear processes controlling the availability of freshwater resources in the light of anthropogenic influences applied under a changing climate. Such studies are essential if we are to meet the human water demand in the Loess Plateau region.

  10. Annual runoff and evapotranspiration of forestlands and non-forestlands in selected basins of the Loess Plateau of China.

    Treesearch

    Yanhui Wang; Pengtao Yu; Karl-Heinz Feger; Xiaohua Wei; Ge Sun; et al

    2011-01-01

    Large-scale forestation has been undertaken over decades principally to control the serious soil erosion in the Loess Plateau of China. A quantitative assessment of the hydrological effects of forestation, especially on basin water yield, is critical for the sustainable forestry development within this dry region. In this study, we constructed the multi-annual water...

  11. Spatial-temporal patterns of water use efficiency and climate controls in China's Loess Plateau during 2000-2010.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Tian; Peng, Jian; Liang, Wei; Yang, Yuting; Liu, Yanxu

    2016-09-15

    Accurate assessments of spatial-temporal variations in water use efficiency (WUE) are important for evaluation of carbon and water balances. In this study, the spatial and temporal patterns of WUE and associated climate controls in China's Loess Plateau are investigated over 2000-2010 by utilizing remote sensing data and multiple statistical methods; which provides a greater understanding about how WUE changed after the Grain to Green Program (GTGP) launched. Carbon sequestration (i.e., net primary productivity, NPP) is estimated with the CASA model and water consumption (i.e., evapotranspiration, ET) is obtained from the MODIS product (i.e., MOD16). Our results identify an increasing trend in the regional mean NPP that amounted to 7.593gC/m(2)·yr with an average value of 310.035gC/m(2)·yr. Changes in ET are segmented into three stages, the growth (2000-2003), decline (2004-2006) and stable (2007-2010) stages. Regional WUE is measured at 0.915gC/mm·m(2) and shows an upward trend at a rate of 0.027gC/mm·m(2)·yr. Spatially, significant regional heterogeneity is found in both NPP and WUE with gradients decreasing from the southeast to the northwest, but sharp rises detected in northern Shaanxi. At the biome level, the annual average WUE of the four groups decrease in the order of grasslands>woodlands>shrublands>croplands. Moreover, all biomes in the grassland ecosystems exhibit a growth in WUE as does the arid desert zone in the northwestern region, suggesting that vegetation in moderately water-deficient areas may have a higher tolerance to drought. Among different meteorological factors, precipitation and drought severity index (DSI) in the Loess Plateau show a latitudinal zonality and influences the WUE, which indicated that the moisture rather than temperature would be the major control factor of the regional WUE. Finally, significant variation in vegetation WUE sensitivity in response to meteorological factors is noted. Temperature is found to be the

  12. Role of the check dam in land development on the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Xiang-Zhou; Zhang, Luo-Hao; Zhu, Tongxin; Dang, Tian-Min; Zhang, Hong-Wu; Xu, Shi-Guo

    2017-04-01

    Check dam is one of the most effective measures to reduce flow connectivity, which can retain soil and water, and increase land productivity. More than 100,000 check dams have been built on the Loess Plateau since 1950s. However, quantifying the effect of check dams on water resources and water environments remains a challenge. In this study, an in-depth field investigation together with a credible statistical analysis was carried out in two representative catchments on the Loess Plateau, Nanxiaohegou Catchment and Jiuyuangou Catchment, to assess the effectiveness of check dams in soil, water and nutrients conservation. The results show: (1) Check dam plays an important role in conserving water, soil, and nutrients on the Loess Plateau. About half of the total transported water and more than 80 % of the total transported soil and nutrients, had been locally retained in the selected catchments. Hence check dams had a significant benefit to improve soil fertility in the small watersheds, and reducing water pollution downstream of dams. (2) Compared to terrace farmlands, forest lands and grasslands, check-dam lands were much more important in conserving water, soil and nutrients in the catchments. Nearly 50% of the reduced water and more than 70% of the stored soil and nutrients in the study catchments were solely retained by the check dams, whereas the area of the dam lands was less than 7% of the total conservation land area. (3) Check dams are still effective in large storms even if dams were damaged by floods. It is often assumed that check dams could only retain sediment in small flood events whereas most of the stored soil may be washed out as the dams may be destroyed in a disastrous flood. Furthermore, if a major check dam, namely the key project dam, was built in the gully outlet, the flood could be controlled, and thereupon the dam-break can be also avoided. We suggest that a compensation and incentive policy be implemented on dam building to realize the

  13. Size-differentiated source profiles for fugitive dust in the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cao, J. J.; Chow, J. C.; Watson, J. G.; Wu, F.; Han, Y. M.; Jin, Z. D.; Shen, Z. X.; An, Z. S.

    Size-differentiated fugitive dust chemical source profiles are determined for the Chinese Loess Plateau, a major source of Asian dust. Fifteen loess samples at five sites (Yulin, Yanchi, Huanxian, Luochuan, and Xi'an) were collected, dried, sieved, resuspended, and sampled through TSP, PM 10, PM 2.5, and PM 1 inlets onto filters for analysis of 40 major and trace elements (Na to U), six ions (Cl -, NO 3-, SO 42-, Na +, K +, and NH 4+), organic carbon (OC) and elemental carbon (EC), and carbonate carbon (CO 3-C). The abundances of major species (>1%) include Al, Si, K, Ca, Fe, OC and CO 3-C, in four size-differentiated source profiles. OC accounted for ˜90% of total carbon in four size fractions for most of the profiles. Enrichment factors indicated that the 18 elements (Na, Mg, Si, K, Ca, Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, Rb, Sr, Y, Zr, Ba) found in the samples were dominated by crustal sources. Enrichment factors for Co, As, Se, Mo, Cd, In, Sb, and Tl are one to two orders of magnitude larger than crustal-derived elements, suggesting the influence of anthropogenic pollution sources. Compared with loess samples, V, Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, Sb, SO 42-, and NO 3- are enriched in ambient PM 2.5 aerosol samples, implying that Asian dust contains pollution components in downwind regions of the desert. The elemental ratios of Si, K, Ca, Ti, Mn, and Fe to Al in Asian dust source regions compared well with those found at downwind regions such as Korea, Japan, and the North Pacific. These ratios can be used as fingerprints to trace the transport path of Asian dust.

  14. Towards Sustainable Integrated Watershed Ecosystem Management: A Case Study in Dingxi on the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Liding; Yang, Lei; Wei, Wei; Wang, Ziting; Mo, Baoru; Cai, Guojun

    2013-01-01

    The Chinese government initiated a massive conservation program called "Grain-for-Green" in 1999 to reduce soil erosion and improve ecosystem function. Implementing practical sustainable development in the loess plateau still remains problematic, particularly in its eco-fragile areas. Here we discussed an approach for sustainable development at the watershed scale by integrating land use suitability, ecosystem services and public participation in the loess hilly area. We linked land use scenario analysis and economic modeling to compare the outcomes of three scenarios, CLU (Current Land Use), GOLU (Grain-production Oriented Land Use) and PSLU (Potential Sustainable Land Use). The results indicated that compared to PSLU, GOLU may provide a higher economic productivity in the short-term, but not in the long-term. CLU ranked lowest in terms of economic benefits and did not meet the daily needs of the local farmers. To reconcile the land use adjustments with farmers' basic needs, a labor-saving land use strategy is necessary. Since the PSLU scenario assumes that slope cropland should be converted to pastures or orchards, more time may be available for off-farm work and for more public participation in integrated ecosystem management. Financial support to the local farmers for environmental conservation should be modulated in function of their positive contribution to ecosystem management.

  15. Seed morphology characteristics in relation to seed loss by water erosion in the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Jiao, Juying; Han, Luyan; Jia, Yanfeng; Lei, Dong; Wang, Ning; Li, Linyu

    2013-01-01

    The role of water erosion on seed loss and on plant establishment and distribution is unknown on the Chinese Loess Plateau, which suffers serious soil erosion. The seed susceptibility of 16 local species to removal by water erosion from loess slopes was determined by rainfall simulation experiments. The experiments were performed on slopes with gradients of 10°, 15°, 20° and 25° for a 60-min duration at an intensity of 50 mm/h, 100 mm/h and 150 mm/h, respectively. The total seed removal rate obviously increased with rainfall intensity but did not obviously change with slope gradient, and the responses were varied among the species. The morphological characteristics affecting seed loss of the various species are quite different. Our experiments showed that the seed removal from some species are mainly due to seed weight, some species are mainly affected by seed shape, some are affected by appendage, some by surface structure, some by the comprehensive effects of the different morphological characteristics, while seeds having mucilage secretion are not easily moved by water erosion. We argued that the seed removal during water erosion can clearly effect seed redistribution and deposition, and consequently, species composition and vegetation spatial distribution.

  16. Towards sustainable integrated watershed ecosystem management: a case study in Dingxi on the loess plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Chen, Liding; Yang, Lei; Wei, Wei; Wang, Ziting; Mo, Baoru; Cai, Guojun

    2013-01-01

    The Chinese government initiated a massive conservation program called "Grain-for-Green" in 1999 to reduce soil erosion and improve ecosystem function. Implementing practical sustainable development in the loess plateau still remains problematic, particularly in its eco-fragile areas. Here we discussed an approach for sustainable development at the watershed scale by integrating land use suitability, ecosystem services and public participation in the loess hilly area. We linked land use scenario analysis and economic modeling to compare the outcomes of three scenarios, CLU (Current Land Use), GOLU (Grain-production Oriented Land Use) and PSLU (Potential Sustainable Land Use). The results indicated that compared to PSLU, GOLU may provide a higher economic productivity in the short-term, but not in the long-term. CLU ranked lowest in terms of economic benefits and did not meet the daily needs of the local farmers. To reconcile the land use adjustments with farmers' basic needs, a labor-saving land use strategy is necessary. Since the PSLU scenario assumes that slope cropland should be converted to pastures or orchards, more time may be available for off-farm work and for more public participation in integrated ecosystem management. Financial support to the local farmers for environmental conservation should be modulated in function of their positive contribution to ecosystem management.

  17. High-resolution summer precipitation variations in the western Chinese Loess Plateau during the last glacial

    PubMed Central

    Rao, Zhiguo; Chen, Fahu; Cheng, Hai; Liu, Weiguo; Wang, Guo'an; Lai, Zhongping; Bloemendal, Jan

    2013-01-01

    We present a summer precipitation reconstruction for the last glacial (LG) on the western edge of the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) using a well-dated organic carbon isotopic dataset together with an independent modern process study results. Our results demonstrate that summer precipitation variations in the CLP during the LG were broadly correlated to the intensity of the Asian summer monsoon (ASM) as recorded by stalagmite oxygen isotopes from southern China. During the last deglaciation, the onset of the increase in temperatures at high latitudes in the Northern Hemisphere and decline in the intensity of the East Asia winter monsoon in mid latitudes was earlier than the increase in ASM intensity and our reconstructed summer precipitation in the western CLP. Quantitative reconstruction of a single paleoclimatic factor provides new insights and opportunities for further understanding of the paleoclimatic variations in monsoonal East Asia and their relation to the global climatic system. PMID:24071743

  18. [Dynamic distribution characters of herbaceous vegetation root systems in abandoned grasslands of Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Li, Peng; Li, Zhanbin; Tantai, Zhan

    2005-05-01

    The investigation on the vertical distribution characters of herbaceous vegetation root systems in abandoned and natural grasslands of Loess Plateau by the method of soil auger showed that there were no significant differences in root system distribution patterns between different sampling points, and the related root indexes could be used to indicate the vertical distribution characters of vegetation roots. The main root indexes including root biomass and root length were decreased with increasing soil depth, but increased with increasing abandoned years. After abandoned for more than 20 years, the root distribution characters of abandoned grassland were approached to that of natural grassland. The root extinction coefficient decreased with increasing abandoned years, indicating that more and more roots were concentrated in surface soil layer with the increase of abandoned time, which was helpful to the improvement of soil physical and chemical properties, and beneficial to the new species intrusion and vegetation succession.

  19. The investigation of sloping cultivated land on the Loess Plateau with 3S technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Dengke; Liu, Anlin; Deng, Fengdong; Zhang, Jinghong; Zhuo, Jing

    2003-07-01

    The hill and ravine area on the Loess Plateau is the typical region of serious soil erosion, excess reclamation, and deteriorated eco-environment in middle reaches of Yellow River. The main project of eco-environment construction is that recover vegetation, and quit high sloping cultivated land to forest or meadow. The local government in the concerned region poses that sloping cultivated land higher than 15 degree should quit. How many are there qualified and how about their distribution? These are the basis problems of the execution of the eco-environment construction project. In this paper, using TM image and digital relief map, the interpretation of land use classification and the calculation of slope are made for Baota , Yan"an, with the software of ARC/INFO and ERDAS IMAGINE. And also the sloping cultivated land is mapped, basing on the composite analysis of land use map and slope map.

  20. Magnetic parameter variations in the Chaona loess/paleosol sequences in the central Chinese Loess Plateau, and their significance for the middle Pleistocene climate transition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Yougui; Fang, Xiaomin; King, John W.; Li, Jijun; Naoto, Ishikawa; An, Zhisheng

    2014-05-01

    A high-resolution rock magnetic investigation was performed on the Chaona Quaternary loess/paleosol sequences in the Central Chinese Loess Plateau. Based on a newly developed independent unturned time scale and magnetic records, we reconstructed the history of the East Asia monsoons during the last 3 Ma and explored the middle Pleistocene climate transition (MPT). Rock magnetic results show that the loess layers are characterized by relatively high coercivity and remanent coercivity, lower magnetic susceptibility (MS), and that the paleosol layers are characterized by relatively high MS, saturation magnetization and remanent saturation magnetization. Spectrum analyses indicate that there are various periods in addition to orbital periodicities. According to the onset and stable appearance of 100 kyr period, we consider that the MPT recorded in this section began at ~ 1.26 Ma and was completed by ~ 0.53 Ma, which differs from previous investigations based on orbitally tuned time scales. The forcing mechanism for the MPT was more complicated than just the orbital forcing. We conclude that the rapid uplift of the Tibetan Plateau may have played an important role in the shift of periodicities during the middle Pleistocene.

  1. Primary Productivity and Precipitation-Use Efficiency in Temperate Grassland in the Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Jia, Xiaoxu; Xie, Baoni; Shao, Ming'an; Zhao, Chunlei

    2015-01-01

    Clarifying spatial variations in aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) and precipitation-use efficiency (PUE) of grasslands is critical for effective prediction of the response of terrestrial ecosystem carbon and water cycle to future climate change. Though the combination use of remote sensing products and in situ ANPP measurements, we quantified the effects of climatic [mean annual precipitation (MAP) and precipitation seasonal distribution (PSD)], biotic [leaf area index (LAI)] and abiotic [slope gradient, aspect, soil water storage (SWS) and other soil physical properties] factors on the spatial variations in ANPP and PUE across different grassland types (i.e., meadow steppe, typical steppe and desert steppe) in the Loess Plateau. Based on the study, ANPP increased exponentially with MAP for the entire temperate grassland; suggesting that PUE increased with increasing MAP. Also PSD had a significant effect on ANPP and PUE; where more even PSD favored higher ANPP and PUE. Then MAP, more than PSD, explained spatial variations in typical steppe and desert steppe. However, PSD was the dominant driving factor of spatial variations in ANPP of meadow steppe. This suggested that in terms of spatial variations in ANPP of meadow steppe, change in PSD due to climate change was more important than that in total annual precipitation. LAI explained 78% of spatial PUE in the entire Loess Plateau temperate grassland. As such, LAI was the primary driving factor of spatial variations in PUE. Although the effect of SWS on ANPP and PUE was significant, it was nonetheless less than that of precipitation and vegetation. We therefore concluded that changes in vegetation structure and consequently in LAI and/or altered pattern of seasonal distribution of rainfall due to global climate change could significantly influence ecosystem carbon and water cycle in temperate grasslands.

  2. Carbon budget of a rainfed spring maize cropland with straw returning on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xiang; Gu, Fengxue; Hao, Weiping; Mei, Xurong; Li, Haoru; Gong, Daozhi; Mao, Lili; Zhang, Zuguang

    2017-05-15

    Assessing the carbon budget of rainfed agricultural ecosystems is a vital component in the process of estimating the global carbon balance. We used eddy covariance techniques combined with soil respiration measurements to estimate the carbon budget of a rainfed spring maize field where straw returning was practiced, on the Loess Plateau, China, during 2012-2014. Carbon fluxes and their components (except heterotrophic respiration, Rh) exhibited single-peak seasonal patterns, and linear relationships were found between daily gross primary productivity (GPP) and net ecosystem exchange (NEE), and between daily GPP and ecosystem respiration (Re), with goodness of fit value of 0.96 and 0.85, respectively. The green leaf area index was the most important factor controlling seasonal variations in daily NEE, Re, and GPP during the growing season, followed by photosynthetically active radiation and air temperature (Ta). Daily Re was mainly controlled by air temperature during the non-growing season, when Re accounted for only ~17% of the annual Re due to winter temperatures. Growing season plant respiration (Rp) was the most important source of carbon emissions from the maize field, with aboveground plant respiration being the major part of Rp. Rh accounted for ~60% of total soil respiration. Only ~60% of the annual GPP was lost as Re, resulting in an average annual net CO2 uptake of 509gCm(-2). Taking into account carbon exported (483gCm(-2)) and carbon imported (10gCm(-2)), the average annual net biome productivity was 37gCm(-2), indicating that the spring maize field with straw returning on the Loess Plateau was a weak carbon sink.

  3. Land Suitability Assessment on a Watershed of Loess Plateau Using the Analytic Hierarchy Process

    PubMed Central

    Yi, Xiaobo; Wang, Li

    2013-01-01

    In order to reduce soil erosion and desertification, the Sloping Land Conversion Program has been conducted in China for more than 15 years, and large areas of farmland have been converted to forest and grassland. However, this large-scale vegetation-restoration project has faced some key problems (e.g. soil drying) that have limited the successful development of the current ecological-recovery policy. Therefore, it is necessary to know about the land use, vegetation, and soil, and their inter-relationships in order to identify the suitability of vegetation restoration. This study was conducted at the watershed level in the ecologically vulnerable region of the Loess Plateau, to evaluate the land suitability using the analytic hierarchy process (AHP). The results showed that (1) the area unsuitable for crops accounted for 73.3% of the watershed, and the main factors restricting cropland development were soil physical properties and soil nutrients; (2) the area suitable for grassland was about 86.7% of the watershed, with the remaining 13.3% being unsuitable; (3) an area of 3.95 km2, accounting for 66.7% of the watershed, was unsuitable for forest. Overall, the grassland was found to be the most suitable land-use to support the aims of the Sloping Land Conversion Program in the Liudaogou watershed. Under the constraints of soil water shortage and nutrient deficits, crops and forests were considered to be inappropriate land uses in the study area, especially on sloping land. When selecting species for re-vegetation, non-native grass species with high water requirements should be avoided so as to guarantee the sustainable development of grassland and effective ecological functioning. Our study provides local land managers and farmers with valuable information about the inappropriateness of growing trees in the study area along with some information on species selection for planting in the semi-arid area of the Loess Plateau. PMID:23922723

  4. Changes of deep soil desiccation with plant growth age in the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Y. Q.; Shao, M. A.; Liu, Z. P.; Zhang, C. C.

    2012-10-01

    Negative water balance in soil can lead to soil desiccation and subsequent the formation of a dried soil layer (DSL). Essential progress on DSL temporal change has been hampered by difficulty in collecting deep soil water samples (i.e. > 1000 cm), which are necessary to quantify the real extent of DSL. We collected soil samples up to a depth of 1800 cm and investigated the evolution of soil water content (SWC) and DSL under three vegetation types (C. korshinskii, R. pseudoacacia, apple) in three zones (Ansai, Luochuan, and Changwu) of the Chinese Loess Plateau. As plant growth age increased, SWC, available soil water (ASW), SWC within DSL (DSL-SWC), and quantity of water deficit for DSL (DSL-QWD) showed similar change trends of decreasing at first and then increasing, whereas DSL thickness (DSLT) showed an increasing trend over time. A turning point in soil water change was found for the three vegetation types. In Changwu zone, the turning point, both in and out of DSL, was corresponded to the 17-year-old apple orchard. The period from 9 to 17 yr was vital to maintain the buffering function of deep soil water pool and to avoid the deterioration of soil desiccation because the highest mean decline velocity of ASW and the maximum mean forming velocity of DSLT were 165 mm yr-1 and 168 cm yr-1, respectively. Significant correlations were found between DSLT and growth age and root depth, and between DSL-QWD and root depth, whereas mean DSL-SWC had no significant correlation with either growth year or root depth. Soil water condition was highly dependent on the growth year of the plants. This information provides pertinent reference for water resource management in the Chinese Loess Plateau and possibly in other water-limited regions in the world.

  5. Comparison of CERES-MODIS cloud microphysical properties with surface observations over Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Hongru; Huang, Jianping; Minnis, Patrick; Yi, Yuhong; Sun-Mack, Sunny; Wang, Tianhe; Nakajima, Takashi Y.

    2015-03-01

    To enhance the utility of satellite-derived cloud properties for studying the role of clouds in climate change and the hydrological cycle in semi-arid areas, it is necessary to know their uncertainties. This paper estimates the uncertainties of several cloud properties by comparing those derived over the China Loess Plateau from the MODerate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on Terra and Aqua by the Clouds and Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) with surface observations at the Semi-Arid Climate and Environment Observatory of Lanzhou University (SACOL). The comparisons use data from January 2008 to June 2010 limited to single layer and overcast stratus conditions during daytime. Cloud optical depths (τ) and liquid water paths (LWP) from both Terra and Aqua generally track the variation of the surface counterparts with modest correlation, while cloud effective radius (re) is only weakly correlated with the surface retrievals. The mean differences between Terra and the SACOL retrievals are -4.7±12.9, 2.1±3.2 μm and 30.2±85.3 g m-2 for τ, re and LWP, respectively. The corresponding differences for Aqua are 2.1±8.4, 1.2±2.9 μm and 47.4±79.6 g m-2, respectively. Possible causes for biases of satellite retrievals are discussed through statistical analysis and case studies. Generally, the CERES-MODIS cloud properties have a bit larger biases over the Loess Plateau than those in previous studies over other locations.

  6. Land suitability assessment on a watershed of Loess Plateau using the analytic hierarchy process.

    PubMed

    Yi, Xiaobo; Wang, Li

    2013-01-01

    In order to reduce soil erosion and desertification, the Sloping Land Conversion Program has been conducted in China for more than 15 years, and large areas of farmland have been converted to forest and grassland. However, this large-scale vegetation-restoration project has faced some key problems (e.g. soil drying) that have limited the successful development of the current ecological-recovery policy. Therefore, it is necessary to know about the land use, vegetation, and soil, and their inter-relationships in order to identify the suitability of vegetation restoration. This study was conducted at the watershed level in the ecologically vulnerable region of the Loess Plateau, to evaluate the land suitability using the analytic hierarchy process (AHP). The results showed that (1) the area unsuitable for crops accounted for 73.3% of the watershed, and the main factors restricting cropland development were soil physical properties and soil nutrients; (2) the area suitable for grassland was about 86.7% of the watershed, with the remaining 13.3% being unsuitable; (3) an area of 3.95 km(2), accounting for 66.7% of the watershed, was unsuitable for forest. Overall, the grassland was found to be the most suitable land-use to support the aims of the Sloping Land Conversion Program in the Liudaogou watershed. Under the constraints of soil water shortage and nutrient deficits, crops and forests were considered to be inappropriate land uses in the study area, especially on sloping land. When selecting species for re-vegetation, non-native grass species with high water requirements should be avoided so as to guarantee the sustainable development of grassland and effective ecological functioning. Our study provides local land managers and farmers with valuable information about the inappropriateness of growing trees in the study area along with some information on species selection for planting in the semi-arid area of the Loess Plateau.

  7. Primary Productivity and Precipitation-Use Efficiency in Temperate Grassland in the Loess Plateau of China

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Xiaoxu; Xie, Baoni; Shao, Ming’an; Zhao, Chunlei

    2015-01-01

    Clarifying spatial variations in aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) and precipitation-use efficiency (PUE) of grasslands is critical for effective prediction of the response of terrestrial ecosystem carbon and water cycle to future climate change. Though the combination use of remote sensing products and in situ ANPP measurements, we quantified the effects of climatic [mean annual precipitation (MAP) and precipitation seasonal distribution (PSD)], biotic [leaf area index (LAI)] and abiotic [slope gradient, aspect, soil water storage (SWS) and other soil physical properties] factors on the spatial variations in ANPP and PUE across different grassland types (i.e., meadow steppe, typical steppe and desert steppe) in the Loess Plateau. Based on the study, ANPP increased exponentially with MAP for the entire temperate grassland; suggesting that PUE increased with increasing MAP. Also PSD had a significant effect on ANPP and PUE; where more even PSD favored higher ANPP and PUE. Then MAP, more than PSD, explained spatial variations in typical steppe and desert steppe. However, PSD was the dominant driving factor of spatial variations in ANPP of meadow steppe. This suggested that in terms of spatial variations in ANPP of meadow steppe, change in PSD due to climate change was more important than that in total annual precipitation. LAI explained 78% of spatial PUE in the entire Loess Plateau temperate grassland. As such, LAI was the primary driving factor of spatial variations in PUE. Although the effect of SWS on ANPP and PUE was significant, it was nonetheless less than that of precipitation and vegetation. We therefore concluded that changes in vegetation structure and consequently in LAI and/or altered pattern of seasonal distribution of rainfall due to global climate change could significantly influence ecosystem carbon and water cycle in temperate grasslands. PMID:26295954

  8. Land Use Changing SOC pool: A Field Investigation from Six Catchments on the Loess Plateau in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, S.; Wang, R.; Hu, Y.

    2016-12-01

    The Loess Plateau in China has long been known for severe erosion, degraded ecosystem and heavy sediment delivery to the Yellow River. Besides the highly erodible loess soil and the hilly geomorphology nature, intensive cultivation has been accused as one of the most destructive anthropogenic activities undermining erosion situation on the Loess Plateau. This made the Loess Plateau once the least fertile region in China with extreme poverty. To preserve soil fertility and ecosystem sustainability, a magnificent national-level project was launched in 1990s to encourage land use changes via afforestation or conversion cropland back to grassland or woodland. After nearly three decades, SOC pool must have been substantially changed following land use conversions. However, climate conditions, geomorphic types and soil properties were spatially distinctive across the Loess Plateau. Their individual as well interactive impacts on changes of soil carbon pool during land use conversions must be properly accounted for. In this study, six watersheds well distributed on the Loess Plateau were investigated. The six watersheds mainly represented three geomorphic types (wide gully, loess ridge, and round knoll), each with three land use types (cropland, grassland and woodland). In total, 695 soil samples were taken from the top 20 cm of the six watersheds during 2010 and 2011. Our results show: 1) Degrees of erosion hugely differed among the six watersheds, with Huangfuchuan having three times more erosion modulus than the least eroded Gaoquangou (21000 vs. 6120 t km-2 per year). 2) The increasing SOC content from 4 mg g-1 at Huangfuchuan to 8.1 mg g-1 at Gaoquangou agreed well with their decreasing erosion modulus, suggesting that geomorphology induced erosion history was the predominant factor to set the general level of watershed-scale SOC reservoir. 3) Within each watershed, grassland and woodland consistently had at least 34% more SOC than cropland, demonstrating the

  9. Actual ET modelling based on the Budyko framework and the sustainability of vegetation water use in the loess plateau.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xuerui; Sun, Miao; Zhao, Qi; Wu, Pute; Zhao, Xining; Pan, Wenxiang; Wang, Yubao

    2017-02-01

    Jointly influenced by the natural factors and the artificial protection measures, the ecological environment of Loess Plateau has been significantly improved in recent years, but which has already brought about some water-related problems. To maintain the balance between precipitation and water consumption is an important foundation for sustainable development of the ecology remediation. This study used Budyko Framework to simulate the actual water consumption of 161 sub-basins from 1990 to 2014. Based on the simulation results, the research also analyzed the evolution characteristics of water balance in Loess Plateau from 1990 to 2014. Results show that, with the increase of vegetation coverage, the regional precipitation and actual evapotranspiration were both showing a significant increasing trend, and the increasing rate of precipitation was 1.91mm/a on average, which was greater than the increasing rate of actual evapotranspiration of 1.34mm/a. To further demonstrate the water balance regime in Loess Plateau, the evapotranspiration coefficient (ECC) was used to quantitatively indicate the ratio of the vegetation water consumption and the total precipitation. The average values of ECC were 0.868, 0.863, 0.851 and 0.837 respectively in four sub-periods of 1990-1999, 2000-2004, 2005-2009 and 2010-2014. The above analyses indicate that with the vegetation recovery and ecological restoration, the percentage of evapotranspiration in the total precipitation is keeping decreasing and in turn the percentage of water yield in the total precipitation is keeping increasing. Consequently, it seems more sustainable for vegetation water use in most areas of Loess Plateau currently.

  10. Geochemical isotopic composition in the Loess Plateau and corresponding source analyses: A case study of China's Yangjuangou catchment.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yafeng; Chen, Liding; Gao, Yang; Chen, Shibo; Chen, Weiliang; Hao, Zhuo; Jia, Junjie; Han, Ning

    2017-03-01

    Isotopic fractionation technology is widely used in identifying sources and the speciation of geochemical isotopic elements. With the increase in human activity, geochemical element transport by soil erosion has become the most critical environmental problem in the Loess Plateau, so tracing the geochemical element source would help in the identification and management of local soil erosion. In this study, we investigated the spatial distribution of carbon (C), nitrogen (N), oxygen (O), and hydrogen (H) isotopes in water and then further analyzed (13)C and (15)N in soil and vegetation to better understand the C and N sources and their biogeochemical cycling function in the Loess Plateau. Results showed that mean dual isotopic values of δ(15)N-NO3(-) and δ(18)O-NO3(-) in the watershed streams were 11.44±6.15‰ and -11.29±2.52‰, respectively, and that N wet deposition, fertilizers, and manure were the three main pollution sources. The mean dual isotopic value of δ(13)C in the water was -5.36±0.28‰, indicating that δ(13)C-DIC in the Yangjuangou Catchment of China's Loess Plateau is mainly controlled by carbonate weathering or soil erosion. The severe erosion in this region has typically occurred in grassy (C4) land-use types devoid of woody vegetation (C3), and this has led to a discrepancy in δ(13)C between soil and water. We found δ(18)O and δ(2)D in water to be -7.87±0.85‰ and -61.49±3.25‰, respectively, and to show a high positive correlation (r(2)=0.81). This suggests that summer rainstorms lead to soil erosion and runoff, which cause a wide range of isotopic values to occur across the Loess Plateau.

  11. Attribution analysis of runoff decline in a semiarid region of the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Binquan; Liang, Zhongmin; Zhang, Jianyun; Wang, Guoqing; Zhao, Weimin; Zhang, Hongyue; Wang, Jun; Hu, Yiming

    2016-12-01

    runoff decline. This study enhances our understanding of runoff changes caused by SWC measures and climate variability in the typical semiarid region of Loess Plateau, China.

  12. Spatial pattern and heterogeneity of soil moisture along a transect in a small catchment on the Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yang; Dou, Yanxing; Liu, Dong; An, Shaoshan

    2017-07-01

    Spatial pattern and heterogeneity of soil moisture is important for the hydrological process on the Loess Plateau. This study combined the classical and geospatial statistical techniques to examine the spatial pattern and heterogeneity of soil moisture along a transect scale (e.g. land use types and topographical attributes) on the Loess Plateau. The average values of soil moisture were on the order of farmland > orchard > grassland > abandoned land > shrubland > forestland. Vertical distribution characteristics of soil moisture (0-500 cm) were similar among land use types. Highly significant (p < 0.01) negative correlations were found between soil moisture and elevation (h) except for shrubland (p > 0.05), whereas no significant correlations were found between soil moisture and plan curvature (Kh), stream power index (SPI), compound topographic index (CTI) (p > 0.05), indicating that topographical attributes (mainly h) have a negative effect on the soil moisture spatial heterogeneity. Besides, soil moisture spatial heterogeneity decreased from forestland to grassland and farmland, accompanied by a decline from 15° to 1° alongside upper to lower slope position. This study highlights the importance of land use types and topographical attributes on the soil moisture spatial heterogeneity from a combined analysis of the structural equation model (SEM) and generalized additive models (GAMs), and the relative contribution of land use types to the soil moisture spatial heterogeneity was higher than that of topographical attributes, which provides insights for researches focusing on soil moisture varitions on the Loess Plateau.

  13. Roots of forbs sense climate fluctuations in the semi-arid Loess Plateau: Herb-chronology based analysis.

    PubMed

    Shi, Songlin; Li, Zongshan; Wang, Hao; von Arx, Georg; Lü, Yihe; Wu, Xing; Wang, Xiaochun; Liu, Guohua; Fu, Bojie

    2016-06-21

    Growth of herbaceous plants responds sensitively and rapidly to climate variability. Yet, little is known regarding how climate warming influences the growth of herbaceous plants, particularly in semi-arid sites. This contrasts with widely reported tree growth decline and even mortality in response to severe water deficits due to climate warming around the world. Here, we use the relatively novel approach of herb-chronology to analyze the correlation between climatic factors and annual ring width in the root xylem of two perennial forb species (Medicago sativa, Potentilla chinensis) in the Loess Plateau of China. We show that warming-induced water deficit has a significant negative effect on the growth of herbaceous plants in the Loess Plateau. Our results indicate that the growth of forbs responds rapidly and sensitively to drought variability, implying that water availability plays a dominant role in regulating the growth of herbaceous plants in semi-arid areas. If warming and drying in the Loess Plateau continue in the future, further affects the growth of herbaceous plants, potentially driving regional changes in the relationship between herbaceous vegetation and climate.

  14. An approach for detecting five typical vegetation types on the Chinese Loess Plateau using Landsat TM data.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhi-Jie; Jiao, Ju-Ying; Lei, Bo; Su, Yuan

    2015-09-01

    Remote sensing can provide large-scale spatial data for the detection of vegetation types. In this study, two shortwave infrared spectral bands (TM5 and TM7) and one visible spectral band (TM3) of Landsat 5 TM data were used to detect five typical vegetation types (communities dominated by Bothriochloa ischaemum, Artemisia gmelinii, Hippophae rhamnoides, Robinia pseudoacacia, and Quercus liaotungensis) using 270 field survey data in the Yanhe watershed on the Loess Plateau. The relationships between 200 field data points and their corresponding radiance reflectance were analyzed, and the equation termed the vegetation type index (VTI) was generated. The VTI values of five vegetation types were calculated, and the accuracy was tested using the remaining 70 field data points. The applicability of VTI was also tested by the distribution of vegetation type of two small watersheds in the Yanhe watershed and field sample data collected from other regions (Ziwuling Region, Huangling County, and Luochuan County) on the Loess Plateau. The results showed that the VTI can effectively detect the five vegetation types with an average accuracy exceeding 80 % and a representativeness above 85 %. As a new approach for monitoring vegetation types using remote sensing at a larger regional scale, VTI can play an important role in the assessment of vegetation restoration and in the investigation of the spatial distribution and community diversity of vegetation on the Loess Plateau.

  15. Roots of forbs sense climate fluctuations in the semi-arid Loess Plateau: Herb-chronology based analysis

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Songlin; Li, Zongshan; Wang, Hao; von Arx, Georg; Lü, Yihe; Wu, Xing; Wang, Xiaochun; Liu, Guohua; Fu, Bojie

    2016-01-01

    Growth of herbaceous plants responds sensitively and rapidly to climate variability. Yet, little is known regarding how climate warming influences the growth of herbaceous plants, particularly in semi-arid sites. This contrasts with widely reported tree growth decline and even mortality in response to severe water deficits due to climate warming around the world. Here, we use the relatively novel approach of herb-chronology to analyze the correlation between climatic factors and annual ring width in the root xylem of two perennial forb species (Medicago sativa, Potentilla chinensis) in the Loess Plateau of China. We show that warming-induced water deficit has a significant negative effect on the growth of herbaceous plants in the Loess Plateau. Our results indicate that the growth of forbs responds rapidly and sensitively to drought variability, implying that water availability plays a dominant role in regulating the growth of herbaceous plants in semi-arid areas. If warming and drying in the Loess Plateau continue in the future, further affects the growth of herbaceous plants, potentially driving regional changes in the relationship between herbaceous vegetation and climate. PMID:27323906

  16. “Grain for Green” driven land use change and carbon sequestration on the Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Lei; Shangguan, Zhou-ping; Sweeney, Sandra

    2014-01-01

    Land-use change is widely considered to be a major factor affecting soil carbon (C) sequestration (ΔCs). This paper studied changes to soil C stocks (Cs) following the conversion of farmland to forest, shrub and grassland across the key area for implementing China's “Grain for Green” — the Loess Plateau. The results are based on a synthesis of 44 recent publications (including 424 observations at 70 sites) which has allowed us to further refine our understanding of the mechanisms driving the increase in Cs following farmland conversion. This synthesis suggests that the ΔCs potential of the Loess Plateau could reach 0.59 Tg yr−1 based on an estimated annual average ΔCs rate of 0.29 Mg ha−1 yr−1. In the region's different rainfall zones both the main contributing factors and Cs dynamics varied. Across the entire Loess Plateau, Cs showed first an increasing (<5 yr) then a decreasing (6–10 yr) tendency only to increase (>10 yr) yet again. In addition, the ΔCs rates depended primarily on restoration age. This synthesis demonstrates that both the initial s Cs and the average annual temperature have a significant effect on ΔCs while the effect of land-use conversion type, rainfall zone, and average annual precipitation were minimal. PMID:25391219

  17. Roots of forbs sense climate fluctuations in the semi-arid Loess Plateau: Herb-chronology based analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, S.

    2016-12-01

    Growth of herbaceous plants responds sensitively and rapidly to climate variability. Yet, little is known regarding how climate warming influences the growth of herbaceous plants, particularly in semi-arid sites. This contrasts with widely reported tree growth decline and even mortality in response to severe water deficits due to climate warming around the world. Here, we use the relatively novel approach of herb-chronology to analyze the correlation between climatic factors and annual ring width in the root xylem of two perennial forb species (Medicago sativa, Potentilla chinensis) in the Loess Plateau of China. We show that warming-induced water deficit has a significant negative effect on the growth of herbaceous plants in the Loess Plateau. Our results indicate that the growth of forbs responds rapidly and sensitively to drought variability, implying that water availability plays a dominant role in regulating the growth of herbaceous plants in semi-arid areas. If warming and drying in the Loess Plateau continue in the future, further affects the growth of herbaceous plants, potentially driving regional changes in the relationship between herbaceous vegetation and climate.

  18. Roots of forbs sense climate fluctuations in the semi-arid Loess Plateau: Herb-chronology based analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Songlin; Li, Zongshan; Wang, Hao; von Arx, Georg; Lü, Yihe; Wu, Xing; Wang, Xiaochun; Liu, Guohua; Fu, Bojie

    2016-06-01

    Growth of herbaceous plants responds sensitively and rapidly to climate variability. Yet, little is known regarding how climate warming influences the growth of herbaceous plants, particularly in semi-arid sites. This contrasts with widely reported tree growth decline and even mortality in response to severe water deficits due to climate warming around the world. Here, we use the relatively novel approach of herb-chronology to analyze the correlation between climatic factors and annual ring width in the root xylem of two perennial forb species (Medicago sativa, Potentilla chinensis) in the Loess Plateau of China. We show that warming-induced water deficit has a significant negative effect on the growth of herbaceous plants in the Loess Plateau. Our results indicate that the growth of forbs responds rapidly and sensitively to drought variability, implying that water availability plays a dominant role in regulating the growth of herbaceous plants in semi-arid areas. If warming and drying in the Loess Plateau continue in the future, further affects the growth of herbaceous plants, potentially driving regional changes in the relationship between herbaceous vegetation and climate.

  19. Analysis on the Relationship Between Vegetation Coverage and Soil Moisture in the Loess Plateau Region of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shao, Weiwei; Yang, Dawen

    2010-05-01

    The growth of vegetation is affected by intermittent water availability, while it also feeds back to influence regional water balance. Analysis on the relationships between vegetation and water balance is significant for the research on the catchment's ecohydrological response to the climate change. A better understanding of the relationships between vegetation coverage and soil moisture variation will be useful for the explanation of the complicated interactions among climate changes, vegetation dynamics, and water cycles. In the present study, 51 catchments in the Loess Plateau region of the Yellow River basin in China were selected as the study area. Through the simplified representation of the average canopy water balance model developed by Eagleson, the mean vegetation coverage in study area is shown well correlated with the meteorological factors. The function of vegetation cover, potential canopy conductance and soil moisture is proposed for the Loess Plateau and the spatial distribution relationship between the average vegetation coverage and soil moisture is analyzed. The result indicates that there is an approximate positive relation between the vegetation coverage and soil moisture in space for the Loess Plateau region. It implies that the alternation of vegetation coverage due to climate change and human activity can be potentially predicted through the soil moisture change, and vice versa. This result is useful for assessing the long-term average effect of vegetation changes on catchment hydrology, and hence it has implications to the water resources management in the non-humid regions of China.

  20. Land use changing SOC pool: A field investigation from four catchments on the Loess Plateau in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Shengli; Wang, Rui; Hu, Yaxian

    2017-04-01

    The Loess Plateau in China has long been known for severe erosion, a degraded ecosystem and heavy sediment delivery to the Yellow River. Apart from, the highly erodible loess soil and the hilly geomorphology, intensive cultivation has been caused such most destructive human activities. This made the Loess Plateau once the least fertile region in China with extreme poverty. To restore soil fertility and ecosystem sustainability, a national-level project was launched in 1990s to encourage land use changes via afforestation or conversion of cropland back to grassland or woodland. After nearly three decades of land use conversion, the SOC pool in the soil can be expected to have substantially changed. However, climate conditions, geomorphic types and soil properties were spatially distinctive across the Loess Plateau. Their individual as well interactive impacts on changes of soil carbon pool during land use conversions must thus be properly accounted for. In this study, four watersheds distributed over the Loess Plateau were investigated. The four watersheds mainly consisted of three geomorphic types: wide gully, loess ridge, and round knoll. On each geomorphic feature, three land use types prevailed: cropland, grassland and woodland. In total, 695 soil samples were taken from the top 20 cm of the four watersheds during 2010 and 2011. Our results show: 1) Degrees of erosion hugely differed among the four watersheds, with Catchment A (hilly) having three times more erosion modulus than the least eroded Catchment D (gully) (12000 vs. 1800 Mg per km2 per year). 2) The increasing SOC content from 4 mg g-1 at Catchment A to 8.1 mg g-1 at Catchment D agreed well with their decreasing erosion, suggesting that geomorphology induced erosion history was the predominant factor to set the general level of watershed-scale SOC reservoir. 3) Within each watershed, grassland and woodland consistently had at least 34% more SOC than cropland, demonstrating the influence of land use

  1. Land rehabilitation, erosion and C sequestration in soils of the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yong; Van Oost, Kristof; Quine, Tim; Govers, Gerard

    2013-04-01

    Once the cradle of Chinese civilization, the Chinese loess plateau is now one of the most degraded ecosystems in the world and a wide range of ecological rehabilitation programs have been implemented since the 1950s that aim at facilitating synergies between soil conservation, food production and socio-economic welfare. More recently, the scope of vegetation restoration programs has been extended to include sequestration of C by soils and the reconversion of 4.8 million ha of cropland to forest and grassland has re-sequestered a substantial amount of C in soils between 2000 and 2008. Although this appears to represent a significant win-win, these estimates are associated with considerable uncertainty both due to the extrapolation and, significantly, because of the assumptions made about the pre-restoration state. Here, we argue that a full assessment of the C sequestration benefit of land rehabilitation programs requires quantification not only of the C uptake in vegetation and plants under the new land use regime (as has been undertaken), but also of the soil atmosphere C exchange associated with the elevated erosion rates that typify the pre-restoration state. We present the results of an intensive measurement campaign to characterize the erosional control on vertical carbon fluxes from degraded land, typical of the pre-restoration state. We report year-round soil respiration (in the absence of vegetation) measurements with high temporal resolution along an erosion gradient on cultivated sloping land in the Chinese Loess Plateau. At 14 sites along an eroding cultivated slope, we quantified the temporal dynamics of soil CO2 fluxes using an Automated Soil CO2 Flux System. This resulted in 13296 respiration measurements between April 2007 and September 2008. We investigate the factors controlling in-situ soil respiration, including soil temperature, moisture, soil erosion and SOC stock and quality. Soil and, by inference, C erosion and deposition since 1954 were

  2. Evolution of ecosystem services in the Chinese Loess Plateau under climatic and land use changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Su, Changhong; Fu, Bojie

    2013-02-01

    Due to the lengthy historic land use by humans and the climate change characterized by warming and drying, the Loess Plateau has been plagued by ecosystem degradation for a long time. A series of ecological conservation projects launched since the 1970s altered the land use pattern greatly, and exerted a profound influence on the ecosystem services. Based on the Integrated Valuation of Ecosystem Services and Tradeoffs (InVEST) and Carnegie-Ames-Stanford Approach (CASA) models, we assessed the historical fluctuation of sediment control, water yield, and net primary production (NPP) in the Loess Plateau. The results showed that sediment retention was greatly consolidated indicated by the sharp decrease of sediment export. Water yield decreased at first and increased later. Both sediment export and water yield showed an increasing 'spatial homogenization' tendency during the period. NPP was steady between 1990 and 2000, and then increased greatly after 2000. Ecosystem services are interlinked closely and complexly. Correlation analyses indicated a positive relationship between the difference in sediment export and water yield (r2 = 0.776**) from 1975 to 2008, with negative correlations between the difference of NPP and water yield (r2 = - 0.422**)/sediment export (r2 = - 0.240*) from 1990 to 2008. This, to some extent, implies that there are tradeoffs between the services of water yield and sediment control/NPP, and there is synergy between sediment control and NPP. Climatic and land use changes are the major drivers on ecosystem services fluctuation. Correlation analyses showed that the decrease of precipitation significantly hindered water yield (r2 = 0.980**) and sediment export (r2 = 0.791**). The increase of temperature exerted a slight negative influence on water yield (r2 = - 0.350**). A spatial concordance existing between the 'cropland to grass/woodland' area and the high sediment control (r2 = 0.313**)/NPP (r2 = 0.488**) area indicated that the land use

  3. Using remote sensing data to evaluate the impacts of re-vegetation on soil moisture of the Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rui, Li

    2017-04-01

    A large-scale re-vegetation supported by the Grain for Green Project (GGP) has greatly changed local eco-hydrological systems of Loess Plateau, in the meantime, with an impact on soil moisture conditions . It is important to know how exactly re-vegetation influences soil moisture condition, which not only crucially constraint growth and distribution of vegetation, and hence, further re-vegetation in the region but also determine the degree of soil desiccation and thus erosion risk. In this study, three eco-environmental factors, which are soil water index (SWI), the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and precipitation, were used to analyze the response of soil moisture in the 1-metre layer of top soil to the re-vegetation. SWI was estimated based on the back-scatter coefficient produced by the European Remote Sensing Satellite (ERS-1/2) and Meteorological Operational satellite program (MetOp) while NDVI was derived from SPOT imagery. Two separate periods, which are 1998-2000 and 2008-2010, were selected to examine the spatio-temporal pattern of the chosen eco-environmental factors. It has been shown that the amount of precipitation in 1998-2000 was close to that of 2008-2010 (the difference being 13.10 mm). From 1998-2000 to 2008-2010, the average annual NDVI increased for 80.99%, while the SWI decreased for 72.64% of the area on the Loess Plateau. More specifically, 57.65% of the area on the Loess Plateau experienced an increased NDVI and decreased SWI. These results indicate that re-vegetation and climate changes have impacts on soil moisture. However, re-vegetation may be the major factor for soil moisture change in most areas of the Loess Plateau. It is ,therefore, suggested that soil moisture content (SMC) should be kept in mind when carrying out re-vegetation in the arid and semi-arid regions. Keywords: Grain for Green Project (GGP), soil water index (SWI) ,Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), Loess Plateau, remote sensing

  4. Temporal and spatial evolution of the standardized precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI) in the Loess Plateau under climate change from 2001 to 2050.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xuerui; Zhao, Qi; Zhao, Xining; Wu, Pute; Pan, Wenxiang; Gao, Xiaodong; Sun, Miao

    2017-04-03

    Loess Plateau has great uncertainty on drought occurrence due to climate change. This paper analyzes the evolution of precipitation, potential evapotranspiration and standardized precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI) based on the Coupled Model Inter-comparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) data and regional downscaling model (RegCM4.0). Results indicate that, under RCP2.6 Scenario, the precipitation will increase significantly (5% confidence level) at the rate of 16.40mm/10a. However, the potential evapotranspiration is showing non-significant decreasing trend at the rate of 2.16mm/10a. Moreover, the SPEI will decrease in the south and northernmost area and increase in the central northern area of Loess Plateau. Under RCP8.5 Scenario, the precipitation will increase significantly (5% confidence level) at the rate of 19.12mm/10a. The potential evapotranspiration will non-significantly decrease at the rate of 2.16mm/10a and the SPEI is showing increasing trend almost in the whole Loess Plateau. Generally, Loess Plateau is becoming wetter in the central part under RCP2.6 Scenario and the wet area will be enlarged to almost the whole plateau under RCP8.5 Scenario. Based on the results, the water resources will increase under global warming, which may alleviate the water scarcity issue in the Loess Plateau.

  5. [Soil carbon and nitrogen storage of different land use types in northwestern Shanxi Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Dong, Yun-Zhong; Wang, Yong-Liang; Zhang, Jian-Jie; Zhang, Qiang; Yang, Zhi-Ping

    2014-04-01

    The soil organic carbon (SOC) and total nitrogen (TN) storage under five different land use patterns, i. e. , poplar and Caragana microphylla plantation, C. microphylla artificial shrubland, poplar plantation, bare land and cropland were studied in the hilly [ness Plateau of northwestern Shanxi. The results showed that the contents, densities and storage of SOC and TN varied remarkably under the different land-use patterns. Soil carbon and nitrogen contents and storage in the 0-20 cm soil layer were significantly higher in the 20-40 cm and 40-60 cm soil layers under each of the five land use patterns. In the same soil layer, the contents and densities of SOC and TN under the five land use patterns were in the order of poplar and C. microphylla plantation > C. microphylla artificial shrubland > poplar plantation > bare land > cropland. The SOC storage in the 0-60 cm soil layer was in the order of poplar and C. microphylla plantation (30.09 t x hm(-2)) > C. microphylla artificial shrubland (24.78 t x hm(-2)) > poplar plantation (24.14 t x hm(-2)) > bare land (22.06 t x hm(-2)) > cropland (17.59 t x hm(-2)). Soil TN storage had the same trend as SOC storage, and TN storage in the 0-60 cm soil layer was the highest (4.94 t x hm(-2)) in poplar and Caragana microphylla plantation, followed by C. microphylla artificial shrubland (3.53 t x hm(-2)), poplar plantation (3.51 t x hm(-2)), bare land (3.40 t x hm(-2)), and cropland (2.71 t x hm(-2)). Poplar and C. microphylla plantation and C. microphylla artificial shrubland were the good land use patterns in the process of vegetation construction and ecological restoration in the hilly Loess Plateau of northwestern Shanxi.

  6. Changes in Soil Carbon and Nitrogen following Land Abandonment of Farmland on the Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Lei; Shangguan, Zhou-Ping; Sweeney, Sandra

    2013-01-01

    The revegetation of abandoned farmland significantly influences soil organic C (SOC) and total N (TN). However, the dynamics of both soil OC and N storage following the abandonment of farmland are not well understood. To learn more about soil C and N storages dynamics 30 years after the conversion of farmland to grassland, we measured SOC and TN content in paired grassland and farmland sites in the Zhifanggou watershed on the Loess Plateau, China. The grassland sites were established on farmland abandoned for 1, 7, 13, 20, and 30 years. Top soil OC and TN were higher in older grassland, especially in the 0–5 cm soil depths; deeper soil OC and TN was lower in younger grasslands (<20 yr), and higher in older grasslands (30 yr). Soil OC and N storage (0–100 cm) was significantly lower in the younger grasslands (<20 yr), had increased in the older grasslands (30 yr), and at 30 years SOC had increased to pre-abandonment levels. For a thirty year period following abandonment the soil C/N value remained at 10. Our results indicate that soil C and TN were significantly and positively correlated, indicating that studies on the storage of soil OC and TN needs to focus on deeper soil and not be restricted to the uppermost (0–30 cm) soil levels. PMID:23940793

  7. Weed inhibition by sowing legume species in early succession of abandoned fields on Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Jin-Hua; Xu, Dang-Hui; Wang, Gang

    2008-01-01

    A major constraint on vegetation succession on abandoned land is dominance by early successional species. Our aim was to inhibit weeds and alter the initial vegetation succession by the introduction of legume species ( Medicago sativa, Melilotus suaveolens, and Astragalus adsurgens) into abandoned fields on the Loess Plateau, China. Results from our study showed that the addition of legume species strongly affected the dominance pattern of the abandoned-field vegetation. The number of naturally colonizing species was inhibited by the introduction of legume species in the first two growing seasons. The strongest effect on weed inhibition appeared by sowing Melilotus suaveolens. Vegetation cover and above-ground biomass increased after introduction of legume species and the number of naturally colonizing plant species showed a positive correlation with above-ground biomass. Later successional species like Stipa breviflora and Astragalus polycladus appeared three years following the introduction of Melilotus suaveolens, indicating that the course of old-field succession may be accelerated by introducing legume species such as Melilotus suaveolens, at least temporarily.

  8. How ecological restoration alters ecosystem services: an analysis of carbon sequestration in China's Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Feng, Xiaoming; Fu, Bojie; Lu, Nan; Zeng, Yuan; Wu, Bingfang

    2013-10-03

    Restoring disturbed and over-exploited ecosystems is important to mitigate human pressures on natural ecosystems. China has launched an ambitious national ecosystem restoration program called Grain to Green Program (GTGP) over the last decade. By using remote sensing techniques and ecosystem modelling, we quantitatively evaluated the changes in ecosystem carbon sequestration since China's GTGP program during period of 2000-2008. It was found the NPP and NEP in this region had steadily increased after the initiative of the GTGP program, and a total of 96.1 Tg of additional carbon had been sequestered during that period. Changes in soil carbon storage were lagged behind and thus insignificant over the period, but was expected to follow in the coming decades. As a result, the Loess Plateau ecosystem had shifted from a net carbon source in 2000 to a net carbon sink in 2008. The carbon sequestration efficiency was constrained by precipitation, and appropriate choices of restoration types (trees, shrubs, and grasses) in accordance to local climate are critical for achieving the best benefit/cost efficiency.

  9. An assessment of restoration success to forests planted for ecosystem restoration in loess plateau, Northwestern China.

    PubMed

    Yang, Zhanbiao; Jin, Hongxi; Wang, Gang

    2010-05-01

    Using ecosystem attributes identified by the Society of Ecological Restoration International, we assessed three restoration projects in the loess plateau, northwestern China, including planting Larix principis-rupprechtii (LS) and Pinus tabulaeformis (PS) on shrubland, and planting L. principis-rupprechtii on open forest land (LO). The reestablishment of native species in LS and PS was poorer than LO because of the excessive stand density. Species diversity, seedling number, and seedling diversity were significantly higher in LO than in LS and PS. Soil nutrient was also significantly higher in the LO treatment. The vegetation composition, species diversity, and soil nutrient in LO, however, were more similar to these in the reference. Our results indicate that planting L. principis-rupprechtii on open forest land had accelerated the succession of the ecosystem for approximately 30 years. But the poor natural regeneration of L. principis-rupprechtii suggests that post-planting activities in LO are required after timber harvesting or the natural mortality of the L. principis-rupprechtii. Management operation such as selective thinning will be required in LS and PS to promote the true restoration of native species diversity in the future.

  10. Profiling bacterial diversity in a limestone cave of the western Loess Plateau of China

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Yucheng; Tan, Liangcheng; Liu, Wuxing; Wang, Baozhan; Wang, Jianjun; Cai, Yanjun; Lin, Xiangui

    2015-01-01

    Bacteria and archaea sustain subsurface cave ecosystems by dominating primary production and fueling biogeochemical cyclings, despite the permanent darkness and shortage of nutrients. However, the heterogeneity and underlying mechanism of microbial diversity in caves, in particular those well connect to surface environment are largely unexplored. In this study, we examined the bacterial abundance and composition in Jinjia Cave, a small and shallow limestone cave located on the western Loess Plateau of China, by enumerating and pyrosequencing small subunit rRNA genes. The results clearly reveal the contrasting bacterial community compositions in relation to cave habitat types, i.e., rock wall deposit, aquatic sediment, and sinkhole soil, which are differentially connected to the surface environment. The deposits on the cave walls were dominated by putative cave-specific bacterial lineages within the γ-Proteobacteria or Actinobacteria that are routinely found on cave rocks around the world. In addition, sequence identity with known functional groups suggests enrichments of chemolithotrophic bacteria potentially involved in autotrophic C fixation and inorganic N transformation on rock surfaces. By contrast, bacterial communities in aquatic sediments were more closely related to those in the overlying soils. This is consistent with the similarity in elemental composition between the cave sediment and the overlying soil, implicating the influence of mineral chemistry on cave microhabitat and bacterial composition. These findings provide compelling molecular evidence of the bacterial community heterogeneity in an East Asian cave, which might be controlled by both subsurface and surface environments. PMID:25870592

  11. Cyclic precipitation variation on the western Loess Plateau of China during the past four centuries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tan, Liangcheng; An, Zhisheng; Huh, Chih-An; Cai, Yanjun; Shen, Chuan-Chou; Shiau, Liang-Jian; Yan, Libin; Cheng, Hai; Edwards, R. Lawrence

    2014-09-01

    Precipitation variation on the Loess Plateau (LP) of China is not only important for rain-fed agriculture in this environmentally sensitive region, but also critical for the water and life securities over the whole Yellow River basin. Here we reconstruct high resolution precipitation variation on the western LP during the past 370 years by using two replicated, annually-laminated stalagmites. Spatial analysis suggests that the reconstruction can be also representative for the whole LP region. The precipitation variations show a significant quasi-50 year periodicity during the last 370 years, and have an important role in determining the runoff of the middle Yellow River. The main factor controlling the decadal scale variations and long-term trend in precipitation over this region is southerly water vapour transport associated with the Asian summer monsoon. The Pacific Decadal Oscillation is also an important influence on precipitation variation in this region, as it can affect the East Asian summer monsoon and the West Pacific Subtropical High.

  12. [Ecological cost of grain production in gully area of Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Li, Xiao; Xie, Yong-sheng; Zhang, Ying-long; Li, Wen-zhuo

    2010-12-01

    Economic and ecological methods were applied to investigate the ecological cost of grain production in the gully area of Loess Plateau. In the study area in 2008, the ecological loss due to grain production was 7.2% of the total crop output, and the ecological cost reached 2.42 yuan x kg(-1) for wheat and 2.12 yuan x kg(-1) for corn. However, the per unit sales were 1.70 yuan x kg(-1) for wheat and 1.28 yuan x kg(-1) for corn. The combination of high production cost and low income affected the sustainable development of local ecological economy. The analysis of grey relationships among various factors affecting the ecological cost of grain production indicated that yield, sown area, and agricultural mechanical cost were the important factors affecting the ecological cost of grain production, while chemical fertilizer cost and organic fertilizer cost had less impact on the ecological cost of grain production. Under current production conditions, the ecological cost of grain production in the area could be reduced by raising the level of scientific and technological inputs, expanding the scale of family agricultural production, and improving the grain yield.

  13. Airborne pollen assemblages and weather regime in the central-eastern Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Yuecong; Ge, Yawen; Xu, Qinghai; Bunting, Jane M.; Lv, Suqing; Wang, Junting; Li, Zetao

    2015-04-01

    This paper presents the results of pollen trapping studies designed to quantify the pollen assemblages carried in the winds of the Loess Plateau in Luochuan and Hunyuan. The one-year-collection samples analysis results show that pollen assemblages can be more sensitive to the change of climate than the vegetation composition, because of the change of pollen production. The analysis results of pollen traps in different weather regimes indicate that the pollen influx coming from dust weather contribute more to the total pollen influx than that coming from non-dust weather. The wind speed is the most important influenced factor to pollen assemblages, then the mean temperature and the mean relative humidity, the wind direction also contributes some. Strong wind coming from dust direction can make the percent and influx of Artemisia and Chenopodiaceae increase obviously with averagely higher than over 2.7 times in dust weather than in non-dust samples. The influences of wind speed and wind direction are not serious to some arboreal pollen such as Rosaceae, Quercus, Betula, Pinus and Ostryopsis, which are mainly influenced by temperature or the relative humidity such as Salix, Hippophae, Carpinus, Brassicaceae, Cupressaceae, Fabaceae.

  14. Changes in soil carbon and nitrogen following land abandonment of farmland on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Deng, Lei; Shangguan, Zhou-Ping; Sweeney, Sandra

    2013-01-01

    The revegetation of abandoned farmland significantly influences soil organic C (SOC) and total N (TN). However, the dynamics of both soil OC and N storage following the abandonment of farmland are not well understood. To learn more about soil C and N storages dynamics 30 years after the conversion of farmland to grassland, we measured SOC and TN content in paired grassland and farmland sites in the Zhifanggou watershed on the Loess Plateau, China. The grassland sites were established on farmland abandoned for 1, 7, 13, 20, and 30 years. Top soil OC and TN were higher in older grassland, especially in the 0-5 cm soil depths; deeper soil OC and TN was lower in younger grasslands (<20 yr), and higher in older grasslands (30 yr). Soil OC and N storage (0-100 cm) was significantly lower in the younger grasslands (<20 yr), had increased in the older grasslands (30 yr), and at 30 years SOC had increased to pre-abandonment levels. For a thirty year period following abandonment the soil C/N value remained at 10. Our results indicate that soil C and TN were significantly and positively correlated, indicating that studies on the storage of soil OC and TN needs to focus on deeper soil and not be restricted to the uppermost (0-30 cm) soil levels.

  15. Effects of pruning intensity on jujube transpiration and soil moisture of plantation in the Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nie, Zhenyi; Wang, Xing; Wang, Youke; Ma, Jianpeng; Wei, Xinguang; Chen, Dianyu

    2017-01-01

    In order to ease soil desiccation and prevent ecological deterioration in the Loess Plateau, where jujube (Zizyphus jujube MIll) is widely cultivated as a drought tolerant plant, four pruning intensities (PI), from PI-1 (light) to PI-4 (heavy) were set up based on total length of secondary branches to study the effects of pruning on transpiration and soil moisture in jujube plantations. Furthermore, growth indexes were regularly monitored to estimate jujubes biomass. Sap flow, meteorological and soil moisture conditions were monitored using thermal dissipation probes (TDP), weather station (RR-9100) and the combination of time domain transmission (TDT) technology and neutron moisture gauges (CNC503B), respectively. The results showed that daily actual transpiration of jujube was positively correlated with leaf biomass. Compared with PI-1, jujube transpiration during growth period under PI-2, PI-3, and PI-4 dropped by 11.1%, 29.2%, and 47.9%, respectively. On the contrary, annual water storage under PI-2, PI-3, and PI-4 increased by 6.29 mm, 25.78 mm and 34.74 mm while water use efficiency increased by 5.1%, 15.7% and 24.2%, respectively. Overall, increase in pruning intensity could significantly reduce water consumption of jujube and improve soil moisture in jujube plantations.

  16. Proxy of monsoon seasonality in carbon isotopes from paleosols of the southern Chinese Loess Plateau

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wang, Hongfang; Follmer, L.R.

    1998-01-01

    Soil organic matter (SOM) and soil carbonate (SC) are common constituents in soils and are directly related to plant growth. SOM accumulates gradually from the decomposition of plant material over time, whereas SC formation is biased to dry-season soil-dissolved CO2 that derives from plant respiration during a drying phase of the growing season. In some mixed C3-C4 environments, the peak of C3 and C4 plant metabolism differs seasonally, and the carbon source that contributes to the SOM and SC can be different. Consequently, ??13C(SOM) values reflect an annual average of the floral biomass, but ??13C(SC) values reflect a seasonal aspect of the plant community. The relationship between ??13C(SC) and ??13C(SOM) is mainly controlled by how different the seasonal conditions are. Our results suggest that the relationship is a seasonal proxy that can be used to differentiate the seasonality effects of Indian, East Asian, and Siberian monsoons on the Chinese Loess Plateau during the last interglacial-glacial cycle.

  17. Separating Vegetation Greening and Climate Change Controls on Evapotranspiration trend over the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Jin, Zhao; Liang, Wei; Yang, Yuting; Zhang, Weibin; Yan, Jianwu; Chen, Xuejuan; Li, Sha; Mo, Xingguo

    2017-08-15

    Evapotranspiration (ET) is a key ecological process connecting the soil-vegetation-atmosphere system, and its changes seriously affects the regional distribution of available water resources, especially in the arid and semiarid regions. With the Grain-for-Green project implemented in the Loess Plateau (LP) since 1999, water and heat distribution across the region have experienced great changes. Here, we investigate the changes and associated driving forces of ET in the LP from 2000 to 2012 using a remote sensing-based evapotranspiration model. Results show that annual ET significantly increased by 3.4 mm per year (p = 0.05) with large interannual fluctuations during the study period. This trend is higher than coincident increases in precipitation (2.0 mm yr(-2)), implying a possible pressure of water availability. The correlation analysis showed that vegetation change is the major controlling factor on interannual variability of annual ET with ~52.8% of pixels scattered in the strip region from the northeastern to southwestern parts of the LP. Further factorial analysis suggested that vegetation greening is the primary driver of the rises of ET over the study period relative to climate change. Our study can provide an improved understanding of the effects of vegetation and climate change on terrestrial ecosystem ET in the LP.

  18. How ecological restoration alters ecosystem services: an analysis of carbon sequestration in China's Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Xiaoming; Fu, Bojie; Lu, Nan; Zeng, Yuan; Wu, Bingfang

    2013-01-01

    Restoring disturbed and over-exploited ecosystems is important to mitigate human pressures on natural ecosystems. China has launched an ambitious national ecosystem restoration program called Grain to Green Program (GTGP) over the last decade. By using remote sensing techniques and ecosystem modelling, we quantitatively evaluated the changes in ecosystem carbon sequestration since China's GTGP program during period of 2000–2008. It was found the NPP and NEP in this region had steadily increased after the initiative of the GTGP program, and a total of 96.1 Tg of additional carbon had been sequestered during that period. Changes in soil carbon storage were lagged behind and thus insignificant over the period, but was expected to follow in the coming decades. As a result, the Loess Plateau ecosystem had shifted from a net carbon source in 2000 to a net carbon sink in 2008. The carbon sequestration efficiency was constrained by precipitation, and appropriate choices of restoration types (trees, shrubs, and grasses) in accordance to local climate are critical for achieving the best benefit/cost efficiency. PMID:24088871

  19. [Effect of different mulching on spring corn yield and on soil environment in Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Fang, Riyao; Tong, Yanan; Liang, Dongli; Fang, Juan

    2003-11-01

    Effects of different mulching on spring corn yield and on soil environment in Loess Plateau, Heyang County were studied. The results showed that different mulching could increase the corn yield significantly. Soil water contents were increased remarkably except normal plastic film mulching, and the upper soil layer kept wet for a long time. Mulching could also reduce temperature difference of day and night, keep soil surface from direct precipitation lash, and maintain better soil structure. Compared with straw mulching, normal plastic film and no mulching, water osmosis plastic film could increase the yield by 6.4%, 23.6% and 29.1%, the water use efficiency 21.5, 20.2, 17.4 and 16.7 kg.mm-1.hm-2, respectively. Straw mulching could remarkably increase soil organic matter and soil fertility. Water osmosis plastic film had the same effect of increasing temperature as normal plastic film. While air temperature was more than 35 degrees C, water osmosis plastic film had the function of reducing extreme temperature, but long term mulching would promote excessive mineralization of soil organic nitrogen and leaching of NO3(-)-N.

  20. [Grain effect of landscape pattern indices in a gully catchment of Loess Plateau, China].

    PubMed

    Qiu, Yang; Yang, Lei; Wang, Jun; Zhang, Ying; Meng, Qing-hua; Zhang, Xiao-guang

    2010-05-01

    By using landscape pattern analysis based on GIS, this paper studied the grain effect of landscape pattern indices with a scale 1-50 m in a gully catchment of the Loess Plateau, China from 1975 to 2007. In the catchment, the grain effect was obvious, and differed significantly with year. The grain effect had five types, i.e., stable, stable decreasing, undulatory decreasing, amplitude-accreting, and anomalistic changing. With increasing grain, the stable grain effect showed a stable patch richness density, the stable decreasing grain effect showed a decreasing trend of total edge, edge density, landscape shape index, aggregation index, and contagion index, the undulatory decreasing grain effect showed an undulatory decreasing trend of perimeter-area fractal dimension, the amplitude-accreting grain effect showed an amplitude increasing trend of total area, Shannon's diversity index, and evenness index, and the anomalistic changing grain effect showed an anomalistic change of patch number, patch density, mean patch area, largest patch index, splitting index, and landscape division index. In 1975, the grain effect of all the indices differed significantly from that in other years, and even, was in opposite.

  1. Analysis of Precipitation Characteristics during 1957-2012 in the Semi-Arid Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Weijun; Yu, Xinyang; Ma, Huan; Zhu, Qingke; Zhang, Yan; Qin, Wei; Ai, Ning; Wang, Yu

    2015-01-01

    Precipitation is the only water supply and most important factor affecting vegetation growth on the slopes of semi-arid Loess Plateau of China. Based on precipitation data from 7 synoptic stations in the study area over the period 1957–2012, the trends of precipitation and standardized precipitation index (SPI) were analyzed by using linear regression, Mann−Kendall, and Spearman’s Rho tests at the 5% significance level. The results show that (1) the precipitation fluctuation of monthly precipitation was intense (coefficients of variation> 100%), and the drier years were recorded as 1965 and 1995 at all stations. (2) The significant change trend of different stations varied on different time scales: the Changwu station had a significant decreasing trend in April (−0.488 mm/year) and November (−0.249 mm/year), while Luochuan station was in April (−0.457 mm/year); Changwu station displayed a significant increasing trends in winter (0.220 mm/year) and a significant decreasing trends in spring (−0.770 mm/year). The significant decreasing trends in annual precipitation were detected at the Suide (−2.034 mm/year) and Yan’an (–2.129 mm/year) stations. (3) The SPI−12 series analysis suggests that the drought degree of Yulin and Changwu was the lowest and that of Hengshan was the highest among the 7 synoptic stations. PMID:26528917

  2. Modeling carbon cycle process of soil profile in Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Y.; Finke, P.; Guo, Z.; Wu, H.

    2011-12-01

    SoilGen2 is a process-based model, which could reconstruct soil formation under various climate conditions, parent materials, vegetation types, slopes, expositions and time scales. Both organic and inorganic carbon cycle processes could be simulated, while the later process is important in carbon cycle of arid and semi-arid regions but seldom being studied. After calibrating parameters of dust deposition rate and segments depth affecting elements transportation and deposition in the profile, modeling results after 10000 years were confronted with measurements of two soil profiles in loess plateau of China, The simulated trends of organic carbon and CaCO3 in the profile are similar to measured values. Relative sensitivity analysis for carbon cycle process have been done and the results show that the change of organic carbon in long time scale is more sensitive to precipitation, temperature, plant carbon input and decomposition parameters (decomposition rate of humus, ratio of CO2/(BIO+HUM), etc.) in the model. As for the inorganic carbon cycle, precipitation and potential evaporation are important for simulation quality, while the leaching and deposition of CaCO3 are not sensitive to pCO2 and temperature of atmosphere.

  3. [Soil moisture characteristics at the boundary of forestland-grassland in hilly area of Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    You, Wenzhong; Zeng, Dehui; Liu, Mingguo; Song, Xide

    2006-06-01

    In this paper, the spatial distribution pattern of soil moisture at the boundary of forestland-grassland in hilly area of Loess Plateau was studied in dry season of June and rainy season of August 2004. The results showed that the variance coefficient of soil moisture content was smaller, and the difference of moisture content between soil layers was less significant in forestland than in grassland in June while reversed in August. There was a weak or medium differentiation of moisture content in different soil layers at the boundary of forestland-grassland. The edge effect area at the boundary was from 2 m (0. 4 of tree height) outside forestland to 2 m inside forestland in June, and from 2 m outside forestland to 4 m (0. 8 of tree height) inside forestland in August. The forestland-grassland landscape could be divided into 3 parts, i.e., grassland area, forest edge area, and forestland area, and the vertical distribution of soil moisture in these three parts showed different traits. In June, soil moisture content increased with increasing soil depth, with a smaller increment in grassland than in forestland, but in August, it was reversed. The vertical distribution of soil moisture at forest edge area showed an in-between feature.

  4. Aerosol-weakened summer monsoons decrease lake fertilization on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Jianbao; Rühland, Kathleen M.; Chen, Jianhui; Xu, Yangyang; Chen, Shengqian; Chen, Qiaomei; Huang, Wei; Xu, Qinghai; Chen, Fahu; Smol, John P.

    2017-02-01

    Anthropogenic aerosol increases over the past few decades have weakened the Asian summer monsoon with potentially far-reaching socio-economic and ecological repercussions. However, it is unknown how these changes will affect freshwater ecosystems that are important to densely populated regions of Asia. High-resolution diatom records and other proxy data archived in lake sediment cores from the Chinese Loess Plateau allow the comparison of summer monsoon intensity, lake trophic status and aquatic ecosystem responses during warming periods over the past two millennia. Here we show that an abrupt shift towards eutrophic limnological conditions coincided with historical warming episodes, marked by increased wind intensity and summer monsoon rainfall leading to phosphorus-laden soil erosion and natural lake fertilization. In contrast, aerosol-affected Anthropocene warming catalysed a marked weakening in summer monsoon intensity leading to decreases in soil erosion and lake mixing. The recent warm period triggered a strikingly different aquatic ecosystem response with a limnological regime shift marked by turnover in diatom species composition now dominated by oligotrophic taxa, consistent with reductions in nutrient fertilization, reduced ice cover and increased thermal stratification. Anthropogenic aerosols have altered climate-monsoon dynamics that are unparalleled in the past ~2,000 years, ushering in a new ecological state.

  5. Analysis of Precipitation Characteristics during 1957-2012 in the Semi-Arid Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Weijun; Yu, Xinyang; Ma, Huan; Zhu, Qingke; Zhang, Yan; Qin, Wei; Ai, Ning; Wang, Yu

    2015-01-01

    Precipitation is the only water supply and most important factor affecting vegetation growth on the slopes of semi-arid Loess Plateau of China. Based on precipitation data from 7 synoptic stations in the study area over the period 1957-2012, the trends of precipitation and standardized precipitation index (SPI) were analyzed by using linear regression, Mann-Kendall, and Spearman's Rho tests at the 5% significance level. The results show that (1) the precipitation fluctuation of monthly precipitation was intense (coefficients of variation> 100%), and the drier years were recorded as 1965 and 1995 at all stations. (2) The significant change trend of different stations varied on different time scales: the Changwu station had a significant decreasing trend in April (-0.488 mm/year) and November (-0.249 mm/year), while Luochuan station was in April (-0.457 mm/year); Changwu station displayed a significant increasing trends in winter (0.220 mm/year) and a significant decreasing trends in spring (-0.770 mm/year). The significant decreasing trends in annual precipitation were detected at the Suide (-2.034 mm/year) and Yan'an (-2.129 mm/year) stations. (3) The SPI-12 series analysis suggests that the drought degree of Yulin and Changwu was the lowest and that of Hengshan was the highest among the 7 synoptic stations.

  6. Revegetation in China’s Loess Plateau is approaching sustainable water resource limits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Xiaoming; Fu, Bojie; Piao, Shilong; Wang, Shuai; Ciais, Philippe; Zeng, Zhenzhong; Lü, Yihe; Zeng, Yuan; Li, Yue; Jiang, Xiaohui; Wu, Bingfang

    2016-11-01

    Revegetation of degraded ecosystems provides opportunities for carbon sequestration and bioenergy production. However, vegetation expansion in water-limited areas creates potentially conflicting demands for water between the ecosystem and humans. Current understanding of these competing demands is still limited. Here, we study the semi-arid Loess Plateau in China, where the `Grain to Green’ large-scale revegetation programme has been in operation since 1999. As expected, we found that the new planting has caused both net primary productivity (NPP) and evapotranspiration (ET) to increase. Also the increase of ET has induced a significant (p < 0.001) decrease in the ratio of river runoff to annual precipitation across hydrological catchments. From currently revegetated areas and human water demand, we estimate a threshold of NPP of 400 +/- 5 g C m-2 yr-1 above which the population will suffer water shortages. NPP in this region is found to be already close to this limit. The threshold of NPP could change by -36% in the worst case of climate drying and high human withdrawals, to +43% in the best case. Our results develop a new conceptual framework to determine the critical carbon sequestration that is sustainable in terms of both ecological and socio-economic resource demands in a coupled anthropogenic-biological system.

  7. Cyclic precipitation variation on the western Loess Plateau of China during the past four centuries

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Liangcheng; An, Zhisheng; Huh, Chih-An; Cai, Yanjun; Shen, Chuan-Chou; Shiau, Liang-Jian; Yan, Libin; Cheng, Hai; Edwards, R. Lawrence

    2014-01-01

    Precipitation variation on the Loess Plateau (LP) of China is not only important for rain-fed agriculture in this environmentally sensitive region, but also critical for the water and life securities over the whole Yellow River basin. Here we reconstruct high resolution precipitation variation on the western LP during the past 370 years by using two replicated, annually-laminated stalagmites. Spatial analysis suggests that the reconstruction can be also representative for the whole LP region. The precipitation variations show a significant quasi-50 year periodicity during the last 370 years, and have an important role in determining the runoff of the middle Yellow River. The main factor controlling the decadal scale variations and long-term trend in precipitation over this region is southerly water vapour transport associated with the Asian summer monsoon. The Pacific Decadal Oscillation is also an important influence on precipitation variation in this region, as it can affect the East Asian summer monsoon and the West Pacific Subtropical High. PMID:25223372

  8. Identification of a Kulshan caldera correlative tephra in the Palouse loess of Washington State, northwest USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, Georgina E.; Pearce, Nicholas J. G.; Roberts, Helen M.; Smith, Victoria C.; Westgate, John A.; Gaylord, David R.; Sweeney, Mark R.

    2016-09-01

    The Kulshan caldera formed at ∼1.15 Ma on the present-day site of Mt. Baker, Washington State, northwest USA and erupted a compositionally zoned (dacite-rhyolite) magma and a correlative eruptive, the Lake Tapps tephra. This tephra has previously been described, but only from the Puget Lowland of NW Washington. Here an occurrence of a Kulshan caldera correlative tephra is described from the Quaternary Palouse loess at the Washtucna site (WA-3). Site WA-3 is located in east-central Washington, ∼340 km southeast of the Kulshan caldera and ∼300 km east-southeast of the Lake Tapps occurrence in the Puget Lowland. Major- and trace element chemistry and location of the deposit at Washtucna within reversed polarity sediments indicates that it is not correlative with the Mesa Falls, Rockland, Bishop Ash, Lava Creek B or Huckleberry Ridge tephras. Instead the Washtucna deposit is related to the Lake Tapps tephra by fractional crystallisation, but is chemically distinct, a consequence of its eruption from a compositionally zoned magma chamber. The correlation of the Washtucna occurrence to the Kulshan caldera-forming eruption indicates that it had an eruptive volume exceeding 100 km3, and that its tephra could provide a valuable early-Pleistocene chronostratigraphic marker in the Pacific Northwest.

  9. A review of recent advances in red-clay environmental magnetism and paleoclimate history on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nie, Junsheng; Song, Yougui; King, John

    2016-03-01

    The red-clay sequence on the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) was deposited during the late Miocene-Pliocene and is encoded with important information of past climate changes. However, it has received much less study in comparison to the overlying Pleistocene loess-paleosol sequence. In this paper, we review recent progress in characterizing the environmental magnetic parameter-based paleoclimate history recorded by the red-clay sequence. Several key conclusions are as follows. 1) the red clay and the loess-paleosol sequences have similar magnetic enhancement mechanisms but magnetic minerals in the red clay sequence have experienced a higher degree of oxidation than in the loess-paleosol sequence. 2) The CLP experienced a cooling and wetting trend from 4.5 to 2.7 Ma, caused by ice sheet expansion and East Asian summer monsoon intensification, respectively. 3) The above conclusions benefit from backfield remanence curve unmixing and comparison of magnetic grain size/concentration records, which are particularly useful in separating the temperature from the precipitation signal. A clear need in future studies is to explore the concentration and the grain size variations of hematite and goethite in the red-clay sequence and their formation mechanisms. The payback would be a clear understanding of climate history during the late Miocene-Pliocene, a possible analog for future warmer climate.

  10. U-Pb ages of detrital zircon and provenances of Red Clay in the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gong, Hujun; Xie, Wenbin; Zhang, Rui; Zhang, Yunxiang

    2017-05-01

    The Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP), which is located in the central part of China, mainly contains two sequences: the Quaternary loess-paleosol sequence and the late Miocene-Pliocene Red Clay sequence. U-Pb ages of detrital zircon from the Quaternary loess-paleosol sequences indicate that the current spatial pattern of central Asian aridification was largely established during the early Quaternary. U-Pb ages of detrital zircon from the underlying Red Clay sequences demonstrate that the northern source regions were important contributors for the dust since the late Miocene, except for the periods of ∼8 Ma and ∼5.5 to ∼4 Ma. These two periods correspond to increased and decreased dust deposition in the North Pacific, respectively, ascribed to the late Miocene aridification of the Qaidam Basin (in the west of the CLP) and the early Pliocene aridification of the Tarim Basin (in the west of the CLP). We attribute the increase of the Qaidam Basin-derived North Pacific dust fluxes to the uplift of the NE Tibetan Plateau. Such uplift also controlled the climatic and environmental changes in central Asian during the late Miocene. This study highlights the dynamical process of the central Asian aridification during the late Miocene-Pliocene.

  11. Size-differentiated chemical characteristics of Asian paleo dust: records from aeolian deposition on Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Wu, Feng; Chow, Judith C; An, Zhisheng; Watson, John G; Cao, Junji

    2011-02-01

    The Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) receives and potentially contributes to Asian dust storms that affect particulate matter (PM) concentrations, visibility, and climate. Loess on the CLP has experienced little weathering effect and is regarded as an ideal record to represent geochemical characteristics of Asian paleo dust. Samples were taken from 2-, 9-, and 15-m depths (representing deposition periods from approximately 12,000 to approximately 200,000 yr ago) in the Xi Feng loess profile on the CLP. The samples were resuspended and then sampled through total suspended particulates (TSP), PM10, PM2.5, and PM1 (PM with aerodynamic diameters < approximately 30, 10, 2.5, and 1 microm, respectively) inlets onto filters for mass, elemental, ionic, and carbon analyses using a Desert Research Institute resuspension chamber. The elements Si, Ca, Al, Fe, K, Mg, water-soluble Ca (Ca2+), organic carbon, and carbonate carbon are the major constituents (> 1%) in loess among the four PM fractions (i.e., TSP, PM10, PM2.5, and PM1). Much of Ca is water soluble and corresponds with measures of carbonate, indicating that most of the calcium is in the form of calcium carbonate rather than other calcium minerals. Most of the K is insoluble, indicating that loess can be separated from biomass burning contributions when K+ is measured. The loess has elemental abundances similar to those of the upper continental crust (UCC) for Mg, Fe, Ti, Mn, V, Cr, and Ni, but substantially different ratios for other elements such as Ca, Co, Cu, As, and Pb. These suggest that the use of UCC as a reference to represent pure or paleo Asian dust needs to be further evaluated. The aerosol samples from the source regions have similar ratios to loess for crustal elements, but substantially different ratios for species from anthropogenic sources (e.g., K, P, V, Cr, Cu, Zn, Ni, and Pb), indicating that the aerosol samples from the geological-source-dominated environment are not a "pure" soil product as compared

  12. Changes in extreme temperature and precipitation events in the Loess Plateau (China) during 1960-2013 under global warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Wenyi; Mu, Xingmin; Song, Xiaoyan; Wu, Dan; Cheng, Aifang; Qiu, Bing

    2016-02-01

    In recent decades, extreme climatic events have been a major issue worldwide. Regional assessments on various climates and geographic regions are needed for understanding uncertainties in extreme events' responses to global warming. The objective of this study was to assess the annual and decadal trends in 12 extreme temperature and 10 extreme precipitation indices in terms of intensity, frequency, and duration over the Loess Plateau during 1960-2013. The results indicated that the regionally averaged trends in temperature extremes were consistent with global warming. The occurrence of warm extremes, including summer days (SU), tropical nights (TR), warm days (TX90), and nights (TN90) and a warm spell duration indicator (WSDI), increased by 2.76 (P < 0.01), 1.24 (P < 0.01), 2.60 (P = 0.0003), 3.41 (P < 0.01), and 0.68 (P = 0.0041) days/decade during the period of 1960-2013, particularly, sharp increases in these indices occurred in 1985-2000. Over the same period, the occurrence of cold extremes, including frost days (FD), ice days (ID), cold days (TX10) and nights (TN10), and a cold spell duration indicator (CSDI) exhibited decreases of - 3.22 (P < 0.01), - 2.21 (P = 0.0028), - 2.71 (P = 0.0028), - 4.31 (P < 0.01), and - 0.69 (P = 0.0951) days/decade, respectively. Moreover, extreme warm events in most regions tended to increase while cold indices tended to decrease in the Loess Plateau, but the trend magnitudes of cold extremes were greater than those of warm extremes. The growing season (GSL) in the Loess Plateau was lengthened at a rate of 3.16 days/decade (P < 0.01). Diurnal temperature range (DTR) declined at a rate of - 0.06 °C /decade (P = 0.0931). Regarding the precipitation indices, the annual total precipitation (PRCPTOT) showed no obvious trends (P = 0.7828). The regionally averaged daily rainfall intensity (SDII) exhibited significant decreases (- 0.14 mm/day/decade, P = 0.0158), whereas consecutive dry days (CDD) significantly increased (1.96 days

  13. Spatial analysis of soil organic carbon in Zhifanggou catchment of the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Li, Mingming; Zhang, Xingchang; Zhen, Qing; Han, Fengpeng

    2013-01-01

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) reflects soil quality and plays a critical role in soil protection, food safety, and global climate changes. This study involved grid sampling at different depths (6 layers) between 0 and 100 cm in a catchment. A total of 1282 soil samples were collected from 215 plots over 8.27 km(2). A combination of conventional analytical methods and geostatistical methods were used to analyze the data for spatial variability and soil carbon content patterns. The mean SOC content in the 1282 samples from the study field was 3.08 g · kg(-1). The SOC content of each layer decreased with increasing soil depth by a power function relationship. The SOC content of each layer was moderately variable and followed a lognormal distribution. The semi-variograms of the SOC contents of the six different layers were fit with the following models: exponential, spherical, exponential, Gaussian, exponential, and exponential, respectively. A moderate spatial dependence was observed in the 0-10 and 10-20 cm layers, which resulted from stochastic and structural factors. The spatial distribution of SOC content in the four layers between 20 and 100 cm exhibit were mainly restricted by structural factors. Correlations within each layer were observed between 234 and 562 m. A classical Kriging interpolation was used to directly visualize the spatial distribution of SOC in the catchment. The variability in spatial distribution was related to topography, land use type, and human activity. Finally, the vertical distribution of SOC decreased. Our results suggest that the ordinary Kriging interpolation can directly reveal the spatial distribution of SOC and the sample distance about this study is sufficient for interpolation or plotting. More research is needed, however, to clarify the spatial variability on the bigger scale and better understand the factors controlling spatial variability of soil carbon in the Loess Plateau region.

  14. Spatial variations of shallow and deep soil moisture in the semi-arid Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, L.; Wei, W.; Chen, L.; Jia, F.; Mo, B.

    2012-09-01

    Soil moisture in deep soil layers is an important relatively stable water resource for vegetation growth in the semi-arid Loess Plateau of China. Characterizing the spatial variations of deep soil moisture with respect to the topographic conditions has significant importance for vegetation restoration. In this study, we focused on analyzing the spatial variations and factors influencing soil moisture content (SMC) in shallow (0-2 m) and deep (2-8 m) soil layers, based on soil moisture observations in the Longtan watershed, Dingxi, Gansu province. The vegetation type of each sampling site for each comparison is same and varies by different positions, gradients, or aspects. The following discoveries were captured: (1) in comparison with shallow SMC, slope position and slope aspect may affect shallow soil moisture more than deep layers, while slope gradient affects both shallow and deep soil moisture significantly. This indicates that a great difference in deep soil hydrological processes between shallow and deep soil moisture remains that can be attributed to the introduced vegetation and topography. (2) A clear negative relationship exists between vegetation growth condition and deep soil moisture, which indicates that plants under different growing conditions may differ in consuming soil moisture, thus causing higher spatial variations in deep soil moisture. (3) The dynamic role of slope position and slope aspect on deep soil moisture has been changed due to large-scale plantation in semi-arid environment. Consequently, vegetation growth conditions and slope gradients may become the key factors dominating the spatial variations in deep soil moisture.

  15. Energy balance in the semiarid area of the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liang, Jiening; Zhang, Lei; Cao, Xianjie; Wen, Jun; Wang, Jiemin; Wang, Guoyin

    2017-02-01

    To understand the energy balance over the complex terrain of the Loess Plateau, we analyzed data from the Semi-Arid Climate and Environment Observatory of Lanzhou University (SACOL). From 1 June to 15 August 2008, the energy balance closure ratio ranged from 0.52 to 0.90 during the daytime when the available energy was greater than 150 W m-2; during nocturnal hours, it was about 0.25. We proposed a method based on water mass conservation to estimate the energy transmitted by the vertical movement of moisture in the soil and set out to explain the imbalance. During the daytime, the heat stored in the soil above the heat flux plate placed at 5 cm below the surface, the energy transmitted by the vertical movement of moisture in the soil, and the energy assimilated by plant photosynthesis contributed to 29.6%, 2.0%, and 1.8% of the energy residual, respectively. During stable conditions, the soil heat storage contributed to 46.4% of the energy residual, whereas the other energy terms contributed little. The instantaneous energy closure ratio was about 0.80 during unstable conditions; it was about 0.40 when the wind speed U was greater than 3.0 m s-1, while depends systematically on U under condition of U < 3.0 m s-1 during stable conditions. Under the weak wind stable condition, affected by topography-induced nonstationary motions, the turbulence is anisotropic with a strong horizontal fluctuation and a weak vertical fluctuation, resulting in weakened heat mixing in the vertical direction and stronger unclosure of energy.

  16. Prehistoric land use in southern Loess Plateau reconstructed from archeological data by a new developed model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Y.; Wu, H.; Guo, Z.

    2014-12-01

    Estimation of land use during the Holocene is crucial to understand impacts of human activity on climate change in preindustrial period. Until now it is still a key issue to reconstruct amount and spatial distribution of prehistoric land use due to lack of data. Most reconstructions are simply extrapolations of population, cleared land amount per person and land suitability for agriculture. In this study, a new quantitative prehistoric land use model (PLUM) is developed based on semi-quantitative predictive models of archeological sites. The PLUM is driven by environmental and social parameters of archeological sites, which are objective evidences of prehistoric human activity, and produces realistic patterns of land use. After successful validations of the model with modern observed data, the PLUM was applied to reconstruct land use from 8 to 4 ka B.P. in Yiluo and Wei valleys, southern Loess Plateau. Both of them are the most important agriculture origin centers in northern China. Results reveal that about 9% of land areas in both valleys have been used by human activity from 8 to 4 ka B.P., expanding from gentle slopes along the river to hinterlands of the valleys. The land cover was affected by increasing agricultural land use during the middle Holocene. The extensive spreads of land use since 7 ka B.P. in both valleys were driven by the combined impacts of population increase and agriculture development, which was further favored by wet and warm climate conditions during middle Holocene; while the decreasing rates of land use expansions after 5 ka B.P. were mainly induced by improved agriculture technology. With the scaling up of PLUM to larger regional or global levels by a greater use of archeological data, the impact of human land use on global change can be studied more accurately.

  17. Uranium comminution age tested by the eolian deposits on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Le; Liu, Xiangjun; Li, Tao; Li, Laifeng; Zhao, Liang; Ji, Junfeng; Chen, Jun; Li, Gaojun

    2017-06-01

    The 234U/238U ratio of fine particles can record the time since their separation from bed rock because of the disruption of uranium series equilibrium introduced by the recoil of daughter 234Th nuclei (precursor of 234U) out of particle surfaces during the decay of 238U. Application of the uranium comminution age method, which has great potential in tracing production and transportation of sediments is however complicated by the weathering dissolution of 234U depleted particle surfaces, the difficulty in determining the fraction of recoiled nuclei, and the precipitation of exogenetic 234U. Here we minimize these complications by using a newly developed precise size separation using electroformed sieve, and a chemical protocol that involves reductive and oxidative leaching. Eolian deposits collected from the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) were used to test the validity of our method. Possible effects of weathering dissolution were also evaluated by comparing samples with different weathering intensities. The results show decreasing 234U/238U ratios in fine eolian particles with increasing sedimentation age, agreeing well with the theoretical prediction of the comminution age model. This successful application of the uranium comminution age approach to the eolian deposits on the CLP is also aided by a stable dust source, the low weathering intensity, the lack of consolidation, and the well-defined age model of the deposits. A transportation time of 242 ± 18 ka was calculated for the eolian deposits, which indicates a long residence time, and thus extensive mixing, of the dust particles in source regions, partly explaining the stable and homogeneous composition of the eolian dust over glacial-interglacial cycles.

  18. The Extraction of Terrace in the Loess Plateau Based on radial method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, W.; Li, F.

    2016-12-01

    The terrace of Loess Plateau, as a typical kind of artificial landform and an important measure of soil and water conservation, its positioning and automatic extraction will simplify the work of land use investigation. The existing methods of terrace extraction mainly include visual interpretation and automatic extraction. The manual method is used in land use investigation, but it is time-consuming and laborious. Researchers put forward some automatic extraction methods. For example, Fourier transform method can recognize terrace and find accurate position from frequency domain image, but it is more affected by the linear objects in the same direction of terrace; Texture analysis method is simple and have a wide range application of image processing. The disadvantage of texture analysis method is unable to recognize terraces' edge; Object-oriented is a new method of image classification, but when introduce it to terrace extracting, fracture polygons will be the most serious problem and it is difficult to explain its geological meaning. In order to positioning the terraces, we use high- resolution remote sensing image to extract and analyze the gray value of the pixels which the radial went through. During the recognition process, we firstly use the DEM data analysis or by manual selecting, to roughly confirm the position of peak points; secondly, take each of the peak points as the center to make radials in all directions; finally, extracting the gray values of the pixels which the radials went through, and analyzing its changing characteristics to confirm whether the terrace exists. For the purpose of getting accurate position of terrace, terraces' discontinuity, extension direction, ridge width, image processing algorithm, remote sensing image illumination and other influence factors were fully considered when designing the algorithms.

  19. Spatial Analysis of Soil Organic Carbon in Zhifanggou Catchment of the Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Li, Mingming; Zhang, Xingchang; Zhen, Qing; Han, Fengpeng

    2013-01-01

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) reflects soil quality and plays a critical role in soil protection, food safety, and global climate changes. This study involved grid sampling at different depths (6 layers) between 0 and 100 cm in a catchment. A total of 1282 soil samples were collected from 215 plots over 8.27 km2. A combination of conventional analytical methods and geostatistical methods were used to analyze the data for spatial variability and soil carbon content patterns. The mean SOC content in the 1282 samples from the study field was 3.08 g·kg−1. The SOC content of each layer decreased with increasing soil depth by a power function relationship. The SOC content of each layer was moderately variable and followed a lognormal distribution. The semi-variograms of the SOC contents of the six different layers were fit with the following models: exponential, spherical, exponential, Gaussian, exponential, and exponential, respectively. A moderate spatial dependence was observed in the 0–10 and 10–20 cm layers, which resulted from stochastic and structural factors. The spatial distribution of SOC content in the four layers between 20 and 100 cm exhibit were mainly restricted by structural factors. Correlations within each layer were observed between 234 and 562 m. A classical Kriging interpolation was used to directly visualize the spatial distribution of SOC in the catchment. The variability in spatial distribution was related to topography, land use type, and human activity. Finally, the vertical distribution of SOC decreased. Our results suggest that the ordinary Kriging interpolation can directly reveal the spatial distribution of SOC and the sample distance about this study is sufficient for interpolation or plotting. More research is needed, however, to clarify the spatial variability on the bigger scale and better understand the factors controlling spatial variability of soil carbon in the Loess Plateau region. PMID:24386143

  20. Yield Responses of Wheat to Mulching Practices in Dryland Farming on the Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Li-fang; Chen, Juan; Shangguan, Zhou-ping

    2015-01-01

    Improving farming practices of soil and water conservation has profound effects on the yield of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) in dryland farming regions of the Loess Plateau in China. Mulching has proven to be an effective practice to increase crop yield, and possibly contribute to replenishing groundwater. This evaluation study collected and analyzed the data of 1849 observations published in 38 papers using meta-analysis to investigate effects of the mulching practices on wheat yield in terms of different rainfall and regions in comparison with conventional tillage. The main results of the study follow. The effects of the mulching practices were ranked in the order of RFM (ridge–furrow mulching) > MTMC (mulching with two materials combined) > MOM (mulching with other materials) > WSM (wheat straw mulching) > FM (flat mulching). The effects of the mulching practices at the different levels of rainfall during the wheat growing season were in the order: (< 150 mm) > (> 250 mm) > (150–250 mm). The effects of the mulching practices in the different regions were in the order of Henan > Shanxi > Shaanxi > Gansu. WSM, MTMC and FM performed better in improving wheat yield for rainfall of < 150, 150–250 and > 250 mm during the growing season, respectively. The wheat yield with FM, MTMC, MOM and MOM was higher than those with the other mulching practices in Shaanxi, Gansu, Henan and Shanxi. The wheat yield with RFM was 27.4% higher than that with FM, indicating that RFM was the most effective practice to improve wheat yield among all the practices. These findings have important implications for choosing appropriate crop field management to improve wheat yield. PMID:26020965

  1. [Fine root biomass and production of four vegetation types in Loess Plateau, China].

    PubMed

    Deng, Qiang; Li, Ting; Yuan, Zhi-You; Jiao, Feng

    2014-11-01

    Fine roots (≤ 2 mm) play a major role in biogeochemical cycling in ecosystems. By the methods of soil cores and ingrowth soil cores, we studied the biomass and annual production of fine roots in 0-40 cm soil layers of four main vegetation types, i. e. , Robinia pseudoacacia plantation, deciduous shrubs, abandoned grassland, and Artemisia desertorum community in Loess Plateau, China. The spatial patterns of fine root biomass and production were negatively associated with latitudes. The fine root biomass in the 0-40 cm soil layer was in the order of deciduous shrubs (220 g · m(-2)), R. pseudoacacia plantation (163 g · m(-2)), abandoned grassland (162 g · m(-2)) and A. desertorum community (79 g · m(-2)). The proportion of ≤ 1 mm fine root biomass (74.1%) in the 0-40 cm soil layer of abandoned grassland was significantly higher than those in the other three vegetation types. The fine root biomass of the four vegetation types was mainly distributed in the 0-10 cm soil layer and decreased with soil depth. The proportion of fine root biomass (44.1%) in the 0-10 cm soil layer of abandoned grassland was significantly higher than those in other three vegetation types. The fine root productions of four vegetation types were in the order of abandoned grassland (315 g · m(-2) · a(-1)) > deciduous shrubs (249 g · m(-2) a(-1)) > R. pseudoacacia plantation (219 g · m(-2) · a(-1)) > A. desertorum community (115 g · m(-2) · a(-1)), and mainly concentrated in the 0-10 cm top soil layer and decreased with the soil depth. The proportion of the annual production (40.4%) in the 0-10 cm soil layer was the highest in abandoned grassland. Fine roots of abandoned grassland turned over faster than those from the other three vegetation types.

  2. Influence of resolution on elevation and slope at watershed scale in Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Chunmei, Wang; Qinke, Yang; Hongyan, Liu; Weiling, Guo; Jupp, David Lb; Rui, Li

    2013-01-01

    This article studied the effects of resolution on elevation and slope using Statistical and Geostatistical methods. Xian' Nan watershed in Loess Plateau was taking as the study area. The base data was a 1:10000 topographic map and the resolutions studied in this paper included 5 m, 25 m and 50 m. The results showed that: (1) for elevation and slope data, the mean value, STD value, histogram and semi-variogram changed with resolution reduction. The mean value, STD value became smaller in both elevation and slope cases. Histograms moved to the left which shows there was a decrease of elevation and slope with resolution. The sill for semi-variograms of elevation and slope decreased with resolution reduction; (2) the changes of Mean value; STD and histogram were greater in elevation data than in slope data. (3) By using the Independent Structure model, the semi-variogram could be modeled by 4 components for elevation data and the semi-variogram could be modeled by 3 components for slope data. There was more information in slope than in elevation in the components with short range (short wave-length) information. (4) The influence of resolution reduction was greater in the components with short range, so the degree of influence of resolution reduction was related to the amount of short wave-lengths information. The results of this paper had shown which information was lost with resolution reduction and the reason for the different changes on mean value, STD and histogram for elevation and slope. It could also be used to explain different scaling effects in different terrain areas in the future.

  3. Influence of Soil Moisture on Litter Respiration in the Semiarid Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yanjun; Guo, Shengli; Liu, Qingfang; Jiang, Jishao

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the response mechanisms of litter respiration to soil moisture in water-limited semi-arid regions is of vital importance to better understanding the interplay between ecological processes and the local carbon cycle. In situ soil respiration was monitored during 2010–2012 under various conditions (normal litter, no litter, and double litter treatments) in a 30-year-old artificial black locust plantation (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) on the Loess Plateau. Litter respiration with normal and double litter treatments exhibited similar seasonal variation, with the maximum value obtained in summer (0.57 and 1.51 μmol m−2 s−1 under normal and double litter conditions, respectively) and the minimum in spring (0.27 and 0.69 μmol m−2 s−1 under normal and double litter conditions, respectively). On average, annual cumulative litter respiration was 115 and 300 g C m−2 y−1 under normal and double litter conditions, respectively. Using a soil temperature of 17°C as the critical point, the relationship between litter respiration and soil moisture was found to follow quadratic functions well, whereas the determination coefficient was much greater at high soil temperature than at low soil temperature (33–35% vs. 22–24%). Litter respiration was significantly higher in 2010 and 2012 than in 2011 under both normal litter (132–165 g C m−2 y−1 vs. 48 g C m−2 y−1) and double litter (389–418 g C m−2 y−1 vs. 93 g C m−2 y−1) conditions. Such significant interannual variations were largely ascribed to the differences in summer rainfall. Our study demonstrates that, apart from soil temperature, moisture also has significant influence on litter respiration in semi-arid regions. PMID:25474633

  4. [Photosynthetic characteristics of dominant plant species at different succession stages of vegetation on Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    An, Hui; Shangguan, Zhou-ping

    2007-06-01

    According to the succession sequence of vegetation on Ziwuling of Loess Plateau, the dominant species at different secondary succession stages, i. e., Bothriochloa ischaemum, Artemisia gmelinii, Hippophae rhamnoides, Sophara viciifolia, Populus davidiana and Quercus liaotungensis, were selected to measure the total N contents in their leaves and soil, and the parameters of leaf gas exchange, chlorophyll content and chlorophyll fluorescence. The results showed that with the succession of vegetation, the total N content in 0-20 cm soil layer had an increasing trend, while the leaf total N and chlorophyll contents were increased first but decreased then. The leaf total N content of dominant species at shrub community stage (H. rhamnoides and S. viciifolia) was significantly higher (P < 0.05) than that at other succession stages, and the photosynthetic rate (P(n)) was higher at the stages of herbaceous and shrub communities than at the early and climax stages of forest community. Stomatal conductance (g(s)) and P(n) had the similar variation trends. The dominant species at the stages of herbaceous and shrub communities had a higher transpiration rate (T(r)), while those at the climax stage of forest community had the lowest one. With vegetation succession, the maximum photochemical efficiency (F(v)/F(m)) had a slow increase, while the actual photochemical efficiency of PS II (Phi(PSII)) was increased first but decreased then. Along the succession sequence, photochemical quenching coefficient (q(P)) presented an increasing trend, while non-photochemical quenching coefficient (q(NP)) showed a single-peaked curve. Therefore, the ecophysiological attributes and adaptation to microhabitats of early succession plant are different from the late succession plants.

  5. Yield responses of wheat to mulching practices in dryland farming on the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Wang, Li-fang; Chen, Juan; Shangguan, Zhou-ping

    2015-01-01

    Improving farming practices of soil and water conservation has profound effects on the yield of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) in dryland farming regions of the Loess Plateau in China. Mulching has proven to be an effective practice to increase crop yield, and possibly contribute to replenishing groundwater. This evaluation study collected and analyzed the data of 1849 observations published in 38 papers using meta-analysis to investigate effects of the mulching practices on wheat yield in terms of different rainfall and regions in comparison with conventional tillage. The main results of the study follow. The effects of the mulching practices were ranked in the order of RFM (ridge-furrow mulching) > MTMC (mulching with two materials combined) > MOM (mulching with other materials) > WSM (wheat straw mulching) > FM (flat mulching). The effects of the mulching practices at the different levels of rainfall during the wheat growing season were in the order: (< 150 mm) > (> 250 mm) > (150-250 mm). The effects of the mulching practices in the different regions were in the order of Henan > Shanxi > Shaanxi > Gansu. WSM, MTMC and FM performed better in improving wheat yield for rainfall of < 150, 150-250 and > 250 mm during the growing season, respectively. The wheat yield with FM, MTMC, MOM and MOM was higher than those with the other mulching practices in Shaanxi, Gansu, Henan and Shanxi. The wheat yield with RFM was 27.4% higher than that with FM, indicating that RFM was the most effective practice to improve wheat yield among all the practices. These findings have important implications for choosing appropriate crop field management to improve wheat yield.

  6. Vertical distribution of aerosol optical properties based on aircraft measurements over the Loess Plateau in China.

    PubMed

    Li, Junxia; Liu, Xingang; Yuan, Liang; Yin, Yan; Li, Zhanqing; Li, Peiren; Ren, Gang; Jin, Lijun; Li, Runjun; Dong, Zipeng; Li, Yiyu; Yang, Junmei

    2015-08-01

    Vertical distributions of aerosol optical properties based on aircraft measurements over the Loess Plateau were measured for the first time during a summertime aircraft campaign, 2013 in Shanxi, China. Data from four flights were analyzed. The vertical distributions of aerosol optical properties including aerosol scattering coefficients (σsc), absorption coefficients (σab), Angström exponent (α), single scattering albedo (ω), backscattering ratio (βsc), aerosol mass scattering proficiency (Qsc) and aerosol surface scattering proficiency (Qsc(')) were obtained. The mean statistical values of σsc were 77.45 Mm(-1) (at 450 nm), 50.72 Mm(-1) (at 550n m), and 32.02 Mm(-1) (at 700 nm). The mean value of σab was 7.62 Mm(-1) (at 550 nm). The mean values of α, βsc and ω were 1.93, 0.15, and 0.91, respectively. Aerosol concentration decreased with altitude. Most effective diameters (ED) of aerosols were less than 0.8 μm. The vertical profiles of σsc,, α, βsc, Qsc and Qsc(') showed that the aerosol scattering properties at lower levels contributed the most to the total aerosol radiative forcing. Both α and βsc had relatively large values, suggesting that most aerosols in the observational region were small particles. The mean values of σsc, α, βsc, Qsc, Qsc('), σab and ω at different height ranges showed that most of the parameters decreased with altitude. The forty-eight hour backward trajectories of air masses during the observation days indicated that the majority of aerosols in the lower level contributed the most to the total aerosol loading, and most of these particles originated from local or regional pollution emissions. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  7. [Photosynthetic mechanisms of northern boundary formation of Quercus wutaishanica forest in Loess Plateau of northern Shaanxi Province].

    PubMed

    Meng, Qian-Cai; Zhang, Xiao-Fei; Liu, Xiao; Yue, Ming

    2011-06-01

    Aimed to understand the causes of the boundary formation of Quercus wutaishanica forest, four sites were chosen along a precipitation and thermal gradient from Qinling Mountain to Loess Plateau of northern Shaanxi Province, i. e. , north slope of Qinling Mountain (Jiwozi) and southern (Chenjiashan), central (Huaishuzhuang), and northern site (Xiasiwan) of Loess Plateau, with the gas exchange, chlorophyll fluorescence parameters, stomatal density, and stomatal size of Q. wutaishanica leaves measured. From the south to the north along the precipitation and thermal gradient, weather varied from cool and humid to warm and semi-arid, and the maximum net photosynthetic rate (Pn max) and light saturation point (Lsp) of Q. wutaishanica leaves reduced obviously from 13.34 to 6.99 micromol CO2 x m(-2) x s(-1) and from 1489.9 to 1055.6 micromol x m(-2) x s(-1), dark respiration rate (Rd) and light compensation point (Lcp) increased evidently from 0.313 to 1.080 micromol CO2 x m(-2) x s(-1) and from 7.49 to 31.96 micromol x m(-2) x s(-1), the minimum fluorescence (F0) and coefficient of non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) displayed an increasing trend, and actual photochemical quantum yield of PS II (phiPS II), apparent electron transport rates (ETR), and coefficient of photochemical quenching (qP) reduced obviously. These results demonstrated that the photosynthetic capacity of Q. wutaishanica declined gradually with decreasing precipitation, but the stomatal density and stomatal size showed no obvious difference among the study sites except for the southern site of Loess Plateau. It was speculated that the depressed net photosynthetic rate of Q. wutaishanica leaves induced by the declined Phi PS II and ETR Could be one of the main causes for the formation of northern boundary of Q. wutaishanica forest.

  8. [Comparison on the methods for spatial interpolation of the annual average precipitation in the Loess Plateau region].

    PubMed

    Yu, Yang; Wei, Wei; Chen, Li-ding; Yang, Lei; Zhang, Han-dan

    2015-04-01

    Based on 57 years (1957-2013) daily precipitation datasets of the 85 meteorological stations in the Loess Plateau region, different spatial interpolation methods, including ordinary kriging (OK), inverse distance weighting (IDW) and radial-based function (RBF), were conducted to analyze the spatial variation of annual average precipitation regionally. Meanwhile, the mean absolute error (MAE), the root mean square error (RMSE), the accuracy (AC) and the Pearson correlation coefficient (R) were compared among the interpolation results in order to quantify the effects of different interpolation methods on spatial variation of the annual average precipitation. The results showed that the Moran's I index was 0.67 for the 57 years annual average precipitation in the Loess Plateau region. Meteorological stations exhibited strong spatial correlation. The validation results of the 63 training stations and 22 test stations indicated that there were significant correlations between the training and test values among different interpolation methods. However, the RMSE (IDW = 51.49, RBF = 43.79) and MAE (IDW = 38.98, RBF = 34.61) of the IDW and the RBF showed higher values than the OK. In addition, the comparison of the four semi-variagram models (Circular, Spherical, Exponential and Gaussian) for the OK indicated that the circular model had the lowest MAE (32.34) and the highest accuracy (0.976), while the MAE of the exponential model was the highest (33.24). In conclusion, comparing the validation between the training data and test results of the different spatial interpolation methods, the circular model of the OK method was the best one for obtaining accurate spatial interpolation of annual average precipitation in the Loess Plateau region.

  9. Dynamic monitoring of land-use change in Loess Plateau using multi-temporal Landsat TM data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hou, Xiyong; Liu, Jiyuan; Gao, Zhiqiang; Zhuang, Dafang; Yu, Xinfang

    2004-11-01

    Loess Plateau is a unique region in the world where the human activities are very intensive and the eco-environment is highly frangible. During the past two decades, the Land Use/Cover Change has been considered as one of the most important reasons for the eco-environment degeneration in Loess Plateau. In this paper, land use data in 1990, 1995 and 2000 were got based on the Landsat TM Remote Sensing images, and the 1km-grid land use change data of 1990-1995, 1995-2000 and 1990-2000 was made using the data management and spatial analysis techniques of ArcGIS 8.3 software. Furthermore, statistical tabular data of Grain for Green Project on county level in recent years were joined in the administrative regionalism spatial data. Based on all of these data, temporal-spatial characteristics of land use change in Loess Plateau were studied in detail, and its driving forces were discussed either. It turned out that land use change in different periods had very different characteristics. On the whole, from 1990 to 2000, farmland and built-up increased greatly, and forest, grassland, water body and unused land decreased remarkably. On the contrary, conversions from farmland and unused to forest or grassland has become the dominant land use change process since 2000. The regional social-economic development and the national macro-control policy have been the most important driving forces of land use change since 1990. Especially, from 2000 to now, the widely implemented Grain for Green Project, under which farming on fragile land gives way to forestation, has become and will remain the most radical and effective driving force to both the land use change and the regional eco-environment restoration.

  10. Sediment delivery ratio of single flood events and the influencing factors in a headwater basin of the Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Mingguo; Liao, Yishan; He, Jijun

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about the sediment delivery of single flood events although it has been well known that the sediment delivery ratio at the inter-annual time scale is close to 1 in the Chinese Loess Plateau. This study examined the sediment delivery of single flood events and the influencing factors in a headwater basin of the Loess Plateau, where hyperconcentrated flows are dominant. Data observed from plot to subwatershed over the period from 1959 to 1969 were presented. Sediment delivery ratio of a single event (SDRe) was calculated as the ratio of sediment output from the subwatershed to sediment input into the channel. It was found that SDRe varies greatly for small events (runoff depth <5 mm or rainfall depth <30 mm) and remains fairly constant (approximately between 1.1 and 1.3) for large events (runoff depth >5 mm or rainfall depth >30 mm). We examined 11 factors of rainfall (rainfall amount, rainfall intensity, rainfall kinetic energy, rainfall erosivity and rainfall duration), flood (area-specific sediment yield, runoff depth, peak flow discharge, peak sediment concentration and flood duration) and antecedent land surface (antecedent precipitation) in relation to SDRe. Only the peak sediment concentration significantly correlates with SDRe. Contrary to popular belief, channel scour tends to occur in cases of higher peak sediment concentrations. Because small events also have chances to attain a high sediment concentration, many small events (rainfall depth <20 mm) are characterized by channel scour with an SDRe larger than 1. Such observations can be related to hyperconcentrated flows, which behave quite differently from normal stream flows. Our finding that large events have a nearly constant SDRe is useful for sediment yield predictions in the Loess Plateau and other regions where hyperconcentrated flows are well developed.

  11. Sediment Delivery Ratio of Single Flood Events and the Influencing Factors in a Headwater Basin of the Chinese Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Mingguo; Liao, Yishan; He, Jijun

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about the sediment delivery of single flood events although it has been well known that the sediment delivery ratio at the inter-annual time scale is close to 1 in the Chinese Loess Plateau. This study examined the sediment delivery of single flood events and the influencing factors in a headwater basin of the Loess Plateau, where hyperconcentrated flows are dominant. Data observed from plot to subwatershed over the period from 1959 to 1969 were presented. Sediment delivery ratio of a single event (SDRe) was calculated as the ratio of sediment output from the subwatershed to sediment input into the channel. It was found that SDRe varies greatly for small events (runoff depth <5 mm or rainfall depth <30 mm) and remains fairly constant (approximately between 1.1 and 1.3) for large events (runoff depth >5 mm or rainfall depth >30 mm). We examined 11 factors of rainfall (rainfall amount, rainfall intensity, rainfall kinetic energy, rainfall erosivity and rainfall duration), flood (area-specific sediment yield, runoff depth, peak flow discharge, peak sediment concentration and flood duration) and antecedent land surface (antecedent precipitation) in relation to SDRe. Only the peak sediment concentration significantly correlates with SDRe. Contrary to popular belief, channel scour tends to occur in cases of higher peak sediment concentrations. Because small events also have chances to attain a high sediment concentration, many small events (rainfall depth <20 mm) are characterized by channel scour with an SDRe larger than 1. Such observations can be related to hyperconcentrated flows, which behave quite differently from normal stream flows. Our finding that large events have a nearly constant SDRe is useful for sediment yield predictions in the Loess Plateau and other regions where hyperconcentrated flows are well developed. PMID:25389752

  12. Differences in hydrological responses for different vegetation types on a steep slope on the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duan, Liangxia; Huang, Mingbin; Zhang, Luodan

    2016-06-01

    Extensive vegetation restoration practices have been implemented to control soil erosion on the Loess Plateau, China. However, no strict guidelines are available to determine the most suitable plant species for vegetation restoration within a given area. The objective of this study was to quantify the changes of each component (soil water storage, surface runoff, and actual evapotranspiration) of a water balance model and soil loss over time under eight different vegetation types, and to further determine the optimal vegetation type for soil and water conservation and sustainable ecological restoration on the steep slopes (>25°) on the Loess Plateau. The results indicated that vegetation type substantially affected soil water storage and that the greatest soil water storage in both the shallow (0-2 m) and the deep soil layers (2-5 m) occurred under Bothriochloa ischaemum L. (BOI). Vegetation type also affected surface runoff and soil losses. The most effective vegetation types for reducing soil erosion were BOI and Sea-buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides L.), while Chinese pine (Pinus tabulaeformis Carr.) and Chinese pine + Black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) were the most ineffective types. Soil water dynamics and evapotranspiration varied considerably among the different vegetation types. A soil water surplus was only found under BOI, while insufficient water replenishment existed under the other seven vegetation types. The higher water consumption rates of the seven vegetation types could result in soil desiccation, which could lead to severe water stresses that would adversely affect plant growth. This study suggested that both vegetation type and its effect on controlling soil erosion should be considered when implementing vegetation restoration and that BOI should be highly recommended for vegetation restoration on the steep slopes of the Loess Plateau. A similar approach to the one used in this study could be applied to other regions of the world confronted

  13. Germinable Soil Seed Banks and the Restoration Potential of Abandoned Cropland on the Chinese Hilly-Gullied Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Ning; Jiao, Ju-Ying; Jia, Yan-Feng; Bai, Wen-Juan; Zhang, Zhen-Guo

    2010-09-01

    Poor vegetation cover is generally considered to be a major factor causing soil erosion on the Loess Plateau in China. It has been argued that tree planting restoration is ineffective, and natural re-vegetation is an alternative ecological solution for restoring abandoned cropland and controlling soil erosion. The aims of this study were to investigate the characteristics of soil seed banks and to assess the natural restoration potential of abandoned cropland in the hilly-gullied Loess Plateau. The soil seed bank was identified by the germination method with the soil samples, which were collected at four sampling times (April, August, and October 2005 and August 2006) from 12 plots abandoned 3-30 years prior to sampling. The seed bank densities of all of the samples in the 0-10 cm soil layer varied from 1,067 ± 225 to 14,967 ± 1,606 seeds m-2. Fifty-one species (24 annual and 27 perennial species) belonging to 18 families were identified, and 39% of these species belonged to the families Compositae and Gramineae. The pioneer species Artemisia scoparia dominated the seed bank, with an average seed density of 3,722 seeds m-2, and accounted for 74.4% of the seeds in the bank. The local dominant species (such as Lespedeza davurica, Artemisia gmelinii, Bothriochloa ischaemun and Stipa bungeana) of the later succession stages also existed at densities varying from 17 to 1, 383 seeds m-2. The combination of soil seed bank characteristics, reproductive traits of the species, the specific landscape conditions indicates that the potential to restoring the abandoned croplands in the hilly-gullied Loess Plateau via natural re-vegetation could be substantial.

  14. Abatement costs of soil conservation in China's Loess Plateau: balancing income with conservation in an agricultural system.

    PubMed

    Hou, Lingling; Hoag, Dana L K; Keske, Catherine M H

    2015-02-01

    This study proposes the use of marginal abatement cost curves to calculate environmental damages of agricultural systems in China's Loess Plateau. Total system costs and revenues, management characteristics and pollution attributes are imputed into a directional output distance function, which is then used to determine shadow prices and abatement cost curves for soil and nitrogen loss. Marginal abatement costs curves are an effective way to compare economic and conservation tradeoffs when field-specific data are scarce. The results show that sustainable agricultural practices can balance soil conservation and agricultural production; land need not be retired, as is current policy.

  15. Loess Magnetostratigraphy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heller, F.

    More than 10 percent of the earth's land surface are covered by a fine centimetre to metre thick blanket of glacial dust called loess. In the foreland of formerly glaciated regions, loess may achieve much greater thicknesses - up to several hundred metres. The age of the thick loess piles in Central and Eastern Asia, in Europe and the Amer- icas was largely unknown until about 20 years ago. Key information about age and deposition history was first provided by magnetostratigraphic polarity studies on the Chinese loess plateau. Although natural remanent magnetization of the Chinese loess is often extremely viscous, the polarity sequence of the stable magnetization compo- nent could be determined successfully. The major geomagnetic reversal boundaries of the last 2.5 Myr have been identified by a number of researchers. The beginning of loess formation was found to coincide with the onset of ice-rafted detritus in the North Atlantic. Meanwhile the record has been extended down below the loess (sensu stricto) of the Chinese loess plateau into a Pliocene aeolian red clay formation, so that the aeolian record can now be carried back beyond 7 million years B.P. In all loess studies, the Matuyama/Brunhes boundary (MBB) always served as a key element for chronological purposes, and it has recently been found for the first time in one of the numerous intramontane loess basins of South America. The occurrence, appearance and position of reversal boundaries in loess has become a matter of considerable de- bate. A close look at the MBB in the Chinese loess reveals multiple magnetization reversals over short stratigraphic intervals. Furthermore, it is observed in sediments deposited during a glacial interval. In the marine polarity record, however, this bound- ary consists of a single transition well established in an interglacial horizon. These fundamental differences can be explained by lock-in models which take into account the effects of (post-)detrital and chemical

  16. Soil and climate modelling to explain soil differences in MIS5e and MIS13 on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finke, P. A.; Yu, Y.; Yin, Q.; Bernardini, N. J.

    2016-12-01

    Objective Proxy records indicate that MIS5 (about 120 ka ago) was warmer than MIS13 (about 500 ka ago). Nevertheless, MIS13-soils in the Chinese loess plateau (105 -115°E and 30-40°N) are stronger developed than MIS5-soils. This has been attributed to a stronger East Asian summer monsoon. Other differences are interglacial lengths and loess deposition rates. We aimed to find explanations for soil development differences by using a soil formation model (SoilGen) with climatic inputs obtained from an earth system model (LOVECLIM). Material and Methods The LOVECLIM model is driven by time-varying insolation and greenhouse gas concentrations and was run to give monthly values for temperature, precipitation and evaporation as well the dominant vegetation type. Model results for were corrected for systematic differences between present-day observation data and simulation. Reconstructions were made for both interglacials of the amount of inblown loess, and the mineralogy and grain size distribution of the initial loess as well as the dust. These data were fed into the SoilGen model, which was used to calculate various soil parameters with depth and over time. Results Simulations show a stronger developed MIS13 soil, in terms of weathering (loss of anorthite), and redistribution of calcite, gypsum and clay. This corresponds to observed paleosoils. MIS13-soils are more leached. As simulated temperatures and annual precipitation between MIS5 and MIS13 did not vary strongly, the greater length of MIS13 seemed the main explanation for the stronger leaching and weathering. Closer analysis however showed a larger number of months in MIS13 with a precipitation surplus, even when only considering the first 22 ka. Only in such months significant leaching can occur. Conclusion Using simulation models it was demonstrated that the stronger soil expression in MIS13 than in MIS5 is likely caused by more months with a precipitation surplus, in combination with a longer duration of MIS

  17. Spring maize yield, soil water use and water use efficiency under plastic film and straw mulches in the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Lin, Wen; Liu, Wenzhao; Xue, Qingwu

    2016-12-15

    To compare the soil water balance, yield and water use efficiency (WUE) of spring maize under different mulching types in the Loess Plateau, a 7-year field experiment was conducted in the Changwu region of the Loess Plateau. Three treatments were used in this experiment: straw mulch (SM), plastic film mulch (PM) and conventional covering without mulch (CK). Results show that the soil water change of dryland spring maize was as deep as 300 cm depth and hence 300 cm is recommended as the minimum depth when measure the soil water in this region. Water use (ET) did not differ significantly among the treatments. However, grain yield was significantly higher in PM compared with CK. WUE was significantly higher in PM than in CK for most years of the experiment. Although ET tended to be higher in PM than in the other treatments (without significance), the evaporation of water in the fallow period also decreased. Thus, PM is sustainable with respect to soil water balance. The 7-year experiment and the supplemental experiment thus confirmed that straw mulching at the seedling stage may lead to yield reduction and this effect can be mitigated by delaying the straw application to three-leaf stage.

  18. Spring maize yield, soil water use and water use efficiency under plastic film and straw mulches in the Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Wen; Liu, Wenzhao; Xue, Qingwu

    2016-12-01

    To compare the soil water balance, yield and water use efficiency (WUE) of spring maize under different mulching types in the Loess Plateau, a 7-year field experiment was conducted in the Changwu region of the Loess Plateau. Three treatments were used in this experiment: straw mulch (SM), plastic film mulch (PM) and conventional covering without mulch (CK). Results show that the soil water change of dryland spring maize was as deep as 300 cm depth and hence 300 cm is recommended as the minimum depth when measure the soil water in this region. Water use (ET) did not differ significantly among the treatments. However, grain yield was significantly higher in PM compared with CK. WUE was significantly higher in PM than in CK for most years of the experiment. Although ET tended to be higher in PM than in the other treatments (without significance), the evaporation of water in the fallow period also decreased. Thus, PM is sustainable with respect to soil water balance. The 7-year experiment and the supplemental experiment thus confirmed that straw mulching at the seedling stage may lead to yield reduction and this effect can be mitigated by delaying the straw application to three-leaf stage.

  19. Spring maize yield, soil water use and water use efficiency under plastic film and straw mulches in the Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Wen; Liu, Wenzhao; Xue, Qingwu

    2016-01-01

    To compare the soil water balance, yield and water use efficiency (WUE) of spring maize under different mulching types in the Loess Plateau, a 7-year field experiment was conducted in the Changwu region of the Loess Plateau. Three treatments were used in this experiment: straw mulch (SM), plastic film mulch (PM) and conventional covering without mulch (CK). Results show that the soil water change of dryland spring maize was as deep as 300 cm depth and hence 300 cm is recommended as the minimum depth when measure the soil water in this region. Water use (ET) did not differ significantly among the treatments. However, grain yield was significantly higher in PM compared with CK. WUE was significantly higher in PM than in CK for most years of the experiment. Although ET tended to be higher in PM than in the other treatments (without significance), the evaporation of water in the fallow period also decreased. Thus, PM is sustainable with respect to soil water balance. The 7-year experiment and the supplemental experiment thus confirmed that straw mulching at the seedling stage may lead to yield reduction and this effect can be mitigated by delaying the straw application to three-leaf stage. PMID:27976710

  20. Determinants of the N content of Quercus wutaishanica leaves in the Loess Plateau: a structural equation modeling approach.

    PubMed

    Xing, Kaixiong; Kang, Muyi; Chen, Han Y H; Zhao, Mingfei; Wang, Yuhang; Wang, Guoyi; Chen, Chen; Liu, Yang; Dong, Xiaobin

    2016-05-27

    Most terrestrial ecosystems are nitrogen (N)-limited. The elucidation of the multivariate relationships among environmental drivers, leaf morphological traits, and foliar N of dominant species which are critical to the functioning of forests remains a critical challenge for ecologists. We sampled leaves of Quercus wutaishanica across a broad natural gradient in the Loess Plateau, China, and employed structural equation modelling to evaluate the causal pathways and the relative importance of drivers of the foliar N per unit area (Narea) and per unit mass (Nmass). We found that (1) Nmass and Narea were primarily affected by leaf morphological traits instead of environmental variables and that leaf morphological traits accounted for most of their variations; (2) the total soil potassium and phosphorus and mean annual precipitation had different effects on Nmass and Narea via different pathways and path coefficients, whereas the mean annual temperature and total soil N had non-significant effects on Nmass and Narea. Our results demonstrated that variations in Nmass and Narea within Quercus wutaishanica were strongly linked to their leaf morphological traits and that the leaf N was also influenced by mean annual precipitation and soil phosphorus and potassium instead of soil N in the Loess Plateau, China.

  1. Land-use types and soil chemical properties influence soil microbial communities in the semiarid Loess Plateau region in China.

    PubMed

    Tian, Qin; Taniguchi, Takeshi; Shi, Wei-Yu; Li, Guoqing; Yamanaka, Norikazu; Du, Sheng

    2017-03-28

    Similar land-use types usually have similar soil properties, and, most likely, similar microbial communities. Here, we assessed whether land-use types or soil chemical properties are the primary drivers of soil microbial community composition, and how changes in one part of the ecosystem affect another. We applied Ion Torrent sequencing to the bacterial and fungal communities of five different land-use (vegetation) types in the Loess Plateau of China. We found that the overall trend of soil quality was natural forest > plantation > bare land. Dominant bacterial phyla consisted of Proteobacteria (42.35%), Actinobacteria (15.61%), Acidobacteria (13.32%), Bacteroidetes (8.43%), and Gemmatimonadetes (6.0%). The dominant fungi phyla were Ascomycota (40.39%), Basidiomycota (38.01%), and Zygomycota (16.86%). The results of Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) and Redundancy Analysis (RDA) based on land-use types displayed groups according to the land-use types. Furthermore, the bacterial communities were mainly organized by soil organic carbon (SOC). The fungal communities were mainly related to available phosphorus (P). The results suggested that the changes of land use type generated changes in soil chemical properties, controlling the composition of microbial community in the semiarid Loess Plateau region. The microbial community could be an indicator for soil quality with respect to ecological restoration.

  2. Estimation of soil loss by water erosion in the Chinese Loess Plateau using Universal Soil Loss Equation and GRACE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schnitzer, S.; Seitz, F.; Eicker, A.; Güntner, A.; Wattenbach, M.; Menzel, A.

    2013-06-01

    For the estimation of soil loss by erosion in the strongly affected Chinese Loess Plateau we applied the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) using a number of input data sets (monthly precipitation, soil types, digital elevation model, land cover and soil conservation measures). Calculations were performed in ArcGIS and SAGA. The large-scale soil erosion in the Loess Plateau results in a strong non-hydrological mass change. In order to investigate whether the resulting mass change from USLE may be validated by the gravity field satellite mission GRACE (Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment), we processed different GRACE level-2 products (ITG, GFZ and CSR). The mass variations estimated in the GRACE trend were relatively close to the observed sediment yield data of the Yellow River. However, the soil losses resulting from two USLE parameterizations were comparatively high since USLE does not consider the sediment delivery ratio. Most eroded soil stays in the study area and only a fraction is exported by the Yellow River. Thus, the resultant mass loss appears to be too small to be resolved by GRACE.

  3. Evaluation of water conservation capacity of loess plateau typical mountain ecosystems based on InVEST model simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lv, Xizhi; Zuo, Zhongguo; Xiao, Peiqing

    2017-06-01

    With increasing demand for water resources and frequently a general deterioration of local water resources, water conservation by forests has received considerable attention in recent years. To evaluate water conservation capacities of different forest ecosystems in mountainous areas of Loess Plateau, the landscape of forests was divided into 18 types in Loess Plateau. Under the consideration of the factors such as climate, topography, plant, soil and land use, the water conservation of the forest ecosystems was estimated by means of InVEST model. The result showed that 486417.7 hm2 forests in typical mountain areas were divided into 18 forest types, and the total water conservation quantity was 1.64×1012m3, equaling an average of water conversation quantity of 9.09×1010m3. There is a great difference in average water conversation capacity among various forest types. The water conservation function and its evaluation is crucial and complicated issues in the study of ecological service function in modern times.

  4. Determinants of the N content of Quercus wutaishanica leaves in the Loess Plateau: a structural equation modeling approach

    PubMed Central

    Xing, Kaixiong; Kang, Muyi; Chen, Han Y. H.; Zhao, Mingfei; Wang, Yuhang; Wang, Guoyi; Chen, Chen; Liu, Yang; Dong, Xiaobin

    2016-01-01

    Most terrestrial ecosystems are nitrogen (N)-limited. The elucidation of the multivariate relationships among environmental drivers, leaf morphological traits, and foliar N of dominant species which are critical to the functioning of forests remains a critical challenge for ecologists. We sampled leaves of Quercus wutaishanica across a broad natural gradient in the Loess Plateau, China, and employed structural equation modelling to evaluate the causal pathways and the relative importance of drivers of the foliar N per unit area (Narea) and per unit mass (Nmass). We found that (1) Nmass and Narea were primarily affected by leaf morphological traits instead of environmental variables and that leaf morphological traits accounted for most of their variations; (2) the total soil potassium and phosphorus and mean annual precipitation had different effects on Nmass and Narea via different pathways and path coefficients, whereas the mean annual temperature and total soil N had non-significant effects on Nmass and Narea. Our results demonstrated that variations in Nmass and Narea within Quercus wutaishanica were strongly linked to their leaf morphological traits and that the leaf N was also influenced by mean annual precipitation and soil phosphorus and potassium instead of soil N in the Loess Plateau, China. PMID:27228948

  5. Effects of wheat stubble on runoff, infiltration, and erosion of farmland on the Loess Plateau, China, subjected to simulated rainfall

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Linhua; Ma, Bo; Wu, Faqi

    2017-03-01

    Soil and water losses in agriculture are major environmental problems worldwide, especially on the Loess Plateau, China. Summer fallow management may help to control soil erosion and conserve water. This study investigated the effects of wheat stubble on runoff, infiltration, and soil loss in laboratory plots under simulated rainfall. The treatments comprised wheat stubble cover (WS) and traditional plowing (TP) in runoff plots (4.0 m × 1.0 m) with three slope gradients (5, 10, and 15°) under simulated rainfall at 80 mm h-1 for 1 h. The runoff volume from WS plots was significantly less than that from TP. The runoff reduction with WS ranged from 91.92 to 92.83 % compared with TP. The runoff rates varied with the runoff volume in the same manner. The infiltration amount was higher with WS (94.8-96.2 % of rainwater infiltrated) than TP (35.4-57.1 %). The sediment concentration was significantly lower with WS than TP. Compared with TP (304.31-731.23 g m-2), the sediment losses were reduced dramatically in WS (2.41-3.78 g m-2) and the sediment loss slightly increased with slope; however, it was greatly increased as slope increased in TP. These results revealed that the stubble cover was the main factor reducing runoff and sediment losses and improving infiltration and that stubble showed a great potential to control erosion and conserve soil and water resources during the summer fallow period in the Loess Plateau region.

  6. [Soil dryness characteristics of alfalfa cropland and optimal growth years of alfalfa on the Loess Plateau of central Gansu, China].

    PubMed

    Luo, Zhu-zhu; Li, Ling-ling; Niu, Yi-ning; Cai, Li-qun; Zhang, Ren-zhi; Xie, Jun-hong

    2015-10-01

    This paper investigated soil moisture in alfalfa (Medicago sativa) cropland with different growth years (1, 3, 8, 12 and 14 years) and discussed the optimum growth years of alfalfa on the Loess Plateau of central Gansu. The results showed that the soil moisture along 0-300 cm soil profile of alfalfa croplands with different growth years was obviously lower than that of the local soil stable moisture. The soil water contents in croplands with alfalfa that had grown for 12 and 14 years were only 9.2% and 7.1% of local soil stable moisture, respectively, which were even lower than the lower limit of alfalfa growth. The average soil dryness indexes along 0-300 cm soil profile in 1, 3, 8, 12 and 14 years alfalfa croplands were 125.4%, 30.5%, 18.4%, -34.2% and -83.3% respectively. The results indicated that soil dryness occurred to varying degrees with different growth years except croplands with alfalfa grown for 1 year. With the increase of growth years of alfalfa, the soil dryness intensity increased and the soil dryness rate decreased. According to the soil moisture and alfalfa productivity results in this study, it could be concluded that the optimum growth years of alfalfa are 8-10 years in semiarid areas of the Loess Plateau.

  7. [Effects of mulching and fertilization on winter wheat field soil moisture in dry highland region of Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiao-Feng; Tian, Xiao-Hong; Chen, Zi-Hui; Chen, Hui-Lin; Wang, Zhao-Hui

    2009-05-01

    A field experiment was conducted in a winter wheat field in Weibei dry highland region of Loess Plateau to study the effects of different mulching and fertilization treatments on soil moisture regime. The treatments were 1) no fertilization, 2) conventional fertilization, 3) recommended fertilization, 4) recommended fertilization + manure, 5) recommended fertilization + plastic mulch on soil ridges, 6) recommended fertilization + plastic mulch on soil ridges and straw mulch in furrows, and 7) recommended fertilization + straw mulch on entire plot. Soil moisture content was determined regularly with a neutron probe. Among the treatments, recommended fertilization plus plastic mulch on soil ridges and straw mulch in furrows in dry season (spring) resulted in the greatest increase of soil water storage and maintained the storage to the critical stage crops needed, followed by recommended fertilization plus plastic mulch on soil ridges. These two treatments could store more precipitation in field, and would benefit the development of rainfed agriculture in dry highland region of Loess Plateau. As for recommended fertilization plus manure, it had the least increase of soil water storage, with a difference of 48.2 mm to the recommended fertilization plus plastic mulch on soil ridges and straw mulch in furrows in dry season.

  8. Agricultural vulnerability over the Chinese Loess Plateau in response to climate change: Exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity.

    PubMed

    Li, Xueling; Philp, Joshua; Cremades, Roger; Roberts, Anna; He, Liang; Li, Longhui; Yu, Qiang

    2016-04-01

    Understanding how the vulnerability of agricultural production to climate change can differ spatially has practical significance to sustainable management of agricultural systems worldwide. Accordingly, this study developed a conceptual framework to assess the agricultural vulnerability of 243 rural counties on the Chinese Loess Plateau. Indicators representing the climate/agriculture interface were selected to describe exposure and sensitivity, while stocks of certain capitals were used to describe adaptive capacity. A vulnerability index for each county was calculated and the spatial distribution was mapped. Results showed that exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity occur independently, with most contributing indicator values concentrated in a narrow range after normalization. Within the 49 most vulnerable counties, which together encompass 81 % of the vulnerability index range, 42 were characterized by high exposure and sensitivity but low adaptive capacity. The most vulnerable area was found to be located in the central northeast-southwest belt of Loess Plateau. Adaptation measures for both ecological restoration and economic development are needed and potential adaptation options need further investigation.

  9. Land-use types and soil chemical properties influence soil microbial communities in the semiarid Loess Plateau region in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tian, Qin; Taniguchi, Takeshi; Shi, Wei-Yu; Li, Guoqing; Yamanaka, Norikazu; Du, Sheng

    2017-03-01

    Similar land-use types usually have similar soil properties, and, most likely, similar microbial communities. Here, we assessed whether land-use types or soil chemical properties are the primary drivers of soil microbial community composition, and how changes in one part of the ecosystem affect another. We applied Ion Torrent sequencing to the bacterial and fungal communities of five different land-use (vegetation) types in the Loess Plateau of China. We found that the overall trend of soil quality was natural forest > plantation > bare land. Dominant bacterial phyla consisted of Proteobacteria (42.35%), Actinobacteria (15.61%), Acidobacteria (13.32%), Bacteroidetes (8.43%), and Gemmatimonadetes (6.0%). The dominant fungi phyla were Ascomycota (40.39%), Basidiomycota (38.01%), and Zygomycota (16.86%). The results of Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) and Redundancy Analysis (RDA) based on land-use types displayed groups according to the land-use types. Furthermore, the bacterial communities were mainly organized by soil organic carbon (SOC). The fungal communities were mainly related to available phosphorus (P). The results suggested that the changes of land use type generated changes in soil chemical properties, controlling the composition of microbial community in the semiarid Loess Plateau region. The microbial community could be an indicator for soil quality with respect to ecological restoration.

  10. Land-use types and soil chemical properties influence soil microbial communities in the semiarid Loess Plateau region in China

    PubMed Central

    Tian, Qin; Taniguchi, Takeshi; Shi, Wei-Yu; Li, Guoqing; Yamanaka, Norikazu; Du, Sheng

    2017-01-01

    Similar land-use types usually have similar soil properties, and, most likely, similar microbial communities. Here, we assessed whether land-use types or soil chemical properties are the primary drivers of soil microbial community composition, and how changes in one part of the ecosystem affect another. We applied Ion Torrent sequencing to the bacterial and fungal communities of five different land-use (vegetation) types in the Loess Plateau of China. We found that the overall trend of soil quality was natural forest > plantation > bare land. Dominant bacterial phyla consisted of Proteobacteria (42.35%), Actinobacteria (15.61%), Acidobacteria (13.32%), Bacteroidetes (8.43%), and Gemmatimonadetes (6.0%). The dominant fungi phyla were Ascomycota (40.39%), Basidiomycota (38.01%), and Zygomycota (16.86%). The results of Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) and Redundancy Analysis (RDA) based on land-use types displayed groups according to the land-use types. Furthermore, the bacterial communities were mainly organized by soil organic carbon (SOC). The fungal communities were mainly related to available phosphorus (P). The results suggested that the changes of land use type generated changes in soil chemical properties, controlling the composition of microbial community in the semiarid Loess Plateau region. The microbial community could be an indicator for soil quality with respect to ecological restoration. PMID:28349918

  11. Temperature sensitivity of soil respiration: Synthetic effects of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilization on Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Wang, Rui; Sun, Qiqi; Wang, Ying; Liu, Qingfang; Du, Lanlan; Zhao, Man; Gao, Xin; Hu, Yaxian; Guo, Shengli

    2017-01-01

    Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) fertilization has the potential to alter soil respiration temperature sensitivity (Q10) by changing soil biochemical and crop physiological process. A four-year field experiment was conducted to determine how Q10 responded to these biochemical and physiological changes in rain-fed agro-ecosystems on the semi-arid Loess Plateau. Soil respiration, as well as biotic and abiotic factors were measured in winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), with three fertilization treatments: (no fertilization (CK), 160kgNhm(-1) (N), and 160kgNha(-1) with 39kgPha(-1) (N+P). Mean annual soil respiration rate (calculated by averaging the four years) in the N treatment and N+P treatment was 18% and 48% higher than that in the CK treatment, respectively; and it was increased by 26% (14%-48%) in the N+P treatment as compared with that in the N treatment. The decrease of Q10 in the N and N+P treatments against the CK treatment was not stable for each year, ranging from 0.01 to 0.28. The maximum decrease of Q10 in the N and N+P treatments was 10% and 15% in 2014-2015, while in other years the decrease of Q10 was numerical but not significant. Soil microbial biomass carbon (SMBC) was increased by 10% and 50%, dissolved organic carbon (DOC) was increased by 6% and 21%, and photosynthesis rate was increased ranging from 6% to 33% with N and N+P fertilization. The relative abundance of Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria and Chloroflexi were significantly higher by 32.9%-54.1% in N addition soils (N and N+P) compared to CK treatment, whereas additional P application into soils increased the relative abundance of the family Micrococcaceae, Nocardioidaceae and Chitinophagaceae. Soil respiration was positively related to SMBC, DOC and photosynthesis rate (p<0.05). However, variation in Q10 may be related to the increase of soil mineral N content and variation of the relative abundance of soil microbial community in our study. Nitrogen and additional phosphorus fertilization

  12. Seed population dynamics on abandoned slopes in the hill and gully Loess Plateau region of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Weijie; Jiao, Juying

    2017-04-01

    Recovery of natural vegetation is an effective but slow approach to control the soil erosion in the Chinese hill and gully Loess Plateau region. As seed stage is particularly vulnerable to environmental conditions, characteristics of seed population should be needed to study for determining whether the recovery of natural vegetation is limited during this stage on the abandoned slopes in this region. The study was performed on three abandoned slopes in a watershed with an area of 8.27 km2in the Shaanxi province of China. The differences in soil seed banks were investigated in two different points in time, late March2011 and early April 2013. Main factors of seed population dynamics, such as seed yield of dominant species, seed inputs by seed rain as well as seed outputs through seed loss by overland flow and seedling emergence, were monitored from late March 2011 to early April 2013. In this study, seed rain densities of the main later successional species, i.e., Lespedeza davurica, Stipa bungeana and Artemisia gmelinii accounted for 51.5-71.6% of their own seed yields. The soil seed bank density in early April 2013 was larger than that in late March 2011. The density of seed inputs by seed rain was 10186 seeds•m-2, and the total seed bank, including seed rain and seeds present in the soil seed bank in late March 2011, reached a density of 15018 seeds•m-2 during the study period. Seed densities of loss due to overland flow and seedling emergence were 79 seeds•m-2 from 20 species and 938 seedlings•m-2 that belonged to 38 species during a study period, and the seed output through them accounted for 0.5% and 6.3% of the total seed bank, respectively. The study concluded that overland flow could not result in large numbers of seeds loss and seeds were accumulating in the soil seed bank due to seed rain, and vegetation succession might be limited by curbed spatial seed dispersal and seedling establishment.

  13. Using check dam deposits to investigate recent changes in sediment yield in the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Tian-yin; Yang, Ming-yi; Walling, Des E.; Zhang, Feng-bao; Zhang, Jia-qiong

    2017-05-01

    Check dams are one of the most important engineering measures for controlling soil and water loss from watersheds and can play a key role in reducing sediment loads in rivers. In addition, the associated sediment deposits can in some circumstances provide a valuable source of information on changing rates of sediment production from the upstream watershed through time. A sediment profile with a depth of 11.325 m was examined within the deposits associated with a check dam at the outlet of the Nianyangou catchment, in the northern Loess Plateau, China, with a drainage area of 0.181 km2. The profile contained evidence of a total of 75 clearly identifiable flood event couplets, which corresponded to storm events occurring during the period 1960-1990. The variability of the grain size composition (clay content) of the sediment and its 137Cs activity and organic matter (SOM) content down the profile was used to identify individual flood event couplets and the record of event rainfall (particularly extreme storm events) was used to establish a chronology for the individual flood event couplets. Based on the reservoir capacity curve and information on couplet thickness and sediment bulk density, the sediment yield associated with each flood couplet has been calculated. Using these data, annual sediment yields were estimated to range between zero in 1965 to 9750 t in 1984. The period from 1960 to 1990 was divided into three distinct phases based on evidence for changing rates of sediment production within the watershed above the check dam provided by a double mass plot of cumulative sediment yield versus cumulative precipitation. These phases represent the periods: 1960 to 1964, 1965 to 1983 and 1984 to 1990, which were characterized by mean annual specific sediment yields of 26,220 t km- 2 year- 1, 5590 t km- 2 year- 1 and 19,130 t km- 2 year- 1, respectively. This study is seen as demonstrating the potential for using the sediment deposits associated with check dams to

  14. Detecting water yield variability due to the small proportional land use and land cover changes in a watershed on the Loess Plateau, China

    Treesearch

    S. Wang; Z. Zhang; G. Sun; S.G. McNulty; M. Zhang

    2009-01-01

    Soil conservation practices have been widely implemented on the Loess Plateau to reduce severe soil erosion in north-central China over the past three decades. However, the hydrologic impacts of these practices are not well documented and understood. The objective of this study was to examine how water yield has changed after implementing soil conservation practices...

  15. Assessing the site-specific impacts of climate change on hydrology, soil erosion and crop yields in the Loess Plateau of China

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Climate changes can have great impacts on fragile agro-ecosystems in the Loess Plateau of China, which is one of the most severely eroded regions in the world. The objective of this study is to assess the site-specific impacts of projected climate change scenarios for 2010-2039 on hydrology, soil l...

  16. Ectomycorrhizal fungal communities associated with Populus simonii and Pinus tabuliformis in the hilly-gully region of the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Long, Dongfeng; Liu, Jianjun; Han, Qisheng; Wang, Xiaobing; Huang, Jian

    2016-04-11

    The Loess Plateau region of northwestern China has unique geological and dry/semi-dry climate characteristics. However, knowledge about ectomycorrhizal fungal (EMF) communities in the Loess Plateau is limited. In this study, we investigated EMF communities in Populus simonii and Pinus tabuliformis patches within the forest-steppe zone, in pine forests within the forest zone, and the transitional zone between them. We revealed high species richness (115 operational taxonomic units [OTUs]) of indigenous EMF resources at the Loess Plateau, of which Tomentella (35 OTUs), Inocybe (16), Sebacina (16), and Geopora (7) were the most OTU-rich lineages. EMF richness within the forest-steppe zone and the transitional zone was limited, while the natural pine forest maintained diverse EMF communities in the forest zone. The changes of EMF community richness and composition along arid eco-zones were highlighted for the complex factors including precipitation, soil factors, host, DBH, and altitude. Indicator analysis revealed that some EMF showed clear host preference and some taxa, i.e., genera Geopora and Inocybe, were dominant in drought and alkaline-saline conditions attributed to their environmental preference. This study revealed that EMF communities were quite limited in the forest-steppe zone, while the forest region contained diverse EMF communities in the Loess Plateau.

  17. Ectomycorrhizal fungal communities associated with Populus simonii and Pinus tabuliformis in the hilly-gully region of the Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Long, Dongfeng; Liu, Jianjun; Han, Qisheng; Wang, Xiaobing; Huang, Jian

    2016-01-01

    The Loess Plateau region of northwestern China has unique geological and dry/semi-dry climate characteristics. However, knowledge about ectomycorrhizal fungal (EMF) communities in the Loess Plateau is limited. In this study, we investigated EMF communities in Populus simonii and Pinus tabuliformis patches within the forest-steppe zone, in pine forests within the forest zone, and the transitional zone between them. We revealed high species richness (115 operational taxonomic units [OTUs]) of indigenous EMF resources at the Loess Plateau, of which Tomentella (35 OTUs), Inocybe (16), Sebacina (16), and Geopora (7) were the most OTU-rich lineages. EMF richness within the forest-steppe zone and the transitional zone was limited, while the natural pine forest maintained diverse EMF communities in the forest zone. The changes of EMF community richness and composition along arid eco-zones were highlighted for the complex factors including precipitation, soil factors, host, DBH, and altitude. Indicator analysis revealed that some EMF showed clear host preference and some taxa, i.e., genera Geopora and Inocybe, were dominant in drought and alkaline-saline conditions attributed to their environmental preference. This study revealed that EMF communities were quite limited in the forest-steppe zone, while the forest region contained diverse EMF communities in the Loess Plateau. PMID:27063338

  18. Spatial distributions and sequestrations of organic carbon and black carbon in soils from the Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Zhan, Changlin; Cao, Junji; Han, Yongming; Huang, Shaopeng; Tu, Xiaming; Wang, Ping; An, Zhisheng

    2013-11-01

    Concentrations of soil organic carbon (SOC), black carbon (BC), char, and soot in topsoils (0-20 cm) and vertical soil profiles (0-100 cm) from the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) were investigated. Objectives of the study were to establish the spatial distributions and estimate the sequestrations of these substances. The SOC, BC, char and soot concentrations were higher in the eastern and southeastern parts of the plateau and lower in the north, which is consistent with the patterns of economic development and energy consumption. The highest average SOC concentration was found in the clayey loess zone, followed by the loess and sandy loess zones. Similar trends were observed for BC, char and soot, suggesting interactions with clay and silt are potentially important influences on OC and BC. The SOC contents in topsoils varied from 0.31 to 51.81 g kg(-1), with a mean value of 6.54 g kg(-1), while BC and char concentrations were 0.02 to 5.5 g kg(-1) and 0.003 to 4.19 g kg(-1), respectively, and soot ranged from 0.01 to 1.32 g kg(-1). Unlike SOC, both BC and char decreased with soil depth, whereas soot showed little variation with depth. BC and char were correlated in the topsoils, and both correlated moderately well with SOC (R(2)=0.60) and soot (R(2)=0.53). The SOC pools sequestered in the 0 to 20 cm and 0 to 100 cm depths were estimated to be 0.741 and 3.63 Pg, respectively, and the BC pools sequestered in the 0 to 20 cm and 0 to 100 cm depths were 0.073 and 0.456 Pg, respectively. Therefore the quantity of carbon stored in the sediments of the CLP evidently exceeds 10(9) tons. The char contained in the upper 20 cm layer was 0.053 Pg, which amounted to 72.5% of the BC in that layer.

  19. Regional temporal persistence of dried soil layer along south-north transect of the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jia, Xiaoxu; Shao, Ming'an; Zhang, Chencheng; Zhao, Chunlei

    2015-09-01

    The occurrence of dried soil layer (DSL) threatens the sustainable development of restored ecosystems in the Loess Plateau of China. Knowledge of the regional spatiotemporal characteristics of DSL in water-deficient regions is critical for optimal water management and vegetation restoration. This study assessed regional temporal persistence of DSL using Spearman's rank correlation coefficient (rs) and relative difference (RD) analyses and determined the dominant driving factors. Two DSL evaluation indices [DSL thickness (DSLT) and DSL soil water content (DSL-SWC)] were calculated by measuring volumetric SWC of the 0-500 cm soil layer at 86 locations along a south-north regional transect of the Loess Plateau in 2013-2014. Based on the study, there was DSL formation at most of the sites (61 out of 86 sites) along the transect. The level of DSL was severe, with mean DSLT of 273 cm and mean DSL-SWC of only 10.8% (v/v) [field capacity (FC) = 22.5% (v/v)]. Mean DSL-SWC generally decreased from south to north, while no obvious trend was noted in DSLT along the transect. Derived rs values indicated a good temporal persistence of spatial patterns of DSL. Also RD analysis showed that DSL with thicker DSLT and/or lower DSL-SWC had much stronger temporal persistence, implying higher possibility for the formation of permanent DSL. The representative locations of each DSL index well represented the regional means of DSLT and DSL-SWC. This suggested that there was the feasibility of directly estimating regional patterns of DSL from theoretical temporal stability. The temporal persistence of DSL patterns was mainly controlled by soil texture, soil organic carbon, field capacity, mean annual precipitation, precipitation seasonal distribution (PSD) and mean annual temperature. We concluded that soil- and climate-related factors dominated regional temporal persistence of DSL. Lower soil water holding capacity, fewer rainfall and more concentrated PSD could intensify the formation and

  20. Characteristics of Soil and Organic Carbon Loss Induced by Water Erosion on the Loess Plateau in China.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhongwu; Nie, Xiaodong; Chang, Xiaofeng; Liu, Lin; Sun, Liying

    2016-01-01

    Soil erosion has been a common environmental problem in the Loess Plateau in China. This study aims to better understand the losses of soil organic carbon (SOC) induced by water erosion. Laboratory-simulated rainfall experiments were conducted to investigate the characteristics of SOC loss induced by water erosion. The applied treatments included two rainfall intensities (90 and 120 mm h-1), four slope gradients (10°, 15°, 20°, and 25°), and two typical soil types- silty clay loam and silty loam. Results showed that the sediment OC enrichment ratios (ERoc) in all the events were relative stable with values ranged from 0.85 to1.21 and 0.64 to 1.52 and mean values of 0.98 and 1.01 for silty clay loam and silty loam, respectively. Similar to the ERoc, the proportions of different sized particles in sediment showed tiny variations during erosion processes. No significant correlation was observed between ERoc values and the proportions of sediment particles. Slope, rainfall intensity and soil type almost had no impact on ERoc. These results indicate that the transportation of SOC during erosion processes was nonselective. While the mean SOC loss rates for the events of silty clay loam and silty loam were 0.30 and 0.08 g m-2 min-1, respectively. Greater differences in SOC loss rates were found in events among different soil types. Meanwhile, significant correlations between SOC loss and soil loss for all the events were observed. These results indicated that the amount of SOC loss was influenced primarily by soil loss and the SOC content of the original soil. Erosion pattern and original SOC content are two main factors by which different soils can influence SOC loss. It seems that soil type has a greater impact on SOC loss than rainfall characteristics on the Loess Plateau of China. However, more kinds of soils should be further studied due to the special formation processes in the Loess Plateau.

  1. Characteristics of Soil and Organic Carbon Loss Induced by Water Erosion on the Loess Plateau in China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Zhongwu; Nie, Xiaodong; Chang, Xiaofeng; Liu, Lin; Sun, Liying

    2016-01-01

    Soil erosion has been a common environmental problem in the Loess Plateau in China. This study aims to better understand the losses of soil organic carbon (SOC) induced by water erosion. Laboratory-simulated rainfall experiments were conducted to investigate the characteristics of SOC loss induced by water erosion. The applied treatments included two rainfall intensities (90 and 120 mm h-1), four slope gradients (10°, 15°, 20°, and 25°), and two typical soil types- silty clay loam and silty loam. Results showed that the sediment OC enrichment ratios (ERoc) in all the events were relative stable with values ranged from 0.85 to1.21 and 0.64 to 1.52 and mean values of 0.98 and 1.01 for silty clay loam and silty loam, respectively. Similar to the ERoc, the proportions of different sized particles in sediment showed tiny variations during erosion processes. No significant correlation was observed between ERoc values and the proportions of sediment particles. Slope, rainfall intensity and soil type almost had no impact on ERoc. These results indicate that the transportation of SOC during erosion processes was nonselective. While the mean SOC loss rates for the events of silty clay loam and silty loam were 0.30 and 0.08 g m-2 min-1, respectively. Greater differences in SOC loss rates were found in events among different soil types. Meanwhile, significant correlations between SOC loss and soil loss for all the events were observed. These results indicated that the amount of SOC loss was influenced primarily by soil loss and the SOC content of the original soil. Erosion pattern and original SOC content are two main factors by which different soils can influence SOC loss. It seems that soil type has a greater impact on SOC loss than rainfall characteristics on the Loess Plateau of China. However, more kinds of soils should be further studied due to the special formation processes in the Loess Plateau. PMID:27124482

  2. Assessment of Holocene soil erosion rates on the loess plateau in East Poland using sedimentary archives from closed depressions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kołodyńska-Gawrysiak, Renata; Poesen, Jean; Gawrysiak, Leszek

    2016-04-01

    Closed depressions (CDs) are typical geomorphological features of the European loess belt. They are closed sedimentation basins that enable the estimation of long-term soil erosion rates for different land use environments. This study was conducted in eastern Poland (Nałęczów Plateau). In this region CDs are rather small landforms and the area of 70% of all CDs does not exceed 1500 m2. The study objective was to assess Holocene soil erosion rates in the loess plateau based on a quantitative analysis of colluvial sediments deposited in CDs. Two representative CDs were selected for this study: one CD is located in an old (long-term) forest and the other is situated in a long-term agricultural land. The maximum depth of the CD in the forest, the mean slope gradient and area of the corresponding catchment are 4.9 m, 3.410 and 7568 m² respectively. For the CD in agricultural land these values are 3.2 m, 2.760 and 5156 m² respectively. In both CDs several dozen of drillings and two trenches (2 m long, 1m wide, 2 m deep) were made in the deepest point of the CDs. Mean long-term soil erosion rates were calculated based on the stratigraphy of the soil-sediment sequence infilling the CDs. C-14 and OSL datings of soils and colluvial sediments within the CDs were obtained. For the long-term agricultural used catchment of the CD it was calculated that since 6.31 ± 0.35 ka BP the mean annual soil loss due to water and tillage erosion is 0.63-0.7 t/ha/year or 279.3 mm. In the prehistoric period since 6.31 ± 0.35 ka BP until 1026-1162 AD the mean annual soil erosion rate amounted to 0,10-0.11 t/ha/year or 41.5 mm. During the last ca. 1000 years mean soil erosion rates increased to 3.99-4.63 t/ha/year or 249.2 mm. Results of long-term soil erosion rates (calculated using colluvial sediment sequences in CDs) from agricultural catchments in the loess regions of eastern Poland (this study) and Central Belgium (Gillijns et al. 2005) are quite similar. For the forested catchment

  3. Reconstruction of the vegetation distribution of different topographic units of the Chinese Loess Plateau during the Holocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Aizhi; Guo, Zhengtang; Wu, Haibin; Li, Qin; Yu, Yanyan; Luo, Yunli; Jiang, Wenying; Li, Xiaoqiang

    2017-10-01

    Soil erosion and related ecological restoration present a tremendous challenge to the socioeconomic development of the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). Although the Chinese government has addressed the problem of soil erosion via an afforestation programme, there have been several negative outcomes. One of the reasons for this is our incomplete understanding of the past natural vegetation distribution in the various topographic units of the CLP under different climate scenarios. Consequently, we used fossil pollen data from 41 sites from different topographic units, together with the biomization method, to reconstruct the Holocene vegetation distribution of the CLP. The results demonstrate significant differences in vegetation types between different topographic units: forest was distributed in mountainous areas, steppe was dominant in Yuan areas, and desert vegetation was distributed in the transition zone between loess and desert. The vegetation in the gully areas exhibited significant spatial differences during the mid-Holocene. In addition, the vegetation on the various topographic units was well-developed during the interval from 9 to 4 ka B.P., when regional moisture levels reached a maximum. This suggests that the East Asian Summer Monsoon was one of the main factors controlling the evolution of vegetation patterns during the Holocene. In addition, our results confirm that both topography and human activity were fundamental factors determining the vegetation distribution of the region. Against a background of ongoing global warming, we advocate a program of vegetation restoration including planting trees and shrubs in the mountainous areas, and promoting the growth of grasses in the Yuan areas and in the transitional zone between loess and desert. In the gully areas, the planting of trees and shrubs is appropriate for reducing soil erosion caused by human activities.

  4. A Reconstruction of Temperature and δ18O Data Since the Last Glacial Maximum Using Soil and Gastropods from the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitsunaga, B.; Mering, J. A.; Eagle, R.; Bricker, H. L.; Davila, N.; Trewman, S.; Burford, S.; Li, G.; Tripati, A. K.

    2016-12-01

    The climate of the Chinese Loess Plateau is affected by the East Asian Monsoon, an important water source for over a billion people. We are examining how temperature and hydrology on the Loess Plateau has changed since the Last Glacial Maximum (18,000 - 23,000 years before the present) in response to insolation, deglaciation, and rising levels of greenhouse gases. Specifically, we are reconstructing temperature and meteoric δ18O through paired clumped and oxygen isotope analyses performed on carbonate minerals. Clumped isotope thermometry—the use of 13C—18O bond frequency in carbonates—is a novel geochemical proxy that provides constraints on mineral formation temperatures and can be combined with carbonate δ18O to quantify meteoric δ18O. We have measured a suite of nodular loess concretions and gastropod shells from the modern as well as the Last Glacial Maximum from 15 sites across the Chinese Loess Plateau. These observations constrain spatial variations in temperature and precipitation, which in turn will provide key constraints on models that simulate changes in regional climates and monsoon intensity over the last 20,000 years.

  5. Palaeoenvironmental and chronological constraints on the Early Pleistocene mammal fauna from loess deposits in the Linxia Basin, NE Tibetan Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zan, Jinbo; Fang, Xiaomin; Zhang, Weilin; Yan, Maodu; Zhang, Tao

    2016-09-01

    The Longdan mammal fauna from the central part of Linxia Basin, NE Tibetan Plateau, is the first Early Pleistocene fauna in China in which the fossils are derived loess deposits, and it provides an excellent opportunity to document mammalian and environmental evolution in Asia. However, the precise age and palaeoenvironmental setting of the fauna are controversial due to the poor exposure of the outcrop section. In the present study, a 105-m-long drill core was obtained from Longdan village and used for detailed magnetostratigraphic dating. The results demonstrate that the late Pliocene- Pleistocene loess deposits in the Longdan section deposited since ca. 3 Ma and that the Longdan fauna has an age range of 2.5-2.2 Ma. In addition, the results of lithological and rock magnetic analyses demonstrate that paleosols are weakly developed throughout the whole core and that in the lower and middle parts the core the magnetic susceptibility and its frequency dependence are relatively low and uniform. These observations, combined with the ecological characteristics of the Longdan fauna, indicate that during the Early Pleistocene the climate in the Longdan area, and even in the Linxia Basin, was sub-humid and that the aeolian dust was frequently subjected to post-depositional reworking by water.

  6. [Profile distribution of sediment particle sizes at a check dam in a small watershed of Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Wang, Ya-Feng; Fu, Bo-Jie; Chen, Li-Ding; Lü, Yi-He; Wang, De; Song, Cheng-Jun

    2009-10-01

    Sediment gyration sampling was conducted in June 2006 to analyze the profile distribution of sediment particle sizes at a check-dam built in 1954 in a typical small watershed of hilly and gully Loess plateau. There were at least 28 layers of sediment gyration at the check-dam, with the layer depth varied from 2 cm to 60 cm. In the sediment profile, silt (0.05-0.002 mm) occupied > 60%, its particle size being mainly within the range of 0.01-0.05 mm, while coarse sand (> 0.05 mm) accounted for 23.09%. The variation degree of sediment particle sizes increased with increasing depth, and an abrupt change was observed at the depth 2 m. Both longitudinal gradient and hydrodynamic condition caused the variation of sediment particle sizes. There was an accumulated plough layer of 72 cm thickness in the profile, which had indicative role for the sediment erosion environment of check dam.

  7. Yield Potential of Soil Water and Its Sustainability for Dryland Spring Maize with Plastic Film Mulch on the Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Wen; Liu, Wenzhao

    2016-04-01

    Plastic film mulch(PM) is an agronomic measure widely used in the dryland spring maize production system on the Loess Plateau of China. The measure can greatly increase yield of dryland maize due to its significant effects on soil water conservation. Few researches have been done to investigate how the yield potential is impacted by PM. The yield-water use (ET) boundary equation raised by French and Schultz provides a simple approach to calculate crop water limited yield potential and gives a benchmark for farmers in managing their crops. However, method used in building the equation is somewhat arbitrary and has no strict principle, which leads to the uncertainty of equation when it is applied. Though using PM can increase crop yield, it increases soil temperature, promotes crop growth and increases the water transpired by crop, which further leads to high water consumption as compared with crops without PM. This means that PM may lead to the overuse of soil water and hence is unsustainable in a long run. This research is mainly focused on the yield potential and sustainability of PMing for spring maize on the Loess Plateau. A principle that may be utilized by any other researchers was proposed based on French & Schultz's boundary equation and on part of quantile regression theory. We used a data set built by collecting the experimental data from published papers and analyzed the water-limited yield potential of spring maize on the Loess Plateau. Moreover, maize yield and soil water dynamics under PM were investigated by a long-term site field experiment. Results show that on the Loess Plateau, the water limited yield potential can be calculated using the boundary equation y = 60.5×(x - 50), with a platform yield of 15954 kghm-2 after the water use exceeds 314 mm. Without PMing, the water limited yield potential can be estimated by the boundary equation y = 47.5×(x - 62.3) , with a platform yield of 12840 kghm-2 when the water use exceeds 325 mm, which

  8. Bioaccumulation of heavy metals in plant leaves from Yan׳an city of the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Hu, Youning; Wang, Dexiang; Wei, Lijing; Zhang, Xinping; Song, Bin

    2014-12-01

    Urban plants are capable of reducing environmental pollutions through bioaccumulation contaminants in their tissues. The accumulation of heavy metals (Pb, Cu, Cd, Cr, and Zn) in leaves of nine tree species and five shrub species from Yan׳an city of China were investigated, and total metal accumulation capacities of different plants were evaluated using the metal accumulation index (MAI). The results indicated that plants in polluted environments are enriched in heavy metals relative to those in pristine environments, this is mainly caused by traffic emissions and coal combustion. Species with the highest accumulation of a single metal did not have the highest total metal accumulation capacity, the MAI should be an important indicator for tree species selection in phytoextraction and urban greening. Considering total accumulation capacities, Sabina chinensis, Juniperus formosana, Ailanthus altissima and Salix matsudana var. matsudana could be widely used in the Loess Plateau.

  9. A comparison of zircon U-Pb age results of the Red Clay sequence on the central Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Gong, Hujun; Nie, Junsheng; Wang, Zhao; Peng, Wenbin; Zhang, Rui; Zhang, Yunxiang

    2016-08-19

    Single grain zircon U-Pb geochronology has demonstrated great potentials in extracting tectonic and atmospheric circulation signal carried by aeolian, fluvial, and fluviolacustrine sediments. A routine in this sort of studies is analyzing 100-150 grains and then compares zircon U-Pb age spectra between the measured sample and the potential sources. Here we compared the zircon U-Pb age results of the late Miocene-Pliocene Red Clay sequence of two neighboring sites from the Chinese Loess Plateau where similar provenance signal is expected. Although the results from the 5.5 Ma sediment support this prediction, the results from the 3 Ma sediment at these two sites differ from each other significantly. These results emphasize the importance of increasing analysis number per sample and combining the zircon U-Pb geochronology with other provenance tools in order to get reliable provenance information.

  10. A comparison of zircon U-Pb age results of the Red Clay sequence on the central Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gong, Hujun; Nie, Junsheng; Wang, Zhao; Peng, Wenbin; Zhang, Rui; Zhang, Yunxiang

    2016-08-01

    Single grain zircon U-Pb geochronology has demonstrated great potentials in extracting tectonic and atmospheric circulation signal carried by aeolian, fluvial, and fluviolacustrine sediments. A routine in this sort of studies is analyzing 100–150 grains and then compares zircon U-Pb age spectra between the measured sample and the potential sources. Here we compared the zircon U-Pb age results of the late Miocene-Pliocene Red Clay sequence of two neighboring sites from the Chinese Loess Plateau where similar provenance signal is expected. Although the results from the 5.5 Ma sediment support this prediction, the results from the 3 Ma sediment at these two sites differ from each other significantly. These results emphasize the importance of increasing analysis number per sample and combining the zircon U-Pb geochronology with other provenance tools in order to get reliable provenance information.

  11. A comparison of zircon U-Pb age results of the Red Clay sequence on the central Chinese Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Hujun; Nie, Junsheng; Wang, Zhao; Peng, Wenbin; Zhang, Rui; Zhang, Yunxiang

    2016-01-01

    Single grain zircon U-Pb geochronology has demonstrated great potentials in extracting tectonic and atmospheric circulation signal carried by aeolian, fluvial, and fluviolacustrine sediments. A routine in this sort of studies is analyzing 100–150 grains and then compares zircon U-Pb age spectra between the measured sample and the potential sources. Here we compared the zircon U-Pb age results of the late Miocene-Pliocene Red Clay sequence of two neighboring sites from the Chinese Loess Plateau where similar provenance signal is expected. Although the results from the 5.5 Ma sediment support this prediction, the results from the 3 Ma sediment at these two sites differ from each other significantly. These results emphasize the importance of increasing analysis number per sample and combining the zircon U-Pb geochronology with other provenance tools in order to get reliable provenance information. PMID:27538343

  12. Response of deep soil moisture to land use and afforestation in the semi-arid Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Lei; Wei, Wei; Chen, Liding; Mo, Baoru

    2012-12-01

    SummarySoil moisture is an effective water source for plant growth in the semi-arid Loess Plateau of China. Characterizing the response of deep soil moisture to land use and afforestation is important for the sustainability of vegetation restoration in this region. In this paper, the dynamics of soil moisture were quantified to evaluate the effect of land use on soil moisture at a depth of 2 m. Specifically, the gravimetric soil moisture content was measured in the soil layer between 0 and 8 m for five land use types in the Longtan catchment of the western Loess Plateau. The land use types included traditional farmland, native grassland, and lands converted from traditional farmland (pasture grassland, shrubland and forestland). Results indicate that the deep soil moisture content decreased more than 35% after land use conversion, and a soil moisture deficit appeared in all types of land with introduced vegetation. The introduced vegetation decreased the soil moisture content to levels lower than the reference value representing no human impact in the entire 0-8 m soil profile. No significant differences appeared between different land use types and introduced vegetation covers, especially in deeper soil layers, regardless of which plant species were introduced. High planting density was found to be the main reason for the severe deficit of soil moisture. Landscape management activities such as tillage activities, micro-topography reconstruction, and fallowed farmland affected soil moisture in both shallow and deep soil layers. Tillage and micro-topography reconstruction can be used as effective countermeasures to reduce the soil moisture deficit due to their ability to increase soil moisture content. For sustainable vegetation restoration in a vulnerable semi-arid region, the plant density should be optimized with local soil moisture conditions and appropriate landscape management practices.

  13. Soil Carbon and Nitrogen Changes following Afforestation of Marginal Cropland across a Precipitation Gradient in Loess Plateau of China

    PubMed Central

    Lü, Yihe; Liu, Guohua; Fu, Bojie

    2014-01-01

    Cropland afforestation has been widely found to increase soil organic carbon (SOC) and soil total nitrogen (STN); however, the magnitudes of SOC and STN accumulation and regulating factors are less studied in dry, marginal lands, and therein the interaction between soil carbon and nitrogen is not well understood. We examined the changes in SOC and STN in younger (5–9-year-old) and older (25–30-year-old) black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L., an N-fixing species) plantations that were established on former cropland along a precipitation gradient (380 to 650 mm) in the semi-arid Loess Plateau of China. The SOC and STN stocks of cropland and plantations increased linearly with precipitation increase, respectively, accompanying an increase in the plantation net primary productivity and the soil clay content along the increasing precipitation gradient. The SOC stock of cropland decreased in younger plantations and increased in older plantations after afforestation, and the amount of the initial loss of SOC during the younger plantations’ establishment increased with precipitation increasing. By contrast, the STN stock of cropland showed no decrease in the initial afforestation while tending to increase with plantation age, and the changes in STN were not related to precipitation. The changes in STN and SOC showed correlated and were precipitation-dependent following afforestation, displaying a higher relative gain of SOC to STN as precipitation decreased. Our results suggest that the afforestation of marginal cropland in Loess Plateau can have a significant effect on the accumulation of SOC and STN, and that precipitation has a significant effect on SOC accumulation but little effect on STN retention. The limitation effect of soil nitrogen on soil carbon accumulation is more limited in the drier area rather than in the wetter sites. PMID:24416408

  14. Effects of conservation tillage practices on ammonia emissions from Loess Plateau rain-fed winter wheat fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Yang; Zhou, Chunju; Li, Na; Han, Kun; Meng, Yuan; Tian, Xiaoxiao; Wang, Linquan

    2015-03-01

    Ammonia emissions from agricultural activities contribute to air pollution. For the rain-fed winter wheat system in the Loess Plateau there is a lack of information about ammonia emissions. Current study aimed to provide field data on ammonia emissions affected by conservation tillage practices and nitrogen applications. A two-year field experiment was conducted during 2011-2013 wheat growing seasons followed a split-plot design. Main plots consisted of one conventional tillage (CT, as the control) and five conservation tillage systems, i.e., stalk mulching (SM), film mulching (FM), ridge tillage (RT), ridge tillage with film mulch on the ridge (RTfm), and ridge tillage with film mulch on the ridge and stalk mulch in the furrow (RTfmsm); while subplots consisted of two nitrogen application rates, i.e., 0 and 180 kg N ha-1. Ammonia emissions were measured using an acid trapping method with vented chambers. Results showed ammonia fluxes peaked during the first 10 days after fertilization. On average, nitrogen application increased ammonia emissions by 26.5% (1.31 kg N ha-1) compared with treatments without nitrogen application (P < 0.05). Ammonia fluxes were strongly dependent on soil ammonium, moisture, and temperature. Tillage systems had significant effects on ammonia emissions. On average, conservation tillage practices reduced ammonia emissions by 7.7% (0.46 kg N ha-1) compared with conventional tillage (P < 0.05), with FM most effective. Deep-band application of nitrogen fertilizer, stalk mulches, and film mulches were responsible for reductions in ammonia emissions from nitrogen fertilization in conservation tillage systems, thus they were recommended to reduce ammonia emissions from winter wheat production regions in the southern Loess Plateau.

  15. Spatial heterogeneity of soil detachment capacity by overland flow at a hillslope with ephemeral gullies on the Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zhen-wei; Zhang, Guang-hui; Geng, Ren; Wang, Hao

    2015-11-01

    Ephemeral gullies are typical erosional landforms and widespread on the Chinese Loess Plateau. To better understand the spatial variability in soil detachment capacity (DC) by overland flow and its influence at a hillslope with an ephemeral gully, this study investigates a hillslope on the Loess Plateau using classical statistics, geostatistical analysis, and principal component analysis. Undisturbed soil samples were collected from 202 sites along nine 90 m transects in two completely developed ephemeral gullies, and were scoured in a laboratory flume under consistent hydraulic conditions. The results indicate that DC varied widely from 0.0004 to 1.25 kg m- 2 s- 1 with a mean of 0.22 kg m- 2 s- 1. The coefficient of variation also shows a high variability in DC. The ephemeral gullies were divided into four sections (uppermost, upper, middle and lower slopes) and DC differed significantly among the four sections. A semivariogram of DC indicated a moderate spatial dependence. The sampling interval significantly affects the spatial pattern of DC. When the sampling interval decreased from 10 to 2 m, the nugget variance decreased, whereas structured variance, spatial dependence, and range increased. Distribution maps of DC, derived from kriging interpolation, showed that samples in the lower slope position have greater DC than the other positions. DC significantly correlates with clay content, sand content, median soil grain size, bulk density, cohesion, water stable aggregate, and litter mass density. Principal component analysis (PCA) and a minimum data set (MDS) method identified that the median soil grain size, bulk density, and litter mass density were the major factors affecting the spatial variability in DC.

  16. [Effects of vegetation restoration on soil microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen in hilly areas of Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Hu, Chan-juan; Fu, Bo-jie; Jin, Tian-tian; Liu, Guo-hua

    2009-01-01

    Aimed to explore the effects of different vegetations and of the years of vegetation restoration on soil microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen, a comparative study was conducted, with the 5 year old Robinia pseudoacacia, Hippophae reamnoide and Prunus armeniaca plantations and the 5, 15 and 25 years old R. pseudoacacia plantation in the Yangjuangou catchment of Yanan City of Shaanxi Province, a typical hilly area of the Loess Plateau, as test objects. The results showed that among the three 5-year old plantations, H. reamnoides plantation had the highest soil organic carbon (SOC) and total nitrogen (TN) contents, while R. pseudoacacia plantation had the highest soil microbial biomass carbon (MBC) (99.56 mg x kg(-1)) and nitrogen (MBN) (28.81 mg x kg(-1)). The MBC was in the order of R. pseudoacacia > H. reamnoides > P. armeniaca, and that of MBN was of R. pseudoacacia > P. armeniaca > H. reamnoides. The MBC/SOC was in the order of R. pseudoacacia > H. reamnoides > P. armeniaca, and that of MBN/TN was of R. pseudoacacia > P. armeniaca > H. reamnoides, with the differences being significant (P < 0.05). With the increasing years of vegetation restoration, the soil pH in R. pseudoacacia plantation decreased, while the SOC, TN, electricity conductance (EC), MBC, and MBN all had an increasing trend, which illustrated that in the hilly area of Loess Plateau, planting R. pseudoacacia was more beneficial to the increase of soil MBC and MBN, and, with the increasing years of this planting, soil MBC, MBN, SOC and TN tended to be increasing.

  17. [Characteristics of soil microelements contents in the rhizospheres of different vegetation in hilly-gully region of Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Chao; Liu, Guo-Bin; Xue, Sha; Zhang, Chang-Sheng

    2012-03-01

    To explore the rhizosphere effect of the microelements in the soils under different vegetation types in Loess Plateau, this paper analyzed the organic C, total N, Mn, Cu, Fe, and Zn contents in the rhizosphere soil and bulk soil of six vegetation types in hilly-gully region of Loess Plateau. Among the six vegetation types, Caragana korshinskii, Heteropappus altaicus, and Artemisia capillaries had higher organic C and total N contents in rhizosphere soil than in bulk soil. With the exception of C. korshinskii and H. rhamnoides, all the six vegetation types had a significantly lower pH in rhizosphere soil than in bulk soil. The six vegetation types had a lower available Mn content in rhizosphere soil than in bulk soil, and the C. korshinskii, Astragalus adsurgen, and Panicum virgatum had a significantly higher available Cu content in rhizosphere soil than in bulk soil. The six vegetation types except A. adsurgens had a slightly higher available Fe content in rhizosphere soil than in bulk soil, and A. adsurgens, P. virgatum, H. altaicus, and A. capillaries had a significant accumulation of available Zn in rhizosphere soil. There existed significant positive correlations between the rhizosphere soil and bulk soil of the six vegetation types in the relationships between the organic C and total N contents and the available Mn and Zn contents and between the contents of available Mn and Zn. In rhizosphere soil, available Mn and Zn contents were significantly negative- ly correlated with pH value. Due to the differences in root growth characteristics, rhizosphere pH value, and microbial structure composition, the microelements contents in the rhizosphere soil of the six vegetation types differed, with the contents of Mn, Cu, Fe, and Zn being higher in the rhizosphere soil of H. altaicus than in that of the other vegetation types.

  18. Riverine CO2 emissions in the Wuding River catchment on the Loess Plateau: Environmental controls and dam impoundment impact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ran, Lishan; Li, Lingyu; Tian, Mingyang; Yang, Xiankun; Yu, Ruihong; Zhao, Ji; Wang, Lixin; Lu, X. X.

    2017-06-01

    River ecosystems contribute significantly to CO2 emissions. However, estimates of global riverine CO2 emissions remain greatly uncertain owing to the absence of a comprehensive and spatially resolved CO2 emission measurement. Based on intensive field measurements using floating chambers, riverine CO2 evasion in the Wuding River catchment on the Loess Plateau was investigated. Lateral carbon derived from soil respiration and chemical weathering played a central role in controlling the variability of riverine CO2 partial pressure (pCO2). In addition, in-stream processing of allochthonous organic carbon was an also important source of CO2 excess, modulating the influence of lateral carbon inputs. All the surveyed streams were net CO2 sources, exhibiting pronounced spatial and seasonal variabilities. The mean CO2 efflux was 172, 116, and 218 mmol m-2 d-1 in spring, summer, and autumn, respectively. Unlike the commonly observed strongest CO2 emissions in headwater streams, the increasing CO2 efflux with stream order in the Wuding River catchment reflects its unique geomorphologic landscape in controlling CO2 emissions. While in reservoirs, the pCO2 was more controlled by primary production with aquatic photosynthetic assimilation constraining it to a lower level. Both the magnitude and direction of CO2 evasion from reservoirs have been greatly altered. Contrast to streams with large CO2 effluxes, reservoirs were small carbon sources and even carbon sinks, due primarily to greatly reduced turbulence and enhanced photosynthesis. In view of the large number of reservoirs on the Loess Plateau, assessing the resulting changes to CO2 emissions and their implications for regional carbon budgets warrants further research.

  19. [Effects of biological soil crust at different succession stages in hilly region of Loess Plateau on soil CO2 flux].

    PubMed

    Wang, Ai-Guo; Zhao, Yun-Ge; Xu, Ming-Xiang; Yang, Li-Na; Ming, Jiao

    2013-03-01

    Biological soil crust (biocrust) is a compact complex layer of soil, which has photosynthetic activity and is one of the factors affecting the CO2flux of soil-atmosphere interface. In this paper, the soil CO, flux under the effects of biocrust at different succession stages on the re-vegetated grassland in the hilly region of Loess Plateau was measured by a modified LI-8100 automated CO, flux system. Under light condition, the soil CO2 flux under effects of cyanobacteria crust and moss crust was significantly decreased by 92% and 305%, respectively, as compared with the flux without the effects of the biocrusts. The decrement of the soil CO, flux by the biocrusts was related to the biocrusts components and their biomass. Under the effects of dark colored cyanobacteria crust and moss crust, the soil CO2 flux was decreased by 141% and 484%, respectively, as compared with that in bare land. The diurnal curve of soil CO2 flux under effects of biocrusts presented a trend of 'drop-rise-drop' , with the maximum carbon uptake under effects of cyanobacteria crust and moss crust being 0.13 and -1.02 micromol CO2.m-2.s-1 and occurred at about 8:00 and 9:00 am, respectively, while that in bare land was unimodal. In a day (24 h) , the total CO2 flux under effects of cyanobacteria crust was increased by 7.7% , while that under effects of moss crust was decreased by 29.6%, as compared with the total CO2 flux in bare land. This study suggested that in the hilly region of Loess Plateau, biocrust had significant effects on soil CO2 flux, which should be taken into consideration when assessing the carbon budget of the 'Grain for Green' eco-project.

  20. Comparison of different landform classification methods for digital landform and soil mapping of the Iranian loess plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoffmeister, Dirk; Kramm, Tanja; Curdt, Constanze; Maleki, Sedigheh; Khormali, Farhad; Kehl, Martin

    2016-04-01

    The Iranian loess plateau is covered by loess deposits, up to 70 m thick. Tectonic uplift triggered deep erosion and valley incision into the loess and underlying marine deposits. Soil development strongly relates to the aspect of these incised slopes, because on northern slopes vegetation protects the soil surface against erosion and facilitates formation and preservation of a Cambisol, whereas on south-facing slopes soils were probably eroded and weakly developed Entisols formed. While the whole area is intensively stocked with sheep and goat, rain-fed cropping of winter wheat is practiced on the valley floors. Most time of the year, the soil surface is unprotected against rainfall, which is one of the factors promoting soil erosion and serious flooding. However, little information is available on soil distribution, plant cover and the geomorphological evolution of the plateau, as well as on potentials and problems in land use. Thus, digital landform and soil mapping is needed. As a requirement of digital landform and soil mapping, four different landform classification methods were compared and evaluated. These geomorphometric classifications were run on two different scales. On the whole area an ASTER GDEM and SRTM dataset (30 m pixel resolution) was used. Likewise, two high-resolution digital elevation models were derived from Pléiades satellite stereo-imagery (< 1m pixel resolution, 10 by 10 km). The high-resolution information of this dataset was aggregated to datasets of 5 and 10 m scale. The applied classification methods are the Geomorphons approach, an object-based image approach, the topographical position index and a mainly slope based approach. The accuracy of the classification was checked with a location related image dataset obtained in a field survey (n ~ 150) in September 2015. The accuracy of the DEMs was compared to measured DGPS trenches and map-based elevation data. The overall derived accuracy of the landform classification based on the

  1. Effects of straw and biochar amendments on aggregate stability, soil organic carbon, and enzyme activities in the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Man; Cheng, Gong; Feng, Hao; Sun, Benhua; Zhao, Ying; Chen, Haixin; Chen, Jing; Dyck, Miles; Wang, Xudong; Zhang, Jianguo; Zhang, Afeng

    2017-04-01

    Soil from the Loess Plateau of China is typically low in organic carbon and generally has poor aggregate stability. Application of organic amendments to these soils could help to increase and sustain soil organic matter levels and thus to enhance soil aggregate stability. A field experiment was carried out to evaluate the effect of the application of wheat straw and wheat straw-derived biochar (pyrolyzed at 350-550 °C) amendments on soil aggregate stability, soil organic carbon (SOC), and enzyme activities in a representative Chinese Loess soil during summer maize and winter wheat growing season from 2013 to 2015. Five treatments were set up as follows: no fertilization (CK), application of inorganic fertilizer (N), wheat straw applied at 8 t ha(-1) with inorganic fertilizer (S8), and wheat straw-derived biochar applied at 8 t ha(-1) (B8) and 16 t ha(-1) (B16) with inorganic fertilizer, respectively. Compared to the N treatment, straw and straw-derived biochar amendments significantly increased SOC (by 33.7-79.6%), microbial biomass carbon (by 18.9-46.5%), and microbial biomass nitrogen (by 8.3-38.2%), while total nitrogen (TN) only increased significantly in the B16 plot (by 24.1%). The 8 t ha(-1) straw and biochar applications had no significant effects on soil aggregation, but a significant increase in soil macro-aggregates (>2 mm) (by 105.8%) was observed in the B16 treatment. The concentrations of aggregate-associated SOC increased by 40.4-105.8% in macro-aggregates (>2 mm) under straw and biochar amendments relative to the N treatment. No significant differences in invertase and alkaline phosphatase activity were detected among different treatments. However, urease activity was greater in the biochar treatment than the straw treatment, indicating that biochar amendment improved the transformation of nitrogen in the soil. The carbon pool index and carbon management index were increased with straw and biochar amendments, especially in the B16

  2. Atmospheric trace elements over source regions for Chinese dust: concentrations, sources and atmospheric deposition on the Loess plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xiaoye; Arimoto, Richard; An, Zhisheng; Chen, Tuo; Zhang, Guangyu; Zhu, Guanghua; Wang, Xinfu

    The mass-particle size distributions of up to 17 trace elements in aerosol particle samples from dust storm and non-dust storm periods were determined for three sites in or near the source regions of Chinese dust. The mass of particulate material in the atmosphere at the sites is dominated by mineral aerosol particles. An absolute principal component analysis of the non-dust storm elemental data for the loess region allows the estimation of the mass contributions from two coarse-particle classes (soil dust and dust associated with pollutants), and two fine-particle classes (soil dust and anomalously enriched). For most elements (Al, Si, Ca, Fe, Ti, K, S and As), the mass-particle size distributions (MSDs) were approximately log-normal. The mass-median diameters (MMDs) of the soil-derived elements tended to decrease with distance from the desert region and when the dust storms subsided. Total dry deposition velocities were calculated by fitting a log-normal distribution to the aerosol data and calculating deposition rates for 100 particle-size intervals using a two-layer deposition model. The mean dry-deposition rates and fluxes were highest during dust storms over desert regions. In thloess region, the calculated dry deposition velocities of soil derived elements (Al, Si, Ca, Fe and Ti) during non-dust storm periods were from 3.1 to 3.7 cm s -1. From the estimated mass-particles size distributions, the coarser and finer mineral particles were found to benriched with Ca, Fe, Ti and K relative to Al or Si. On a yearly basis, the dry atmospheric input to the Loess Plateau was mainly attributable to normal transport processes, i.e. non-dust storm conditions. Wet deposition fluxes estimated from scavenging ratios indicate that dry deposition dominated the total atmospheric deposition of mineral aerosol. The deposition of aerosol particles associated with coal burning or other anthropogenic sources also was considerable on the Loess Plateau.

  3. The Formation of Barrier Winds East of the Loess Plateau and Their Effects on Dispersion Conditions in the North China Plains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Xiao-Ming; Li, Xingliang; Xue, Ming; Wu, Dui; Fuentes, Jose D.

    2016-10-01

    The North China Plain (NCP) to the east of the Loess Plateau is one of the most heavily polluted areas in the world. Weak surface flow in the western part of the NCP exacerbates the air pollution in this region. Deceleration of low-level flow when approaching the Loess Plateau, together with enhanced roughness associated with large cities, were previously ascribed as the causes for low wind speeds in the NCP. Using numerical simulations with a one-layer dispersion model, we identify that dynamic modification of airflow by the Loess Plateau (not just simple deceleration due to mountain blocking) plays an important role in reducing the wind speed over the NCP. Dynamically-induced northerly barrier winds, superimposed on the prevailing southerly/south-easterly flow, reduce the wind speed in a 50-100 km wide region to the east of the Plateau, partially explaining the weak winds in the western part of the NCP. Poor dispersion conditions due to weak horizontal winds likely contribute to the accumulation of pollutants in this region.

  4. Variations in extreme precipitation on the Loess Plateau using a high-resolution dataset and their linkages with atmospheric circulation indices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Guangju; Zhai, Jianqing; Tian, Peng; Zhang, Limei; Mu, Xingmin; An, Zhengfeng; Han, Mengwei

    2017-08-01

    Assessing regional patterns and trends in extreme precipitation is crucial for facilitating flood control and drought adaptation because extreme climate events have more damaging impacts on society and ecosystems than simple shifts in the mean values. In this study, we employed daily precipitation data from 231 climate stations spanning 1961 to 2014 to explore the changes in precipitation extremes on the Loess Plateau, China. Nine of the 12 extreme precipitation indices suggested decreasing trends, and only the annual total wet-day precipitation (PRCPTOT) and R10 declined significantly: - 0.69 mm/a and - 0.023 days/a at the 95% confidence level. The spatial patterns in all of the extreme precipitation indices indicated mixed trends on the Loess Plateau, with decreasing trends in the precipitation extremes at the majority of the stations examined in the Fen-Wei River valley and high-plain plateau. Most of extreme precipitation indices suggested apparent regional differences, whereas R25 and R20 had spatially similar patterns on the Loess Plateau, with many stations revealing no trends. In addition, we found a potential decreasing trend in rainfall amounts and rainy days and increasing trends in rainfall intensities and storm frequencies in some regions due to increasing precipitation events in recent years. The relationships between extreme rainfall events and atmospheric circulation indices suggest that the weakening trend in the East Asia summer monsoon has limited the northward extension of the rainfall belt to northern China, thereby leading to a decrease in rainfall on the Loess Plateau.

  5. [Distribution characteristics of soil pH, CEC and organic matter in a small watershed of the Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Wei, Xiao-Rong; Shao, Ming-An

    2009-11-01

    Soil chemical properties play important roles in soil ecological functioning. In this study, 207 surface soil (0-20 cm) samples were collected from different representative landscape units in a gully watershed of the Loess Plateau to examine the distribution characteristics of soil pH, cation exchange capacity (CEC) and organic matter, and their relations to land use type, landform, and soil type. The soil pH, CEC and organic matter content ranged from 7.7 to 8.6, 11.9 to 28.7 cmol x kg(-1), and 3.0 to 27.9 g x kg(-1), and followed normal distribution, log-normal distribution, and negative binomial distribution, respectively. These three properties were significantly affected by land use type, landform, and soil type. Soil CEC and organic matter content were higher in forestland, grassland and farmland than in orchard land, and soil pH was lower in forestland than in other three land use types. Soil pH, CEC and organic matter content were higher in plateau land and sloping land than in gully bottom and terrace land. Soil CEC and organic matter content were higher in dark loessial soil and rebified soil, while soil pH was higher in yellow loessial soil. Across all the three landscape factors, soil CEC and organic matter content showed the similar distribution pattern, but an opposite distribution pattern was observed for soil pH.

  6. Satellite evidence for significant biophysical consequences of the "Grain for Green" Program on the Loess Plateau in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiao, Jingfeng

    2014-12-01

    Afforestation has been implemented worldwide as regional and national policies to address environmental problems and to improve ecosystem services. China's central government launched the "Grain for Green" Program (GGP) in 1999 to increase forest cover and to control soil erosion by converting agricultural lands on steep slopes to forests and grasslands. Here a variety of satellite data products from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer were used to assess the biophysical consequences of the GGP for the Loess Plateau, the pilot region of the program. The average tree cover of the plateau substantially increased because of the GGP, with a relative increase of 41.0%. The GGP led to significant increases in enhanced vegetation index (EVI), leaf area index, and the fraction of photosynthetically active radiation absorbed by canopies. The increase in forest productivity as approximated by EVI was not driven by elevated air temperature, changing precipitation, or rising atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations. Moreover, the afforestation significantly reduced surface albedo, leading to a positive radiative forcing and a warming effect on the climate. The GGP also led to a significant decline in daytime land surface temperature and exerted a cooling effect on the climate. The GGP therefore has significant biophysical consequences by altering carbon cycling, hydrologic processes, and surface energy exchange and has significant feedbacks to the regional climate. The net radiative forcing on the climate depends on the offsetting of the negative forcing from carbon sequestration and higher evapotranspiration and the positive forcing from lower albedo.

  7. Innovative in-situ determination of unsaturated hydraulic properties in deep loess sediments in north-west Bulgaria

    SciTech Connect

    Mallants, Dirk; Perko, Janez; Antonov, Dimitar; Karastanev, Doncho

    2007-07-01

    In the framework of selecting a suitable site for final disposal of low- and intermediate level short-lived radioactive waste (LILW-SL) in Bulgaria, site characterization is ongoing at the Marichin Valog site, North-West Bulgaria. The site is characterized by a complex sequence of loess, clayey gravel, and clay layers, of which the first 30-40 m are unsaturated. Proper knowledge about unsaturated water flow and concomitant radionuclide transport is key input to safety assessment calculations. Constant-head infiltrometer tests were carried out at several meters below ground surface to determine the unsaturated hydraulic properties of silty loess, clayey loess, and clayey gravel layers. Individual infiltrometers were equipped with 0.5-m-long filter sections; the shallowest filter was from 2 to 2.5 m depth, whereas the deepest was from 9.5 to 10 m depth. Infiltration tests provided data on cumulative infiltration and progression of the wetting front in the initially unsaturated sediments surrounding the infiltrometer. A cylindrical time-domain reflectometry TRIME probe was used to measure water content variations with time during progression of the wetting front. Access tubes for the TRIME probe were installed at 0.3 to 0.5 m from the infiltrometer tubes. By means of an inverse optimization routine implemented in the finite element code HYDRUS-2D, field-scale soil hydraulic parameters were derived for all layers. Results show a great consistency in the optimized parameter values, although the test sites were several meters apart. Apparently the size of the affected volume of soil was large enough to reduce the effect of spatial variability and to produce average field-scale hydraulic parameters that are relevant for large-scale predictions of flow patterns and radionuclide migration pathways. (authors)

  8. Seed dormancy, seedling establishment and dynamics of the soil seed bank of Stipa bungeana (Poaceae) on the Loess Plateau of northwestern China.

    PubMed

    Hu, Xiao Wen; Wu, Yan Pei; Ding, Xing Yu; Zhang, Rui; Wang, Yan Rong; Baskin, Jerry M; Baskin, Carol C

    2014-01-01

    Studying seed dormancy and its consequent effect can provide important information for vegetation restoration and management. The present study investigated seed dormancy, seedling emergence and seed survival in the soil seed bank of Stipa bungeana, a grass species used in restoration of degraded land on the Loess Plateau in northwest China. Dormancy of fresh seeds was determined by incubation of seeds over a range of temperatures in both light and dark. Seed germination was evaluated after mechanical removal of palea and lemma (hulls), chemical scarification and dry storage. Fresh and one-year-stored seeds were sown in the field, and seedling emergence was monitored weekly for 8 weeks. Furthermore, seeds were buried at different soil depths, and then retrieved every 1 or 2 months to determine seed dormancy and seed viability in the laboratory. Fresh seeds (caryopses enclosed by palea and lemma) had non-deep physiological dormancy. Removal of palea and lemma, chemical scarification, dry storage (afterripening), gibberellin (GA3) and potassium nitrate (KNO3) significantly improved germination. Dormancy was completely released by removal of the hulls, but seeds on which hulls were put back to their original position germinated to only 46%. Pretreatment of seeds with a 30% NaOH solution for 60 min increased germination from 25% to 82%. Speed of seedling emergence from fresh seeds was significantly lower than that of seeds stored for 1 year. However, final percentage of seedling emergence did not differ significantly for seeds sown at depths of 0 and 1 cm. Most fresh seeds of S. bungeana buried in the field in early July either had germinated or lost viability by September. All seeds buried at a depth of 5 cm had lost viability after 5 months, whereas 12% and 4% seeds of those sown on the soil surface were viable after 5 and 12 months, respectively.

  9. Seed Dormancy, Seedling Establishment and Dynamics of the Soil Seed Bank of Stipa bungeana (Poaceae) on the Loess Plateau of Northwestern China

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Xiao Wen; Wu, Yan Pei; Ding, Xing Yu; Zhang, Rui; Wang, Yan Rong; Baskin, Jerry M.; Baskin, Carol C.

    2014-01-01

    Studying seed dormancy and its consequent effect can provide important information for vegetation restoration and management. The present study investigated seed dormancy, seedling emergence and seed survival in the soil seed bank of Stipa bungeana, a grass species used in restoration of degraded land on the Loess Plateau in northwest China. Dormancy of fresh seeds was determined by incubation of seeds over a range of temperatures in both light and dark. Seed germination was evaluated after mechanical removal of palea and lemma (hulls), chemical scarification and dry storage. Fresh and one-year-stored seeds were sown in the field, and seedling emergence was monitored weekly for 8 weeks. Furthermore, seeds were buried at different soil depths, and then retrieved every 1 or 2 months to determine seed dormancy and seed viability in the laboratory. Fresh seeds (caryopses enclosed by palea and lemma) had non-deep physiological dormancy. Removal of palea and lemma, chemical scarification, dry storage (afterripening), gibberellin (GA3) and potassium nitrate (KNO3) significantly improved germination. Dormancy was completely released by removal of the hulls, but seeds on which hulls were put back to their original position germinated to only 46%. Pretreatment of seeds with a 30% NaOH solution for 60 min increased germination from 25% to 82%. Speed of seedling emergence from fresh seeds was significantly lower than that of seeds stored for 1 year. However, final percentage of seedling emergence did not differ significantly for seeds sown at depths of 0 and 1 cm. Most fresh seeds of S. bungeana buried in the field in early July either had germinated or lost viability by September. All seeds buried at a depth of 5 cm had lost viability after 5 months, whereas 12% and 4% seeds of those sown on the soil surface were viable after 5 and 12 months, respectively. PMID:25396423

  10. Spatio-temporal variation of erosion-type non-point source pollution in a small watershed of hilly and gully region, Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Wu, Lei; Liu, Xia; Ma, Xiao-Yi

    2016-06-01

    Loss of nitrogen and phosphorus in the hilly and gully region of Chinese Loess Plateau not only decreases the utilization rate of fertilizer but also is a potential threat to aquatic environments. In order to explore the process of erosion-type non-point source (NPS) pollution in Majiagou watershed of Loess Plateau, a distributed, dynamic, and integrated NPS pollution model was established to investigate impacts of returning farmland on erosion-type NPS pollution load from 1995 to 2012. Results indicate that (1) the integrated model proposed in this study was verified to be reasonable; the general methodology is universal and can be applicable to the hilly and gully region, Loess Plateau; (2) the erosion-type NPS total nitrogen (TN) and total phosphorus (TP) load showed an overall decreasing trend; the average nitrogen and phosphorus load modulus in the last four years (2009-2012) were 1.23 and 1.63 t/km(2) · a, respectively, which were both decreased by about 35.4 % compared with the initial treatment period (1995-1998); and (3) The spatial variations of NPS pollution are closely related to spatial characteristics of rainfall, topography, and soil and land use types; the peak regions of TN and TP loss mainly occurred along the main river banks of the Yanhe River watershed from northeast to southeast, and gradually decreased with the increase of distance to the left and right river banks, respectively. Results may provide scientific basis for the watershed-scale NPS pollution control of the Loess Plateau.

  11. [Characterization of soil microbial community function and structure in rhizosphere of typical tree species and the meaning for environmental indication in the Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hai-han; Tang, Ming; Chen, Hui

    2009-08-15

    Determination of the soil microbial community structure in rhizosphere of typical tree species in the Loess Plateau can be of great theoretical significance for correctly assessing the characteristics of soil ecological rehabilitation of the Loess Plateau. In this study,spore density analysis, microbial cultivation and BIOLOG were employed to evaluate the AMF spore density and soil microbial community diversity under four tree species with vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizae in ecological rehabilitation area of the Loess Plateau, north Shaanxi Province. The results show that the different tree species differed significantly in both soil microbial number and microbial functional diversity, AMF spore density of Hippophae rhamnoides soil is 2.24 times than that of the Robinia pseudoacacia soil,and the rank as following order: Hippophae rhamnoides > Sophora viciifolia > Caragana microphylla > Robinia pseudoacacia . The statistical significant are detected in the bacteria and actinomyces numbers, however, there is no statistical significance in fungi number among the treatments. The principle component analyses indicates that scatter of Caragana microphylla and Hippophae rhamnoides are smaller than that of Sophora viciifolia and Robinia pseudoacacia, these results suggest that the soil community structure strongly varied among the different tree species. Numbers of carbon sources related to the first two components are 14 and 8. Correlation analysis shows that the AMF spore density appeared extremely significantly and positively correlated with the number of bacteria,and the metabolic of amino acids,amines and aromatic compounds, respectively. Moreover,AMF spore density positively correlated with the average well color development (AWCD), nevertheless, no correlations are found among AMF spore density, carboxylic acids,carbohydrates and polymers. These results suggest that AMF spore density is shown to be an important environmental biology parameter used in correctly

  12. Ecological stoichiometric characteristics and element reserves of three stands in a closed forest on the Chinese loess plateau.

    PubMed

    Cao, Yuanbo; Wang, Baitian; Wei, Tingting; Ma, Hua

    2016-02-01

    Populus davidiana, Leuchtenbergia principis, and Pinus tabulaeformis are important greening tree species with a cosmopolitan distribution. However, the stoichiometric characteristics and element reserves of stands of these three species are not particularly clear. In this study, we conducted a plot-level investigation of forest stands of these species in the loess area; these have been closed forest stands more than 28 years. Trees were sampled from an area of 50 m × 20 m (in 6, 8, and 9 plots, respectively), which was sufficient for shrub (2 m × 2 m), herbal species, and litter (1 m × 1 m) investigations. The C, N, and P concentrations and the C:N:P stoichiometry in five different soil layers (0-10 cm, 10-20 cm, 20-30 cm, 30-50 cm, and 50-100 cm) and in the leaves, stems, branches, and roots of the plants were examined. The soil element concentrations and density were affected by soil depth. The element content had a significantly negative correlation with soil depth, and element density differed significantly among the soil layers. A particular element in a particular organ differed significantly between the forest stands, and the same element in different organs of the same stand was also significantly different. The C, N, and P element reserves in the soil were considerably higher than in the plants. Our results indicate that there are different stoichiometric characteristics and element reserves of the three stands in a closed forest on the Chinese loess plateau, which may provide a reference when we develop and optimize the structure of forest stands.

  13. Groundwater recharge mechanism in an integrated tableland of the Loess Plateau, northern China: insights from environmental tracers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Tianming; Pang, Zhonghe; Liu, Jilai; Ma, Jinzhu; Gates, John

    2017-05-01

    Assessing groundwater recharge characteristics (recharge rate, history, mechanisms (piston and preferential flow)) and groundwater age in arid and semi-arid environments remains a difficult but important research frontier. Such assessments are particularly important when the unsaturated zone (UZ) is thick and the recharge rate is limited. This study combined evaluations of the thick UZ with those of the saturated zone and used multiple tracers, such as Cl, NO3, Br, 2H, 18O, 13C, 3H and 14C, to study groundwater recharge characteristics in an integrated loess tableland in the Loess Plateau, China, where precipitation infiltration is the only recharge source for shallow groundwater. The results indicate that diffuse recharge beneath crops, as the main land use of the study area, is 55-71 mm yr-1 based on the chloride mass balance of soil profiles. The length of time required for annual precipitation to reach the water table is 160-400 yrs. The groundwater is all pre-modern water and paleowater, with corrected 14C age ranging from 136 to 23,412 yrs. Most of the water that eventually becomes recharge originally infiltrated in July-September. The Cl and NO3 contents in the upper UZ are considerably higher than those in the deep UZ and shallow groundwater because of recent human activities. The shallow groundwater has not been in hydraulic equilibrium with present near-surface boundary conditions. The homogeneous material of the UZ and relatively old groundwater age imply that piston flow is the dominant recharge mechanism for the shallow groundwater in the tableland.

  14. Effects of legume species introduction on vegetation and soil nutrient development on abandoned croplands in a semi-arid environment on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Zi-Qiang; Yu, Kai-Liang; Epstein, Howard; Fang, Chao; Li, Jun-Ting; Liu, Qian-Qian; Liu, Xue-Wei; Gao, Wen-Juan; Li, Feng-Min

    2016-01-15

    Revegetation facilitated by legume species introduction has been used for soil erosion control on the Loess Plateau, China. However, it is still unclear how vegetation and soil resources develop during this restoration process, especially over the longer term. In this study, we investigated the changes of plant aboveground biomass, vegetation cover, species richness and density of all individuals, and soil total nitrogen, mineral nitrogen, total phosphorus and available phosphorus over 11 years from 2003 to 2013 in three treatments (natural revegetation, Medicago sativa L. introduction and Melilotus suaveolens L. introduction) on the semi-arid Loess Plateau. Medicago significantly increased aboveground biomass and vegetation cover, and soil total nitrogen and mineral nitrogen contents. The Medicago treatment had lower species richness and density of all individuals, lower soil moisture in the deep soil (i.e., 1.4-5m), and lower soil available phosphorus. Melilotus introduction significantly increased aboveground biomass in only the first two years, and it was not an effective approach to improve vegetation biomass and cover, and soil nutrients, especially in later stages of revegetation. Overall, our study suggests that M. sativa can be the preferred plant species for revegetation of degraded ecosystems on the Loess Plateau, although phosphorus fertilizer should be applied for the sustainability of the revegetation.

  15. A preliminary investigation of the dynamic characteristics of dried soil layers on the Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yunqiang; Shao, Ming'an; Shao, Hongbo

    2010-02-01

    SummarySerious soil desiccation, resulting from climatic conditions and poor land management, may lead to the formation of a dried soil layer (DSL), which can negatively affect ecological and hydrological processes. To mitigate these effects through management, it is necessary to understand property interactions within DSLs, compared with those in the whole soil profile, and DSL formation processes under different land uses. We investigated the relationships between soil water content (SWC) and plant root indices, and other soil properties, under various land uses in the Liudaogou watershed on the Loess Plateau, China. We also studied the development of DSLs as a function of the growth age of two vegetation types. Rate of formation and thickness of DSLs were dependent on vegetation type: DSLs formed after 2 years of alfalfa ( Medicago sativa) growth and 3 years of Caragana korshinskii growth; after 4 years of growth, DSLs under alfalfa were thicker than those under C. korshinskii, but after 31 years the DSL thickness under C. korshinskii (4.4 m) exceeded that formed under alfalfa (3 m). The more persistent DSLs occurred below a 100 cm thick upper soil layer that was seasonally dried and replenished by rainfall under both vegetation types. The degree of soil desiccation under natural vegetation was generally less than that under non-indigenous plant species, and was similarly less over a period of about 30 years for a natural plant succession sequence than for an artificial one. Thus, the use of natural vegetation succession management principles would possibly reduce soil desiccation during vegetative restoration. Densities of root length, weight, and surface area, and the average root diameter of soybean ( Glycine max), alfalfa, Stipa bubgeana, and C. korshinskii all decreased with increases in soil depths below 20 cm. Correlations between SWC and root indices, and various soil physical and chemical properties, were generally weaker within the DSL layers than

  16. A drought hazard assessment index based on the VIC-PDSI model and its application on the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Baoqing; Wu, Pute; Zhao, Xining; Wang, Yubao; Gao, Xiaodong; Cao, Xinchun

    2013-10-01

    Drought is a complex natural hazard that is poorly understood and difficult to assess. This paper describes a VIC-PDSI model approach to understanding drought in which the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) Model was combined with the Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI). Simulated results obtained using the VIC model were used to replace the output of the more conventional two-layer bucket-type model for hydrological accounting, and a two-class-based procedure for calibrating the characteristic climate coefficient ( K j ) was introduced to allow for a more reliable computation of the PDSI. The VIC-PDSI model was used in conjunction with GIS technology to create a new drought assessment index (DAI) that provides a comprehensive overview of drought duration, intensity, frequency, and spatial extent. This new index was applied to drought hazard assessment across six subregions of the whole Loess Plateau. The results show that the DAI over the whole Loess Plateau ranged between 11 and 26 (the greater value of the DAI means the more severe of the drought hazard level). The drought hazards in the upper reaches of Yellow River were more severe than that in the middle reaches. The drought prone regions over the study area were mainly concentrated in Inner Mongolian small rivers, Zuli and Qingshui Rivers basin, while the drought hazards in the drainage area between Hekouzhen-Longmen and Weihe River basin were relatively mild during 1971-2010. The most serious drought vulnerabilities were associated with the area around Lanzhou, Zhongning, and Yinchuan, where the development of water-saving irrigation is the most direct and effective way to defend against and reduce losses from drought. For the relatively humid regions, it will be necessary to establish the rainwater harvesting systems, which could help to relieve the risk of water shortage and guarantee regional food security. Due to the DAI considers the multiple characteristic of drought duration, intensity, frequency

  17. Effects of Litter on Seedling Emergence and Seed Persistence of Three Common Species on the Loess Plateau in Northwestern China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Rui; Hu, Xiaowen; Baskin, Jerry M; Baskin, Carol C; Wang, Yanrong

    2017-01-01

    Litter accumulation resulting from land use change (enclosure) is one of the key variables influencing seedling recruitment and consequently the regeneration of plant populations and seed persistence in the soil seed bank. A better understanding of the effects of litter on seed germination and seedling emergence is crucial for developing a new set of indicators for grassland ecosystem health and for grassland management policy. We investigated the effects of seed position in litter and amount of litter covering the seed on seedling emergence and seed persistence of three common species on the Loess Plateau in northwestern China. Seed position beneath the litter layer provided a suitable environment for seedling emergence of the three species. A moderate amount of litter (160 g/m(2)) was beneficial for seedling emergence of the small-seeded species Stipa bungeana and Lespedeza davurica from seeds from beneath the litter layer. The large-seeded species Setaria glauca was more tolerant of a high amount of litter (240 g/m(2)) than the two small-seeded species. Seed persistence in the soil differed among the three species and also was affected by seed position in litter and amount of litter cover. The proportion of viable seeds of Stipa bungeana and Setaria glauca on top of the litter layer increased with an increase in amount of litter. Seedling emergence and seed persistence varied significantly among species, amount of litter and seed position in litter. A moderate amount of litter and seeds positioned beneath the litter layer were better for seedling recruitment than for those on top of the litter layer. A high amount of litter was more favorable for persistence of seeds positioned on top of the litter than for those beneath the litter. Our study showed that maintaining litter amount between 80 and 160 g/m(2) is optimal for S. bungeana dominated grassland on the Loess Plateau. We suggest that litter amount can serve as a guide for monitoring and managing grassland

  18. Effects of Litter on Seedling Emergence and Seed Persistence of Three Common Species on the Loess Plateau in Northwestern China

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Rui; Hu, Xiaowen; Baskin, Jerry M.; Baskin, Carol C.; Wang, Yanrong

    2017-01-01

    Litter accumulation resulting from land use change (enclosure) is one of the key variables influencing seedling recruitment and consequently the regeneration of plant populations and seed persistence in the soil seed bank. A better understanding of the effects of litter on seed germination and seedling emergence is crucial for developing a new set of indicators for grassland ecosystem health and for grassland management policy. We investigated the effects of seed position in litter and amount of litter covering the seed on seedling emergence and seed persistence of three common species on the Loess Plateau in northwestern China. Seed position beneath the litter layer provided a suitable environment for seedling emergence of the three species. A moderate amount of litter (160 g/m2) was beneficial for seedling emergence of the small-seeded species Stipa bungeana and Lespedeza davurica from seeds from beneath the litter layer. The large-seeded species Setaria glauca was more tolerant of a high amount of litter (240 g/m2) than the two small-seeded species. Seed persistence in the soil differed among the three species and also was affected by seed position in litter and amount of litter cover. The proportion of viable seeds of Stipa bungeana and Setaria glauca on top of the litter layer increased with an increase in amount of litter. Seedling emergence and seed persistence varied significantly among species, amount of litter and seed position in litter. A moderate amount of litter and seeds positioned beneath the litter layer were better for seedling recruitment than for those on top of the litter layer. A high amount of litter was more favorable for persistence of seeds positioned on top of the litter than for those beneath the litter. Our study showed that maintaining litter amount between 80 and 160 g/m2 is optimal for S. bungeana dominated grassland on the Loess Plateau. We suggest that litter amount can serve as a guide for monitoring and managing grassland

  19. Canopy transpiration of two black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia) plantations with different ages in semi-arid Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiao, L.

    2015-12-01

    Black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia) was widely planted to control soil erosion and restore degraded ecosystem in Loess Plateau. The water use of the plantations was concerned due to its potential effects on hydrological cycle and regional water resource. Although some studies estimated canopy transpiration (Ec) of the mature black locust plantation, variation in Ec in plantations with different ages was not clear. In this study, we selected two plantations with different ages (12 years and 27 years, denoted as young stand and mature stand, respectively) in similar topographical conditions in Yangjuangou catchment in the central of Loess Plateau. Sap flux density (Fd) and tree biometrics were measured in each stand during the growing season in 2014. Soil water content (SWC) in each plot and meteorological variables in the catchment were simultaneously monitored. Tree transpiration (Et) was derived from Fd and tree sapwood area (As). Canopy transpiration (Ec) was estimated by a product of mean stand sap flux density (Js) and stand total sapwood area (AST). The mean Fd of mature trees was 2-fold larger than that of young trees.However, tree-to-tree variation in Fd among sampled trees within mature stand was evident compared to that within young stand. Mean Et in mature stand was higher than that in young stand. Ec in mature stand was significant higher than that in young stand,with cumulative value of 54 mm and 27 mm respectively. This is attributed to higher Js in mature stand although AST in young is slightly higher than that in mature stand. The patterns of daily Ec during the growing season were similar in both stands during the study period. A exponential saturation model can explain the responses of Ec to vapor deficit pressure (VPD) and solar radiation (Rs) in both stands.The relationship between Ec and SWC was not detected. Our finding suggested that stand age should be taken into consideration when estimated vegetation water use in this region. Further

  20. [Differences in soil respiration between cropland and grassland ecosystems and factors influencing soil respiration on the Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Zhou, Xiao-Gang; Zhang, Yan-Jun; Nan, Ya-Fang; Liu, Qing-Fang; Guo, Sheng-Li

    2013-03-01

    Understanding the effect of land-use change on soil respiration rates becomes critical in predicting soil carbon cycling under conversion of arable into grassland on the Loess Plateau. From July 2010 to December 2011, CO2 efflux from the soil surface was measured between 08:00 to 10:00 am in clear days by a Licor-8100 closed chamber system (Li-COR, Lincoln, NE, US). Also, soil temperature and soil moisture at the 5-cm depth was measured using a Li-Cor thermocouple and a hand-held frequency-domain reflectometer (ML2x, Delta-T Devices Ltd, UK) at each PVC collar, respectively. We found marked differences (P < 0.05) in soil respiration related to different land-use: the mean cropland soil respiration [1.35 micromol x (m2 x s)(-1)] was 24% (P < 0.05) less than the paired grassland soil respiration [1.67 micromol x (m2 x s)(-1)] (P < 0.05) during the period of experiment and the cumulative CO2-C emissions in grassland (856 g x m(-2)) was 23% (P < 0.05) higher than that in cropland (694 g x m(-2)). Soil moisture from 0-5 cm depth was much drier in cropland and significantly different between cropland and grassland except for winter. However, there were no clear relationships between soil moisture and soil respiration. Soil temperature at 5-cm depth was 2.5 degress C higher in grassland during the period of experiment (P < 0.05). Regression of soil temperature vs. soil respiration indicated significant exponential relationships both in grassland and cropland. Besides, there were intrinsic differences in response of soil respiration to temperature between the cropland and grassland ecosystems: grassland and cropland respiration response was significantly different at the alpha = 0.05 level, also expressed by a higher temperature sensitivity of soil respiration (Q10) in cropland (2.30) relative to grassland (1.74). Soil temperature of cropland and grassland can explain 79% of the variation in the soil respiration in grassland, compared to 82% in cropland. Therefore, land

  1. Variations in vegetation cover and topography control gully density and sediment production on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Jianlin; Govers, Gerard

    2016-04-01

    The factors controlling topsoil erosion rates are relatively well understood. This explains why topsoil erosion rates on the Chinese loess plateau (CLP) can be relatively accurately estimated using a combination of empirical data and relatively simple models (Zhao et al., in press). This is, however, not the case for non-topsoil erosion (sediment production by gullying and landslides): while it is well known that these processes produce significant amounts of sediment, the factors controlling their intensity on the CLP are far less understood. In this study, the contribution of non-topsoil erosion to total sediment production on the CLP was investigated. We estimated non-topsoil erosion rates (ENT) by making the difference between measured total sediment yield and the estimated topsoil erosion in 46 gauged catchments on the CLP for the period 1950-1970, when soil conservation measures were mostly absent in the area. We tested an extensive set of environmental variables related to topography, climate and the impact of land use for correlation Our results showed that the average catchment erosion rate (E) and ENT between 1950 and 1970 were 68.29 tha-1yr-1 and 58.02 tha-1yr-1 respectively. The sediment contribution of non-topsoil erosion to total sediment production ranged between 0 and 97% with a mean of 70%. Both E and ENT were significantly related with river slope, land use, NDVI, and gully density. However, gully density was the only variable explaining a major part of the variance in both E (60%) and ENT (57%). Gully density itself was significantly related to topography and vegetation cover but not to precipitation. Importantly, gully density was not only related to overall slope steepness, but also the river gradients and the hypsometric integral, suggesting that not only land cover disturbance but also tectonic uplift may control gully density and erosion rates. The absence of a clear climate signal, both with respect to the variation in gully density and in

  2. Water-use efficiency of dryland wheat in response to mulching and tillage practices on the Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Li-Fang; Shangguan, Zhou-Ping

    2015-07-01

    Mulching and tillage are widely considered to be major practices for improving soil and water conservation where water is scarce. This paper studied the effects of FM (flat mulching), RFM (ridge-furrow mulching), SM (straw mulching), MTMC (mulching with two materials combined), MOM (mulching with other materials), NT (no-tillage) ST (subsoiling tillage) and RT (rotational tillage) on wheat yield based on a synthesis of 85 recent publications (including 2795 observations at 24 sites) in the Loess Plateau, China. This synthesis suggests that wheat yield was in the range of 259-7898 kg ha-1 for FM and RFM. The sequence of water use efficiency (WUE) effect sizes was similar to that of wheat yield for the practices. Wheat yields were more sensitive to soil water at planting covered by plastic film, wheat straw, liquid film, water-permeable plastic film and sand compared to NT, ST and RT. RFM and RT increased the yields of wheat by 18 and 15%, respectively, and corresponding for WUE by 20.11 and 12.50%. This synthesis demonstrates that RFM was better for avoiding the risk of reduced production due to lack of precipitation; however, under conditions of better soil moisture, RT and MTMC were also economic.

  3. A comparative study on three methods of soil quality evaluation of microtopography in the semi-arid Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Bo, Yaojun; Zhu, Qingke; Bao, Yaoxian; Zhao, Weijun; Zhao, Yanming; Zhang, Hongzhi

    2015-01-01

    Three soil property test data of microtopography in the semi-arid Loess Plateau were used to compare the following three soil quality evaluation methods: correlation coefficient method, factor analysis method and Nemoro index method. The results of these methods were analyzed and compared to determine the most suitable method for comprehensive evaluation of soil quality. While correlation coefficient method and factor analysis method produced similar results, Nemoro index method showed several differences from the othertwo methods and exhibited higher sensitivity in its assessment results. The soil quality index (SQI) parameters of three methods showed consistent scales and variation trends among the various microtopographies, and there was a highly significant linear positive correlation between the SQI parameters of any two given methods. This result suggested that the three methods were all reliable and could be employed for comprehensive assessment of soil quality of microtopography in the study region. However, the Nemoro index method involves relatively uncomplicated mathematics and is very easy to absorb, and thus should be preferentially employed when three grading standards can be identified. The factor analysis method is the next most preferable, followed by correlation coefficient method.

  4. Vegetation changes in recent large-scale ecological restoration projects and subsequent impact on water resources in China's Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Li, Shuai; Liang, Wei; Fu, Bojie; Lü, Yihe; Fu, Shuyi; Wang, Shuai; Su, Huimin

    2016-11-01

    Recently, relationship between vegetation activity and temperature variability has received much attention in China. However, vegetation-induced changes in water resources through changing land surface energy balance (e.g. albedo), has not been well documented. This study investigates the underlying causes of vegetation change and subsequent impacts on runoff for the Northern Shaanxi Loess Plateau. Results show that satellite-derived vegetation index has experienced a significantly increasing trend during the past three decades, especially during 2000-2012. Large-scale ecological restorations, i.e., the Natural Forest Conservation project and the Grain for Green project, are found to be the primary driving factors for vegetation increase. The increased vegetation coverage induces decrease in surface albedo and results in an increase in temperature. This positive effect can be counteracted by higher evapotranspiration and the net effect is a decrease in daytime land surface temperature. A higher evapotranspiration rate from restored vegetation is the primary reason for the reduced runoff coefficient. Other factors including less heavy precipitation, increased water consumption from town, industry and agriculture also appear to be the important causes for the reduction of runoff. These two ecological restoration projects produce both positive and negative effects on the overall ecosystem services. Thus, long-term continuous monitoring is needed. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Carbon Storage Patterns of Caragana korshinskii in Areas of Reduced Environmental Moisture on the Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Chunmei; Bai, Juan; Wang, Junhui; Zhou, Yulu; Kang, Tai; Wang, Jiajia; Hu, Congxia; Guo, Hongbo; Chen, Peilei; Xie, Pei; Li, Yuanfeng

    2016-01-01

    Precipitation patterns are influenced by climate change and profoundly alter the carbon sequestration potential of ecosystems. Carbon uptake by shrubbery alone accounts for approximately one-third of the total carbon sink; however, whether such uptake is altered by reduced precipitation is unclear. In this study, five experimental sites characterised by gradual reductions in precipitation from south to north across the Loess Plateau were used to evaluate the Caragana korshinskii’s functional and physiological features, particularly its carbon fixation capacity, as well as the relationships among these features. We found the improved net CO2 assimilation rates and inhibited transpiration at the north leaf were caused by lower canopy stomatal conductance, which enhanced the instantaneous water use efficiency and promoted plant biomass as well as carbon accumulation. Regional-scale precipitation reductions over a certain range triggered a distinct increase in the shrub’s organic carbon storage with an inevitable decrease in the soil’s organic carbon storage. Our results confirm C. korshinskii is the optimal dominant species for the reconstruction of fragile dryland ecosystems. The patterns of organic carbon storage associated with this shrub occurred mostly in the soil at wetter sites, and in the branches and leaves at drier sites across the arid and semi-arid region. PMID:27412432

  6. Long-Term Monitoring of Rainfed Wheat Yield and Soil Water at the Loess Plateau Reveals Low Water Use Efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Wei; Chi, Baoliang; Oenema, Oene

    2013-01-01

    Increasing crop yield and water use efficiency (WUE) in dryland farming requires a quantitative understanding of relationships between crop yield and the water balance over many years. Here, we report on a long-term dryland monitoring site at the Loess Plateau, Shanxi, China, where winter wheat was grown for 30 consecutive years and soil water content (0–200 cm) was measured every 10 days. The monitoring data were used to calibrate the AquaCrop model and then to analyse the components of the water balance. There was a strong positive relationship between total available water and mean cereal yield. However, only one-third of the available water was actually used by the winter wheat for crop transpiration. The remaining two-thirds were lost by soil evaporation, of which 40 and 60% was lost during the growing and fallow seasons, respectively. Wheat yields ranged from 0.6 to 3.9 ton/ha and WUE from 0.3 to 0.9 kg/m3. Results of model experiments suggest that minimizing soil evaporation via straw mulch or plastic film covers could potentially double wheat yields and WUE. We conclude that the relatively low wheat yields and low WUE were mainly related to (i) limited rainfall, (ii) low soil water storage during fallow season due to large soil evaporation, and (iii) poor synchronisation of the wheat growing season to the rain season. The model experiments suggest significant potential for increased yields and WUE. PMID:24302987

  7. Effects of ecological restoration projects on changes in land cover: A case study on the Loess Plateau in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Jun; Yang, Yanzheng; Zhao, Qingxia; Zhao, Zhong

    2017-03-01

    Changes in land cover have become key components of global environmental change and represent the impact of human activity. To better understand the fundamental processes of land transition characteristics before and after the implementation of ecological programmes, we determined the dominant systematic changes in land cover in Yongshou, a hilly-gully region on the Loess Plateau. This was achieved by performing an in-depth analysis of a cross-tabulation matrix and a modified spatial dynamic degree model. Our results indicated that (1) forest land and cultivated land were the most important land cover types in Yongshou and their persistence would greatly affect the landscape pattern of the entire region; (2) the most significant changing signals in the study area during the periods 1992–2000 and 2000–2013 were from immature forest land to forest land, cultivated land to orchards and orchards to construction land; and (3) the region that experienced the most changes during 1992–2000 was the densely populated county seat of Yongshou; however, from 2000–2013, the region of most changes was Changning, a town located in the northcentral region of Yongshou. These findings reveal the main characteristics of the land cover changes in this region and provide insight into the processes underlying these changes.

  8. Quantifying the effect of ecological restoration on soil erosion in China's Loess Plateau region: an application of the MMF approach.

    PubMed

    Li, Changbin; Qi, Jiaguo; Feng, Zhaodong; Yin, Runsheng; Guo, Biyun; Zhang, Feng; Zou, Songbing

    2010-03-01

    Land degradation due to erosion is one of the most serious environmental problems in China. To reduce land degradation, the government has taken a number of conservation and restoration measures, including the Sloping Land Conversion Program (SLCP), which was launched in 1999. A logical question is whether these measures have reduced soil erosion at the regional level. The objective of this article is to answer this question by assessing soil erosion dynamics in the Zuli River basin in the Loess Plateau of China from 1999 to 2006. The MMF (Morgan, Morgan and Finney) model was used to simulate changes in runoff and soil erosion over the period of time during which ecological restoration projects were implemented. Some model variables were derived from remotely sensed images to provide improved land surface representation. With an overall accuracy rate of 0.67, our simulations show that increased ground vegetation cover, especially in forestlands and grasslands, has reduced soil erosion by 38.8% on average from 1999 to 2006. During the same time period, however, the change in rainfall pattern has caused a 13.1% +/- 4.3% increase in soil erosion, resulting in a net 25.7% +/- 8.5% reduction in soil erosion. This suggests that China's various ecological restoration efforts have been effective in reducing soil loss.

  9. [Impact of micro-landform on grassland plant comniunity structure and function in the hilly Loess Plateau region, China].

    PubMed

    Ru, Hai-li; Zhang, Hai-dong; Jiao, Feng; Xue, Chao-yu; Guo, Mei-li

    2016-01-01

    In order to analyze the impact of micro-landform on grassland plant community structure and function, species composition, aboveground and belowground biomass, and annual fine root production at different slope aspects (sunny slope and shady slope) and different slope positions (top, upper, middle and lower) were investigated in the hilly Loess Plateau region. The results showed that grassland communities were mainly composed of plants species belonging to Compositae, Poaceae and Leguminosae. The aboveground and belowground biomass and annual fine root production of community were 164.12 g · m⁻², 1044.87 g · m⁻² and 731.77 g · m⁻² · a⁻¹, respectively. Aboveground biomass, belowground biomass and annual fine root production of community were in the order of shady slope > sunny slope > top slope. In shady slope, the biomass of community under different positions were in the order of lower > middle > upper > top, but it exhibited different orders in the sunny slope compared with shady slope. Fine root mainly concentrated in the 0-20 cm top soil layer and decreased with soil depth. The average turnover time of root was 0.75 a⁻¹ and changed with soil layers and micro-landform.

  10. Soil, Leaf and Root Ecological Stoichiometry of Caragana korshinskii on the Loess Plateau of China in Relation to Plantation Age.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Quanchao; Lal, Rattan; Chen, Yanan; An, Shaoshan

    2017-01-01

    Caragana korshinskii, a leguminous shrub, a common specie, is widely planted to prevent soil erosion on the Loess Plateau. The objective of this study was to determine how the plantation ages affected soil, leaf and root nutrients and ecological stoichiometry. The chronosequence ages of C. korshinskii plantations selected for this study were 10, 20 and 30 years. Soil organic carbon (SOC) and soil total nitrogen (STN) of C. korshinskii plantations significantly increased with increase in the chronosequence age. However, soil total phosphorous (STP) was not affected by the chronosequence age. The soil C: N ratio decreased and the soil C: P and N: P ratios increased with increasing plantation age. The leaf and root concentrations of C, N, and P increased and the ratios C: N, C: P, and N: P decreased with age increase. Leaf N: P ratios were >20, indicating that P was the main factor limiting the growth of C. korshinskii. This study also demonstrated that the regeneration of natural grassland (NG) effectively preserved and enhanced soil nutrient contents. Compared with NG, shrub lands (C. korshinskii) had much lower soil nutrient concentrations, especially for long (>20 years) chronosequence age. Thus, the regeneration of natural grassland is an ecologically beneficial practice for the recovery of degraded soils in this area.

  11. Effects of ecological restoration projects on changes in land cover: A case study on the Loess Plateau in China.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jun; Yang, Yanzheng; Zhao, Qingxia; Zhao, Zhong

    2017-03-21

    Changes in land cover have become key components of global environmental change and represent the impact of human activity. To better understand the fundamental processes of land transition characteristics before and after the implementation of ecological programmes, we determined the dominant systematic changes in land cover in Yongshou, a hilly-gully region on the Loess Plateau. This was achieved by performing an in-depth analysis of a cross-tabulation matrix and a modified spatial dynamic degree model. Our results indicated that (1) forest land and cultivated land were the most important land cover types in Yongshou and their persistence would greatly affect the landscape pattern of the entire region; (2) the most significant changing signals in the study area during the periods 1992-2000 and 2000-2013 were from immature forest land to forest land, cultivated land to orchards and orchards to construction land; and (3) the region that experienced the most changes during 1992-2000 was the densely populated county seat of Yongshou; however, from 2000-2013, the region of most changes was Changning, a town located in the northcentral region of Yongshou. These findings reveal the main characteristics of the land cover changes in this region and provide insight into the processes underlying these changes.

  12. Effects of ecological restoration projects on changes in land cover: A case study on the Loess Plateau in China

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Jun; Yang, Yanzheng; Zhao, Qingxia; Zhao, Zhong

    2017-01-01

    Changes in land cover have become key components of global environmental change and represent the impact of human activity. To better understand the fundamental processes of land transition characteristics before and after the implementation of ecological programmes, we determined the dominant systematic changes in land cover in Yongshou, a hilly-gully region on the Loess Plateau. This was achieved by performing an in-depth analysis of a cross-tabulation matrix and a modified spatial dynamic degree model. Our results indicated that (1) forest land and cultivated land were the most important land cover types in Yongshou and their persistence would greatly affect the landscape pattern of the entire region; (2) the most significant changing signals in the study area during the periods 1992–2000 and 2000–2013 were from immature forest land to forest land, cultivated land to orchards and orchards to construction land; and (3) the region that experienced the most changes during 1992–2000 was the densely populated county seat of Yongshou; however, from 2000–2013, the region of most changes was Changning, a town located in the northcentral region of Yongshou. These findings reveal the main characteristics of the land cover changes in this region and provide insight into the processes underlying these changes. PMID:28322250

  13. Ecosystem Health Assessment at County-Scale Using the Pressure-State-Response Framework on the Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Delin; Hao, Shilong

    2016-01-01

    Assessing ecosystem health is helpful to determine reasonable eco-environmental restoration and resource management strategies. Based on a pressure-state-response (PSR) framework, a set of comprehensive indicators including natural, social and economic aspects was proposed and applied for assessing the ecosystem health of Yuanzhou County, Loess Plateau, Ningxia Province, China. The basic data used to calculate the values of the assessment indicators include Landsat TM image and socio-economic data, and remote sensing (RS) and the geographic information system (GIS) were used to process image data. The results showed that the ecosystem health conditions of most townships in Yuanzhou County were at the moderately healthy level, three townships were at the healthy level, and only two townships were at the unhelathy level; the areas (percentage) at the unhealthy, moderately healthy and healthy levels were 443.91 km2 (12.66%), 2438.75 km2 (69.54%) and 624.50 km2 (17.81%), respectively. The results could provide useful information for local residents and the government to take measures to improve the health conditions of their township ecosystem. PMID:28025518

  14. Changes in Species Diversity Patterns and Spatial Heterogeneity during the Secondary Succession of Grassland Vegetation on the Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Caili; Chai, Zongzheng; Liu, Guobin; Xue, Sha

    2017-01-01

    Analyzing the dynamic patterns of species diversity and spatial heterogeneity of vegetation in grasslands during secondary succession could help with the maintenance and management of these ecosystems. Here, we evaluated the influence of secondary succession on grassland plant diversity and spatial heterogeneity of abandoned croplands on the Loess Plateau (China) during four phases of recovery: 1–5, 5–10, 10–20, and 20–30 years. The species composition and dominance of the grassland vegetation changed markedly during secondary succession and formed a clear successional series, with the species assemblage dominated by Artemisia capillaris→ Heteropappus altaicus→ A. sacrorum. The diversity pattern was one of low–high–low, with diversity peaking in the 10–20 year phase, thus corresponding to a hump-backed model in which maximum diversity occurring at the intermediate stages. A spatially aggregated pattern prevailed throughout the entire period of grassland recovery; this was likely linked to the dispersal properties of herbaceous plants and to high habitat heterogeneity. We conclude that natural succession was conducive to the successful recovery of native vegetation. From a management perspective, native pioneer tree species should be introduced about 20 years after abandoning croplands to accelerate the natural succession of grassland vegetation. PMID:28900433

  15. [Physical and chemical properties of soil bio-crust on rehabilitated grassland in hilly Loess Plateau of China].

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yunge; Xu, Mingxiang; Wang, Quanjiu; Shao, Ming'an

    2006-08-01

    Soil bio-crust (SBC) plays an important role in degraded ecosystem restoration. The field investigation and laboratory analysis of SBC on different year rehabilitated grasslands at the north slope of hilly Loess Plateau showed that after cropland shifted to rehabilitated grassland, rainfall- induced structural crust appeared firstly, and then, with the increasing year of rehabilitation, crust- forming microorganism gradually settled in, and SBC developed. The depth of SBC increased in inverse "S" shape with increasing year of rehabilitation. 10 years after rehabilitation, the increase of SBC depth slowed down, and soil bulk density decreased from 1.4 g x cm(-3) to 1.1 g x cm(-3). SBC formation improved soil cohesion significantly, and the latter was increased in inverse "S" shape with increasing year of rehabilitation. The organic matter and total nitrogen contents in SBC were obviously higher than those in cropland, and increased gradually with increasing year of rehabilitation but tended to be stable after 10 years of rehabilitation. The available N, P and K contents in SBC were also increased, but no significant difference of total phosphorus was found between SBC and cropland soil. The formation of SBC in test region could be classified into 3 stages, i. e., the first stage named the beginning of the formation, which was from 1 to 4 years of grassland rehabilitation, the second stage named the rapid development period, which was from 5 to 10 years of the rehabilitation, and the third stage named stable period after 10 years of rehabilitation.

  16. Soil, Leaf and Root Ecological Stoichiometry of Caragana korshinskii on the Loess Plateau of China in Relation to Plantation Age

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Quanchao; Lal, Rattan; Chen, Yanan; An, Shaoshan

    2017-01-01

    Caragana korshinskii, a leguminous shrub, a common specie, is widely planted to prevent soil erosion on the Loess Plateau. The objective of this study was to determine how the plantation ages affected soil, leaf and root nutrients and ecological stoichiometry. The chronosequence ages of C. korshinskii plantations selected for this study were 10, 20 and 30 years. Soil organic carbon (SOC) and soil total nitrogen (STN) of C. korshinskii plantations significantly increased with increase in the chronosequence age. However, soil total phosphorous (STP) was not affected by the chronosequence age. The soil C: N ratio decreased and the soil C: P and N: P ratios increased with increasing plantation age. The leaf and root concentrations of C, N, and P increased and the ratios C: N, C: P, and N: P decreased with age increase. Leaf N: P ratios were >20, indicating that P was the main factor limiting the growth of C. korshinskii. This study also demonstrated that the regeneration of natural grassland (NG) effectively preserved and enhanced soil nutrient contents. Compared with NG, shrub lands (C. korshinskii) had much lower soil nutrient concentrations, especially for long (>20 years) chronosequence age. Thus, the regeneration of natural grassland is an ecologically beneficial practice for the recovery of degraded soils in this area. PMID:28076357

  17. Changes in Soil Microbial Community and Its Effect on Carbon Sequestration Following Afforestation on the Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Xiang, Yun; Huang, Yimei; An, Shaoshan; Darboux, Frédéric

    2017-01-01

    Afforestation plays an important role in soil protection and ecological restoration. The objective of this study is to understand the effect of afforestation on soil carbon and soil microbial communities in the Loess Plateau of China. We measured two chemically-separated carbon fractions (i.e., humic acid, HA, and fulvic acid, FA) and soil microbial communities within shrublands (18-year-old Caragana korshinskii Kom (shrubland I) and 28-year-old Caragana korshinskii Kom (shrubland II)) and cropland. The size and structure of the soil microbial community was measured by phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis. The analysis of C-fractions indicated that at a depth of 0–20 cm, FA-C concentration in shrubland I and shrubland II were 1.7 times that of cropland, while HA-C had similar values across all three sites. Total PLFAs, G+ (Gram positive) bacterial, G− (Gram negative) bacterial, and actinobacterial PLFAs were highest in shrubland II, followed by shrubland I and finally cropland. Fungal PLFAs were significantly higher in shrubland II compared to the other sites. Additionally, we found a high degree of synergy between main microbial groups (apart from fungi) with FA-C. We concluded that planting C. korshinskii in abandoned cropland could alter the size and structure of soil microbial community, with these changes being closely related to carbon sequestration and humus formation. PMID:28829374

  18. Water–use efficiency of dryland wheat in response to mulching and tillage practices on the Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Li-fang; Shangguan, Zhou-ping

    2015-01-01

    Mulching and tillage are widely considered to be major practices for improving soil and water conservation where water is scarce. This paper studied the effects of FM (flat mulching), RFM (ridge-furrow mulching), SM (straw mulching), MTMC (mulching with two materials combined), MOM (mulching with other materials), NT (no-tillage) ST (subsoiling tillage) and RT (rotational tillage) on wheat yield based on a synthesis of 85 recent publications (including 2795 observations at 24 sites) in the Loess Plateau, China. This synthesis suggests that wheat yield was in the range of 259–7898 kg ha−1 for FM and RFM. The sequence of water use efficiency (WUE) effect sizes was similar to that of wheat yield for the practices. Wheat yields were more sensitive to soil water at planting covered by plastic film, wheat straw, liquid film, water-permeable plastic film and sand compared to NT, ST and RT. RFM and RT increased the yields of wheat by 18 and 15%, respectively, and corresponding for WUE by 20.11 and 12.50%. This synthesis demonstrates that RFM was better for avoiding the risk of reduced production due to lack of precipitation; however, under conditions of better soil moisture, RT and MTMC were also economic. PMID:26192158

  19. Linking the soil moisture distribution pattern to dynamic processes along slope transects in the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shuai; Fu, Bojie; Gao, Guangyao; Zhou, Ji; Jiao, Lei; Liu, Jianbo

    2015-12-01

    Soil moisture pulses are a prerequisite for other land surface pulses at various spatiotemporal scales in arid and semi-arid areas. The temporal dynamics and profile variability of soil moisture in relation to land cover combinations were studied along five slopes transect on the Loess Plateau during the rainy season of 2011. Within the 3 months of the growing season coupled with the rainy season, all of the soil moisture was replenished in the area, proving that a type stability exists between different land cover soil moisture levels. Land cover combinations disturbed the trend determined by topography and increased soil moisture variability in space and time. The stability of soil moisture resulting from the dynamic processes could produce stable patterns on the slopes. The relationships between the mean soil moisture and vertical standard deviation (SD) and coefficient of variation (CV) were more complex, largely due to the fact that different land cover types had distinctive vertical patterns of soil moisture. The spatial SD of each layer had a positive correlation and the spatial CV exhibited a negative correlation with the increase in mean soil moisture. The soil moisture stability implies that sampling comparisons in this area can be conducted at different times to accurately compare different land use types.

  20. Evaluating sustainability of cropland use in Yuanzhou county of the Loess plateau, China using an emergy-based ecological footprint.

    PubMed

    Bai, Xiaomei; Wen, Zhongming; An, Shaoshan; Li, Bicheng

    2015-01-01

    Evaluating the sustainability of cropland use is essential for guaranteeing a secure food supply and accomplishing agriculture sustainable development. This study was conducted in the ecologically vulnerable Loess Plateau region of China to evaluate the sustainability of cropland use based on an ecological footprint model that integrates emergy analysis. One modified method proposed in 2005 is known as the emergetic ecological footprint (EEF). We enhanced the method by accounting for both the surface soil energy in the carrying capacity calculation and the net topsoil loss for human consumption in the EF calculation. This paper evaluates whether the cropland of the study area was overloaded or sustainably managed during the period from 1981 to 2009. Toward this end, the final results obtained from EEF were compared to conventional EF and previous methods. The results showed that the cropland of Yuanzhou County has not been used sustainably since 1983, and the conventional EF analysis provided similar results. In contrast, a deficit did not appear during this time period when previous calculation methods of others were used. Additionally, the ecological sustainable index (ESI) from three models indicated that the recently used cropland system is unlikely to be unsustainable.

  1. Evaluating Sustainability of Cropland Use in Yuanzhou County of the Loess Plateau, China Using an Emergy-Based Ecological Footprint

    PubMed Central

    Bai, Xiaomei; Wen, Zhongming; An, Shaoshan; Li, Bicheng

    2015-01-01

    Evaluating the sustainability of cropland use is essential for guaranteeing a secure food supply and accomplishing agriculture sustainable development. This study was conducted in the ecologically vulnerable Loess Plateau region of China to evaluate the sustainability of cropland use based on an ecological footprint model that integrates emergy analysis. One modified method proposed in 2005 is known as the emergetic ecological footprint (EEF). We enhanced the method by accounting for both the surface soil energy in the carrying capacity calculation and the net topsoil loss for human consumption in the EF calculation. This paper evaluates whether the cropland of the study area was overloaded or sustainably managed during the period from 1981 to 2009. Toward this end, the final results obtained from EEF were compared to conventional EF and previous methods. The results showed that the cropland of Yuanzhou County has not been used sustainably since 1983, and the conventional EF analysis provided similar results. In contrast, a deficit did not appear during this time period when previous calculation methods of others were used. Additionally, the ecological sustainable index (ESI) from three models indicated that the recently used cropland system is unlikely to be unsustainable. PMID:25738289

  2. Effect of land use and check dams on sediment yield and transport in Shejiagou Catchment (Loess Plateau, China)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pal, Debasish; Tang, Honglei; Galelli, Stefano; Ran, Qihua

    2017-04-01

    The understanding of soil erosion and sediment transport processes is a key step towards the sustainable management of erosion-prone areas. This requires uncovering the interaction between natural and anthropogenic processes—e.g., how land cover, sediment sources, delivery routes and check dams affect the transport of sediments. In this work, we use a spatially distributed model (WaTEM/SEDEM) to study the effect of land use and check dams on soil erosion and sediment yield in Shejiagou Catchment, a 4.72 km2 area located in the Loess Plateau (China). The model is calibrated and validated using available data on suspended sediments at the catchment outlet, check dam locations, and 1975, 1986 and 2006 land use scenarios. Furthermore, we carry out a sensitivity analysis to study the effect of different parameterizations on WaTEM/SEDEM accuracy. We use the model to identify the critical sources of sediments and to assess the role of check dams in retaining sediments within the catchment. Preliminary results indicate that check dams can control sediment transport significantly. Further investigation is required to study the accumulation of sediments in check dams—a primary cause of dam maintenance costs and failures.

  3. Changes in Soil Microbial Community and Its Effect on Carbon Sequestration Following Afforestation on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Xiang, Yun; Cheng, Man; Huang, Yimei; An, Shaoshan; Darboux, Frédéric

    2017-08-22

    Afforestation plays an important role in soil protection and ecological restoration. The objective of this study is to understand the effect of afforestation on soil carbon and soil microbial communities in the Loess Plateau of China. We measured two chemically-separated carbon fractions (i.e., humic acid, HA, and fulvic acid, FA) and soil microbial communities within shrublands (18-year-old Caragana korshinskii Kom (shrubland I) and 28-year-old Caragana korshinskii Kom (shrubland II)) and cropland. The size and structure of the soil microbial community was measured by phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis. The analysis of C-fractions indicated that at a depth of 0-20 cm, FA-C concentration in shrubland I and shrubland II were 1.7 times that of cropland, while HA-C had similar values across all three sites. Total PLFAs, G⁺ (Gram positive) bacterial, G(-) (Gram negative) bacterial, and actinobacterial PLFAs were highest in shrubland II, followed by shrubland I and finally cropland. Fungal PLFAs were significantly higher in shrubland II compared to the other sites. Additionally, we found a high degree of synergy between main microbial groups (apart from fungi) with FA-C. We concluded that planting C. korshinskii in abandoned cropland could alter the size and structure of soil microbial community, with these changes being closely related to carbon sequestration and humus formation.

  4. A policy-driven large scale ecological restoration: quantifying ecosystem services changes in the Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Lü, Yihe; Fu, Bojie; Feng, Xiaoming; Zeng, Yuan; Liu, Yu; Chang, Ruiying; Sun, Ge; Wu, Bingfang

    2012-01-01

    As one of the key tools for regulating human-ecosystem relations, environmental conservation policies can promote ecological rehabilitation across a variety of spatiotemporal scales. However, quantifying the ecological effects of such policies at the regional level is difficult. A case study was conducted at the regional level in the ecologically vulnerable region of the Loess Plateau, China, through the use of several methods including the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE), hydrological modeling and multivariate analysis. An assessment of the changes over the period of 2000-2008 in four key ecosystem services was undertaken to determine the effects of the Chinese government's ecological rehabilitation initiatives implemented in 1999. These ecosystem services included water regulation, soil conservation, carbon sequestration and grain production. Significant conversions of farmland to woodland and grassland were found to have resulted in enhanced soil conservation and carbon sequestration, but decreased regional water yield under a warming and drying climate trend. The total grain production increased in spite of a significant decline in farmland acreage. These trends have been attributed to the strong socioeconomic incentives embedded in the ecological rehabilitation policy. Although some positive policy results have been achieved over the last decade, large uncertainty remains regarding long-term policy effects on the sustainability of ecological rehabilitation performance and ecosystem service enhancement. To reduce such uncertainty, this study calls for an adaptive management approach to regional ecological rehabilitation policy to be adopted, with a focus on the dynamic interactions between people and their environments in a changing world.

  5. Vegetation dynamics and climate seasonality jointly control the interannual catchment water balance in the Loess Plateau under the Budyko framework

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ning, Tingting; Li, Zhi; Liu, Wenzhao

    2017-03-01

    Within the Budyko framework, the controlling parameter (ω in the Fu equation) is widely considered to represent landscape conditions in terms of vegetation coverage (M); however, some qualitative studies have concluded that climate seasonality (S) should be incorporated in ω. Here, we discuss the relationship between ω, M, and S, and further develop an empirical equation so that the contributions from M to actual annual evapotranspiration (ET) can be determined more accurately. Taking 13 catchments in the Loess Plateau as examples, ω was found to be well correlated with M and S. The developed empirical formula for ω calculations at the annual scale performed well for estimating ET by the cross-validation approach. By combining the Budyko framework with the semi-empirical formula, the contributions of changes in ω to ET variations were further decomposed as those of M and S. Results showed that the contributions of S to ET changes ranged from 0.1 to 74.8 % (absolute values). Therefore, the impacts of climate seasonality on ET cannot be ignored, otherwise the contribution of M to ET changes will be estimated with a large error. The developed empirical formula between ω, M, and S provides an effective method to separate the contributions of M and S to ET changes.

  6. Carbon Storage Patterns of Caragana korshinskii in Areas of Reduced Environmental Moisture on the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gong, Chunmei; Bai, Juan; Wang, Junhui; Zhou, Yulu; Kang, Tai; Wang, Jiajia; Hu, Congxia; Guo, Hongbo; Chen, Peilei; Xie, Pei; Li, Yuanfeng

    2016-07-01

    Precipitation patterns are influenced by climate change and profoundly alter the carbon sequestration potential of ecosystems. Carbon uptake by shrubbery alone accounts for approximately one-third of the total carbon sink; however, whether such uptake is altered by reduced precipitation is unclear. In this study, five experimental sites characterised by gradual reductions in precipitation from south to north across the Loess Plateau were used to evaluate the Caragana korshinskii’s functional and physiological features, particularly its carbon fixation capacity, as well as the relationships among these features. We found the improved net CO2 assimilation rates and inhibited transpiration at the north leaf were caused by lower canopy stomatal conductance, which enhanced the instantaneous water use efficiency and promoted plant biomass as well as carbon accumulation. Regional-scale precipitation reductions over a certain range triggered a distinct increase in the shrub’s organic carbon storage with an inevitable decrease in the soil’s organic carbon storage. Our results confirm C. korshinskii is the optimal dominant species for the reconstruction of fragile dryland ecosystems. The patterns of organic carbon storage associated with this shrub occurred mostly in the soil at wetter sites, and in the branches and leaves at drier sites across the arid and semi-arid region.

  7. [Effects of limited supplemental irrigation with catchment rainfall on potato growth in rainfed areas of western Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Qin, Shu-Hao; Zhang, Jun-Lian; Wang, Di; Pu, Yu-Lin

    2009-11-01

    Field experiments were conducted to study the effects of limited supplemental irrigation with catchment rainfall on the growth of potato cultivars Daxiyang and Tongshu 23 in rainfed areas of western Loess Plateau. Supplemental irrigation with catchment rainfall at seedling stage increased the potato yield significantly, and the increment was higher for Daxiyang than for Tongshu No. 23. Supplemental irrigation at tuber expanding stage increased the yield of Tongshu 23, but decreased the yield of Daxiyang. Low amount of supplemental irrigation (45 mm) increased the water use efficiency (WUE) and irrigation water use efficiency (IWUE) of Tongshu 23. For Daxiyang, its WUE and IWUE were higher when the supplemental irrigation was made at seedling stage than at tuber expanding stage. Supplemental irrigation increased the tuber yield and the percentages of bigger and medium tubers of Tongshu 23, but the percentages of green and blet tubers were also increased. As for Daxiyang, supplemental irrigation increased the percentages of bigger and smaller tubers, as well as the percentage of blet tuber.

  8. A Policy-Driven Large Scale Ecological Restoration: Quantifying Ecosystem Services Changes in the Loess Plateau of China

    PubMed Central

    Lü, Yihe; Fu, Bojie; Feng, Xiaoming; Zeng, Yuan; Liu, Yu; Chang, Ruiying; Sun, Ge; Wu, Bingfang

    2012-01-01

    As one of the key tools for regulating human-ecosystem relations, environmental conservation policies can promote ecological rehabilitation across a variety of spatiotemporal scales. However, quantifying the ecological effects of such policies at the regional level is difficult. A case study was conducted at the regional level in the ecologically vulnerable region of the Loess Plateau, China, through the use of several methods including the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE), hydrological modeling and multivariate analysis. An assessment of the changes over the period of 2000–2008 in four key ecosystem services was undertaken to determine the effects of the Chinese government's ecological rehabilitation initiatives implemented in 1999. These ecosystem services included water regulation, soil conservation, carbon sequestration and grain production. Significant conversions of farmland to woodland and grassland were found to have resulted in enhanced soil conservation and carbon sequestration, but decreased regional water yield under a warming and drying climate trend. The total grain production increased in spite of a significant decline in farmland acreage. These trends have been attributed to the strong socioeconomic incentives embedded in the ecological rehabilitation policy. Although some positive policy results have been achieved over the last decade, large uncertainty remains regarding long-term policy effects on the sustainability of ecological rehabilitation performance and ecosystem service enhancement. To reduce such uncertainty, this study calls for an adaptive management approach to regional ecological rehabilitation policy to be adopted, with a focus on the dynamic interactions between people and their environments in a changing world. PMID:22359628

  9. Water-use efficiency of dryland wheat in response to mulching and tillage practices on the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Wang, Li-fang; Shangguan, Zhou-ping

    2015-07-20

    Mulching and tillage are widely considered to be major practices for improving soil and water conservation where water is scarce. This paper studied the effects of FM (flat mulching), RFM (ridge-furrow mulching), SM (straw mulching), MTMC (mulching with two materials combined), MOM (mulching with other materials), NT (no-tillage) ST (subsoiling tillage) and RT (rotational tillage) on wheat yield based on a synthesis of 85 recent publications (including 2795 observations at 24 sites) in the Loess Plateau, China. This synthesis suggests that wheat yield was in the range of 259-7898 kg ha(-1) for FM and RFM. The sequence of water use efficiency (WUE) effect sizes was similar to that of wheat yield for the practices. Wheat yields were more sensitive to soil water at planting covered by plastic film, wheat straw, liquid film, water-permeable plastic film and sand compared to NT, ST and RT. RFM and RT increased the yields of wheat by 18 and 15%, respectively, and corresponding for WUE by 20.11 and 12.50%. This synthesis demonstrates that RFM was better for avoiding the risk of reduced production due to lack of precipitation; however, under conditions of better soil moisture, RT and MTMC were also economic.

  10. Potential nitrogen fixation activity of different aged biological soil crusts from rehabilitated grasslands of the hilly Loess Plateau, China

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zhao, Y.; Xu, M.; Belnap, J.

    2010-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) cover up to 60–70% of the soil surface in grasslands rehabilitated during the "Grain for Green" project implemented in the hilly Loess Plateau region in 1999. As biocrusts fix nitrogen (N), they are an important part of restoring soil fertility. We measured nitrogenase activity (NA) in biocrusts from sites rehabilitated at six different time periods to estimate 1) the effects of moisture content and temperature on NA in biocrusts of different ages and 2) the potential N contribution from biocrusts to soils and plants in this region. Results show that NA in the biocrusts was mostly controlled by the species composition, as the activity of biocrusts dominated by free-living soil cyanobacteria was significantly higher than that of moss-dominated biocrusts. Nitrogenase activity was also influenced by soil moisture content and ambient temperature, with a significant decline in activity when moisture levels were decreased to 20% field water-holding capacity. The optimal temperature for NA was 35–40 °C and 30–40 °C for cyanobacteria- and moss-dominated biocrusts, respectively. Biocrust fixed N is likely an important source of N in this ecosystem, as we estimated annual potential N inputs per hectare in these grasslands to be up to 13 kg N ha-1 and 4 kg N ha-1 for cyanobacteria- and moss-dominated biocrusts, respectively.

  11. Drought variation of western Chinese Loess Plateau since 1568 and its linkages with droughts in western North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, Keyan; Guo, Zhengtang; Chen, Deliang; Linderholm, Hans W.; Li, Jinbao; Zhou, Feifei; Guo, Guoyang; Dong, Zhipeng; Li, Yingjun

    2017-03-01

    Understanding long-term drought variations in the past can help to evaluate ongoing and future hydroclimate change in the arid western Chinese Loess Plateau (WCLP), a region with increasing demand for water resources due to the increasing population and socioeconomic activities. Here we present a new tree-ring chronology inform the WCLP, which shows coherent interannual variations with tree-ring chronologies from 7 neighboring areas across the WCLP, suggesting a common regional climate control over tree growth. However, considerable differences are observed among their interdecadal variations, which are likely due to growth disturbances at interdecadal timescales. To deal with this issue, we use a frequency based method to develop a composite tree-ring chronology from 401 tree-ring series from these 8 sites, which shows more pronounced interdecadal variability than a chronology developed using traditional methods. The composite tree-ring chronology is used to reconstruct the annual precipitation from previous August to current July from 1568 to 2012, extending about 50 years longer than the previous longest tree-ring reconstruction from the region. The driest epoch of our reconstruction is found in the 1920s-1930s, which matches well with droughts recorded in historical documents. Over the past four centuries, a strong resemblance between drought variability in the WCLP and western North America (WNA) is evident on multidecadal timescales, but this relationship breaks down on timescales shorter than about 50 years.

  12. Ecosystem Health Assessment at County-Scale Using the Pressure-State-Response Framework on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Delin; Hao, Shilong

    2016-12-22

    Assessing ecosystem health is helpful to determine reasonable eco-environmental restoration and resource management strategies. Based on a pressure-state-response (PSR) framework, a set of comprehensive indicators including natural, social and economic aspects was proposed and applied for assessing the ecosystem health of Yuanzhou County, Loess Plateau, Ningxia Province, China. The basic data used to calculate the values of the assessment indicators include Landsat TM image and socio-economic data, and remote sensing (RS) and the geographic information system (GIS) were used to process image data. The results showed that the ecosystem health conditions of most townships in Yuanzhou County were at the moderately healthy level, three townships were at the healthy level, and only two townships were at the unhelathy level; the areas (percentage) at the unhealthy, moderately healthy and healthy levels were 443.91 km² (12.66%), 2438.75 km² (69.54%) and 624.50 km² (17.81%), respectively. The results could provide useful information for local residents and the government to take measures to improve the health conditions of their township ecosystem.

  13. Eocene stabilization and Miocene incision of Tibetan Plateau Remnants in the Northwest Himalaya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Beek, P.; van Melle, J.; Guillot, S.; Pêcher, A.; Reiners, P. W.; Valla, P. G.; Latif, M.

    2009-12-01

    We have recently described Eocene Tibetan Plateau remnants that are preserved as relict high-elevation, low-relief landscapes within the north-west Himalayan syntaxis (van der Beek et al., Nature Geosci., 2, 364-368, 2009). The recognition of these remnants is based on common morphologic characteristics and similar histories of long-term slow exhumation since at least 35 Myr ago. Here we extend our morphologic analysis to show that the Babusar area (Gamugah surface) and parts of the Northern Karakorum could constitute similar remnant Tibetan landscape elements. We also report additional thermochronology data from the Indus and Astor valleys that record the more recent incision history of the Deosai plateau borders (Northern Pakistan). Apatite fission-track and (U-Th)/He ages from the valleys are significantly younger (<10 Ma) than those from the plateau surface. Thermochronological age-elevation profiles sampled up the Indus valley escarpment of the plateau cannot be interpreted in a straightforward manner because they cover a region with strong lateral contrasts in topography and denudation rate. We use an inverse modeling approach with the thermo-kinematic model Pecube in order to constrain the incision history of the plateau and find that incision of the Indus Valley most probably started around 26 Ma in this region, consistent with independent sedimentological evidence for drainage reorientation in the Northwest Himalaya (Sinclair and Jaffey, J. Geol. Soc. London, 158, 151-162, 2001). In order to fit the age difference between the Indus Valley and the Deosai Plateau samples, relative rock uplift of the valley with respect to the plateau is required, implying either tilting of the plateau or, more probably, significant isostatic rebound in response to valley incision. The inferred histories of constant slow denudation on the Deosai Plateau and other plateau surfaces contradict the hypothesis that widespread low-relief surfaces in the northwest Himalaya result

  14. Impact of the Loess Plateau on the atmospheric boundary layer structure and air quality in the North China Plain: a case study.

    PubMed

    Hu, Xiao-Ming; Ma, ZhiQiang; Lin, Weili; Zhang, Hongliang; Hu, Jianlin; Wang, Ying; Xu, Xiaobin; Fuentes, Jose D; Xue, Ming

    2014-11-15

    The North China Plain (NCP), to the east of the Loess Plateau, experiences severe regional air pollution. During the daytime in the summer, the Loess Plateau acts as an elevated heat source. The impacts of such a thermal effect on meteorological phenomena (e.g., waves, precipitation) in this region have been discussed. However, its impacts on the atmospheric boundary layer structure and air quality have not been reported. It is hypothesized that the thermal effect of the Plateau likely modulates the boundary layer structure and ambient concentrations of pollutants over the NCP under certain meteorological conditions. Thus, this study investigates such effect and its impacts using measurements and three-dimensional model simulations. It is found that in the presence of daytime westerly wind in the lower troposphere (~1 km above the NCP), warmer air above the Loess Plateau was transported over the NCP and imposed a thermal inversion above the mixed boundary layer, which acted as a lid and suppressed the mixed layer growth. As a result, pollutants accumulated in the shallow mixed layer and ozone was efficiently produced. The downward branch of the thermally-induced Mountain-Plains Solenoid circulation over the NCP contributed to enhancing the capping inversion and exacerbating air pollution. Previous studies have reported that low mixed layer, a factor for elevated pollution in the NCP, may be caused by aerosol scattering and absorption of solar radiation, frontal inversion, and large scale subsidence. The present study revealed a different mechanism (i.e., westerly warm advection) for the suppression of the mixed layer in summer NCP, which caused severe O3 pollution. This study has important implications for understanding the essential meteorological factors for pollution episodes in this region and forecasting these severe events. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. The seismic Moho structure of Shatsky Rise oceanic plateau, northwest Pacific Ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jinchang; Sager, William W.; Korenaga, Jun

    2016-05-01

    Oceanic plateaus are large igneous provinces formed by extraordinary eruptions that create thick oceanic crust, whose structure is poorly known owing to the lack of deep-penetration seismic data. Multichannel seismic (MCS) reflection and wide-angle refraction data allow us to show Moho structure beneath a large part of the Shatsky Rise oceanic plateau in the northwest Pacific Ocean. Moho reflectors in the two data sets can be connected to trace the interface from the adjacent abyssal plain across much of the interior. The reflectors display varied character in continuity, shape, and amplitude, similar to characteristics reported in other locations. Beneath normal crust, the Moho is observed at ∼13 km depth (∼7 km below the seafloor) in MCS data and disappears at ∼20 km depth (∼17 km below the seafloor) beneath the high plateau. Moho at the distal flanks dips downward towards the center with slopes of ∼0.5°-1°, increasing to 3°-5° at the middle flanks. Seismic Moho topography is consistent with Airy isostasy, confirming this widely-applied assumption. Data from this study show that crustal thickness between the massifs in the interior of the plateau is nearly twice normal crustal thickness, despite the fact that this crust records apparently normal seafloor spreading magnetic lineations. The Moho model allows improved estimates of plateau area (5.33 ×105 km2) and volume (6.90 ×106 km3), the latter assuming that the entire crust was formed by Shatsky Rise volcanism because the massifs formed at spreading ridges. This study is unique in showing Moho depth and structure over an extraordinarily large area beneath an oceanic plateau, giving insight to plateau structure and formation.

  16. New insights into the palaeoclimatic interpretation of the temperature dependence of the magnetic susceptibility and magnetization of Mid-Late Pleistocene loess/palaeosols in Central Asia and the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zan, Jinbo; Fang, Xiaomin; Yan, Maodu; Li, Bingshuai

    2017-02-01

    The temperature dependence of magnetic susceptibility (χ-T curves) and magnetization (M-T curves) has been used as a routine rock magnetic tool to characterize the magnetic mineralogy and magnetic granulometry of Chinese loess/palaeosols. However, palaeoclimatic interpretation of these thermomagnetic analyses remains controversial. In the present study, total organic carbon (TOC), thermomagnetic and low-temperature magnetic experiments on Mid-Late Pleistocene loess/palaeosols in Central Asia and the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) have been conducted. We found that the M (T) cooling curves at room temperature were mostly lower than the corresponding heating curves, whereas for the χ (T) analyses the cooling curves at room temperature were always much higher than the heating curves. Low-temperature magnetic measurements demonstrated that a large amount of superparamagnetic ferrimagnetic particles were produced during the thermal treatment and resulted in the aforementioned differences. This finding further indicated that the use of the M-T curves to estimate the relative content of maghemite in the loess/palaeosols from the CLP was problematic. In addition, a positive correlation exists between the TOC and the frequency-dependent susceptibility (χFD) in the CLP, suggesting that stronger pedogenesis would result in the simultaneous increase in the content of both maghemite and organic matter. Consequently, the parameters ▵χ1 (representing the relative content of pedogenic maghemite), ▵χ2 ([χph - χ] +▵χ1) and χph (related to the organic matter concentration), which can be calculated from the χ-T analyses, can potentially be used as new indicators of pedogenesis and palaeoclimate in Central Asia and the CLP.

  17. New insights into the paleoclimatic interpretation of the temperature dependence of the magnetic susceptibility and magnetization of Mid-Late Pleistocene loess/palaeosols in Central Asia and the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zan, Jinbo; Fang, Xiaomin; Yan, Maodu; Li, Bingshuai

    2016-11-01

    The temperature dependence of magnetic susceptibility (χ-T curves) and magnetization (M-T curves) has been used as a routine rock magnetic tool to characterize the magnetic mineralogy and magnetic granulometry of Chinese loess/palaeosols. However, paleoclimatic interpretation of these thermomagnetic analyses remains controversial. In the present study, total organic carbon (TOC), thermomagnetic and low-temperature magnetic experiments on Mid-Late Pleistocene loess/palaeosols in Central Asia and the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) have been conducted. We found that the M (T) cooling curves at room temperature were mostly lower than the corresponding heating curves, whereas for the χ (T) analyses the cooling curves at room temperature were always much higher than the heating curves. Low-temperature magnetic measurements demonstrated that a large amount of superparamagnetic ferrimagnetic particles were produced during the thermal treatment and resulted in the aforementioned differences. This finding further indicated that the use of the M - T curves to estimate the relative content of maghemite in the loess/paleosols from the CLP was problematic. In addition, a positive correlation exists between the TOC and the frequency-dependent susceptibility (χFD) in the CLP, suggesting that stronger pedogenesis would result in the simultaneous increase in the content of both maghemite and organic matter. Consequently, the parameters △χ1 (representing the relative content of pedogenic maghemite), △χ2 ([χph-χ] +△χ1) and χph (related to the organic matter concentration), which can be calculated from the χ - T analyses, can potentially be used as new indicators of pedogenesis and paleoclimate in Central Asia and the CLP.

  18. Hydrological Responses to Vegetation Restoration in Fine Temporal Scale in a Catchment on the Loess Plateau, China.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xiaoping; Liu, Er-jia; Lin, Pengfei; Xie, MingLi; Zhang, Tingting; Zhang, Jianjun

    2014-05-01

    The implementation of "Grain for Green" program since 1999 in China resulted in a great land use/cover change on the Loess Plateau, China, which fundamentally influenced hydrological cycle and then streamflow-sediment transportation behavior. It is important to fully evaluate the characteristics of the trends of streamflow, sediment discharge and their behavior in the fine temporal scale in the seriously eroded area in the world. A typical hilly-gully catchment, the upper reaches of Beiluohe river, was selected to investigate the hydrological responses to LUCC and their driving forces. The daily and events data of streamflow and sediment load were used from 1963 to 2009. The nonparametric Mann-Kendall test and Pettitt test were employed to identify trend and change point in the streamflow and sediment load records. Both the streamflow and sediment load had a significant negative trend (P<0.01) with the annual rate of -0.31 mm.a-1 and -0.24 x 103 t.km-2.a-1. And the change points of 1980 and 2002 were detected for both steamflow and sediment load (P < 0.05). Compared to the period 1 (1963 to 1979), the high (5%) and median (50%) percentile flow decreased with -17.0%, -5.2% in the period 2 (1980 to 2002) and -40.2%, -26.8% in the period 3 (2003-2009). While the low (95%) flow dramatically increased with 94.2%, 128.1%, respectively, in the latter two periods. The sediment load in high and median percentiles reduced with -34.6% and -40.1% in period 2 and further to -95.7% and -96.8% in period 3. The number of zero-sediment load days increased period by period. The streamflow-sediment behavior in the basis of monthly data in the rainy season showed a "clockwise loop" and the magnitude and width of the loop decreased period by period especially in period 3 which was characterized with a 10 years' vegetation restoration. A power function could be fitted well to the relationship of daily flow and sediment load. And the constant in the equation during the three periods

  19. Fractal features of soil particle size distribution in layered sediments behind two check dams: Implications for the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Xia; Li, Xungui; Wei, Ning

    2016-08-01

    The layered sediment deposited behind a check dam can provide useful information about soil erosion processes in the dam-controlled area. This study aims to evaluate the possible fractal nature of layered sediments behind check dams, assessing whether fractal dimension can serve as a feasible index for evaluating the impact of land use types on the area controlled by the check dam. Fractal dimension measurement was employed to analyze the features of soil particle size distribution (PSD) for different layered sediments of the Shipanmao and Zhangshan check dams in the Dalihe River Basin of the Loess Plateau, China. Results show that the predominant soil particle sizes of the sediment layers behind the Shipanmao and Zhangshan dams are silt-clay (< 0.05 mm) and fine sand (0.25-0.05 mm). The overall gradients of the trends for silt-clay and fine sand are 0.0622 (slight increase) and - 0.0618 (slight decrease), respectively, for Shipanmao, and - 0.8415 (decrease) and 0.8448 (increase), respectively, for Zhangshan. There are considerable differences in the PSDs among different layers, especially in the coarse and fine sand fractions. The coefficient of variation (CV) for the coarse sand fraction is highest, followed by the fine sand and the silt-clay size fractions. Larger soil particle sizes coincide with larger CV values. The fractal dimension (Dm) of the PSD ranges from 2.111 to 2.219, and 2.144 to 2.447 for Shipanmao and Zhangshan, respectively. The Dm values tend to increase and decrease for the layered sediments from top to bottom with some turning points. The turning points of Dm are related to the trends of the soil PSDs in the adjacent sediment layers. Although Dm has significant positive and negative correlations with the silt-clay and the fine sand size fractions, respectively, no correlation with the coarse sand fraction was observed. Soil PSD is a more dominant factor affecting Dm than the time lag between soil erosion and sediment deposition. Overall, Dm

  20. Timing and Spatial Distribution of Loess in Xinjiang, NW China.

    PubMed

    Li, Yun; Song, Yougui; Yan, Libin; Chen, Tao; An, Zhisheng

    2015-01-01

    Central Asia is one of the most significant loess regions on Earth, with an important role in understanding Quaternary climate and environmental change. However, in contrast to the widely investigated loess deposits in the Chinese Loess Plateau, the Central Asian loess-paleosol sequences are still insufficiently known and poorly understood. Through field investigation and review of the previous literature, the authors have investigated the distribution, thickness and age of the Xinjiang loess, and analyzed factors that control these parameters in the Xinjiang in northwest China, Central Asia. The loess sediments cover river terraces, low uplands, the margins of deserts and the slopes of the Tianshan Mountains and Kunlun Mountains and are also present in the Ili Basin. The thickness of the Xinjiang loess deposits varies from several meters to 670 m. The variation trend of the sand fraction (>63 μm) grain-size contour can indicate the local major wind directions, so we conclude that the NW and NE winds are the main wind directions in the North and South Xinjiang, and the westerly wind mainly transport dust into the Ili basin. We consider persistent drying, adequate regional wind energy and well-developed river terraces to be the main factors controlling the distribution, thickness and formation age of the Xinjiang loess. The well-outcropped loess sections have mainly developed since the middle Pleistocene in Xinjiang, reflecting the appearance of the persistent drying and the present air circulation system. However, the oldest loess deposits are as old as the beginning of the Pliocene in the Tarim Basin, which suggests that earlier aridification occurred in the Tarim Basin rather than in the Ili Basin and the Junggar Basin.

  1. Spatiotemporal changes of normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and response to climate extremes and ecological restoration in the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Anzhou; Zhang, Anbing; Liu, Xianfeng; Cao, Sen

    2017-03-01

    Extreme drought, precipitation, and other extreme climatic events often have impacts on vegetation. Based on meteorological data from 52 stations in the Loess Plateau (LP) and a satellite-derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) from the third-generation Global Inventory Modeling and Mapping Studies (GIMMS3g) dataset, this study investigated the relationship between vegetation change and climatic extremes from 1982 to 2013. Our results showed that the vegetation coverage increased significantly, with a linear rate of 0.025/10a (P < 0.001) from 1982 to 2013. As for the spatial distribution, NDVI revealed an increasing trend from the northwest to the southeast, with about 61.79% of the LP exhibiting a significant increasing trend (P < 0.05). Some temperature extreme indices, including TMAXmean, TMINmean, TN90p, TNx, TX90p, and TXx, increased significantly at rates of 0.77 mm/10a, 0.52 °C/10a, 0.62 °C/10a, 0.80 °C/10a, 5.16 days/10a, and 0.65 °C/10a, respectively. On the other hand, other extreme temperature indices including TX10p and TN10p decreased significantly at rates of -2.77 days/10a and 4.57 days/10a (P < 0.01), respectively. Correlation analysis showed that only TMINmean had a significant relationship with NDVI at the yearly time scale (P < 0.05). At the monthly time scale, vegetation coverage and different vegetation types responded significantly positively to precipitation and temperature extremes (TMAXmean, TMINmean, TNx, TNn, TXn, and TXx) (P < 0.01). All of the precipitation extremes and temperature extremes exhibited significant positive relationships with NDVI during the spring and autumn (P < 0.01). However, the relationship between NDVI and RX1day, TMAXmean, TXn, and TXx was insignificant in summer. Vegetation exhibited a significant negative relationship with precipitation extremes in winter (P < 0.05). In terms of human activity, our results indicate a strong correlation between the cumulative afforestation area and NDVI in Yan

  2. [Vegetation above-ground biomass and its affecting factors in water/wind erosion crisscross region on Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Wang, Jian-guo; Fan, Jun; Wang, Quan-jiu; Wang, Li

    2011-03-01

    Field investigations were conducted in Liudaogou small watershed in late September 2009 to study the differences of vegetation above-ground biomass, soil moisture content, and soil nutrient contents under different land use patterns, aimed to approach the vegetation above-ground biomass level and related affecting factors in typical small watershed in water/wind erosion crisscross region on Loess Plateau. The above-ground dry biomass of the main vegetations in Liudaogou was 177-2207 g x m(-2), and that in corn field, millet field, abandoned farmland, artificial grassland, natural grassland, and shrub land was 2097-2207, 518-775, 248-578, 280-545, 177-396, and 372-680 g x m(-2), respectively. The mean soil moisture content in 0-100 layer was the highest (14.2%) in farmlands and the lowest (10.9%) in shrub land. The coefficient of variation of soil moisture content was the greatest (26. 7% ) in abandoned farmland, indicating the strong spatial heterogeneity of soil moisture in this kind of farmland. The mean soil water storage was in the order of farmland > artificial grassland > natural grassland > shrub land. Soil dry layer was observed in alfalfa and caragana lands. There was a significant positive correlation (r = 0.639, P < 0.05) between above-ground dry biomass and 0-100 cm soil water storage, and also, a very significant positive correlation between above-ground fresh biomass and vegetation height. The above-ground biomass of the higher vegetations could potentially better control the wind and water erosion in the water/wind erosion crisscross region. Vegetation above-ground biomass was highly correlated with soil moisture and nutrient contents, but had no significant correlations with elevation, slope gradient, slope aspect, and soil bulk density.

  3. Land-Use Conversion Changes the Multifractal Features of Particle-Size Distribution on the Loess Plateau of China

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Caili; Liu, Guobin; Xue, Sha

    2016-01-01

    Analyzing the dynamics of soil particle-size distributions (PSDs), soil nutrients, and erodibility are very important for understanding the changes of soil structure and quality after long-term land-use conversion. We applied multifractal Rényi spectra (Dq) and singularity spectra (f(α)) to characterize PSDs 35 years after conversions from cropland to shrubland with Caragana microphylla (shrubland I), shrubland with Hippophae rhamnoides (shrubland II), forested land, and grassland on the Loess Plateau of China. Multifractal parameters (capacity dimension (D0), entropy dimension (D1), D1/D0, correlation dimension (D2), and Hölder exponent of order zero (α0)) were used to analyze the changes of PSDs. Dq and f(α) characterized the PSDs well and sensitively represented the changes in PSDs after conversion. All types of land-use conversion significantly improved the properties of the topsoil (0–10 cm), but the effect of shrubland I and even forested land decreased with depth. All types of land-use conversion significantly increased D1 and D2 in the topsoil, and D1 and D2 in the 10–50 cm layers of shrubland II, forested land, and grassland and D1 in the 50–100 cm layers of shrubland II were significantly higher relative to the control. Both D1 and D2 were positively correlated with the contents of soil nutrients and fine particles and were negatively correlated with soil erosion, indicating that D1 and D2 were potential indices for quantifying changes in soil properties and erosion. In conclusion, all types of land-use conversion significantly improved the conditions of the topsoil, but conversion from cropland to shrubland II, forested land, and grassland, especially shrubland II and grassland, were more effective for improving soil conditions in deeper layers. PMID:27527201

  4. Land-Use Conversion Changes the Multifractal Features of Particle-Size Distribution on the Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Sun, Caili; Liu, Guobin; Xue, Sha

    2016-08-05

    Analyzing the dynamics of soil particle-size distributions (PSDs), soil nutrients, and erodibility are very important for understanding the changes of soil structure and quality after long-term land-use conversion. We applied multifractal Rényi spectra (Dq) and singularity spectra (f(α)) to characterize PSDs 35 years after conversions from cropland to shrubland with Caragana microphylla (shrubland I), shrubland with Hippophae rhamnoides (shrubland II), forested land, and grassland on the Loess Plateau of China. Multifractal parameters (capacity dimension (D₀), entropy dimension (D₁), D₁/D₀, correlation dimension (D₂), and Hölder exponent of order zero (α₀)) were used to analyze the changes of PSDs. Dq and f(α) characterized the PSDs well and sensitively represented the changes in PSDs after conversion. All types of land-use conversion significantly improved the properties of the topsoil (0-10 cm), but the effect of shrubland I and even forested land decreased with depth. All types of land-use conversion significantly increased D₁ and D₂ in the topsoil, and D₁ and D₂ in the 10-50 cm layers of shrubland II, forested land, and grassland and D₁ in the 50-100 cm layers of shrubland II were significantly higher relative to the control. Both D₁ and D₂ were positively correlated with the contents of soil nutrients and fine particles and were negatively correlated with soil erosion, indicating that D₁ and D₂ were potential indices for quantifying changes in soil properties and erosion. In conclusion, all types of land-use conversion significantly improved the conditions of the topsoil, but conversion from cropland to shrubland II, forested land, and grassland, especially shrubland II and grassland, were more effective for improving soil conditions in deeper layers.

  5. Spatial and temporal evolution of climatic factors and its impacts on potential evapotranspiration in Loess Plateau of Northern Shaanxi, China.

    PubMed

    Li, C; Wu, P T; Li, X L; Zhou, T W; Sun, S K; Wang, Y B; Luan, X B; Yu, X

    2017-07-01

    Agriculture is very sensitive to climate change, and correct forecasting of climate change is a great help to accurate allocation of irrigation water. The use of irrigation water is influenced by crop water demand and precipitation. Potential evapotranspiration (ET0) is a measure of the ability of the atmosphere to remove water from the surface through the processes of evaporation and transpiration, assuming no control on water supply. It plays an important role in assessing crop water requirements, regional dry-wet conditions, and other factors of water resource management. This study analyzed the spatial and temporal evolution processes and characteristics of major meteorological parameters at 10 stations in the Loess Plateau of northern Shaanxi (LPNS). By using the Mann-Kendall trend test with trend-free pre-whitening and the ArcGIS platform, the potential evapotranspiration of each station was quantified by using the Penman-Monteith equation, and the effects of climatic factors on potential evapotranspiration were assessed by analyzing the contribution rate and sensitivity of the climatic factors. The results showed that the climate in LPNS has become warmer and drier. In terms of the sensitivity of ET0 to the variation of each climatic factor in LPNS, relative humidity (0.65) had the highest sensitivity, followed by daily maximum temperature, wind speed, sunshine hours, and daily minimum temperature (-0.05). In terms of the contribution rate of each factor to ET0, daily maximum temperature (5.16%) had the highest value, followed by daily minimum temperature, sunshine hours, relative humidity, and wind speed (1.14%). This study provides a reference for the management of agricultural water resources and for countermeasures to climate change. According to the climate change and the characteristics of the study area, farmers in the region should increase irrigation to guarantee crop water demand.

  6. Quantitative contribution of climate change and human activities on flood-season streamflow in the middle of Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, C.; Yu, F.; Liu, J.; Zhang, W.; Li, L.; Wang, X.

    2015-12-01

    The Yanhe River Basin (YRB) is the first-order tributary of the Yellow River, which is located at the middle of the Loess Plateau, China. The Yanhe River is the main river that causes floods and damages to the Yanan city. The YRB contributes significantly to the total sediment yield in the Yellow River. A great number of water and soil conservation measures including terracing, afforestation, and construction of sediment-trapping dams have been implemented since the 1960s. It is important to investigate the contributions of climate change and human activities affecting the changes of flood-season streamflow and to provide a scientific basis for future flood prevention. The data from six hydrological stations and 22 meteorological stations of YRB are used in this study. Two nonparametric methods, the Mann-Kendall test and the Pettitt test, are used to detect change trend and change point in the flood-season streamflow for the period of 1952 to 2003. The lumped conceptual daily hydrological model SIMHYD and one kind of sensitivity-based method are used to assess the impact of climate change and human activities to flood-season streamflow. The results show that the change point in flood-season streamflow occurred in 1972. The flood-season streamflow has decreased by 34.2% from 1972 to 2003 compared with the period from 1952 to 1971. The flood-season streamflow becomes more sensitive to change in precipitation than change in potential evapotranspiration (PET) in 1972-2003. The impact of human activities is greater than climate change after 1972. The effects of climate change and human activities on flood-season streamflow account for about 36% and 64% respectively.

  7. Effects of land use pattern on soil water in revegetation watersheds in semi-arid Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Lei; Chen, Liding; Wei, Wei

    2017-04-01

    Soil water stored below rainfall infiltration depth is a reliable water resource for plant growth in arid and semi-arid regions. For decreasing serious soil erosion, large-scale human-introduced vegetation restoration was initiated in Chinese Loess Plateau in late 1990s. However, these activities may result in excessive water consumption and soil water deficit if no appropriate scientific guidance were offered. This in turn impacts the regional ecological restoration and sustainable management of water resources. In this study, soil water content data in depth of 0-5 m was obtained by long-term field observation and geostatistical method in 6 small watersheds covered with different land use pattern. Profile characteristics and spatial-temporal patterns of soil water were compared between different land use types, hillslopes, and watersheds. The results showed that: (1) Introduced vegetation consumed excessive amount of water when compared with native grassland and farmland, and induced temporally stable soil desiccation in depth of 0-5 m. The introduced vegetation decreased soil water content to levels lower than the reference value representing no human impact in all soil layers. (2) The analysis of differences in soil water at hillslope and watershed scales indicated that land use determined the spatial and temporal variability of soil water. Soil water at watershed scale increased with the increasing area of farmland, and decreased with increasing percentage of introduced vegetation. Land use structure determined the soil water condition and land use pattern determined the spatial-temporal variability of soil water at watershed scale. (3) Large-scale revegetation with introduced vegetation diminished the spatial heterogeneity of soil water at different scales. Land use pattern adjustment could be used to improve the water resources management and maintain the sustainability of vegetation restoration.

  8. Effect of pore water velocities and solute input methods on chloride transport in the undisturbed soil columns of Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, BeiBei; Wang, QuanJiu

    2017-09-01

    Studies on solute transport under different pore water velocity and solute input methods in undisturbed soil could play instructive roles for crop production. Based on the experiments in the laboratory, the effect of solute input methods with small pulse input and large pulse input, as well as four pore water velocities, on chloride transport in the undisturbed soil columns obtained from the Loess Plateau under controlled condition was studied. Chloride breakthrough curves (BTCs) were generated using the miscible displacement method under water-saturated, steady flow conditions. Using the 0.15 mol L-1 CaCl2 solution as a tracer, a small pulse (0.1 pore volumes) was first induced, and then, after all the solution was wash off, a large pulse (0.5 pore volumes) was conducted. The convection-dispersion equation (CDE) and the two-region model (T-R) were used to describe the BTCs, and their prediction accuracies and fitted parameters were compared as well. All the BTCs obtained for the different input methods and the four pore water velocities were all smooth. However, the shapes of the BTCs varied greatly; small pulse inputs resulted in more rapid attainment of peak values that appeared earlier with increases in pore water velocity, whereas large pulse inputs resulted in an opposite trend. Both models could fit the experimental data well, but the prediction accuracy of the T-R was better. The values of the dispersivity, λ, calculated from the dispersion coefficient obtained from the CDE were about one order of magnitude larger than those calculated from the dispersion coefficient given by the T-R, but the calculated Peclet number, Pe, was lower. The mobile-immobile partition coefficient, β, decreased, while the mass exchange coefficient increased with increases in pore water velocity.

  9. Sustained high magnitude erosional forcing generates an organic carbon sink: Test and implications in the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Y.; Quine, T. A.; Yu, H. Q.; Govers, G.; Six, J.; Gong, D. Z.; Wang, Z.; Zhang, Y. Z.; Van Oost, K.

    2015-02-01

    Humans are now the most important geomorphic agent on the planet and accelerated erosion in agricultural landscapes results in high magnitude lateral organic carbon (OC) fluxes and significant perturbation of the land-ocean carbon flux. Nevertheless, the net effect of these lateral carbon fluxes on the C cycle is poorly constrained and there is no consensus as to whether they drive a net source or net sink of atmospheric CO2. Here, we test the hypothesis that, under sustained erosional forcing, soil carbon stocks on hillslopes reach a new equilibrium state in which all carbon exported with erosion is replaced; and, therefore, erosion results in a net sink for atmospheric CO2 at the scale of eroding hillslopes. The evidence from our study site, in the Loess Plateau of China, is consistent with this hypothesis. Despite net export of OC equivalent to ca. 10% NPP, we found that all of the eroded OC was replaced and, therefore, that the sink strength was equal to the C export rate. This sets the upper limit of the erosion-induced sink term at the scale of whole watershed. The fate of the exported carbon in reservoirs, floodplains, riverbeds and the ocean ultimately controls the watershed-scale sink strength. Nevertheless, the full replacement observed here suggests that erosion does not induce a C source, irrespective of the fate of the exported carbon, at least for high-input agricultural systems. Finally, we propose that assessment of the C cycle perturbation associated with erosion-induced lateral C fluxes must be made an integral part of accounting mechanisms for climate change mitigation strategies that are based on land use change and C sequestration in terrestrial environments.

  10. Evaluation of Nitrate Fluxes to Groundwater under Agriculture Land Uses across the Loess Plateau - A Catchment Scale Investigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turkeltaub, T.; Jia, X.; Binley, A. M.

    2016-12-01

    Nitrate management is required for fulfilling the objective of high agriculture productivity and concurrently reduced groundwater contamination to minimum. Yet, nitrate is considered as a non-point contaminant. Therefore, understanding the temporal and spatial processes controls of nitrate transport in the vadose zone are imperative for protection of groundwater. This study is conducted in the Loess Plateau which located in the north-central of mainland China and characterized with a semi-arid climate. Moreover, it accounts for about 6.6% of the Chinese territory and supports over 8.5% of the Chinese population. This area undergoes high pressure from human activities and requiring optimal management interventions. Integrated modelling frameworks, which include unsaturated and saturated processes, are able to simulate nitrate transport under various scenarios, and provide reasonable prediction for the decision-makers. We used data obtained from soil samples collected across a region of 41 × 104 km2 (243 samples, to 5 m depth) to derive unsaturated flow and transport properties. Particle size distributions, saturated hydraulic conductivity, water content at field capacity (0.33 atm) and saturated water content were also obtained for the shallower layers (0-40 cm). The van Genuchten - Mualem soil parameters describing the retention and the unsaturated hydraulic conductivity curves were estimated with the Rosetta code. The analysis of the soil samples indicated that the silt loam soil type is dominant. Hence, a scaling approach was chosen as an adequate method for estimation of representative retention and hydraulic conductivity curves. Water flow and nitrate leaching were simulated with mechanistic based 1-D model for each agriculture land use within the area. The simulated nitrate losses were compared with results of root zone model simulations. Subsequently, the calculated fluxes were input as upper boundary conditions in the Modflow model to examine the regional

  11. [Natural vegetation restoration and soil nutrient dynamics of abandoned farmlands in forest-steppe zone on Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Wen, Zhongming; Jiao, Feng; Liu, Baoyuan; Bu, Yaojun; Jiao, Juying

    2005-11-01

    To understand the relationship between plant community succession and soil nutrient dynamics is crucial in intervening vegetation succession. This paper reported the results from a study carried out in a forest-steppe zone on the Loess Plateau, with emphasis on the vegetation characteristics and soil nutrient dynamics duringvegetation restoration on abandoned farmlands of this area. The results showed that under zonal habitat conditions, natural vegetation succession would turn toward the original vegetation communities, but the expected shrub or trees communities didn't occur after 40 approximately 50 years, and Stipa bungeana, Artemisia sacrorum, Bothriochloa ischaemun, Stipa grandis and Lespedeza davurica communities were still the widely distributed communities. Vegetation restoration had a significant effect on soil nutrient dynamics. In general, soil nutrient contents increased with restoration time, and extremely significant changes occurred in soil organic matter, total N, available N, and available K (P< 0.001),while only significant changes in available P (0.05 < P < 0.01) and no significant change in total P (P > 0.05). Moreover, the changes were also found in soil profile. Statistical analysis showed that from surface layer (0 approximately 20 cm) to deeper layer (to 60 cm), extremely significant changes occurred in soil organic matter, total N, available N, available K and available P (P < 0.001), and significant change in total P (P< 0.05). Soil nutrients intended to accumulate in surface layer. Further linear correlation analysis showed that soil organic matter, total N, available N and available K were significantly correlated each other ( P< 0.001), but didn't show correlation with soil total P and available P.

  12. [Characteristics of soil organic carbon and enzyme activities in soil aggregates under different vegetation zones on the Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Li, Xin; Ma, Rui-ping; An, Shao-shan; Zeng, Quan-chao; Li, Ya-yun

    2015-08-01

    In order to explore the distribution characteristics of organic carbon of different forms and the active enzymes in soil aggregates with different particle sizes, soil samples were chosen from forest zone, forest-grass zone and grass zone in the Yanhe watershed of Loess Plateau to study the content of organic carbon, easily oxidized carbon, and humus carbon, and the activities of cellulase, β-D-glucosidase, sucrose, urease and peroxidase, as well as the relations between the soil aggregates carbon and its components with the active soil enzymes were also analyzed. It was showed that the content of organic carbon and its components were in order of forest zone > grass zone > forest-grass zone, and the contents of three forms of organic carbon were the highest in the diameter group of 0.25-2 mm. The content of organic carbon and its components, as well as the activities of soil enzymes were higher in the soil layer of 0-10 cm than those in the 10-20 cm soil layer of different vegetation zones. The activities of cellulase, β-D-glucosidase, sucrose and urease were in order of forest zone > grass zone > forest-grass zone. The peroxidase activity was in order of forest zone > forest-grass zone > grass zone. The activities of various soil enzymes increased with the decreasing soil particle diameter in the three vegetation zones. The activities of cellulose, peroxidase, sucrose and urease had significant positive correlations with the contents of various forms of organic carbon in the soil aggregates.

  13. Comparison of six algorithms to determine the soil thermal diffusivity at a site in the Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Z.; Wang, L.; Horton, R.

    2009-03-01

    Soil thermal diffusivity is a crucial physical parameter that affects soil temperature. Six prevalent algorithms to calculate soil thermal diffusivity are inter-compared by using soil temperature data collected at the depths of 0.05 m and 0.10 m at a bare site in the China Loess Plateau from DOY 201 through DOY 207 in 2005. Five of the six algorithms (i.e., Amplitude, Phase, Arctangent, Logarithm, and Harmonic or HM algorithms) are developed from the traditional one-dimensional heat conduction equation. The other algorithm is based on the one-dimensional heat conduction-convection equation which considers the vertical heterogeneity of thermal diffusivity in soil and couples thermal conduction and convection processes (hereinafter referred to as the Conduction-convection algorithm). To assess these six algorithms, we (1) calculate the soil thermal diffusivities by using each of the algorithms, (2) use the soil thermal diffusivities to predict soil temperature at the 0.10 m depth, and (3) compare the estimated soil temperature against direct measurements. Results show that (1) HM algorithm gives the most reliable estimates among the traditional five algorithms; and (2) generally, the Conduction-convection algorithm provides the second best estimates. Among all of the algorithms, the HM algorithm has the best description of the upper boundary temperature with time, but it only includes conduction heat transfer in the soil. Compared to the HM algorithm, the Conduction-convection algorithm has a less accurate description of the upper boundary temperature, but by accounting for the vertical gradient of soil diffusivity and the water flux density it includes more physics in the soil heat transfer process. The Conduction-convection algorithm has potential application within land surface models, but future effort should be made to combine the HM and Conduction-convection algorithms in order to make use of the advantages of each.

  14. [Effects of different mulching measures on winter wheat field soil respiration in Loess Plateau dry land region].

    PubMed

    Guan, Qing; Wang, Jun; Song, Shu-Ya; Liu, Wen-Zhao

    2011-06-01

    A field experiment was conducted to study the effects of different mulching measures on the diurnal and seasonal variations of winter wheat field soil respiration in dry land region of Loess Plateau. Four treatments were installed, i. e., 300 kg x hm(-2) straw mulching (M300), 600 kg x hm(-2) straw mulching (M600), plastic film mulching (PM), and no mulching (CK). In all treatments, the soil respiration rate had a decreasing trend from autumn to winter, but increased rapidly after winter and peaked at jointing stage. Comparing with CK, treatments mulching promoted the soil respiration obviously from wintering to maturing stage, with significant differences between treatment PM and the others. The average soil respiration rate in treatments M300, and M600 in whole growth period was 1. 52 micromol CO2 x m(-2) x s(-1) and 1. 47 micromol CO2 x m(-2) x s(-1), being 10. 2% and 6.6% higher than the CK (1.38 micromol CO2 x m(-2) s(-1)) , respectively, and that in treatment PM was 3. 63 micromol CO2 x m(-2) x s(-1), 163% higher than CK. The diurnal variation of soil respiration rate in CK and in M300 and M600 presented a single peak curve and peaked at 12:00 and 14:00, respectively, but for PM treatment, the diurnal variation of soil respiration rate was similar with that in CK at jointing stage while presented a bimodal curve at maturing stage, with the peaks at 12:00 and 16:00, respectively. Soil respiration rate had an exponential correlation with soil temperature, and a parabolic correlation with soil moisture.

  15. Assessing the effects of changes in land use and climate on runoff and sediment yields from a watershed in the Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Zuo, Depeng; Xu, Zongxue; Yao, Wenyi; Jin, Shuangyan; Xiao, Peiqing; Ran, Dachuan

    2016-02-15

    The changes in runoff and sediment load in the Loess Plateau of China have received considerable attention owing to their dramatic decline during recent decades. In this paper, the impacts of land-use and climate changes on water and sediment yields in the Huangfuchuan River basin (HFCRB) of the Loess Plateau are investigated by combined usage of statistical tests, hydrological modeling, and land-use maps. The temporal trends and abrupt changes in runoff and sediment loads during 1954-2012 are detected by using non-parametric Mann-Kendall and Pettitt tests. The land-use changes between 1980 and 2005 are determined by using transition matrix analysis, and the effects of land-use and climate changes on water and sediment yields are assessed by using the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) hydrological model and four scenarios, respectively. The results show significant decreasing trends in both annual runoff and sediment loads, whereas slightly decreasing and significantly increasing trends are detected for annual precipitation and air temperature, respectively. 1984 is identified as the dividing year of the study period. The land-use changes between 1980 and 2005 show significant effects of the Grain for Green Project in China. Both land-use change and climate change have greater impact on the reduction of sediment yield than that of water. Water and sediment yields in the upstream region show more significant decreases than those in the downstream region under different effects. The results obtained in this study can provide useful information for water resource planning and management as well as soil and water conservation in the Loess Plateau region.

  16. Systematics of a Clumped Isotope-Based Reconstruction of Temperature and Precipitation Water δ18O from Late Pleistocene and Holocene Archives of the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bricker, H. L.; Mitsunaga, B.; Mering, J. A.; Eagle, R.; Li, G.; Tripati, A. K.

    2016-12-01

    The Chinese Loess Plateau lies at the terminus of the East Asian Monsoon, a massive meteorological phenomenon that provides water to up to a quarter of the world's population. This event has been hypothesized to exhibit shifts in intensity and location over geologic time in response to changes in glaciation and climate forcing, including associated abrupt events, during glacial-interglacial cycles, and over longer (>106) year timescales. We propose to reconstruct and evaluate processes that affect carbonate δ18O and carbonate "clumped" isotope thermometry signatures of archives from the Loess Plateau. We will examine modern and Holocene (5,000-10,000 year old) snail specimens (Sp. Cathaica) from four locations within the Plateau: Yichuan, Xifeng, Mangshan, and Lingtai. We will additionally employ the evaporative flux balance model of Balakrishnan (2005) to analyze snail aragonite crystallization in oxygen isotope equilibrium as a proxy measurement for δ18O evaporation. We will then compare these measurements with empirical, modern-day meteoric δ18O and temperature data from local weather stations and the Global Network of Isotopes in Precipitation (GNIP), as well as data from in situ carbonate nodular loess concretions. These comparisons will allow us to assess the seasonality of growth and determine if non-climatological parameters (e.g., kinetic effects) dominate isotopic signatures, in order to assess if these proxies represent. If the clumped isotope data conforms to these independently-derived measurements, clumped isotope thermometry may be a valid and robust method for characterizing past environmental changes, and we can extend this procedure to proxy materials.

  17. [Crown interception of apple trees in loess hilly and gully region, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Li, Jing-Jing; Bai, Gang-Shuan

    2013-02-01

    Taking the apple trees at their full-fruit stage in the loess hilly and gully region of Shaanxi as test objects, a three-year consecutive monitoring was conducted on the precipitation outside the tree crown, the through fall of the crown, and the stem flow from 2008 to 2010, with the effects of different precipitation factors on the crown interception analyzed. In the study region, the stem flow rate and crown interception rate of the trees accounted for 0. 8% and 8.9% of the precipitation, respectively, the inter-plant interception was higher than the inter-row interception, and the interception increased with the decreasing distance to the stem. In rainy season, the crown interception was greater while the interception rate was smaller; in drought season, it was in adverse. The crown interception increased with increasing precipitation amount, precipitation intensity, precipitation duration, and precipitation interval, and the relationships followed power function or logarithmic function. The interception rate was negatively correlated with precipitation amount, precipitation intensity, and precipitation duration, but positively correlated with precipitation interval, and the relationships were in power function. Among the precipitation factors, precipitation amount had the greatest effects on the crown interception capability of the apple trees.

  18. Multiple nuclide cosmogenic dating of very old desert pavements on the Puna Plateau, Northwest Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dortch, J.; Schoenbohm, L. M.

    2011-12-01

    Wind erosion of bedrock has been suggested to be responsible for the removal of more than 800 m of strata in the Qaidam Basin while wind deposition creates large-scale landforms such as the loess plateau. Wind eroded landforms, such as desert pavements in the Namibian Desert, Africa, form relic landscapes that are stable for more than 5 Ma. Desert pavements are of particular importance because of their widespread occurrence on terraces and fans, in mountains and coastal areas, and in hot and cold deserts including: Southwestern Africa, Antartic Dry valleys, Southwest USA, Denmark, Ireland, Israel, Sweden, and Central Tibet. Moreover, greater than 95 % of ventifacts on desert pavements are suspected to be late Quaternary to Holocene in age and are located on surfaces suitable for cosmogenic radionuclide dating. In spite of this, glacial, fluvial, and mass wasting systems have received far more attention than wind as an important geomorphic agent of erosion, deposition, and rock mass redistribution. Our goal is to: 1) quantify bedrock wind erosion rates; 2) quantify the ages of old, stable desert pavements; 3) and to identify which lithology-isotope pair provides the most accurate exposure ages for desert pavements in arid landscapes. The Puna Plateau, Argentina, is an ideal area to undertake this study because numerous wind eroded/deposited landforms are present, rates of fluvial erosion are low, and glaciation is limited. Mapping using remote sensed images shows that a significant portion of the Puna Plateau surface is covered by wind eroded or wind deposited landforms. These landforms align with the dominant wind direction (southeast) determined from ~450 ventifact measurements from 9 locations on the plateau. Twelve amalgamated samples sets that span six lithologies (granite, gneiss, quartzite, rhyolite, diabase, and basalt) using four cosmogenic isotopes (10Be, 26Al, 36Cl, 3He) on ventifacted clasts were collected from two surfaces to identify the most

  19. Performance of soil particle-size distribution models for describing deposited soils adjacent to constructed dams in the China Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Pei; Shao, Ming-an; Horton, Robert

    2011-02-01

    Soil particle-size distributions (PSD) have been used to estimate soil hydraulic properties. Various parametric PSD models have been proposed to describe the soil PSD from sparse experimental data. It is important to determine which PSD model best represents specific soils. Fourteen PSD models were examined in order to determine the best model for representing the deposited soils adjacent to dams in the China Loess Plateau; these were: Skaggs (S-1, S-2, and S-3), fractal (FR), Jaky (J), Lima and Silva (LS), Morgan (M), Gompertz (G), logarithm (L), exponential (E), log-exponential (LE), Weibull (W), van Genuchten type (VG) as well as Fredlund (F) models. Four-hundred and eighty samples were obtained from soils deposited in the Liudaogou catchment. The coefficient of determination (R 2), the Akaike's information criterion (AIC), and the modified AIC (mAIC) were used. Based upon R 2 and AIC, the three- and four-parameter models were both good at describing the PSDs of deposited soils, and the LE, FR, and E models were the poorest. However, the mAIC in conjunction with R 2 and AIC results indicated that the W model was optimum for describing PSD of the deposited soils for emphasizing the effect of parameter number. This analysis was also helpful for finding out which model is the best one. Our results are applicable to the China Loess Plateau.

  20. [Effects of land use and environmental factors on the variability of soil quality indicators in hilly Loess Plateau region of China].

    PubMed

    Xu, Ming-Xiang; Liu, Guo-Bin; Zhao, Yun-Ge

    2011-02-01

    Classical statistics methods were adopted to analyze the soil quality variability, its affecting factors, and affecting degree at a regional scale (700 km2) in the central part of hilly Loess Plateau region of China. There existed great differences in the variability of test soil quality indicators. Soil pH, structural coefficient, silt content, specific gravity, bulk density, total porosity, capillary porosity, and catalase activity were the indicators with weak variability; soil nutrients (N, P, and K) contents, CaCO3 content, cation exchange capacity (CEC), clay content, micro-aggregate mean mass diameter, aggregate mean mass diameter, water-stable aggregates, respiration rate, microbial quotient, invertase and phosphatase activities, respiratory quotient, and microbial carbon and nitrogen showed medium variation; while soil labile organic carbon and phosphorus contents, erosion-resistance, permeability coefficient, and urease activity were the indicators with strong variability. The variability of soil CaCO3, total P and K, CEC, texture, and specific gravity, etc. was correlated with topography and other environmental factors, while the variability of dynamic soil quality indicators, including soil organic matter content, nitrogen content, water-stable aggregates, permeability, microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen, enzyme activities, and respiration rate, was mainly correlated with land use type. Overall, land use pattern explained 97% of the variability of soil quality indicators in the region. It was suggested that in the evaluation of soil quality in hilly Loess Plateau region, land use type and environmental factors should be fully considered.

  1. [Effects of mulching patterns on soil water, broomcorn millet growth, photosynthetic charac- teristics and yield in the dryland of Loess Plateau in China].

    PubMed

    Su, Wang; Zhang, Yan-Ping; Qu, Yang; Li, Cui; Miao, Jia-Yuan; Gao, Xiao-Li; Liu, Jian-Hua; Feng, Bai-Li

    2014-11-01

    The objective of this study was to explore the effects of mulching patterns on soil water, growth, photosynthetic characteristics, grain yield and water use efficiency (WUE) of broomcorn millet in the dryland of Loess Plateau in China. In a three-year field experiment from 2011 to 2013, we compared four different mulching patterns with traditional plat planting (no mulching) as the control (CK). The mulching patterns included W ridge covered with common plastic film + intredune covered with straw (SG), common ridge covered with common plastic film + intredune covered with straw (LM), double ridges covered with common plastic film + intredune covered with straw (QM), and the traditional plat planting covered with straw (JG). The results showed that the soil water storage in 0-100 cm layer was significantly higher in all mulching patterns than in CK, particularly in SG then followed by LM, QM and JG, and the differences among the mulching patterns reached a significant level at the different growth stages of broomcorn millet. Among all mulching patterns, SG had the greatest effect on the growth and photosynthesis of broomcorn millet, respectively increasing the yield and WUE by 55.9% and 64.9% over CK, and the differences among the mulching patterns also reached a significant level. Therefore, SG was recommended as an efficient planting pattern for broomcorn millet production in the dryland of Loess Plateau in China.

  2. Timing and Spatial Distribution of Loess in Xinjiang, NW China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yun; Song, Yougui; Yan, Libin; Chen, Tao; An, Zhisheng

    2015-01-01

    Central Asia is one of the most significant loess regions on Earth, with an important role in understanding Quaternary climate and environmental change. However, in contrast to the widely investigated loess deposits in the Chinese Loess Plateau, the Central Asian loess–paleosol sequences are still insufficiently known and poorly understood. Through field investigation and review of the previous literature, the authors have investigated the distribution, thickness and age of the Xinjiang loess, and analyzed factors that control these parameters in the Xinjiang in northwest China, Central Asia. The loess sediments cover river terraces, low uplands, the margins of deserts and the slopes of the Tianshan Mountains and Kunlun Mountains and are also present in the Ili Basin. The thickness of the Xinjiang loess deposits varies from several meters to 670 m. The variation trend of the sand fraction (>63 μm) grain-size contour can indicate the local major wind directions, so we conclude that the NW and NE winds are the main wind directions in the North and South Xinjiang, and the westerly wind mainly transport dust into the Ili basin. We consider persistent drying, adequate regional wind energy and well-developed river terraces to be the main factors controlling the distribution, thickness and formation age of the Xinjiang loess. The well-outcropped loess sections have mainly developed since the middle Pleistocene in Xinjiang, reflecting the appearance of the persistent drying and the present air circulation system. However, the oldest loess deposits are as old as the beginning of the Pliocene in the Tarim Basin, which suggests that earlier aridification occurred in the Tarim Basin rather than in the Ili Basin and the Junggar Basin. PMID:25970617

  3. Variations of deep soil moisture under different vegetation types and influencing factors in a watershed of the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, Xuening; Zhao, Wenwu; Wang, Lixin; Feng, Qiang; Ding, Jingyi; Liu, Yuanxin; Zhang, Xiao

    2016-08-01

    Soil moisture in deep soil layers is a relatively stable water resource for vegetation growth in the semi-arid Loess Plateau of China. Characterizing the variations in deep soil moisture and its influencing factors at a moderate watershed scale is important to ensure the sustainability of vegetation restoration efforts. In this study, we focus on analyzing the variations and factors that influence the deep soil moisture (DSM) in 80-500 cm soil layers based on a soil moisture survey of the Ansai watershed in Yan'an in Shanxi Province. Our results can be divided into four main findings. (1) At the watershed scale, higher variations in the DSM occurred at 120-140 and 480-500 cm in the vertical direction. At the comparable depths, the variation in the DSM under native vegetation was much lower than that in human-managed vegetation and introduced vegetation. (2) The DSM in native vegetation and human-managed vegetation was significantly higher than that in introduced vegetation, and different degrees of soil desiccation occurred under all the introduced vegetation types. Caragana korshinskii and black locust caused the most serious desiccation. (3) Taking the DSM conditions of native vegetation as a reference, the DSM in this watershed could be divided into three layers: (i) a rainfall transpiration layer (80-220 cm); (ii) a transition layer (220-400 cm); and (iii) a stable layer (400-500 cm). (4) The factors influencing DSM at the watershed scale varied with vegetation types. The main local controls of the DSM variations were the soil particle composition and mean annual rainfall; human agricultural management measures can alter the soil bulk density, which contributes to higher DSM in farmland and apple orchards. The plant growth conditions, planting density, and litter water holding capacity of introduced vegetation showed significant relationships with the DSM. The results of this study are of practical significance for vegetation restoration strategies, especially

  4. Soil C, N, P and Its Stratification Ratio Affected by Artificial Vegetation in Subsoil, Loess Plateau China

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Jian; Sun, Pingsheng; Zhao, Fazhu; Han, Xinhui; Yang, Gaihe; Feng, Yongzhong; Ren, Guangxin

    2016-01-01

    Artificial vegetation restoration can induce variations in accumulation and distribution of soil carbon (C), nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P). However, little is known about variations in soil C, N and P nutrient fraction stratification following artificial vegetation in Loess Plateau China. Based on the hypothesis that re-vegetated can improve soil quality and stratification ratios (SR) can be used as an indicator to evaluate soil quality. This study measured contents and storages of soil organic carbon (SOC), total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP) and their SRs in topsoil (0–20 cm) and subsoil (20–60 cm) in three 30-year re-vegetated lands that had been converted from arable land (Robinia pseudoacacia L., Caragana Korshinskii Kom. and abandoned cropland with low interferences and few management measures) and one slope cropland (SC) as a control for three soil profiles(0–20 cm, 20–40 cm and 40–60 cm) from June 2009 to June 2013. The results showed that the contents and storages of SOC, TN and TP in re-vegetated land were significantly higher than those in the SC in both topsoil and subsoil. The storages of SOC, TN and TP in the topsoil (0–20 cm) of the re-vegetated lands increased by 16.2%-26.4%, 12.7%-28.4% and 16.5%-20.9%, respectively, and increased by smaller but significant amounts in subsoil from 2009 to 2013. The SRs for SOC, TN and TP in the re-vegetated lands were mostly >2 (either for 0–20:20–40 cm or 0–20:40–60 cm) and greater than that in the SC. The SRs showed an increasing trend with increasing restoration age. The results also showed that the land use type and soil depth were the most influential factors for the SRs and storages, and the SRs of SOC and TN had significantly positive correlations with their storages. The SRs were concluded to be a good indicator for evaluating the soil quality, which can be significantly enhanced through vegetation restoration. Moreover, vegetation restoration can significantly enhance SOC, TN

  5. Vegetation cover and topography rather than human disturbance control gully density and sediment production on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Jianlin; Vanmaercke, Matthias; Chen, Longqian; Govers, Gerard

    2016-12-01

    The factors controlling topsoil erosion rates on the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) are currently relatively well understood and topsoil erosion rates can now be relatively accurately estimated. This is, however, not the case for non-topsoil erosion (sediment production by gullying and landslides): while it is well known that these processes produce significant amounts of sediment, the factors controlling their intensity and spatial distribution on the CLP are less well understood. In this study we quantified the contribution of non-topsoil erosion to total sediment production on the CLP and investigated which factors control spatial and temporal variations in non-topsoil erosion. We estimated non-topsoil erosion rates (ENT) by comparing the measured average sediment yields of 46 gauged catchments for the 1950-1970 period, when soil conservation measures were nearly absent in the area, with predicted topsoil erosion rates (using a recently developed empirical model). In addition, gully density was estimated in each catchment using Google Earth data. Our results showed that the area-weighted average catchment erosion rate (E) and ENT were 58.60 ± 51.80 and 48.68 ± 49.78 t ha- 1 yr- 1 respectively for the studied catchments. The sediment contribution of non-topsoil erosion to total sediment production ranged between ca. 0 and 97% with a mean of 70 ± 25%. Both E and ENT were significantly correlated to longitudinal river slope, land use, NDVI, and gully density. However, gully density was the only variable explaining a major part of the variance in both E (60%) and ENT (57%). Gully density itself was significantly related to topography and vegetation cover but not to rainfall erosivity. Importantly, gully density was not only related to overall slope steepness, but also to the longitudinal slope of the river network and the hypsometric integral, suggesting that not only land cover disturbance but also tectonic uplift controls gully density and erosion rates. The

  6. Impacts of climate change and ecological restoration activities on vegetation phenology and streamflow change in the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sheng, M.; Lei, H.; Yang, D.

    2016-12-01

    The Loess Plateau of China occupies an area of 6.4 × 105 km2 in the middle reaches of the Yellow River in semi-arid area where vegetation is sensitive to water. For a long time, check dams and "Grain for Green" Program (GGP) are the main ecological restoration activities aiming to control soil erosion in the region. Check dam is an effective engineering measure and the GGP is an ecological measure which restores agricultural lands on steep slopes to forests or grasslands. Up to now, vegetation cover is found to increase about 41% from 1999, however, the annual water yield largely decreased by nearly 3 billion m3 compared with 1980s. Meanwhile, precipitation and air temperature significantly increases in recent 20 years. Considering the tight coupling between effects of climate change and ecological restoration, the role of ecological restoration activities on vegetation phenology and water yield change remains unclear. Partitioning the contributions of climate change and ecological restoration to the changes in water yield and vegetation phenology is crucial for evaluating impacts of the ecological restoration project. The key scientific issues to be addressed in the study include: 1) what is the interaction mechanism between soil hydrological processes and vegetation phenology change under the impacts of check dams? 2) How does land use change impact the coupling between hydrological processes and vegetation growth under climate change? In the study, a hydrologically-enhanced Community Land Model (CLM 4.0) will be established. Compared with the original CLM4.0, it has a more accurate hydrological simulation enhanced by a physically-based parameterization. The model evaluation and impartments will be made in the three aspects: 1) the response of vegetation phenology to climate change; 2) the effects of land use change on vegetation phenology; 3) the effects of check dams on hydrological processes. Finally, the effects of climate change, land use change, and

  7. Ecosystem service trade-offs and their influencing factors: A case study in the Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Feng, Qiang; Zhao, Wenwu; Fu, Bojie; Ding, Jingyi; Wang, Shuai

    2017-12-31

    Soil erosion control (SEC), carbon sequestration (CAS), and soil moisture (SMO) strongly interact in the semi-arid Loess Plateau. Since SMO has supportive effects on SEC and CAS, it can be considered as ecosystem service (ES), and there is an immediate need to coordinate the relationships among these ecosystem services (ESs) to promote the sustainability of vegetation recovery. In this study, we quantified the ESs, ES trade-offs, and the environmental factors in 151 sample plots in the Ansai watershed, and we used a redundancy analysis (RDA) to clarify the effects of environmental factors on these ESs and their trade-offs. The results were as follows: (1) the general trend in the SEC of vegetation types was Robinia pseudoacacia (CH)>native grass (NG)>small arbor (ST)>Hippophae rhamnoides (SJ)>artificial grass (AG)>Caragana korshinskii (NT)>apple orchard (GY)>crop (CP); the CAS trend was CH>SJ>NT>AG>CP>ST>GY>NG; and the SMO trend was CP>NG>GY>AG>SJ>ST>CH>NT. (2) For SEC-SMO trade-offs, the influence of vegetation type, altitude, silt and sand composition was dominant. The arrangement of NG, AG, and SJ could decrease the extent of the trade-offs. (3) For CAS-SMO trade-offs, vegetation coverage and types were the dominant factors, but the effects were not complex. The extent of these trade-offs was lowest for NT, and that for SJ was the second lowest. (4) Considering the relationships among the three ESs, SJ was the most appropriate afforestation plant. Combing the vegetation types, slope position, slope gradient, and soil properties could regulate these ES relationships. The dominant factors influencing ES trade-offs varied among the different soil layers, so we must consider the corresponding influencing factors to regulate ESs. Moreover, manual management measures were also important for coordinating the ES relationships. Our research provides a better understanding of the mechanisms influencing the relationships among ESs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All

  8. Runoff and sediment loss responses to rainfall and land use in two agricultural catchments on the Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kang, Shaozhong; Zhang, Lu; Song, Xiaoyu; Zhang, Shuhan; Liu, Xianzhao; Liang, Yinli; Zheng, Shiqing

    2001-04-01

    Soil erosion is a severe problem hindering sustainable agriculture on the Loess Plateau of China. Plot experiments were conducted under the natural rainfall condition during 1995-1997 at Wangdongguo and Aobao catchments in this region to evaluate the effects of various land use, cropping systems, land slopes and rainfall on runoff and sediment losses, as well as the differences in catchment responses. The experiments included various surface conditions ranging from bare soil to vegetated surfaces (maize, wheat residue, Robinia pseudoacacia L., Amorpha fruticosa L., Stipa capillata L., buckwheat and Astragarus adsurgens L.). The measurements were carried out on hill slopes with different gradients (i.e. 0 ° to 36 °). These plots varied from 20 to 60 m in length. Results indicated that runoff and erosion in this region occurred mainly during summer storms. Summer runoff and sediment losses under cropping and other vegetation were significantly less than those from ploughed bare soil (i.e. without crop/plant or crop residue). There were fewer runoff and sediment losses with increasing canopy cover. Land slope had a major effect on runoff and sediment losses and this effect was markedly larger in the tillage plots than that in the natural grass and forest plots, although this effect was very small when the maximum rainfall intensity was larger than 58·8 mm/h or smaller than 2·4 mm/h. Sediment losses per unit area rose with increasing slope length for the same land slope and same land use. The effect of slope length on sediment losses was stronger on a bare soil plot than on a crop/plant plot. The runoff volume and sediment losses were both closely related to rainfall volume and maximum intensity, while runoff coefficient was mainly controlled by maximum rainfall intensity. Hortonian overland flow is the dominant runoff process in the region. The differences in runoff volume, runoff coefficient and sediment losses between the catchments are mainly controlled by the

  9. Microbial functional diversity responses to 2 years since biochar application in silt-loam soils on the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Li-Xia; Xiao, Qian; Shen, Yu-Fang; Li, Shi-Qing

    2017-10-01

    The structure and function of soil microbial communities have been widely used as indicators of soil quality and fertility. The effect of biochar application on carbon sequestration has been studied, but the effect on soil microbial functional diversity has received little attention. We evaluated effects of biochar application on the functional diversities of microbes in a loam soil. The effects of biochar on microbial activities and related processes in the 0-10 and 10-20cm soil layers were determined in a two-year experiment in maize field on the Loess Plateau in China. Low-pyrolysis biochar produced from maize straw was applied into soils at rates of 0 (BC0), 10 (BC10) and 30 (BC30)tha(-1). Chemical analysis indicated that the biochar did not change the pH, significantly increased the amounts of organic carbon and nitrogen, and decreased the amount of mineral nitrogen and the microbial quotient. The biochar significantly decreased average well colour development (AWCD) values in Biolog EcoPlates™ for both layers, particularly for the rate of 10tha(-1). Biochar addition significantly decreased substrate richness (S) except for BC30 in the 0-10cm layer. Effects of biochar on the Shannon-Wiener index (H) and Simpson's dominance (D) were not significant, except for a significant increase in evenness index (E) in BC10 in the 10-20cm layer. A principal component analysis clearly differentiated the treatments, and microbial use of six categories of substrates significantly decreased in both layers after biochar addition, although the use of amines and amides did not differ amongst the three treatments in the deeper layer. Maize above ground dry biomass and height did not differ significantly amongst the treatments, and biochar had no significant effect on nitrogen uptake by maize seedlings. H was positively correlated with AWCD, and negatively with pH. AWCD was positively correlated with mineral N and negatively with pH. Our results indicated that shifts in soil

  10. Late Miocene–Pliocene Paleoclimatic Evolution Documented by Terrestrial Mollusk Populations in the Western Chinese Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Li, Fengjiang; Wu, Naiqin; Rousseau, Denis-Didier; Dong, Yajie; Zhang, Dan; Pei, Yunpeng

    2014-01-01

    The Neogene eolian deposits in the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) are one of the most useful continental deposits for understanding climatic changes. To decipher Late Neogene paleoclimatic changes in the CLP, we present a terrestrial mollusk record spanning the time interval between 7.1 and 3.5 Ma from the western CLP. The results indicate four stages of paleoclimatic evolution: From 7.1 to 6.2 Ma, cold and dry climatic conditions prevailed as evidenced by high values of the total number of cold-aridiphilous (CA) mollusk species and by low values of all of the thermo-humidiphilous (TH) mollusk indices. From 6.2 to 5.4 Ma, the climate remained cold and dry but was not quite as dry as during the preceding phase, as indicated by the dominance of CA mollusks and more TH species and individuals. From 5.4 to 4.4 Ma, a warm and moist climate prevailed, as indicated by high values of the TH species and individuals and by the sparsity of CA species and individuals. From 4.4 to 3.5 Ma, all of the CA indices increased significantly and maintained high values; all of the TH indices exhibit high values from 4.4 to 4.0 Ma, an abrupt decrease from 4.0 Ma and a further increase from 3.7 Ma. The CA species of Cathaica pulveraticula, Cathaica schensiensis, and Pupopsis retrodens are only identified in this stage, indicating that the CA species were diversified and that the climate was becoming drier. Moreover, the CA mollusk group exhibits considerable diversity from 7.1 to 5.4 Ma when a cold, dry climate prevailed; whereas the diversity of the TH group was high during the relatively warm, wet interval from 5.4 to 4.4 Ma. This indicates that variations in the diversity of the CA and TH mollusk groups were closely related to climatic changes during the Late Miocene to Pliocene. PMID:24752586

  11. Characterizing hydrological processes on loess slopes using electrical resistivity tomography - A case study of the Heifangtai Terrace, Northwest China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, R. Q.; Meng, X. M.; Zhang, F. Y.; Wang, S. Y.; Cui, Z. J.; Zhang, M. S.; Zhang, Y.; Chen, G.

    2016-10-01

    From the perspective of engineering geology, loess has long been considered as a homogeneous and porous material. It is commonly believed that water penetrates loess via pores and in some cases causing mass movements. However, several researchers have expressed doubts about this mechanism as a cause of slope failures in loess, and moreover the actual hydrological processes operating in loess deposits and their effect on slope failures have not been fully investigated. Here we present the results of an electrical resistivity survey of the Heifangtai loess terrace in northwestern China, designed to characterize the hydrological processes in loess slopes and their relationship with slope failures. The Heifangtai loess terrace is located on the fourth terrace of the Yellow River and consists of 57-m-thickness of aeolian loess. 2D and 3D electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) was used to monitor the movement of ground water before and after irrigation and rainfall events and the evolution of a sink hole in the toe of the landslide deposits. Our main findings are as follows: (1) Based on the 2D ERT results, the depth of infiltration into the thick unsaturated loess is not more than 5 m in the profile at the top of the landslide. (2) Electrical resistivity decreased as a result of water infiltration through sinkholes, and this process can increase the soil water content and induce soil liquefaction which can eventually result in land sliding. (3) Landslide deposits block the groundwater drainage channels through the loess, which results in the concentration of water in the toe of the landslide. Consequently, groundwater together with rainfall, triggers the failure of sinkholes or cracks, which may induce a continuing process of new slope failures at the sites of past landslide.

  12. [Effect of Below-cloud Secondary Evaporation in Precipitations over the Loess Plateau Based on the Stable Isotopes of Hydrogen and Oxygen].

    PubMed

    Jin, Xiao-gang; Zhang, Ming-jun; Wang, Sheng-jie; Zhu, Xiao-fan; Dong, Lei; Ren, Zheng-guo; Chen, Fen-li

    2015-04-01

    Based on stable isotopes in 409 precipitation samples provided by GNIP and meteorological records at the eight stations in Loess Plateau from January 1985 to December 2004, as well as the trajectory model of HYSPLIT 4.9, the spatial and temporal variations of d-excess and Δ18O were analyzed. The spatial distribution of secondary evaporation rate and the impact of meteorological factors on below-cloud secondary evaporation were also discussed. The result showed that: (1) During summer and winter monsoon periods, Δ18O showed an uptrend variation and d-excess showed a downtrend variation from south to north in Loess Plateau. From east to west, Δ180 showed an uptrend variation only in summer monsoon period and a downtrend variation in winter monsoon period. The value of d-excess also showed a downtrend variation. Amplitude of variation Δ18O and d-excess could indicate the routes of monsoon. (2) Secondary evaporation existed on an annual basis, and it was relatively significant during the summer monsoon period, with ranges from 1.51% to 5.88% and an average rate of 3.87%. While winter monsoon became lower, the rates ranged from 1.06% to 5.46%, and the average rate dropped to 3.03%. Monsoon had larger influence on secondary evaporation in margin area of the plateau, while the influence on the central stations was little. (3) Temperature had the highest contribution to secondary evaporation, followed by precipitation amount and water vapor pressure, and relative humidity had a small contribution. Moreover, the influence of wind speed and altitude on secondary evaporation was weak.

  13. Changes in soil organic carbon and total nitrogen in croplands converted to walnut-based agroforestry systems and orchards in southeastern Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Lu, Sen; Meng, Ping; Zhang, Jinsong; Yin, Changjun; Sun, Shiyou

    2015-11-01

    Limited information is available on the effects of agroforestry system practices on soil properties in the Loess Plateau of China. Over the last decade, a vegetation restoration project has been conducted in this area by converting cropland into tree-based agroforestry systems and orchards to combat soil erosion and degradation. The objective of the present study was to determine the effects of land use conversion on soil organic carbon and total nitrogen in southeastern Loess Plateau. The experiment included three treatments: walnut intercropping system (AF), walnut orchard (WO), and traditional cropland (CR). After 7 years of continual management, soil samples were collected at 0-10, 10-30, and 30-50-cm depths for three treatments, and soil organic carbon (SOC) and total nitrogen (TN) were measured. Results showed that compared with the CR and AF treatments, WO treatment decreased both SOC and TN concentrations in the 0-50-cm soil profile. However, similar patterns of SOC and TN concentrations were observed in the AF and CR treatments across the entire profile. The SOC stocks at 0-50-cm depth were 5.42, 5.52, and 4.67 kg m(-2) for CR, AF, and WO treatments, respectively. The calculated TN stocks at 0-50-cm depth were 0.63, 0.62, and 0.57 kg m(-2) for CR, AF, and WO treatments, respectively. This result demonstrated that the stocks of SOC and TN in WO were clearly lower than those of AF and CR and that the walnut-based agroforestry system was more beneficial than walnut monoculture in terms of SOC and TN sequestration. Owing to the short-term intercropping practice, the changes in SOC and TN stocks were slight in AF compared with those in CR. However, a significant decrease in SOC and TN stocks was observed during the conversion of cropland to walnut orchard after 7 years of management. We also found that land use types had no significant effect on soil C/N ratio. These findings demonstrated that intercropping between walnut rows can potentially maintain

  14. Seasonal variation in water uptake patterns of three plant species based on stable isotopes in the semi-arid Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jian; Fu, Bojie; Lu, Nan; Zhang, Li

    2017-12-31

    Water is a limiting factor and significant driving force for ecosystem processes in arid and semi-arid areas. Knowledge of plant water uptake pattern is indispensable for understanding soil-plant interactions and species coexistence. The 'Grain for Green' project that started in 1999 in the Loess Plateau of China has led to large scale vegetation change. However, little is known about the water uptake patterns of the main plant species that inhabit in this region. In this study, the seasonal variations in water uptake patterns of three representative plant species, Stipa bungeana, Artemisia gmelinii and Vitex negundo, that are widely distributed in the semi-arid area of the Loess Plateau, were identified by using dual stable isotopes of δ(2)H and δ(18)O in plant and soil water coupled with a Bayesian mixing model MixSIAR. The soil water at the 0-120cm depth contributed 79.54±6.05% and 79.94±8.81% of the total water uptake of S. bungeana and A. gmelinii, respectively, in the growing season. The 0-40cm soil contributed the most water in July (74.20±15.20%), and the largest proportion of water (33.10±15.20%) was derived from 120-300cm soils in August for A. gmelinii. However, V. negundo obtained water predominantly from surface soil horizons (0-40cm) and then switched to deep soil layers (120-300cm) as the season progressed. This suggested that V. negundo has a greater degree of ecological plasticity as it could explore water sources from deeper soils as the water stress increased. This capacity can mainly be attributed to its functionally dimorphic root system. V. negundo may have a competitive advantage when encountering short-term drought. The ecological plasticity of plant water use needs to be considered in plant species selection and ecological management and restoration of the arid and semi-arid ecosystems in the Loess Plateau. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. [Effects of topographies and land uses on soil organic carbon in subsurface in hilly region of Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Sun, Wen-Yi; Guo, Sheng-Li; Zhou, Xiao-Gang

    2010-11-01

    It is important to accurately assess soil carbon sequestration potential and the global carbon cycle to study effects of topographies and land uses on soil profile organic carbon in subsurface. In Yangou watershed of hilly region of Loess Plateau, based on three topographies (tableland, slopeland, gullyland) and seven land uses (farmland, orchard, secondary grassland, manmade and secondary shrubland and manmade and secondary woodland), 53 soil profiles (0-100 cm) in six soil depths up to 898 samples were collected to investigate effects of topographies and land uses on contents and spatial distribution of soil organic carbon in subsurface. Topographies, land uses, depths and interaction of them significantly (p < 0.01) affected spatial distribution of soil organic carbon in subsurface in Yangou watershed. SOC had different spatial distribution in topographies between subsurface (10-100 cm) and surface (0-10 cm). In 0-10 cm soil layer, the content of soil organic carbon of slopeland (10.7 g x kg(-1)) was the highest, followed by gullyland (8.9 g x kg(-1)), the content of SOC of tableland (4.4 g x kg(-1)) was the lowest. But the contents of SOC every layer in 10-100 cm expressed as gullyland > slopeland > tableland trends, the average contents of SOC were 5.6 g x kg(-1), 4.5 g x kg(-1) and 3.2 g x kg(-1). Land uses significantly (p < 0.05) affected spatial distribution of SOC in subsurface in Yangou watershed. Compared with farmland, the content of SOC of orchard in 0-40 cm decreased by 21%, yet increased by 13% in 80-100 cm. The content of SOC of manmade shrubland (2.6 g x kg(-1)) was 19% lower than that of farmland, while SOC content of manmade woodland (3.4 g x kg(-1)) was 6% higher than that of farmland. The content of SOC of secondary shrubland was higher than that of any other land uses in 20-100 cm, but it is significantly (p < 0.05) different form other land uses in 40-100 cm, the average contents was 5.3 g x kg(-1), which was 66% higher than that of farmland

  16. Land preparation techniques and vegetation type commonly determine soil conditions in a typical hilly watershed, Loess Plateau of China.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Yang; Wei, Wei; Chen, Liding; Feng, Tianjiao; Qin, Wei

    2017-04-01

    Soil is a key component of the earth, it plays important role in regulating the chemical, hydrological and biological cycles. Land preparation techniques (e.g., leveled ditches, leveled benches, adversely graded tableland and fish-scale pits) is one of the most effective ecological engineering practices to reduce water erosion. Land preparation greatly affects soil physicochemical properties, soil moisture variation, runoff and sediment prevention. This study investigated the influence of different land preparation techniques on soil conditions, runoff and erosion during vegetation restoration, which remained poorly understand to date. Soil samples were collected from depths of 0-10 cm, 10-20 cm, 20-40 cm, 40-60 cm, 60-80 cm and 80-100 cm, in the typical hilly watershed of Dingxi City, Loess Plateau. Soil bulk density (BD), soil organic matter (SOM) and total nitrogen (TN) were determined for different land preparations and vegetation type (Caragana korshinskii, Platycladus orientalis, Pinus tabulaeformis and Prunus armeniaca) combinations. Fractal theory was used to analyze the soil particle size distribution (PSD). Redundancy analyses were conducted to distinguish the relationships between soil conditions and the factors influencing them (land preparation and vegetation). The analysis of runoff coefficient and erosion rates were calculated considering the monitoring time. The results indicated that: 1) the effect of land preparation on soil properties and PSD varies with soil depth. For each land preparation category, SOM and TN values showed a significant difference between the top soil layer and the underlying soil depth. 2) The 20 cm soil layer was a boundary that distinguished the explanatory factors, with land preparation and vegetation type as the controlling factors in the 0-20 cm and 20-100 cm soil layers, respectively. Land preparation and vegetation significantly affected soil properties in the surface soil layer, while land preparation (41.6%) was the

  17. The use of the rock magnetic and paleomagnetic data for the Loess Plateau deposits in China for their climatologic and chronologic correlation to the oxygen isotopic timescale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bol'shakov, V. A.

    2017-03-01

    The results of numerous rock magnetic and paleomagnetic studies of Pleistocene deposits in the Loess Plateau in China which were obtained over a period of a few decades are analyzed. It is shown that two important problems remain unsolved. These are (1) developing the particular mechanism of "magnetic enhancement" in the soils, probably with a more accurate assessment of the level of effect of various natural factors causing qualitative changes in the magnetic fraction of the soil. Here, both the chemical composition of the newly crystallized magnetic mineral causing this enhancement and the parameters of the corresponding secondary (chemical) magnetization process should be determined. (2) Fixing the exact climate-stratigraphic position of the main paleomagnetic benchmarks of the Pleistocene, primarily the Matuyama-Brunhes reversal. In contrast to many conclusions, it is inferred that the Pleistocene paleoclimatic loess-soil record in China generally disagrees with the oxygen isotope (OI) record in the deep-sea sediments. This inconsistency is particularly significant for the Matuyama chron deposits.

  18. Estimating groundwater recharge following land-use change using chloride mass balance of soil profiles: a case study at Guyuan and Xifeng in the Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Tianming; Pang, Zhonghe

    2011-02-01

    Groundwater recharge is affected by land use in (semi)arid areas. A new application of the chloride-mass-balance approach has been developed to estimate the reduction in groundwater recharge following land-use change by comparing chloride concentrations below the root zone and above the base of the chloride accumulation zone, before and after the land-use conversion. Two sites in the Loess Plateau of central China have been selected for study. Results from the Guyuan terrace region show that groundwater recharge beneath natural sparse small-grass was 100 mm/year, but the conversion to winter wheat about 100 years ago has reduced groundwater recharge to 55 mm/year. At the Xifeng Loess Plain the conversion from winter wheat, with groundwater recharge at 33 mm/year, to apple orchard 7 years ago has led to chloride accumulation to 5 m below land surface, suggesting the recharge rate has been reduced. This is in agreement with previous studies in these areas which have shown that the regional afforestation and other land-use conversions have resulted in deep soil desiccation and have caused an upper boundary to form with low matrix potential, thus preventing the soil moisture from actually recharging the aquifer.

  19. Vertical Profiles of Soil Water Content as Influenced by Environmental Factors in a Small Catchment on the Hilly-Gully Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Bing; Wen, Fenxiang; Wu, Jiangtao; Wang, Xiaojun; Hu, Yani

    2014-01-01

    Characterization of soil water content (SWC) profiles at catchment scale has profound implications for understanding hydrological processes of the terrestrial water cycle, thereby contributing to sustainable water management and ecological restoration in arid and semi-arid regions. This study described the vertical profiles of SWC at the small catchment scale on the hilly and gully Loess Plateau in Northeast China, and evaluated the influences of selected environmental factors (land-use type, topography and landform) on average SWC within 300 cm depth. Soils were sampled from 101 points across a small catchment before and after the rainy season. Cluster analysis showed that soil profiles with high-level SWC in a stable trend (from top to bottom) were most commonly present in the catchment, especially in the gully related to terrace. Woodland soil profiles had low-level SWC with vertical variations in a descending or stable trend. Most abandoned farmland and grassland soil profiles had medium-level SWC with vertical variations in varying trends. No soil profiles had low-level SWC with vertical variations in an ascending trend. Multi-regression analysis showed that average SWC was significantly affected by land-use type in different soil layers (0–20, 20–160, and 160–300 cm), generally in descending order of terrace, abandoned farmland, grassland, and woodland. There was a significant negative correlation between average SWC and gradient along the whole profile (P<0.05). Landform significantly affected SWC in the surface soil layer (0–20 cm) before the rainy season but throughout the whole profile after the rainy season, with lower levels on the ridge than in the gully. Altitude only strongly affected SWC after the rainy season. The results indicated that land-use type, gradient, landform, and altitude should be considered in spatial SWC estimation and sustainable water management in these small catchments on the Loess Plateau as well as in other complex

  20. Application of a modified distributed-dynamic erosion and sediment yield model in a typical watershed of a hilly and gully region, Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Lei; Liu, Xia; Ma, Xiaoyi

    2016-11-01

    Soil erosion not only results in the destruction of land resources and the decline of soil fertility, but also contributes to river channel sedimentation. In order to explore the spatiotemporal evolution of erosion and sediment yield before and after returning farmland in a typical watershed of the hilly and gully region (Chinese Loess Plateau), a distributed-dynamic model of sediment yield based on the Chinese Soil Loss Equation (CSLE) was established and modified to assess the effects of hydrological factors and human activities on erosion and sediment yield between 1995 and 2013. Results indicate that (1) the modified model has the characteristics of a simple algorithm, high accuracy, wide practicability and easy expansion, and can be applied to predict erosion and sediment yield in the study area, (2) soil erosion gradations are closely related to the spatial distribution of rainfall erosivity and land use patterns, and the current soil and water conservation measures are not efficient for high rainfall intensities, and (3) the average sediment yield rate before and after model modification in the most recent 5 years (in addition to 2013) is 4574.62 and 1696.1 Mg km-2, respectively, decreasing by about 35.4 and 78.2 % when compared to the early governance (1995-1998). However, in July 2013 the once-in-a-century storm is the most important reason for maximum sediment yield. Results may provide an effective and scientific basis for soil and water conservation planning and ecological construction of the hilly and gully region, Chinese Loess Plateau.

  1. Using dual isotopes to identify sources and transformations of nitrogen in water catchments with different land uses, Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Xing, Meng; Liu, Weiguo

    2016-01-01

    Nitrogen pollution in rivers is a research hotspot in the field of biogeochemistry. However, the types and sources of pollution have historically been poorly understood in the water catchments of the Loess Plateau in China. In this study, we have chosen the main waterway and four lesser branches of the Jinghe River that vary by land use. We investigated the concentrations and isotopic signatures of nitrogen in river water. Our results revealed that nitrate was the dominant nitrogen type in river catchments of the Loess Plateau. The δ(15)N and δ(18)O values showed that NO3 (-) ions in the studied river samples were derived from precipitation, manure, sewage, soil organic nitrogen, and synthetic NO3 (-) fertilizer. The δ(18)O-NO3 (-) values during July 2012 (mean ± SD = +18.1 ± 1.5‰) were higher than those during the September 2013 (mean ± SD = +7.8 ± 3.7‰), which indicated that mixing with atmospheric NO3 (-) resulted in the high δ(18)O values during July 2012. It appears that no intense nitrification and denitrification occurred in all five rivers according to the isotopic and chemical data. A Bayesian model was used to determine the contributions of four NO3 (-) sources to all five rivers. Results showed that source contributions differ significantly between July and September, and the four potential NO3 (-) sources also showed high variability between the different land use areas.

  2. Effects of straw and plastic film mulching on greenhouse gas emissions in Loess Plateau, China: A field study of 2 consecutive wheat-maize rotation cycles.

    PubMed

    Chen, Haixin; Liu, Jingjing; Zhang, Afeng; Chen, Jing; Cheng, Gong; Sun, Benhua; Pi, Xiaomin; Dyck, Miles; Si, Bingcheng; Zhao, Ying; Feng, Hao

    2017-02-01

    Mulching practices have long been used to modify the soil temperature and moisture conditions and thus potentially improve crop production in dryland agriculture, but few studies have focused on mulching effects on soil gaseous emissions. We monitored annual greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions under the regime of straw and plastic film mulching using a closed chamber method on a typical winter-wheat (Triticum aestivum L. cv Xiaoyan 22) and summer-maize (Zea mays L. cv Qinlong 11) rotation field over two-year period in the Loess Plateau, northwestern China. The following four field treatments were included: T1 (control, no mulching), T2 (4000kgha(-1) wheat straw mulching, covering 100% of soil surface), T3 (half plastic film mulching, covering 50% of soil surface), and T4 (complete plastic film mulching, covering 100% of soil surface). Compared with the control, straw mulching decreased soil temperature and increased soil moisture, whereas plastic film mulching increased both soil temperature and moisture. Accordingly, straw mulching increased annual crop yields over both cycles, while plastic film mulching significantly enhanced annual crop yield over cycle 2. Compared to the no-mulching treatment, all mulching treatments increased soil CO2 emission over both cycles, and straw mulching increased soil CH4 absorption over both cycles, but patterns of soil N2O emissions under straw or film mulching are not consistent. Overall, compared to T1, annual GHG intensity was significantly decreased by 106%, 24% and 26% under T2, T3 and T4 over cycle 1, respectively; and by 20%, 51% and 29% under T2, T3 and T4 over cycle 2, respectively. Considering the additional cost and environmental issues associated with plastic film mulching, the application of straw mulching might achieve a balance between food security and GHG emissions in the Chinese Loess Plateau. However, further research is required to investigate the perennial influence of different mulching applications.

  3. Dynamics of CO2 fluxes and environmental responses in the rain-fed winter wheat ecosystem of the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wen; Liao, Yuncheng; Wen, Xiaoxia; Guo, Qiang

    2013-09-01

    Chinese Loess Plateau plays an important role in carbon balance of terrestrial ecosystems. Continuous measurement of CO2 fluxes in cropland ecosystem is of great significance to accurately evaluate the carbon sequestration potential and to better explain the carbon cycle process in this region. By using the eddy covariance system we conducted a long-term (from Sep 2009 to Jun 2010) CO2 fluxes measurement in the rain-fed winter wheat field of the Chinese Loess Plateau and elaborated the responses of CO2 fluxes to environmental factors. The results show that the winter wheat ecosystem has distinct seasonal dynamics of CO2 fluxes. The total net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) of -218.9±11.5 gC m(-2) in the growing season, however, after considering the harvested grain, the agro-ecosystem turned into a weak carbon sink (-36.2 gC m(-2)). On the other hand, the responses of CO2 fluxes to environmental factors depended on different growth stages of winter wheat and different ranges of environmental variables, suggesting that the variations in CO2 exchange were sensitive to the changes in controlling factors. Particularly, we found the pulse response of ecosystem respiration (Reco) to a large rainfall event, and the strong fluctuations of CO2 fluxes usually appeared after effective rainfall events (daily precipitation > 5 mm) during middle growing season. Such phenomenon also occurred in the case of the drastic changes in air temperature and within 5 days after field management (e.g. tillage and plough). Copyright © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Beryllium-7 measurements of wind erosion on sloping fields in the wind-water erosion crisscross region on the Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jiaqiong; Yang, Mingyi; Deng, Xinxin; Liu, Zhang; Zhang, Fengbao; Zhou, Weiying

    2017-09-29

    Soil erosion is complex in the wind-water erosion crisscross region of the Chinese Loess Plateau, as interleaving of wind and water erosion occurs on both temporal and spatial scales. It is difficult to distinguish wind erosion from the total erosion in previous studies due to the untraceable of aeolian particles and the limitation of feasible methods and techniques. This study used beryllium-7 measurements to study wind erosion in the wind-water erosion crisscross region on the Chinese Loess Plateau arms to delineate wind erosion distribution, to analyze its implication to erosive winds and surface microrelief, and to determine correlations between erosion rates and slope gradients. Results obtained using beryllium-7 measurements based on observation plots were verified with saltating particle collection method, and were also verified on a field scale. Results indicated that the effective resultant erosion wind was from northward, which was proved by the eight-directional distributed saltating particles. The microrelief of the ground surface contributed to the formation of high or low erosion centers. Wind erosion rates increased with a linear (R(2)≥0.95) or exponential (R(2)≥0.83) fitting increase in the slope gradients as reported in previous studies. Compared to wind erosion on field scale, both the plots and fields exhibited similar distribution patterns in wind erosion isolines. We also determined that the wind erosion rate for two fields estimated, based on equations developed from plot scale was acceptable. This study validates the feasibility of beryllium-7 measurements for soil-wind erosion field experiments and the potential to expand this approach to real field conditions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Vertical profiles of soil water content as influenced by environmental factors in a small catchment on the hilly-gully Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bing; Wen, Fenxiang; Wu, Jiangtao; Wang, Xiaojun; Hu, Yani

    2014-01-01

    Characterization of soil water content (SWC) profiles at catchment scale has profound implications for understanding hydrological processes of the terrestrial water cycle, thereby contributing to sustainable water management and ecological restoration in arid and semi-arid regions. This study described the vertical profiles of SWC at the small catchment scale on the hilly and gully Loess Plateau in Northeast China, and evaluated the influences of selected environmental factors (land-use type, topography and landform) on average SWC within 300 cm depth. Soils were sampled from 101 points across a small catchment before and after the rainy season. Cluster analysis showed that soil profiles with high-level SWC in a stable trend (from top to bottom) were most commonly present in the catchment, especially in the gully related to terrace. Woodland soil profiles had low-level SWC with vertical variations in a descending or stable trend. Most abandoned farmland and grassland soil profiles had medium-level SWC with vertical variations in varying trends. No soil profiles had low-level SWC with vertical variations in an ascending trend. Multi-regression analysis showed that average SWC was significantly affected by land-use type in different soil layers (0-20, 20-160, and 160-300 cm), generally in descending order of terrace, abandoned farmland, grassland, and woodland. There was a significant negative correlation between average SWC and gradient along the whole profile (P<0.05). Landform significantly affected SWC in the surface soil layer (0-20 cm) before the rainy season but throughout the whole profile after the rainy season, with lower levels on the ridge than in the gully. Altitude only strongly affected SWC after the rainy season. The results indicated that land-use type, gradient, landform, and altitude should be considered in spatial SWC estimation and sustainable water management in these small catchments on the Loess Plateau as well as in other complex terrains

  6. Seasonal and interannual variation of radiation and energy fluxes over a rain-fed cropland in the semi-arid area of Loess Plateau, northwestern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Xing; Yu, Ye; Chen, Jinbei; Zhang, Tangtang; Li, Zhenchao

    2016-07-01

    Understanding the land-atmosphere interactions over the semi-arid area of Loess Plateau is important due to its special climate and unique underlying surface. In this study, two years' micrometeorological and energy flux observations from the Pingliang Land Surface Process & Severe Weather Research Station, CAS were used to investigate the seasonal and interannual variations of radiation budget and energy fluxes over a rain-fed cropland in the semi-arid area of Loess Plateau, with an emphasis on the influence of rain, soil moisture and agricultural production activities (such as crop type and harvest time) on the energy partitioning as well as the surface energy balance. The results revealed large annual variations in the seasonal distribution of precipitation, which gave rise to significant seasonal and interannual variations in soil moisture. Soil moisture was the main factor affecting radiation budget and energy partitioning. There was a negatively linear relationship between the albedo and the soil moisture. The main consumer of available energy varied among months and years with an apparent water stress threshold value of ca. 0.12 m3 m- 3, and the evapotranspiration was suppressed especially during the growing season. On an annual scale, the largest consumer of midday net radiation was sensible heat flux in 2010-2011, while it was latent heat flux in 2011-2012, which accounted for about 35% and 40% of the net radiation, respectively. The agricultural activity altered the sensitivity and variability of albedo to soil moisture, as well as energy partitioning patterns. The surface energy budget closures during Dec. 2010-Nov. 2011 and Dec. 2011-Nov. 2012 were 77.6% and 73.3%, respectively, after considering the soil heat storage. The closure was comparable to other sites in ChinaFLUX (49% to 81% of 8 sites). The patterns of energy partitioning and the water stress threshold found in the semi-arid cropland could be used to evaluate and improve land surface models.

  7. Contribution analysis of the long-term changes in seasonal runoff on the Loess Plateau, China, using eight Budyko-based methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Jingwen; Miao, Chiyuan; Wang, Yamei; Duan, Qingyun; Zhang, Xiaoming

    2017-02-01

    Over the last five decades, runoff from the Loess Plateau has greatly decreased because of changes in the climate and intensive human activities. Comprehending and distinguishing the relative impacts of climate change and human activities on runoff is essential to adapt water-resource management and soil-and-water conservation projects to climate change. In this study, we used a technique involving integrated climate elasticity and eight Budyko-based methods to assess the relative impacts of climate change and human activities on runoff changes during high-flow and low-flow seasons in 17 catchments across the Loess Plateau during the period of 1961-2013. The results showed that, on average, runoff in the high-flow season exhibited a significant downward trend in 15/17 catchments, with an average decrease of 0.63 mm/yr. In contrast, the decrease was 0.29 mm/yr for the low-flow season. We also found that changes in runoff were more sensitive to variations in precipitation than variations in potential evapotranspiration, in both high-flow and low-flow seasons. The quantitative contributions from climate change and human activities as calculated by the eight Budyko-based methods were relatively similar during the high-flow season, but varied across catchments in the low-flow season. The results showed that, during the high-flow season, human activities had a greater impact on runoff changes than climate change, accounting for about 73% of the total decrease. However, in the low-flow season, which exhibits significantly increased potential evapotranspiration (p < 0.01) and decreased precipitation, the influence of climate change on runoff changes was greater than the influence of human activities. The discrepancies between the results obtained via eight Budyko-based methods and the resulting uncertainties in the quantitative attributions are also discussed.

  8. Evaluating the eco-hydrologic impacts of soil and water conservation in the Jinghe River Basin of Loess Plateau, China, using an eco-hydrologic model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peng, Hui; Jia, Yangwen; Tague, Christina; Slaughter, Peter

    2016-04-01

    Since the 1950s, soil and water conservation has been widely applied in the Loess Plateau in China. We examine the eco-hydrologic responses to soil and water conservation in the Jinghe River Basin of Loess Plateau in two scales - catchment scale and basin scale, using Regional Hydro-Ecologic Simulation System (RHESSys). In the catchment scale, we apply the model to disentangle the relative roles played by inter-annual variation and longer-term trends in climate drivers and re-growth following reforestation. Our model-based analysis of trends in forest water use highlights the differences in the response of control and reforested catchments to similar declines in annual precipitation in this region over the past decades. Model estimates show that while reforestation does increase vegetation water use, the impacts on streamflow are small relative to the impact of precipitation trends on streamflow, and forest water use. Results also show that the greatest impact of reforestation is likely to be on groundwater recharge but also suggest that evaporation rather than transpiration is a significant contributor to hydrologic change. In the basin scales, we applied the modified model to evaluate the impacts of soil and water conservation measures on streamflow. Results demonstrate that the soil and water conservation decreased annual streamflow by 8% (0.1 billion m3), with the largest decrease occurring in the 2000s. Model estimates also suggest that soil and water conservation engineering has greater impacts than vegetation recovery. This study offers scientific support for soil and water conservation planning and management in this region.

  9. Precipitation gradient determines the tradeoff between soil moisture and soil organic carbon, total nitrogen, and species richness in the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Cong; Wang, Shuai; Fu, Bojie; Li, Zongshan; Wu, Xing; Tang, Qiang

    2017-01-01

    A tight coupling exists between biogeochemical cycles and water availability in drylands. However, studies regarding the coupling among soil moisture (SM), soil carbon/nitrogen, and plants are rare in the literature, and clarifying these relationships changing with climate gradient is challenging. Thus, soil organic carbon (SOC), total nitrogen (TN), and species richness (SR) were selected as soil-plant system variables, and the tradeoff relationships between SM and these variables and their variations along the precipitation gradient were quantified in the Loess Plateau, China. Results showed these variables increased linearly along the precipitation gradient in the woodland, shrubland, and grassland, respectively, except for the SR in the woodland and grassland, and SOC in the grassland (p>0.05). Correlation analysis showed that the SM-SOC and SM-TN tradeoffs were significantly correlated with mean annual precipitation (MAP) across the three vegetation types, and SM-SR tradeoff was significantly correlated with MAP in grassland and woodland. The linear piece-wise quantile regression was applied to determine the inflection points of these tradeoffs responses to the precipitation gradient. The inflection point for the SM-SOC tradeoff was detected at MAP=570mm; no inflection point was detected for SM-TN tradeoff; SM-SR tradeoff variation trends were different in the woodland and grassland, and the inflection points were detected at MAP=380mm and MAP=570mm, respectively. Before the turning point, constraint exerted by soil moisture on SOC and SR existed in the relatively arid regions, while the constraint disappears or is lessened in the relatively humid regions in this study. The results demonstrate the tradeoff revealed obvious trends along the precipitation gradient and were affected by vegetation type. Consequently, tradeoffs could be an ecological indicator and tool for restoration management in the Loess Plateau. In further study, the mechanism of how the

  10. [Degradation characteristics, patterns, and processes of lakeside wetland in Napahai of northwest Yunnan Plateau, Southwest China].

    PubMed

    Shang, Wen; Yang, Yong-Xing

    2012-12-01

    Two-way indicator species analysis (TWINSPAN) and canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) were employed to analyze the degradation characteristics, patterns, and processes of lakeside wetland in Napahai of northwest Yunnan Plateau. The plant communities in the lakeside wetland could be classified into four associations, according to the TWINSPAN results. The succession patterns of the plant community were represented by aquatic plant community --> swamp plant community --> swamp meadow plant community --> meadow plant community. During the processes of succession, the plant community coverage, density, Shannon diversity index, species richness, and plant aboveground biomass increased, whereas the community height decreased. The succession of the plant hydro-ecotypes followed the sequence of aquatic --> helophyte --> hygrophyte --> mesophyte. With the succession of the plant community, the wetland water quality indices salinity, alkalinity, and hardness decreased but ammonium nitrogen and total phosphorus concentrations increased, while total nitrogen and nitrate nitrogen concentrations showed no significant changes. Meanwhile, the soil pH and soil organic matter and total nitrogen contents decreased gradually, soil total phosphorous and potassium contents were increasing, whereas soil available phosphorous and potassium contents decreased after an initial increase. The CCA showed that the community species composition and structure were mainly affected by the wetland water gradient. The soil pH and total phosphorus content and the water total nitrogen and ammonium nitrogen concentrations had significant effects on the wetland plant species distribution and plant community succession.

  11. Tectonic and climatic controls on provenance changes of fine-grained dust on the Chinese Loess Plateau since the late Oligocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Yan; Ma, Long; Sun, Youbin

    2017-03-01

    Provenance variations of Late Cenozoic aeolian deposits on the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) were closely associated with regional tectonic activity and climatic change. Previous studies, however, have not reached a consensus regarding the nature and origin of past variations in source. This study presents the results of oxygen isotope (δ18O) analyses of fine-grained quartz (<16 μm) extracted from aeolian deposits on the CLP since the late Oligocene. The quartz δ18O variations exhibit distinct trends and patterns of variation over six time intervals (i.e. 25-20, 20-12, 12-7, 7-2.6, 2.6-1.2, and 1.2-0 Ma). In comparison with quartz δ18O results from East Asian dust sources and previous provenance studies of the same aeolian sequences, we identify three significant composition changes of the dust source system at around 20, 12, and 2.6 Ma. The dust source system was also rather unstable at 25-20, 12-7 and 1.2-0 Ma, while three stable stages occurred at 20-12, 7-2.6, and 2.6-1.2 Ma. The correlation between the provenance changes and paleoclimatic and tectonic evidence suggests that both tectonic and climatic factors were important in driving the observed stepwise provenance changes. However, the changes were mainly constrained by Tibetan Plateau uplift prior to the Quaternary, and by global climate change thereafter.

  12. Dynamic analysis of eco-environmental changes based on remote sensing and geographic information system: an example in Longdong region of the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, L. C.; Dong, X. F.; Wang, J. H.

    2007-11-01

    The Chinese Loess Plateau is suffering from severe soil erosion. The eco-environmental changes of the plateau are believed to have an important influence on global eco-environmental sustainability; hence, this problem has attracted considerable attention from scientists around the world. This study has two purposes; application of remote sensing (RS) and geographic information system (GIS) techniques in the dynamic analysis of eco-environmental changes in the semiarid zone; and using the Longdong region of the Chinese Loess Plateau as an example, to make dynamic analysis of the eco-environmental changes of the region during the 1986 2004 period and identify controlling factors. Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) data at a spatial resolution of 30 m were used for analysis. Two training areas were selected in Jingning and Qingcheng counties for analysis using 10-m resolution SPOT and Landsat TM data. The satellite RS images were obtained from the Institute of Remote Sensing Application (IRSA), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). Each images was rectified by Albers Equal Area Conic projection based on 1:50,000 scale topographic maps after spectrum preparation of the images. To make the precision within 1 or 2 pixels, the accurate coordinative control points of the two systems were identified. Then the interpretation key was established based on the land use/cover survey in the study area. The images were classified into six primary environmental types (farmland, forest, grassland, water, construction area, and desert) and 25 sub-types using a visual image interactive interpretation method to obtain vector and attribute data. The resultant accuracy of the land use/cover classification reached 95%. Finally, the transformation areas and ratios of various eco-environmental types in the region were calculated to obtain the transition matrixes of eco-environmental types in the two training areas, Jingning and Qingcheng. This study demonstrates that satellite RS and GIS techniques

  13. A storm-based CSLE incorporating the modified SCS-CN method for soil loss prediction on the Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Wenhai; Huang, Mingbin

    2017-04-01

    The Chinese Loess Plateau is one of the most erodible areas in the world. In order to reduce soil and water losses, suitable conservation practices need to be designed. For this purpose, there is an increasing demand for an appropriate model that can accurately predict storm-based surface runoff and soil losses on the Loess Plateau. The Chinese Soil Loss Equation (CSLE) has been widely used in this region to assess soil losses from different land use types. However, the CSLE was intended only to predict the mean annual gross soil loss. In this study, a CSLE was proposed that would be storm-based and that introduced a new rainfall-runoff erosivity factor. A dataset was compiled that comprised measurements of soil losses during individual storms from three runoff-erosion plots in each of three different watersheds in the gully region of the Plateau for 3-7 years in three different time periods (1956-1959; 1973-1980; 2010-13). The accuracy of the soil loss predictions made by the new storm-based CSLE was determined using the data for the six plots in two of the watersheds measured during 165 storm-runoff events. The performance of the storm-based CSLE was further compared with the performance of the storm-based Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) for the same six plots. During the calibration (83 storms) and validation (82 storms) of the storm-based CSLE, the model efficiency, E, was 87.7% and 88.9%, respectively, while the root mean square error (RMSE) was 2.7 and 2.3 t ha-1 indicating a high degree of accuracy. Furthermore, the storm-based CSLE performed better than the storm-based RULSE (E: 75.8% and 70.3%; RMSE: 3.8 and 3.7 t ha-1, for the calibration and validation storms, respectively). The storm-based CSLE was then used to predict the soil losses from the three experimental plots in the third watershed. For these predictions, the model parameter values, previously determined by the calibration based on the data from the initial six plots, were used in

  14. The impact of environmental change and human land use on alluvial valleys in the Loess Plateau of China during the Middle Holocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosen, Arlene M.

    2008-10-01

    In recent years a growing number of studies have reported proxy evidence for Holocene climatic and environmental change on the Loess Plateau of north-central China. Pollen from lake cores and sediment analyses from loess sections firmly point to a warm-moist Mid-Holocene Climatic Optimum. Archaeological evidence indicates that at the same time, human agricultural settlements expanded into this area during the Middle Neolithic Period. A geoarchaeological study of sediment sections from several valleys within the catchment of the Yiluo River, Henan Province, indicates a sequence beginning with a stable landscape, soil development and high water tables in the Early Mid-Holocene, which was exploited by Early Neolithic millet farmers in the Peiligang Period. Subsequently, there was a rapid shift to episodes of hillslope erosion and increased valley alluviation in the later Mid-Holocene. The resulting alluvial sediments, dating from 5300/5010 cal. BC through 2130/1870 cal. BC, represent clay-rich water-logged deposits that contain sediment and phytolith evidence for the first rice paddy farming in this region. This coincides with the first migration of Neolithic rice farmers to the area in the Yangshao Period ca. 5500 cal. BC. These fills, temporally and stratigraphically linked to archaeological sites and human land-use practices, suggest that they originated as a direct result of human impact on the landscape. After ca. 2000 cal. BC, Holocene valley incision in this catchment led to narrowing floodplains, the disappearance of the valley wetland deposits, and a reduction in land available for paddy farming.

  15. Tracing the source of sedimentary organic carbon in the Loess Plateau of China: An integrated elemental ratio, stable carbon signatures, and radioactive isotopes approach.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chun; Dong, Yuting; Li, Zhongwu; Chang, Xiaofeng; Nie, Xiaodong; Liu, Lin; Xiao, Haibing; Bashir, Hassan

    2017-02-01

    Soil erosion, which will induce the redistribution of soil and associated soil organic carbon (SOC) on the Earth's surface, is of critically importance for biogeochemical cycling of essential elements and terrestrial carbon sequestration. Despite the importance of soil erosion, surprisingly few studies have evaluated the sources of eroded carbon (C). This study used natural abundance levels of the stable isotope signature ((13)C) and radioactive isotopes ((137)Cs and (210)Pbex), along with elements ratio (C/N) based on a two end member mixing model to qualitatively and quantitatively identify the sources of sedimentary OC retained by check dam in the Qiaozigou small watershed in the Loess Plateau, China. Sediment profiles (0-200 cm) captured at natural depositional area of the basin was compared to possible source materials, which included: superficial Loess mineral soils (0-20 cm) from three land use types [i.e., grassland (Medicago sativa), forestland (Robinia pseudoacacia.), shrubland (Prunus sibirica), and gully land (Loess parent material.)]. The results demonstrated that SOC in sediments showed significantly negative correlation with pH (P < 0.01), and positive correlation with soil water content (SWC) (P < 0.05). The sedimentary OC was not derived from grasslands or gullies. Forestland and shrubland were two main sources of eroded organic carbon within the surface sediment (0-60 cm deep), except for that in the 20-40 cm soil layer. Radionuclides analyses also implied that the surface sediments retained by check-dams mainly originated from soils of forestland and shrubland. Results of the two end-member mixing model demonstrated that more than 50% SOC (mean probability estimate (MPE) 50.13% via (13)C and 60.53% via C/N) in surface sediment (0-20 cm deep) derived from forestland, whereas subsurface sedimentary SOC (20-200 cm) mainly resulted from shrubland (MPE > 50%). Although uncertainties on the sources of SOC in deep soils exist, the soil

  16. An Upscaling Method for Cover-Management Factor and Its Application in the Loess Plateau of China

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Wenwu; Fu, Bojie; Qiu, Yang

    2013-01-01

    The cover-management factor (C-factor) is important for studying soil erosion. In addition, it is important to use sampling plot data to estimate the regional C-factor when assessing erosion and soil conservation. Here, the loess hill and gully region in Ansai County, China, was studied to determine a method for computing the C-factor. This C-factor is used in the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) at a regional scale. After upscaling the slope-scale computational equation, the C-factor for Ansai County was calculated by using the soil loss ratio, precipitation and land use/cover type. The multi-year mean C-factor for Ansai County was 0.36. The C-factor values were greater in the eastern region of the county than in the western region. In addition, the lowest C-factor values were found in the southern region of the county near its southern border. These spatial differences were consistent with the spatial distribution of the soil loess ratios across areas with different land uses. Additional research is needed to determine the effects of seasonal vegetation growth changes on the C-factor, and the C-factor upscaling uncertainties at a regional scale. PMID:24113551

  17. Integrating a mini catchment with mulching for soil water management in a sloping jujube orchard on the semiarid Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Hongchen; Zhao, Xining; Gao, Xiaodong

    2015-04-01

    Conserving more soil water is of great importance to the success of arid and semiarid orchards. On the hilly areas of the Loess Plateau of China, mini catchments, named fish-scale pits, are widely used in orchards for collecting surface runoff to infiltrate more soil water. However, the flat surface inside fish-scale pits would increase soil evaporation during non-rainfall periods. Here we integrated fish-scale pits with mulching, a popular meanings to reduce soil evaporation, to test whether this integration could improve soil water conservation. To this end, we observed soil water in the 0-180 cm in a typical rain fed jujube orchard in the hilly region of the Loess Plateau. Four different treatments with three replicates of each were established including fish-scale pit with branch mulching (FB), fish-scale pit with straw mulching (FS), fish-scale pit without mulching (F) and no fish-scale pit and no mulching (CK). The results showed that the treatments FB, FS, and F increased soil water storages (SWS) in the 0-180 cm by 14.23%, 9.35% and 4.82%, respectively, compared to the CK during the growing season. It is noteworthy that the increases of SWS were mainly in the 0-100cm indicating relatively low levels of water was supplied by rainfall infiltration beneath. During the dry season (June), an apparent soil water deficit was observed for all treatments. Throughout the wet season (July and August) soil water was greatly compensated. However, soil water deficit occurred again in the dry month of September. An index was used to represent the soil water supply from rainfall infiltration denoted WS. During the growing season the FB and FS treatments showed positive WS in the whole profile while the F treatment showed positive values only in the 0-100 cm. However, positive WS values were only found in the 0-40 cm for the CK treatment. In conclusion, integrating fish-scale pits with branch/straw mulching could conserve significantly more soil water by increasing

  18. Impact of LUCC on streamflow based on the SWAT model over the Wei River basin on the Loess Plateau in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Hong; Sun, Fubao; Xia, Jun; Liu, Wenbin

    2017-04-01

    Under the Grain for Green Project in China, vegetation recovery construction has been widely implemented on the Loess Plateau for the purpose of soil and water conservation. Now it is becoming controversial whether the recovery construction involving vegetation, particularly forest, is reducing the streamflow in the rivers of the Yellow River basin. In this study, we chose the Wei River, the largest branch of the Yellow River, with revegetated construction area as the study area. To do that, we apply the widely used Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) model for the upper and middle reaches of the Wei River basin. The SWAT model was forced with daily observed meteorological forcings (1960-2009) calibrated against daily streamflow for 1960-1969, validated for the period of 1970-1979, and used for analysis for 1980-2009. To investigate the impact of LUCC (land use and land cover change) on the streamflow, we firstly use two observed land use maps from 1980 and 2005 that are based on national land survey statistics merged with satellite observations. We found that the mean streamflow generated by using the 2005 land use map decreased in comparison with that using the 1980 one, with the same meteorological forcings. Of particular interest here is that the streamflow decreased on agricultural land but increased in forest areas. More specifically, the surface runoff, soil flow, and baseflow all decreased on agricultural land, while the soil flow and baseflow of forest areas increased. To investigate that, we then designed five scenarios: (S1) the present land use (1980) and (S2) 10 %, (S3) 20 %, (S4) 40 %, and (S5) 100 % of agricultural land that was converted into mixed forest. We found that the streamflow consistently increased with agricultural land converted into forest by about 7.4 mm per 10 %. Our modeling results suggest that forest recovery construction has a positive impact on both soil flow and baseflow by compensating for reduced surface runoff, which leads

  19. Effects of Revegetation on Soil Organic Carbon Storage and Erosion-Induced Carbon Loss under Extreme Rainstorms in the Hill and Gully Region of the Loess Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yujin; Jiao, Juying; Wang, Zhijie; Cao, Binting; Wei, Yanhong; Hu, Shu

    2016-01-01

    Background: The Loess Plateau, an ecologically vulnerable region, has long been suffering from serious soil erosion. Revegetation has been implemented to control soil erosion and improve ecosystems in the Loess Plateau region through a series of ecological recovery programs. However, the increasing atmospheric CO2 as a result of human intervention is affecting the climate by global warming, resulting in the greater frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, such as storms that may weaken the effectiveness of revegetation and cause severe soil erosion. Most research to date has evaluated the effectiveness of revegetation on soil properties and soil erosion of different land use or vegetation types. Here, we study the effect of revegetation on soil organic carbon (SOC) storage and erosion-induced carbon loss related to different plant communities, particularly under extreme rainstorm events. Materials and methods: The erosion-pin method was used to quantify soil erosion, and soil samples were taken at soil depths of 0–5 cm, 5–10 cm and 10–20 cm to determine the SOC content for 13 typical hillside revegetation communities in the year of 2013, which had the highest rainfall with broad range, long duration and high intensity since 1945, in the Yanhe watershed. Results and discussion: The SOC concentrations of all plant communities increased with soil depth when compared with slope cropland, and significant increases (p < 0.05) were observed for most shrub and forest communities, particularly for natural ones. Taking the natural secondary forest community as reference (i.e., soil loss and SOC loss were both 1.0), the relative soil loss and SOC loss of the other 12 plant communities in 2013 ranged from 1.5 to 9.4 and 0.30 to 1.73, respectively. Natural shrub and forest communities showed greater resistance to rainstorm erosion than grassland communities. The natural grassland communities with lower SOC content produced lower SOC loss even with higher soil

  20. Integrating a mini catchment with mulching for soil water management in a sloping jujube orchard on the semiarid Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, H. C.; Gao, X. D.; Zhao, X. N.; Wu, P. T.; Li, L. S.; Ling, Q.; Sun, W. H.

    2016-02-01

    Conserving more soil water is of great importance to the sustainability of arid and semiarid orchards. Here we integrated fish-scale pits, semicircular mini-catchments for hill slope runoff collection, with mulches to test their effects on soil water storage in a 12-year-old dryland jujube orchard on the Loess Plateau of China, by using soil water measurements from April 2013 to November 2014. This experiment included four treatments: fish-scale pits with branch mulching (FB), fish-scale pits with straw mulching (FS), fish-scale pits without mulching (F), and bare land treatment (CK). Soil water was measured using the TRIME®-IPH time-domain reflectometer (TDR) tool in 20 cm intervals down to a depth of 180 cm, and was measured once every 2 weeks in the 2013 and 2014 growing seasons. The results showed that fish-scale pits with mulching were better in soil water conservation. Average soil water storage (SWS, for short) of FB at soil layer depths of 0-180 cm increased by 14.23 % (2013) and 21.81 % (2014), respectively, compared to CK, but only increased by 4.82 % (2013) and 5.34 % (2014), respectively, for the F treatment. The degree of soil water compensation, WS, was employed here to represent to what extent soil water was recharged from precipitation at the end of the rainy season relative to that at the beginning of the rainy season. A positive (negative) WS larger (lower) soil water content at the end of rainy season than at the beginning. For the treatment of FB, the values of WS over the entire soil profile were greater than 0; for the treatment of F, negative values of WS were observed in depths of 60-100 cm in both years. However, the bare land treatment showed negative values in depths of 40-180 cm. This indicated that integrating fish-scale pits with mulching could significantly increase soil water storage by increasing infiltration and decreasing evaporation, and it showed greater soil water storage and degree of soil water compensation compared to fish

  1. Effects of Revegetation on Soil Organic Carbon Storage and Erosion-Induced Carbon Loss under Extreme Rainstorms in the Hill and Gully Region of the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Li, Yujin; Jiao, Juying; Wang, Zhijie; Cao, Binting; Wei, Yanhong; Hu, Shu

    2016-04-29

    The Loess Plateau, an ecologically vulnerable region, has long been suffering from serious soil erosion. Revegetation has been implemented to control soil erosion and improve ecosystems in the Loess Plateau region through a series of ecological recovery programs. However, the increasing atmospheric CO₂ as a result of human intervention is affecting the climate by global warming, resulting in the greater frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, such as storms that may weaken the effectiveness of revegetation and cause severe soil erosion. Most research to date has evaluated the effectiveness of revegetation on soil properties and soil erosion of different land use or vegetation types. Here, we study the effect of revegetation on soil organic carbon (SOC) storage and erosion-induced carbon loss related to different plant communities, particularly under extreme rainstorm events. The erosion-pin method was used to quantify soil erosion, and soil samples were taken at soil depths of 0-5 cm, 5-10 cm and 10-20 cm to determine the SOC content for 13 typical hillside revegetation communities in the year of 2013, which had the highest rainfall with broad range, long duration and high intensity since 1945, in the Yanhe watershed. The SOC concentrations of all plant communities increased with soil depth when compared with slope cropland, and significant increases (p < 0.05) were observed for most shrub and forest communities, particularly for natural ones. Taking the natural secondary forest community as reference (i.e., soil loss and SOC loss were both 1.0), the relative soil loss and SOC loss of the other 12 plant communities in 2013 ranged from 1.5 to 9.4 and 0.30 to 1.73, respectively. Natural shrub and forest communities showed greater resistance to rainstorm erosion than grassland communities. The natural grassland communities with lower SOC content produced lower SOC loss even with higher soil loss, natural secondary forest communities produced higher SOC

  2. Effects of different nitrogen reduction modes on yield of spring maize and nitrate - N residue in soils of the southern Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dang, Tinghui; Dong, Qiang

    2017-04-01

    【Objectives】Excessive fertilization in farmland caused nitrate leaching and accumulation in soil, which not only reduced the fertilizer utilization rate, but also had potential environmental problems. The effects of different nitrogen reduction modes on yield of spring maize and soil NO3-N in the southern Loess Plateau were discussed, and scientific fertilization suggestions were put forward, which were of great significance to instruct local maize fertilization and protect environment safety. 【Methods】A field experiment was conducted in the south of the Loess Plateau for three years. Spring maize was planted with half plastic film mulching in one crop per annum.The experiment consisted of 5 N fertilization treatments: control treatment (CK),conventional N fertilization rate (Con), optimal N fertilizationⅠ(OptⅠ), optimal N fertilizationⅡ (Opt Ⅱ) and optimal N fertilization Ⅲ(Opt Ⅲ), The changes of yield of maize, nitrogen uptake and soil NO3-N were measured.【Results】The results showed that, compared with the conventional fertilization, the grain yield and N uptake of maize had no significant change under the three optimal N fertilization application models, the rate of the grain yield's change is 100 300kg/hm2. Compared with the conventional fertilization, agronomic efficiency of fertilizer-nitrogen and N partial fertilizer productivity were increased by 20.2% 23.2% and 21.9% 23.7%, respectively. The accumulation of nitrate nitrogen in profile (0-200 cm) decreased by 90.7 kg / hm2, 97.3 kg / hm2, 100.7 kg / hm2 ,respectively, with the decreases of 44.7%, 47.9% and 49.6% respectively.【Conclusions】The optimum nitrogen fertilization pattern did not affect spring maize yield and N uptake, and could improve agronomic efficiency of fertilizer-nitrogen and N partial fertilizer productivity. Under the same nitrogen application rate, the effects of adding nitrification inhibitor or slow-release fertilizer on nitrate-N residue were not obvious

  3. Effects of land use/cover change and climate change on long-term changes of streamflow and sediment load in the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, G.

    2016-12-01

    Understanding the impacts of land use/cover change (LUCC) and climate change (CC) on hydrological responses is important to the design of water resources and land use management strategies, especially in water-limited areas. The China's Loess Plateau contributed nearly 90% of sediment load in the Yellow River, which was once the world's largest carrier of fluvial sediment. With the implementation of soil and water conservation measures (SWCM, especially terracing and construction of check dams) since 1950s and large-scale ecological restoration campaigns such as Grain-for Green project (i.e., returning sloping cropland to afforestation and pasture reestablishment) in 1999, the sediment load of the Yellow River has decreased by approximately 90% over the past 60 years. In this study, the changes of streamflow (Q), runoff coefficient (Rc), sediment load (S), sediment concentration (SC) and sediment coefficient (Cs) as well as precipitation (P) and potential evapotranspiration (E0) in 16 main catchments of the Loess Plateau during 1961-2011 were detected. The time-trend analysis method, Budyko model and elasticity approach were combined to quantify the effects of LUCC and CC on streamflow and sediment load changes. The Q, Rc, S, SC and Cs significantly decreased with average rate of 0.82 mm, 0.18%, 63.74×104 t, 3.63 kg m-3 and 0.37 t km-2 mm-1 per year, respectively, and the decrease was greatly evident after 1999. The annual P showed decreasing trend in most of the catchments and the E0 showed mixed changing trend, but the changes of them was significant in only two catchments. On average, the contributions of LUCC and CC to decreased Q were 64.75% and 35.25%, respectively, while those to decreased S were 71.75% and 28.25%, respectively. The P played a more important role than E0. The contribution of LUCC was positively correlated with the percentage of SWCM area. The Rc and Cs linearly decreased with the percentage of SWCM area, which was significant in nearly all

  4. Coupled effects of mulching and nitrogen fertilization on crop yield, residual soil nitrate, and water use efficiency of summer maize in the Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhanjun; Meng, Yan; Cai, Miao; Zhou, Jianbin

    2017-09-21

    Appropriate water-saving and nitrogen management strategies are critical for achieving sustainable agricultural development in dry sub-humid areas of the Chinese Loess Plateau. The present study was conducted in 2004, 2005, 2008, and 2012 based on a long-term field experiment and aimed to investigate the coupled impacts of mulching and N fertilization on maize yield, water use efficiency (WUE), and residual soil nitrate (RSN) accumulated in the soil profile (0-200 cm). The results demonstrated that mulch is conducive to increasing summer maize yield. The plastic film-mulched ridge and straw-mulched furrow (RF) treatment significantly increased maize yield across the studied period, while the straw mulch (SM) treatment did not significantly increase maize yield until the third experimental year. Compared with SM, the RF treatment showed more significant and positive effects on maize yield, WUE, and RSN accumulated in the 0-200 cm soil depth. N fertilization significantly increased maize yield and WUE, but no significant differences were observed when 120 and 240 kg N ha(-1) were applied. The N240 treatment was characterized by relatively high NO3(-)-N accumulation in 0-200 cm soil depth and low ratios of soil nitrate in the upper to the lower soil layers, indicating a considerable potential for NO3(-)-N leaching. Averaged across years, economic optimum N fertilizer rates (Nops) were 154, 148, and 150 kg N ha(-1) for the no mulch, RF, and SM treatments, respectively. This suggested that 25.8-51.2% of N rate can be reduced while maintaining an acceptably high maize yield. Additionally, understanding NO3(-)-N depth distribution in 0-100 cm soil profile can adequately predict and represent the characteristics of NO3(-)-N accumulated in the 100-200 cm and 0-200 cm soil layers because of their significant correlations, thus saving time and money. In conclusion, the practice of RF combined with properly reduced farmers' N rate (~ 150 kg N ha(-1)) is the preferred

  5. Pollution characteristics and ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in three land-use types on the southern Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yubin; Wu, Faqi; Zhang, Xinsheng; Cao, Ning

    2017-08-25

    The accumulation of heavy metals in agricultural soils has been the subject of great concern because these metals have the potential to be transferred to soil solutions and subsequently accumulate in the food chain. To study the persistence of trace metals in crop and orchard soils, representative surface soil samples were collected from terrace farmland that had been cultivated for various numbers of years (3, 8, 12, 15, and >20 years), terrace orchard land that had been cultivated for various numbers of years (4, 7, 10, 12, 15, 18, 25, and >30 years), and slope farmland with various gradients (3°, 5°, 8°, 12°, 15°, and 25°) and analyzed for heavy metals (As, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, and Zn). These samples were collected from Nihegou catchment of Chunhua county in the southern Loess Plateau of China. The six heavy metals demonstrated different trends with time or gradient in the three land-use types. The Cu and Zn contents of the soil were higher than the referee background values of the loessal soil, and the contents of Cr and Ni, and especially those of As and Hg, were lower. Cu was the only heavy metal that just met the Grade III Environmental Quality Standard for Soils of China, while the others reached grade I. Cu and Hg were considered contaminant factors and Hg was a moderate potential ecological risk factor in the catchment. Of the sites investigated, 89.5% fell into the category with a low degree of contamination (C d ) and rest were moderate, while all three land-use types had low potential ecological risk (RI). Changes of C d and RI were consistent with the cultivated time in the terrace farmland and terrace orchard land. Values of RI increased while C d decreased with the increasing of slope gradient in the slope farmland. Evaluating the ecological risk posed by heavy metals using more soil samples in a larger study area is necessary on the Loess Plateau of China.

  6. Spatial scale effect on sediment dynamics in basin-wide floods within a typical agro-watershed: A case study in the hilly loess region of the Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Le-Tao; Li, Zhan-Bin; Wang, Shan-Shan

    2016-12-01

    Scale issues, which have been extensively studied in the domain of soil erosion, are considerably significant in geomorphologic processes and hydrologic modelling. However, relatively scarce efforts have been made to quantify the spatial scale effect on event-based sediment dynamics in basin-wide floods. To address this issue, sediment-runoff yield data of 44 basin-wide flood events were collected from gauging stations at the Chabagou river basin, a typical agro-basin (unmanaged) in the hilly loess region of the Chinese Loess Plateau. Thus, the spatial scale effect on event-based sediment dynamics was investigated in the basin system across three different spatial scales from sublateral to basin outlet. Results showed that the event-based suspended sediment concentration, as well as the intra- and inter-scale flow-sediment relationships remained spatially constant. Hence, almost all the sediment-laden flows can reach at the detachment-limited maximum concentration across scales, specifically for hyperconcentrated flows. Consequently, limited influence was exerted by upstream sediment-laden flow on downstream sediment output, particularly for major sediment-producing events. However, flood peak discharge instead of total flood runoff amount can better interpret the dynamics of sediment yield across scales. As a composite parameter, the proposed stream energy factor combines flood runoff depth and flood peak discharge, thereby showing more advantages to describe the event-based inter-scale flow-sediment relationship than other flow-related variables. Overall, this study demonstrates the process-specific characteristics of soil erosion by water flows in the basin system. Therefore, event-based sediment control should be oriented by the process to cut off the connectivity of hyperconcentrated flows and redistribute the erosive energy of flowing water in terms of temporality and spatiality. Furthermore, evaluation of soil conservation benefits should be based on the

  7. Early Pleistocene Climate in Western Arid Central Asia Inferred from Loess-Palaeosol Sequences in North Iran

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, X.; Wei, H.; Khormali, F.; Taheri, M.; Danukalova, G.; Chen, F.

    2016-12-01

    Arid central Asia (ACA) is one of the most arid regions in the mid-latitudes and one of the main potential dust sources for the northern hemisphere. The relatively weak study of Pleistocene loess/dust records from in situ ACA hinders our comprehensive understanding of the spatio-temporal record of aeolian loess accumulation and long term climatic changes in Asia as a whole. The northern Iran is located in the westernmost part of ACA. The precipitation here is mainly influenced by the zonal Westerlies, while the dust is mainly transported by regional westerly and northwest-northeasterly winds. Previous loess study in northern Iran demonstrate that most of the loess deposits in this region accumulated during the middle to late Pleistocene, and that the palaeosol and loess layers formed during interglacial and glacial periods, respectively. However, the Early Pleistocene loess and paleoclimate history in this key region remains porely constraints. In this work we focus on the chronology, sedimentology, and paleoclimatic records of the early Pleistocene loess-paleosol sequence in north Iran. Multi-sedimentological evidence suggests the widely distributed red-coloured silt-dominated sediments, unconformably underlying the upper Pleistocene loess successions, in north Iran are aeolian in origin. The dominance of the coarse dust component in the loess samples suggests the main body of the Iranian loess was transported predominantly by the local low-level winds from proximal source regions. Magnetostratigraphy with biostratigraphic age constraints indiciate the red-colored loess accumulated between 2.4 and 1.81 Ma, an equivalent of the Wucheng formation on the Chinese Loess Plateau. Paleoclimatic proxy incies and micromorphological evidence reveals that the climate during the early Pleistocene in the western ACA was semi-arid, but wetter, warmer, and less windy than during the late Pleistocene and present interglacial. Comparison of loess records between north Iran and the

  8. Depth persistence of the spatial pattern of soil-water storage along a small transect in the Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xuezhang; Shao, Ming'an; Jia, Xiaoxu; Wei, Xiaorong; He, Liang

    2015-10-01

    Knowledge of the spatial patterns of soil-water storage (SWS) in soil profiles is important for understanding the dynamics of soil water between surface and subsurface soil layers in semiarid area. We investigated the depth persistence of the overall and scale-specific spatial patterns of SWS for different soil layers during different seasons. Soil-water contents were measured using a neutron probe on 22 occasions in 2012 and 2013 along a 1340-m transect over several sub-watersheds in the Liudaogou catchment on the Loess Plateau of China. Similarities in the spatial patterns of SWS were analyzed by Spearman's rank correlations and wavelet coherency. A spatiotemporal analysis indicated that the temporal evolution of the SWS profiles differed between the growing and non-growing seasons and that landscape position and soil texture determined the amount of SWS at each sampling location. Spearman's rank correlations were significant between any two layers within different seasons, and the correlation coefficients decreased as the distance between layers increased. Clay content controlled the spatial pattern of SWS between layers at large scales. The SWS spatial pattern had a higher depth persistence during the non-growing season than during the growing season, and the soil layer had a larger effect than season on the similarity in SWS spatial patterns. These results can improve our understanding of the hydrological processes in soil profiles and can be of considerable value in the application of hydrological models and in water management.

  9. Comparison of Drip, Pipe and Surge Spring Root Irrigation for Jujube (Ziziphus jujuba Mill.) Fruit Quality in the Loess Plateau of China

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Qing-Han; Yu, Jin-Gang; Wu, Chun-Sen; Wang, Zhi-Sheng; Wang, You-Ke; Zhu, De-Lan; Wang, Min

    2014-01-01

    Loess Plateau is a typical rain-fed farming region, facing the threat of drought. Irrigation method is among the most important factors affecting jujube quality. This study investigated the response of Ziziphus jujuba Mill. cv. Lizao quality to three different irrigation methods (drip-, pipe- and surge spring root irrigation) combining two water levels (20 m3/hm2 and 120 m3/hm2). The effects of the trials were evaluated by taking into account the physical-chemical characteristics of jujubes and the antioxidant activity. Concomitant to this, the concentration of some taste-related (viz. glucose, fructose, TSS and malic acid) and health-related compounds/parameters (viz. catechin and epicatechin) were generally much greater in jujube fruit treated with drip irrigation (120 m3/hm2). Different irrigation treatments had no significant effects on antioxidant capacity, total phenolics and proanthocyanidins (except for pipe irrigation 20 m3/hm2). The best compromise between quality and irrigation of jujube fruit was achieved with drip irrigation (120 m3/hm2). PMID:24551188

  10. Change of precipitation characteristics in the water-wind erosion crisscross region on the Loess Plateau, China, from 1958 to 2015.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Xingkai; Li, Zengyao; Zhu, Qingke

    2017-08-14

    Precipitation plays an important and crucial role in processes in the water-wind erosion crisscross region of the Loess Plateau than in other parts of the region. We analyzed precipitation data and standardized precipitation index (SPI) at 14 representative synoptic stations from 1958 to 2015 used trend-free prewhitening, linear trend estimation, Spearman's rho test, the Mann-Kendall trend test, the Mann-Kendall abrupt change test and rescaled range analysis. The following conclusions were drawn. First, the analysis of monthly precipitation at all stations suggested that precipitation during the rainy season (July, August, September), especially rain in July and August, exhibited a general decreasing trend, while both increasing and decreasing trends were observed in other months. Moreover, the annual precipitation of all stations continued to exhibit decreasing trends except Wuzhai. Erosive rainfall frequency in the rainy season and the annual scale was weakly reduced but erosive force of single rainfall has been enhanced. Second, the SPI exhibited different increasing degrees in winter, while decreasing trends were observed in other seasons. Additionally, the annual-scale SPI at most stations exhibited a stable and sustained downward trend. Therefore, this region is currently associated with a drought trend, and the drought degree will likely continue to increase.

  11. [Biological soil crust nitrogenase activity and its responses to hydro-thermic factors in different erosion regions on the Loess Plateau, China].

    PubMed

    Ming, Jiao; Zhao, Yun-Ge; Xu, Ming-Xiang; Yang, Li-Na; Wang, Ai-Guo

    2013-07-01

    Based on field survey, the biological soil crusts at their stable development stage were collected from the water erosion region, water-wind erosion region, and wind erosion region on the Loess Plateau, aimed to study the effects of the variations of moisture and temperature on the crusts nitrogenase activity (NA). The NA of the crusts in the erosion regions decreased in the order of water erosion region (127.7 micromol x m(-2) x h(-1)) > water-wind erosion region (34.6 micromol x m(-2) x h(-1)) > wind erosion region (6.0 micromol x m(-2) x h(-1)), and the optimal temperature for the crust nitrogen fixation was 35 degrees C, 25 degrees C, and 15 degrees C, respectively. At the optimal temperature and 100% -40% field water-holding capacity, the NA of the crusts from the water erosion and water-wind erosion regions had no significant difference. The NA of the crusts from the wind erosion region was more sensitive to the variation of moisture, showing a dramatic decline when the moisture decreased to 80% field water-holding capacity, and totally lost when the moisture decreased to 20% field water-holding capacity. The differences in the NA of the crusts from the three erosion regions and the responses of the NA to the variations of moisture and temperature were likely associated with the climate, environment, and the crust species composition.

  12. Integrating a mini catchment with mulching for soil water management in a sloping jujube orchard on the semiarid Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, H. C.; Gao, X. D.; Zhao, X. N.; Wu, P. T.; Li, L. S.; Ling, Q.; Sun, W. H.

    2015-11-01

    Conserving more soil water is of great importance to the success of arid and semiarid orchards. On the hilly areas of the Loess Plateau of China, mini catchments, named fish-scale pits, are widely used in orchards for collecting surface runoff to infiltrate more soil water. However, the flat surface inside fish-scale pits would increase soil evaporation during non-rainfall periods. Therefore, we integrated fish-scale pits with mulching, a popular meaning to reduce soil evaporation, to test whether this integration could improve soil water conservation. The results showed that soil water deficit was observed for all treatments. However, soil water deficit was further intensified in the dry month. An index was used to represent the soil water supply from rainfall infiltration denoted WS. For the fish-scale pit with branch mulching treatment in the entire soil profile, the compensation degree of SWS were greater than 0. However, the CK treatment showed negative values in the 40-180 cm. In conclusion, integrating fish-scale pits with mulching could conserve significantly more soil water by increasing infiltration and decreasing evaporation compared to fish-scale pits alone. Since the mulching branches were trimmed jujube branches, the integration of fish-scale pit with branch mulching is recommended in jujube orchards in order to both preserve more soil water and reduce the cost of mulching materials.

  13. Artemisia dominant species succession relating to the soil moisture decrease in abandoned land of the Loess Plateau (China): comparative study of drought-adaptive characteristics.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yong; Yu, Jing; Xia, Pengguo; He, Shaoxuan; Zhou, Ziyun; Han, Ruilian; Liang, Zongsuo

    2016-01-01

    Artemisia scoparia, Artemisia sacrorum and Artemisia giraldii were three dominant Artemisia species which successive grew in the secondary succession on abandoned land of the Loess Plateau. The succession accompanied the soil moisture steady decrease with field age after their abandonment. To elucidate the relationship between the Artemisia species succession and their drought-adaptation, three dominant species and a contrastive species Artemisia annua (mesophyte), were selected to compare their drought-resistant characteristics, including morphological and anatomical traits of leaf and root. Then physiological responses were investigated in mature plants after drought treatment. The results indicated that three dominant species leaf presented drought-adaptive structures, such as bushy trichomes, transitional or isolateral leaf cells, thick cuticles and epidermal cells. However, A. annua had no leaf traits involved in drought-adaptation. In addition, A. sacrorum and A. giraldii contained large root systems, while A. scoparia and A. annua utilized succulent roots. The physiological responses to drought suggested that A. giraldii had strong regulation in water using strategy, growth, as well as superoxide dismutase and catalase activity. A. sacrorum and A. giraldii could maintain high ascorbate peroxidase activity and malondialdehyde content, while A. scoparia and A. giraldii presented higher peroxidase activity, ascorbate and soluble sugar content. A. annua exhibited high proline and carotenoid contents under drought. The drought-resistant of the four Artemisia species presented the order of A. giraldii > A. sacrorum > A. scoparia > A. annua, which was consistent with their succession on abandoned land.

  14. Comparison of drip, pipe and surge spring root irrigation for Jujube (Ziziphus jujuba Mill.) fruit quality in the Loess plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Gao, Qing-Han; Yu, Jin-Gang; Wu, Chun-Sen; Wang, Zhi-Sheng; Wang, You-Ke; Zhu, De-Lan; Wang, Min

    2014-01-01

    Loess Plateau is a typical rain-fed farming region, facing the threat of drought. Irrigation method is among the most important factors affecting jujube quality. This study investigated the response of Ziziphus jujuba Mill. cv. Lizao quality to three different irrigation methods (drip-, pipe- and surge spring root irrigation) combining two water levels (20 m(3)/hm(2) and 120 m(3)/hm(2)). The effects of the trials were evaluated by taking into account the physical-chemical characteristics of jujubes and the antioxidant activity. Concomitant to this, the concentration of some taste-related (viz. glucose, fructose, TSS and malic acid) and health-related compounds/parameters (viz. catechin and epicatechin) were generally much greater in jujube fruit treated with drip irrigation (120 m(3)/hm(2)). Different irrigation treatments had no significant effects on antioxidant capacity, total phenolics and proanthocyanidins (except for pipe irrigation 20 m(3)/hm(2)). The best compromise between quality and irrigation of jujube fruit was achieved with drip irrigation (120 m(3)/hm(2)).

  15. Patterns of taxonomic, phylogenetic diversity during a long-term succession of forest on the Loess Plateau, China: insights into assembly process.

    PubMed

    Chai, Yongfu; Yue, Ming; Liu, Xiao; Guo, Yaoxin; Wang, Mao; Xu, Jinshi; Zhang, Chenguang; Chen, Yu; Zhang, Lixia; Zhang, Ruichang

    2016-06-08

    Quantifying the drivers underlying the distribution of biodiversity during succession is a critical issue in ecology and conservation, and also can provide insights into the mechanisms of community assembly. Ninety plots were established in the Loess Plateau region of northern Shaanxi in China. The taxonomic and phylogenetic (alpha and beta) diversity were quantified within six succession stages. Null models were used to test whether phylogenetic distance observed differed from random expectations. Taxonomic beta diversity did not show a regular pattern, while phylogenetic beta diversity decreased throughout succession. The shrub stage occurred as a transition from phylogenetic overdispersion to clustering either for NRI (Net Relatedness Index) or betaNRI. The betaNTI (Nearest Taxon Index) values for early stages were on average phylogenetically random, but for the betaNRI analyses, these stages were phylogenetically overdispersed. Assembly of woody plants differed from that of herbaceous plants during late community succession. We suggest that deterministic and stochastic processes respectively play a role in different aspects of community phylogenetic structure for early succession stage, and that community composition of late succession stage is governed by a deterministic process. In conclusion, the long-lasting evolutionary imprints on the present-day composition of communities arrayed along the succession gradient.

  16. Patterns of taxonomic, phylogenetic diversity during a long-term succession of forest on the Loess Plateau, China: insights into assembly process

    PubMed Central

    Chai, Yongfu; Yue, Ming; Liu, Xiao; Guo, Yaoxin; Wang, Mao; Xu, Jinshi; Zhang, Chenguang; Chen, Yu; Zhang, Lixia; Zhang, Ruichang

    2016-01-01

    Quantifying the drivers underlying the distribution of biodiversity during succession is a critical issue in ecology and conservation, and also can provide insights into the mechanisms of community assembly. Ninety plots were established in the Loess Plateau region of northern Shaanxi in China. The taxonomic and phylogenetic (alpha and beta) diversity were quantified within six succession stages. Null models were used to test whether phylogenetic distance observed differed from random expectations. Taxonomic beta diversity did not show a regular pattern, while phylogenetic beta diversity decreased throughout succession. The shrub stage occurred as a transition from phylogenetic overdispersion to clustering either for NRI (Net Relatedness Index) or betaNRI. The betaNTI (Nearest Taxon Index) values for early stages were on average phylogenetically random, but for the betaNRI analyses, these stages were phylogenetically overdispersed. Assembly of woody plants differed from that of herbaceous plants during late community succession. We suggest that deterministic and stochastic processes respectively play a role in different aspects of community phylogenetic structure for early succession stage, and that community composition of late succession stage is governed by a deterministic process. In conclusion, the long-lasting evolutionary imprints on the present-day composition of communities arrayed along the succession gradient. PMID:27272407

  17. Impacts of biochar addition on soil dissolved organic matter characteristics in a wheat-maize rotation system in Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Afeng; Zhou, Xu; Li, Ming; Wu, Haiming

    2017-08-16

    Biochar amendment in soil has the potential to sequester carbon, improve soil quality and mitigate greenhouse gas (GHG) emission in agriculture, but the impact of biochar amendments on dissolved organic matter (DOM) properties of soils in the fertilized agro-ecosystem has received little research attention. This study performed a long-term field experiment to assess the influence of biochar amendments (different addition rate: 4 t ha(-1) and 8 t ha(-1)) on DOM characteristics in soils in wheat-maize rotation system in Loess Plateau of China by exploiting fluorescence excitation-emission spectrophotometry and parallel factor analysis (EEM-PARAFAC). Our results showed that the content of soil DOM was significantly influenced by the addition of biochar, and the higher biochar addition markedly increased the mean concentration of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) (from 83.99 mg kg(-1) to 144.27 mg kg(-1)) in soils under the same fertilizer application. Three identified fluorescent components (fulvic acid-like, humic acid-like and tryptophan-like) were found, and fluorescence intensity of those components (especially humic-like material) was enhanced with the increasing DOC in the biochar treatments but the composition of DOM was not changed. These findings would be beneficial to understand the biochar's effects and processes in decreasing GHG emissions from soils. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. The changes of densities and patterns of roads and rural buildings: a case study on Dongzhi Yuan of the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Bi, Xiaoli; Wang, Hui; Ge, Jianping

    2010-05-01

    Roads and buildings are considered as primary causes of rural landscape changes. In this study, linear regression models were used to analyze the dynamic influences of environmental factors and variables on roads and rural buildings from 1979 to 2005 in Dongzhi Yuan (tableland) of the Loess Plateau, China. The relationship between roads and rural buildings and their effects on Dongzhi Yuan are discussed also. The results showed that three environmental factors (topography, land cover, and development level) explained roads better than rural buildings referring densities and patterns. The environmental variables significantly related to roads have decreased, whereas those related to rural buildings have increased over time. Among these significant variables, percent of farmland mostly determined the densities and patterns of both roads and rural buildings. There was significant correlation between roads and rural buildings in terms of density and pattern. In addition, roads and rural buildings have increased greatly in gully areas of this region. Therefore, more attention should be paid to planning of roads and rural buildings in Dongzhi Yuan.

  19. Stable isotopic investigations of modern and charred foxtail millet and the implications for environmental archaeological reconstruction in the western Chinese Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    An, Cheng-Bang; Dong, Weimiao; Chen, Yufeng; Li, Hu; Shi, Chao; Wang, Wei; Zhang, Pingyu; Zhao, Xueye

    2015-07-01

    Stable isotopic analysis of carbon and nitrogen in human and faunal remains has been widely used to reconstruct prehistoric diets and environmental changes. Isotopic analysis of plant remains allows for a more extensive consideration of paleodiets and can potentially provide information about the environment in which the crops were grown. This paper reports the results of δ13C and δ15N analyses performed on modern and charred archaeological foxtail millet samples collected from the western part of the Chinese Loess Plateau. The δ13C mean value of modern samples is lower than that of ancient samples. There is a significant difference between grain and leaf δ15N values. These results challenge the standard assumption in isotope studies that the nitrogen isotope signals of the different part of plants consumed by humans and animals are the same. The 3-5‰ difference between human and animal δ15N values is always regarded as an indicator of whether human diets contained considerable animal protein. The difference between grain and leaf δ15N values makes this assumption problematic in a foxtail millet-dominated society.

  20. Diversity and structure of a bacterial community in grassland soils disturbed by sheep grazing, in the Loess Plateau of northwestern China.

    PubMed

    Gou, Y N; Nan, Z B; Hou, F J

    2015-12-15

    The relationship between disturbance, biodiversity, and ecosystem function has been a hot topic recently in international ecological research, and a universally applicable model remains elusive. In this study, we assessed the diversity and structure of a bacterial community in grassland soils along a disturbance gradient due to sheep grazing. Bacteria were identified based on 16S rDNA gene libraries prepared from a 12-year field experiment that included four grazing, intensity treatments: no grazing, light grazing, moderate grazing and heavy grazing in the Loess Plateau of northwestern China. We found that diversity indices of bacterial 16S rDNA increased with grazing intensity, suggesting that disturbance led to higher bacterial diversity. The bacterial community structure, measured as species composition, was also affected by grazing. In addition, the change in soil bacterial community composition was maximum under heavy grazing, based on the Sorensen similarity index. Overall, the relationship between disturbance and bacterial diversity is complex, therefore, more studies are required to determine the possibility of using microbial diversity as an indicator of ecosystem stability.

  1. [Effects of Nitrogen Fertilization on Soil Respiration and Temperature Sensitivity in Spring Maize Field in Semi-Arid Regions on Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Jiang, Ji-shao; Guo, Sheng-li; Wang, Rui; Liu, Qing-fang; Wang, Zhi-qi; Zhang, Yan-jun; Li, Na-na; Li, Ru-jian; Wu, De-feng; Sun, Qi-qi

    2015-05-01

    Understanding the effects of nitrogen fertilization on soil respiration rate and its temperature sensitivity (Q10) is of critical importance to predict the variability of soil respiration in cropland. A field experiment was established in a rain-fed spring maize cropland (Zea mays L. ) in the State Key Agro-Ecological Experimental Station in the Loess Plateau in Changwu County, Shaanxi Province, China. The experiment comprised of two treatments: no N-fertilizer application ( CK) and N-fertilizer application with 160 kg N · hm(-2) (N). Soil respiration rate, soil temperature, soil moisture, yields, aboveground biomass and root biomass were measured in two continuous spring maize growing seasons from April 2013 to September 2014. The cumulative soil CO2 emissions were increased by 35% in 2013 and 54% in 2014 in N treatment as compared to CK treatment. Though nitrogen fertilization significantly increased the cumulative soil CO2 emissions (P < 0.05), it did decrease evidently the temperature sensitivity of soil respiration (P < 0.05) . The Q10 values in N treatment were decreased by 27% and 17% compared with CK treatment in 2013 and 2014, respectively. Nitrogen fertilization significantly increased the maize yields, aboveground biomass and root biomass (P < 0.05). Root biomasses in N treatment were 32% and 123% greater than those in CK treatment of 2013 and 2014, respectively. Nitrogen fertilization had no marked influence on soil temperature or moisture. Root biomass was a critical biotical factor for variation of soil respiration under nitrogen fertilization.

  2. Spatial and Temporal Variations of Ecosystem Service Values in Relation to Land Use Pattern in the Loess Plateau of China at Town Scale

    PubMed Central

    Fang, Xuan; Tang, Guoan; Li, Bicheng; Han, Ruiming

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the relationship between land use change and ecosystem service values (ESVs) is the key for improving ecosystem health and sustainability. This study estimated the spatial and temporal variations of ESVs at town scale in relation to land use change in the Loess Plateau which is characterized by its environmental vulnerability, then analyzed and discussed the relationship between ESVs and land use pattern. The result showed that ESVs increased with land use change from 1982 to 2008. The total ESVs increased by 16.17% from US$ 6.315 million at 1982 to US$ 7.336 million at 2002 before the start of the Grain to Green project, while increased significantly thereafter by 67.61% to US$ 11.275 million at 2008 along with the project progressed. Areas with high ESVs appeared mainly in the center and the east where largely distributing orchard and forestland, while those with low ESVs occurred mainly in the north and the south where largely distributing cropland. Correlation and regression analysis showed that land use pattern was significantly positively related with ESVs. The proportion of forestland had a positive effect on ESVs, however, that of cropland had a negative effect. Diversification, fragmentation and interspersion of landscape positively affected ESVs, while land use intensity showed a negative effect. It is concluded that continuing the Grain to Green project and encouraging diversified agriculture benefit to improve the ecosystem service. PMID:25329311

  3. The Effects of Nitrogen Addition on the Uptake and Allocation of Macro- and Micronutrients in Bothriochloa ischaemum on Loess Plateau in China.

    PubMed

    Ai, Zemin; Wang, Guoliang; Liang, Chutao; Liu, Hongfei; Zhang, Jiaoyang; Xue, Sha; Liu, Guobin

    2017-01-01

    The effects of nitrogen (N) addition on the macro- and micronutrient concentrations, storage, and allocation of Bothriochloa ischaemum (L.) Keng, a native forage plant on the Loess Plateau in China remain unclear. We studied the effects of N addition at 0 (CK), 2.5 (N1), 5.0 (N2), and 10.0 (N3) g N m(-2) y(-1). N addition significantly decreased the available copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), and total Cu concentration, but significantly increased the available iron concentration in the soil. Cu, manganese (Mn), and sodium (Na) concentrations in aboveground tissues and potassium (K), magnesium, and Zn concentrations in belowground tissues significantly increased with N addition. Calcium (Ca) concentrations in belowground tissues decreased significantly. The ratios of above- to belowground Ca, Cu, Zn, and Mn significantly increased with N addition. The maximum ratios appeared at N2 for Cu, Zn, and Mn. The aboveground, belowground, and total biomass storage of studied nutrients significantly changed with N addition, and most attained maximum values under N2 treatment. The storage ratios of above- to belowground Cu, Zn, Mn, and Na attained maximum values at N2. We conclude that N addition significantly, but differentially influence the macro- and micronutrient concentrations and storage in B. ischaemum. B. ischaemum allocated and accumulated increased macro- and micronutrients to its aboveground tissues and exhibited high total storage when the amount of N addition reached 5 g N m(-2) y(-1).

  4. The Effects of Nitrogen Addition on the Uptake and Allocation of Macro- and Micronutrients in Bothriochloa ischaemum on Loess Plateau in China

    PubMed Central

    Ai, Zemin; Wang, Guoliang; Liang, Chutao; Liu, Hongfei; Zhang, Jiaoyang; Xue, Sha; Liu, Guobin

    2017-01-01

    The effects of nitrogen (N) addition on the macro- and micronutrient concentrations, storage, and allocation of Bothriochloa ischaemum (L.) Keng, a native forage plant on the Loess Plateau in China remain unclear. We studied the effects of N addition at 0 (CK), 2.5 (N1), 5.0 (N2), and 10.0 (N3) g N m-2 y-1. N addition significantly decreased the available copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), and total Cu concentration, but significantly increased the available iron concentration in the soil. Cu, manganese (Mn), and sodium (Na) concentrations in aboveground tissues and potassium (K), magnesium, and Zn concentrations in belowground tissues significantly increased with N addition. Calcium (Ca) concentrations in belowground tissues decreased significantly. The ratios of above- to belowground Ca, Cu, Zn, and Mn significantly increased with N addition. The maximum ratios appeared at N2 for Cu, Zn, and Mn. The aboveground, belowground, and total biomass storage of studied nutrients significantly changed with N addition, and most attained maximum values under N2 treatment. The storage ratios of above- to belowground Cu, Zn, Mn, and Na attained maximum values at N2. We conclude that N addition significantly, but differentially influence the macro- and micronutrient concentrations and storage in B. ischaemum. B. ischaemum allocated and accumulated increased macro- and micronutrients to its aboveground tissues and exhibited high total storage when the amount of N addition reached 5 g N m-2 y-1.

  5. Spatial and temporal variations of ecosystem service values in relation to land use pattern in the Loess Plateau of China at town scale.

    PubMed

    Fang, Xuan; Tang, Guoan; Li, Bicheng; Han, Ruiming

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the relationship between land use change and ecosystem service values (ESVs) is the key for improving ecosystem health and sustainability. This study estimated the spatial and temporal variations of ESVs at town scale in relation to land use change in the Loess Plateau which is characterized by its environmental vulnerability, then analyzed and discussed the relationship between ESVs and land use pattern. The result showed that ESVs increased with land use change from 1982 to 2008. The total ESVs increased by 16.17% from US$ 6.315 million at 1982 to US$ 7.336 million at 2002 before the start of the Grain to Green project, while increased significantly thereafter by 67.61% to US$ 11.275 million at 2008 along with the project progressed. Areas with high ESVs appeared mainly in the center and the east where largely distributing orchard and forestland, while those with low ESVs occurred mainly in the north and the south where largely distributing cropland. Correlation and regression analysis showed that land use pattern was significantly positively related with ESVs. The proportion of forestland had a positive effect on ESVs, however, that of cropland had a negative effect. Diversification, fragmentation and interspersion of landscape positively affected ESVs, while land use intensity showed a negative effect. It is concluded that continuing the Grain to Green project and encouraging diversified agriculture benefit to improve the ecosystem service.

  6. Microcalorimetric study of the effects of long-term fertilization on soil microbial activity in a wheat field on the Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qi; Liu, Xiaomei; Ma, Xiaojun; Fang, Jian; Fan, Tinglu; Wu, Fasi; An, Lizhe; Feng, Huyuan

    2014-12-01

    The effects of the long-term inorganic (nitrogen, N; phosphate, P) and organic (manure, M; straw, S) fertilizers/managemenet individually and in combinations (N, NP, SNP, M, and MNP) on soil microbial activity were investigated in a wheat field on the Loess Plateau, China. Microcalorimetry was used to determine microbial activity under different treatments. Nearly 30 years of consecutive fertilization has altered the culturable population of soil bacteria and fungi, the highest ones were detected in the treatments of manure and MNP, followed by the NP and SNP treatments. The microbial growth rate constant (μ/h(-1)) was significantly greater in the MNP treatment than all the other treatments. The total heat exchange values (Q/J) were the highest in the MNP and NP treatments, which were significantly different from the N and M treatments. The peak height (P(t)/μW) were significantly higher in MNP and NP treatments than in the remaining treatments. The peak time values (t(p)/h) among the MNP, NP, SNP and M, N and CK treatments were significantly different. In general, comparing with control, soil microbial activity was much higher in MNP, NP and SNP treatments, all including the phosphate fertilizer. Our results showed that the application of inorganic fertilizer and organic manure have positive effects on multiple soil chemical parameters, soil microorganism abundance and activity, and hence crop yield.

  7. [Simulation on the restoration effect of soil moisture in alfalfa (Medicago sativa)-grain rotation system in semi-arid and drought-prone regions of Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Wang, Xue-Chun; Li, Jun; Fang, Xin-Yu; Sun, Jian; Tahir, Muhammad Naveed

    2011-01-01

    With the combination of field survey and EPIC modeling, this paper simulated the restoration effect of soil moisture in different alfalfa (Medicago sativa)-grain rotation systems in semi-arid and drought-prone regions of Loess Plateau. In perennial alfalfa field and in grain crop field after alfalfa, the correlation coefficients between the simulated and observed values of soil moisture content in 0-10 m layer were larger than 0.9 (P < 0.01), and their relative root mean square errors were between 0.05 and 0.16, with the relative errors less than 10%. The dynamic changes of the simulated soil moisture contents in different soil layers were consistent with those of the observed values. In the study regions, it was difficult for the restoration of soil moisture in the deep soil layers of alfalfa field. During the cultivation of alfalfa, the soil moisture content in the layers at 8-10 m depth should not be less than 5.7%. Considering the sustainable development of agricultural production, the appropriate cultivation duration of alfalfa should be 4-6 years and no more than 8 years. For the restoration of soil moisture after alfalfa cultivation in the study regions, the rotation system potato (Solanum tuberosum) --> potato --> spring wheat (Triticum aestivum) could be adopted, and alfalfa could be cultivated again after 32-33 years.

  8. Processing, validating, and comparing DEMs for geomorphic application on the Puna de Atacama Plateau, northwest Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Purinton, Benjamin; Bookhagen, Bodo

    2016-04-01

    This study analyzes multiple topographic datasets derived from various remote-sensing methods from the Pocitos Basin of the central Puna Plateau in northwest Argentina at the border to Chile. Here, the arid climate and clear atmospheric conditions and lack of vegetation provide ideal conditions for remote sensing and Digital Elevation Model (DEM) comparison. We compare the following freely available DEMs: SRTM-X (spatial resolution of ~30 m), SRTM-C v4.1 (90 m), and ASTER GDEM2 (30 m). Additional DEMs for comparison are generated from optical and radar datasets acquired freely (ASTER Level 1B stereo pairs and Sentinal-1A radar), through research agreements (RapidEye Level 1B scenes, ALOS radar, and ENVISAT radar), and through commercial sources (TerraSAR-X / TanDEM-X radar). DEMs from ASTER (spatial resolution of 15 m) and RapidEye (~5-10 m) optical datasets are produced by standard photogrammetric techniques and have been post-processed for validation and alignment purposes. Because RapidEye scenes are captured at a low incidence angle (<20°) and stereo pairs are unavailable, merging and averaging methods of two to four overlapping scenes is explored for effective DEM generation. Sentinal-1A, TerraSAR-X / TanDEM-X, ALOS, and ENVISAT radar data is processed through interferometry resulting in DEMs with spatial resolutions ranging from 5 to 30 meters. The SRTM-X dataset serves as a control in the creation of further DEMs, as it is widely used in the geosciences and represents the highest-quality DEM currently available. All DEMs are validated against over 400,000 differential GPS (dGPS) measurements gathered during four field campaigns in 2012 and 2014 to 2016. Of these points, more than 250,000 lie within the Pocitos Basin with average vertical and horizontal accuracies of 0.95 m and 0.69 m, respectively. Dataset accuracy is judged by the lowest standard deviations of elevation compared with the dGPS data and with the SRTM-X control DEM. Of particular interest in

  9. [Characteristics of Soil Respiration along Eroded Sloping Land with Different SOC Background on the Hilly Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Chen, Gai; Xu, Ming-xiang; Zhang, Ya-feng; Wang, Chao-hua; Fan, Hui-min; Wang, Shan-shan

    2015-09-01

    This study aimed to characterize soil respiration along eroded sloping land at erosion and deposition area under different soil organic carbon(SOC) levels, and linked the relationship between soil respiration and soil temperature, soil moisture, SOC and slope position. Experiments were carried out in the plots of S type slopes include five different soil organic carbon levels in the Loess Hilly Region. The S type slopes were divided into control area at the top of the slope, erosion area at the middle of the slope and deposition area at the toe of the slope. We found that soil temperature had a greater impact on soil respiration in the deposition area, whereas soil moisture had a greater impact on soil respiration in the erosion area compared among control area, erosion area and deposition area. In addition, SOC was the most important factor affecting soil respiration, which can explain soil respiration variation 54. 72%, followed by soil moisture, slope position and soil temperature, which explain soil respiration variation 18. 86% , 16. 13% and 10. 29%, respectively. Soil respiration response to erosion showed obvious on-site and off-site effects along the eroded sloping land. Soil respiration in the erosion area was reduced by 21. 14% compared with control area, and soil respiration in the deposition area was increased by 21. 93% compared with control area. Erosion effect on source and sink of carbon emission was correlated with SOC content of the eroded sloping land. When SOC content was higher than 6. 82 g.kg-1, the slope. erosion tended to be a carbon sequestration process, and when SOC content was lower than 3.03 g.kg-1, the slope erosion tended to be a process of the carbon emission source. The model could reflect the relationship between soil respiration and independent variables of soil organic carbon content, soil temperature and moisture.

  10. Seasonal and interannual variation of energy balance and partition over a rain-fed cropland in the semi-arid area of Loess Plateau, northwestern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, X.; Yu, Y.

    2014-12-01

    In this study, two years' micrometeorological and energy flux observations from the Pingliang Station of Lightning and Hail Storm Research, CAS were used to investigate the seasonal and interannual variations of radiation, albedo and energy fluxes over a rain-fed cropland in the semi-arid area of Loess Plateau, with an emphasis on the influence of rain, soil moisture and agricultural production activities on the energy partitioning as well as the surface energy balance. The results revealed large annual variations in the seasonal distribution of precipitation, which along with soil freezing and thawing gave rise to significant variations in soil moisture. Radiation components had general seasonal cycles with less annual variability. Shortwave radiation fluctuated obviously with weather conditions, while longwave radiation was less affected. Surface albedo had significant seasonal and interannual variations: the maximum midday mean value (0.83) occurred after snow, then it dropped to less than 0.2 during crop growing season, after crop harvest, it fluctuated with precipitation. There was a negatively linear relationship between the albedo and the soil moisture. Large interannual differences in seasonal variations of sensible and latent heat fluxes were observed due to the interannual variations in precipitation and agricultural activities. The main consumer of available energy varied among months and years, with the monthly mean diurnal cycle of latent (sensible) heat flux peaking in summer (spring) at 251.9 (192.5) W m-2. On an annual scale, the largest consumer of midday net radiation was sensible (latent) heat flux in 2010-2011 (2011-2012), which accounted for about 35% (40%) of the net radiation. The annual surface energy budget closures were 77.6% and 73.3%, respectively. The closure was the lowest in winter and the highest in spring, which was affected by atmospheric stability and the heat storage by vegetation canopy and near surface air layer.

  11. The combined effects of moss-dominated biocrusts and vegetation on erosion and soil moisture and implications for disturbance on the Loess Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Bu, Chongfeng; Wu, Shufang; Han, Fengpeng; Yang, Yongsheng; Meng, Jie

    2015-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs, or biocrusts) have important positive ecological functions such as erosion control and soil fertility improvement, and they may also have negative effects on soil moisture in some cases. Simultaneous discussions of the two-sided impacts of BSCs are key to the rational use of this resource. This study focused on the contribution of BSCs while combining with specific types of vegetation to erosion reduction and their effects on soil moisture, and it addressed the feasibility of removal or raking disturbance. Twelve plots measuring 4 m × 2 m and six treatments (two plots for each) were established on a 15° slope in a small watershed in the Loess Plateau using BSCs, bare land (as a control, BL), Stipa bungeana Trin. (STBU), Caragana korshinskii Kom. (CAKO), STBU planted with BSCs (STBU+BSCs) and CAKO planted with BSCs (CAKO+BSCs). The runoff, soil loss and soil moisture to a depth of 3 m were measured throughout the rainy season (from June to September) of 2010. The results showed that BSCs significantly reduced runoff by 37.3% and soil loss by 81.0% and increased infiltration by 12.4% in comparison with BL. However, when combined with STBU or CAKO, BSCs only made negligible contributions to erosion control (a runoff reduction of 7.4% and 5.7% and a soil loss reduction of 0.7% and 0.3%). Generally, the soil moisture of the vegetation plots was lower in the upper layer than that of the BL plots, although when accompanied with a higher amount of infiltration, this soil moisture consumption phenomenon was much clearer when combining vegetation with BSCs. Because of the trivial contributions from BSCs to erosion control and the remaining exacerbated consumption of soil water, moderate disturbance by BSCs should be considered in plots with adequate vegetation cover to improve soil moisture levels without a significant erosion increase, which was implied to be necessary and feasible.

  12. Soil Infiltration Characteristics in Agroforestry Systems and Their Relationships with the Temporal Distribution of Rainfall on the Loess Plateau in China.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lai; Zhong, Chonggao; Gao, Pengxiang; Xi, Weimin; Zhang, Shuoxin

    2015-01-01

    Many previous studies have shown that land use patterns are the main factors influencing soil infiltration. Thus, increasing soil infiltration and reducing runoff are crucial for soil and water conservation, especially in semi-arid environments. To explore the effects of agroforestry systems on soil infiltration and associated properties in a semi-arid area of the Loess Plateau in China, we compared three plant systems: a walnut (Juglans regia) monoculture system (JRMS), a wheat (Triticum aestivum) monoculture system (TAMS), and a walnut-wheat alley cropping system (JTACS) over a period of 11 years. Our results showed that the JTACS facilitated infiltration, and its infiltration rate temporal distribution showed a stronger relationship coupled with the rainfall temporal distribution compared with the two monoculture systems during the growing season. However, the effect of JTACS on the infiltration capacity was only significant in shallow soil layer, i.e., the 0-40 cm soil depth. Within JTACS, the speed of the wetting front's downward movement was significantly faster than that in the two monoculture systems when the amount of rainfall and its intensity were higher. The soil infiltration rate was improved, and the two peaks of soil infiltration rate temporal distribution and the rainfall temporal distribution coupled in rainy season in the alley cropping system, which has an important significance in soil and water conservation. The results of this empirical study provide new insights into the sustainability of agroforestry, which may help farmers select rational planting patterns in this region, as well as other regions with similar climatic and environmental characteristics throughout the world.

  13. Natural vegetation restoration is more beneficial to soil surface organic and inorganic carbon sequestration than tree plantation on the Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Jin, Zhao; Dong, Yunshe; Wang, Yunqiang; Wei, Xiaorong; Wang, Yafeng; Cui, Buli; Zhou, Weijian

    2014-07-01

    Natural vegetation restoration and tree plantation are the two most important measures for ecosystem restoration on the Loess Plateau of China. However, few studies have compared the effects of the two contrasting measures on soil organic and inorganic carbon (SOC and SIC) sequestration or have further used SOC and SIC isotopes to analyze the inherent sequestration mechanism. This study examined a pair of neighboring small watersheds with similar topographical and geological backgrounds. Since 1954, natural vegetation restoration has been conducted in one of these watersheds, and tree plantation has been conducted in the other. The two watersheds have now formed completely different landscapes (naturally restored grassland and artificial forestland). Differences in soil bulk density, SOC and SIC content and storage, and SOC and SIC δ(13)C values were investigated in the two ecosystems in the upper 1m of the soil. We found that SOC storage was higher in the grassland than in the forestland, with a difference of 14.90 Mg ha(-1). The vertical changes in the δ(13)CSOC value demonstrated that the two ecosystems have different mechanisms of soil surface organic carbon accumulation. The SIC storage in the grassland was lower than that in the forestland, with a difference of 38.99 Mg ha(-1). The δ(13)CSIC values indicated that the grassland generates more secondary carbonate than the forestland and that SIC was most likely transported to the rivers from the grassland as dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC). The biogeochemical characteristics of the grassland were favorable for the formation of bicarbonate. Thus, more DIC derived from the dissolution of root and microbial respired CO2 into soil water could have been transported to the rivers through flood runoff. It is necessary to study further the transportation of DIC from the grassland because this process can produce a large potential carbon sink. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  14. [Influencing factors of soil organic carbon in deeper soil layers at a small watershed on tableland region of the Loess Plateau, China].

    PubMed

    Che, Sheng-guo; Guo, Sheng-li

    2010-05-01

    Analyzing and estimating soil organic carbon (SOC) storage and changes in deep layers under different land uses and landforms may play a pivotal role in comprehending the balance and cycle mechanisms of C cycling, and comprehending the capacity of C sequestration in the terrestrial ecosystem. The study mainly emphasized on effects of landforms and land uses on vertical distribution characteristic of SOC sampled to a depth of 200 cm at the Wangdonggou watershed on the tableland region of Loess Plateau, China. For the top soil of 0-20 cm, the order of SOC contents was gully (10.0 g x kg(-1)) > tableland (7.8 g x kg(-1)) and slopeland (8.2 g x kg(-1)). For the subsoil, SOC in tableland was higher than that in gully and slopeland. For slopeland and gully, SOC decreased with increasing depth, while for tableland, SOC decreased initially, then increased, lastly decreased. Meanwhile, for tableland, the order of SOC appeared approximately manmade grassland > cropland > orchard with the effecting depth of land uses for 40 cm, and for slopeland the order was native grassland (4.3 g x kg(-1)) > manmade woodland (3.8 g x kg(-1)) > manmade grassland (3.3 g x kg(-1)) > orchard (3.3 g x kg(-1)) with the depth for 100 cm, while for gully, there was no significantly difference (p > 0.05) among different land uses. SOC storage in the profile of 20-200 cm accounted for 67.6% sampled to a depth of 100 cm, while for 100-200cm, SOC storage accounted 37.3% in 0-200 cm equaled to 63.8% of the SOC storage in 0-100 cm. The results revealed that landforms and land uses highly significantly (p < 0.05) affected the vertical distribution of SOC at a small watershed scale and considerable amounts of C were stored at deeper depths.

  15. Unraveling the microRNA of Caragana korshinskii along a precipitation gradient on the Loess Plateau, China, using high-throughput sequencing.

    PubMed

    Ning, Pengbo; Zhou, Yulu; Gao, Lifang; Sun, Yingying; Zhou, Wenfei; Liu, Furong; Yao, Zhenye; Xie, Lifang; Wang, Junhui; Gong, Chunmei

    2017-01-01

    Drought remains one of the main factors that negatively affect plant growth and development. Caragana korshinskii is widely distributed on the Loess Plateau, China, where it mediates soil and water loss and helps prevent desertification. However, little is known about the stress response mechanisms of C. korshinskii in water-starved environments. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been implicated in the regulation of plant responses to several types of biotic and abiotic stress. Here, we describe the miRNAs of wild C. korshinskii from Huangling, Yulin, and Dalad Banner, which occur along a precipitation gradient. Using next-generation sequencing technology, we obtained a total of 13 710 681, 15 048 945, and 15 198 442 reads for each location, respectively; after filtering and BLAST analysis, 490 conserved miRNAs and 96 novel miRNAs were characterized from the sRNAome data, with key functions determined using Gene Ontology and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes pathway analyses. We also designed stem-loop qRT-PCR to validate the expression patterns of 5 conserved miRNAs (miR390, miR398, miR530, miR2119, and miR5559) that obviously responded to water stress in plants grown both under natural and experimental water stress conditions and found that the expression levels of miR2119 and miR5559 were negatively correlated with their predicted target genes. This study is the first to identify miRNAs from wild C. korshinskii and provides a basis for future studies of miRNA-mediated gene regulation of stress responses in C. korshinskii.

  16. Differential Effects of Legume Species on the Recovery of Soil Microbial Communities, and Carbon and Nitrogen Contents, in Abandoned Fields of the Loess Plateau, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Jin Hua; Jiao, Shu Mei; Gao, Rong Qing; Bardgett, Richard D.

    2012-12-01

    Plant-soil interactions are known to influence a wide range of ecosystem-level functions. Moreover, the recovery of these functions is of importance for the successful restoration of soils that have been degraded through intensive and/or inappropriate land use. Here, we assessed the effect of planting treatments commonly used to accelerate rates of grassland restoration, namely introduction of different legume species Medicago sativa, Astragalus adsurgens, Melilotus suaveolens, on the recovery of soil microbial communities and carbon and nitrogen contents in abandoned fields of the Loess Plateau, China. The results showed effects were species-specific, and either positive, neutral or negative depending on the measure and time-scale. All legumes increased basal respiration and metabolic quotient and had a positive effect on activity and functional diversity of the soil microbial community, measured using Biolog EcoPlate. However, soil under Astragalus adsurgens had the highest activity and functional diversity relative to the other treatments. Soil carbon and nitrogen content and microbial biomass were effectively restored in 3-5 years by introducing Medicago sativa and Astragalus adsurgens into early abandoned fields. Soil carbon and nitrogen content were retarded in 3-5 years and microbial biomass was retarded in the fifth year by introducing Melilotus suaveolens. Overall, the restoration practices of planting legumes can significantly affect soil carbon and nitrogen contents, and the biomass, activity, and functional diversity of soil microbial community. Therefore, we propose certain legume species could be used to accelerate ecological restoration of degraded soils, hence assist in the protection and preservation of the environment.

  17. Warmer and Wetter Soil Stimulates Assimilation More than Respiration in Rainfed Agricultural Ecosystem on the China Loess Plateau: The Role of Partial Plastic Film Mulching Tillage.

    PubMed

    Gong, Daozhi; Hao, Weiping; Mei, Xurong; Gao, Xiang; Liu, Qi; Caylor, Kelly

    2015-01-01

    Effects of agricultural practices on ecosystem carbon storage have acquired widespread concern due to its alleviation of rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations. Recently, combining of furrow-ridge with plastic film mulching in spring maize ecosystem was widely applied to boost crop water productivity in the semiarid regions of China. However, there is still limited information about the potentials for increased ecosystem carbon storage of this tillage method. The objective of this study was to quantify and contrast net carbon dioxide exchange, biomass accumulation and carbon budgets of maize (Zea maize L.) fields under the traditional non-mulching with flat tillage (CK) and partial plastic film mulching with furrow-ridge tillage (MFR) on the China Loess Plateau. Half-hourly net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) of both treatments were synchronously measured with two eddy covariance systems during the growing seasons of 2011 through 2013. At same time green leaf area index (GLAI) and biomass were also measured biweekly. Compared with CK, the warmer and wetter (+1.3°C and +4.3%) top soil at MFR accelerated the rates of biomass accumulation, promoted greater green leaf area and thus shortened the growing seasons by an average value of 10.4 days for three years. MFR stimulated assimilation more than respiration during whole growing season, resulting in a higher carbon sequestration in terms of NEE of -79 gC/m2 than CK. However, after considering carbon in harvested grain (or aboveground biomass), there is a slight higher carbon sink (or a stronger carbon source) in MFR due to its greater difference of aboveground biomass than that of grain between both treatments. These results demonstrate that partial plastic film mulched furrow-ridge tillage with aboveground biomass exclusive of grain returned to the soil is an effective way to enhance simultaneously carbon sequestration and grain yield of maize in the semiarid regions.

  18. Fractal Feature of Particle-Size Distribution in the Rhizospheres and Bulk Soils during Natural Recovery on the Loess Plateau, China

    PubMed Central

    Song, Zilin; Zhang, Chao; Liu, Guobin; Qu, Dong; Xue, Sha

    2015-01-01

    The application of fractal geometry to describe soil structure is an increasingly useful tool for better understanding the performance of soil systems. Only a few studies, however, have focused on the structure of rhizospheric zones, where energy flow and nutrient recycling most frequently occur. We used fractal dimensions to investigate the characteristics of particle-size distribution (PSD) in the rhizospheres and bulk soils of six croplands abandoned for 1, 5, 10, 15, 20, and 30 years on the Loess Plateau of China and evaluated the changes over successional time. The PSDs of the rhizospheres and the fractal dimensions between rhizosphere soil and bulk soils during the natural succession differed significantly due to the influence of plant roots. The rhizospheres had higher sand (0.05–1.00 mm) contents, lower silt (<0.002 mm) contents, and lower fractal dimensions than the bulk soils during the early and intermediate successional stages (1–15 years). The fractal dimensions of the rhizosphere soil and bulk soil ranged from 2.102 to 2.441 and from 2.214 to 2.459, respectively, during the 30-year restoration. Rhizospheric clay and silt contents and fractal dimension tended to be higher and sand content tended to be lower as abandonment age increased, but the bulk soils had the opposite trend. Linear regression analysis indicated that the fractal dimensions of both the rhizospheres and bulk soils were significantly linearly correlated with clay, sand, organic-carbon, and total-nitrogen contents, with R2 ranging from 0.526 to 0.752 (P<0.001). In conclusion, PSD differed significantly between the rhizosphere soil and bulk soil. The fractal dimension was a sensitive and useful index for quantifying changes in the properties of the different soil zones. This study will greatly aid the application of the fractal method for describing soil structure and nutrient status and the understanding of the performance of rhizospheric zones during ecological restoration. PMID

  19. Eco-Physiological Responses of Dominant Species to Watering in a Natural Grassland Community on the Semi-Arid Loess Plateau of China.

    PubMed

    Niu, Furong; Duan, Dongping; Chen, Ji; Xiong, Peifeng; Zhang, He; Wang, Zhi; Xu, Bingcheng

    2016-01-01

    Altered precipitation regimes significantly affect ecosystem structure and function in arid and semi-arid regions. In order to investigate effects of precipitation changes on natural grassland community in the semi-arid Loess Plateau, the current research examined eco-physiological characteristics of two co-dominant species (i.e., Bothriochloa ischaemum and Lespedeza davurica) and community composition following two watering instances (i.e., precipitation pulses, July and August, 2011, respectively) in a natural grassland community. Results showed that the photosynthetic rate, transpiration rate, stomatal conductance and intercellular CO2 concentration rapidly increased on the first to third day following watering in both species, and both months. Under watering treatments, the maximum net photosynthetic rates appeared on the second to third day after watering, which increased 30-80% in B. ischaemum and 40-50% in L. davurica compared with non-watering treatments, respectively. Leaf water use efficiency kept stable or initially decreased in both species under watering treatments. Watering in July produced more promoting effects on grass photosynthesis than in August, particularly in B. ischaemum. Community above-ground biomass at the end of the growing season increased after watering, although no significant changes in species diversity were observed. Our results indicated that timing and magnitude of watering could significantly affect plant eco-physiological processes, and there were species-specific responses in B. ischaemum and L. davurica. Pulsed watering increased community productivity, while did not significantly alter community composition after one growing season. The outcomes of this study highlight eco-physiological traits in dominant species may playing important roles in reshaping community composition under altered precipitation regimes.

  20. Comparative analysis of land use/cover change trajectories and their driving forces in two small watersheds in the western Loess Plateau of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Dongchuan; Gong, Jianhua; Chen, Liding; Zhang, Lihui; Song, Yiquan; Yue, Yujuan

    2013-04-01

    To prevent soil loss and achieve better ecological environments, soil conservation measures have been taken during the past decades in the western Loess Plateau of China. In this paper, a case study was taken in Luoyu valley and Lver valley, two sub-watersheds of Xihe watershed and comparison was carried out between them. The main object of this study is to monitor land use/cover changes in the two similar small watersheds utilizing SPOT5 imageries by object-oriented human-computer interactive classification method, further develop the method of spatio-temporal analysis of land use/cover change by using pattern metrics of change trajectories and relative land use suitability index (R) in smaller watersheds, and make comparisons between the two similar small watersheds, taking water and soil conservation measures into consideration. Results show that combining GIS and RS, this method can be perfectly applied to make comparisons between different small watersheds with similar geographical backgrounds. And land use/cover spatiotemporal dynamic change characteristics can be preferably expressed by pattern metrics of change trajectories and R values based on topographical data. Different emphases have been laid according to their own geological backgrounds in the two watersheds and human activities have different effects on the landscapes of the two watersheds. The main change pattern is from slope farmland to terrace (322, the largest in Luoyu valley) or to economic fruit forest (344, the largest in Lver valley). R value of every slope grade in both of the two watersheds drops with the rising of slope degree on the whole and it shows that there is still much to do for people in the two watersheds in consideration that all the R values are still lower than 0.7.