Plant biomass, leaf area, carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus in wet sedge tundra, 1994, Arctic LTER, Toolik Lake, Alaska.


Plant biomass, leaf area, carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus were measured in three wet sedge tundra experimental sites. Treatments at each site included factorial NxP and at the Toolik sites greenhouse and shade house. Treatments started in 1985 (Sag site) and in 1988 (Toolik sites).

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Published on EDI/LTER Data Portal


Shaver, G. 1996. Plant biomass, leaf area, carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus in wet sedge tundra, 1994, Arctic LTER, Toolik Lake, Alaska. Environmental Data Initiative.



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Associated Researcher

Date Range: 

Monday, July 25, 1994 to Wednesday, August 3, 1994

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Plots were setup as indicated below, with annual fertilization treatments of 10 g/m2 Nitrogen (as NH4NO3) and 5 g/m2 Phosphorous (as triple superphosphate) . Greenhouses and shade houses were annually set up in late May or early June and removed in the end of August or early September.
Sites: Block 1 - Toolik Inlet (CT, N, P, NP, GH, GHNP, and Shade treatments)
Treatments began summer of 1989; one 5x10m
Block 2 - Toolik Outlet (Same treatments)
Treatments began summer of 1989; one 5x10m
Block 3 - Sag River toposequence wet sedge site (CT, N, P, and NP treatments)
Consider as "Block 3" for comparison with Toolik sites, but
the wet sedge is site 2 in the toposequence experiment.
Treatments began fall 1985 , 2 replicate plots,
each 2x10 m

Notes: There were several miss marked bags: 2 bags of block 2 N ‘Other carex’, sheath. Values very close; averaged the values. There is a missing block 2 ‘Other Carex’ Sheath Shade treatment; used the average from the block 2 N ‘Other Carex’ sheath. There were 2 block 1 moss NP; averaged the values. There is an unknown leaf found in an Andromeda bag.

Calculations: Units; Tissue mass data are expressed in g/quadrat (400 cm2). Multiply by 25 to get g/m2. Leaf blade area are in cm2/quadrat. Multiply by .0025 to get m2 leaf/m2 ground.

Sampling Description.

Biomass quadrats, size 20x20 cm, were randomly located along line transects within plots. There were 4 quadrats/plot (treatment) collected in Blocks 1 and 2, and 2 quadrats/plot (2 plots/treatment) at the Sag site. All aboveground biomass plus belowground stems and rhizomes were clipped in 20x20 cm quadrats. Aboveground biomass is considered "within" the quadrat if it is associated with a meristem that is within the quadrat. Quadrats were sorted within 24 hours into species and then into tissue type. Tissue categories were standard, except for graminoid sheaths. Because some species, especially Carex cordirhiza, included many culms, "sheaths" included culms as well. Leaf Blades were the only other aboveground biomass category for graminoids, so inflorescence also went into the "sheaths" category. This is potentially a problem in analysis, because much of the mass of C. cordirhiza is culms and attached, aboveground sheaths, whereas the "sheath" category for other graminoids is almost entirely belowground and nongreen. All leaf blade material from Blocks 1 and 2 was run through the LiCor leaf area meter before drying. They were then dried at 50-70 degrees C in a drying oven. After several days in the oven samples were weighed to nearest milligram. Samples are then returned to Woods Hole for nutrient analysis. All samples were ground at least to 60 mesh, either on a Wiley mill or home made roller mill. Nitrogen and Carbon was analyzed on a Perkin-Emler CHN analyzer and Phosphorus was analyzed by the method of Aspila, et al (Analyst 101 pp. 187-197). Details on biomass harvest are given in Shaver and Chapin (Ecological Monographs, 61(1), 1991, pg. 1.)
In Blocks 1 and 2, light and dark LiCor measurements were made on quadrats 2-4 before harvesting (see 94gsbflx.txt)

Version Changes: 

Log of changes:

11Mar95 Separated comma delimited data from Excel file. JL 28Oct2004
Checked and completed the variable description section and added C, N % P data. Re-organized the data to match other biomass files. JL
Version2: Creaded Excel metadata form. Changed titler and added attribut table. 10Jan06 JimL
Version 3: Added LTERNET Data Access server proxy for Excel and comma delimited data files.
Version 4: Upadte LTERNET Data Access server proxy link for Excel and comma delimited data files. Changed from knb to das in url.
Version 5: Updated the metadata form to new version and eml to 2.1.0 JimL 9Jul2012
Version 6: Taxonomic coverage data updated. Updated metadata to newer form (with sites sheet). CH march 2013.
Version 7: Checked keywords against the LTER network preferred list and replaced non-preferred terms. Jim L 27Jan14
 Version 9: Changed Distrubution URL since the LTER network DAS system is being discontinued. (No version 8) JimL 9Apr2015

Sites sampled.

Full Metadata and data files (either comma delimited (csv) or Excel) - Environmental Data Initiative repository.

Use of the data requires acceptance of the data use policy --> Arctic LTER Data Use Policy