Restorations of vegetation in damaged grassland ecosystems is a challenging task for researchers and requires better understanding of nutrient availability and dynamics. The stoichiometric properties of plant carbon (C), nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) and their relationships with soil were studied in different grassland communities i.e., desert steppe, semi-desert steppe, mountain meadows, mountain meadow steppes and alpine meadows in northwestern, China. The result showed that C contents in below ground parts were lower than in above ground parts from the temperate steppe community. The average values of total C in plant leaves and roots were 346.1 g.kg-1 and 341.8 g.kg-1, respectively. The average values of N and P in plant leaves were 13.6 g.kg-1 and 1.7 g.kg-1, respectively. For the below ground part, the average values of N and P were 9.5 g.kg-1 and 1.4 g.kg-1, respectively. By comparison with the mean N and P contents of leaves in China, N contents in the study area were lower, while the P contents were consistent with average values at national level. The average above ground parts and root’s chemometrics of N/P were 7.5 and 7.1, respectively. N is a limiting factor and it should be taken into consideration for the appropriate supply of nitrogen. This study could provide the theoretical basis for vegetation restorations of damaged ecosystems and support for further protecting grassland and ecosystems.
Abhusan Achhami– Graduate Student, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Nevada