Recovery of soil pH, cation-exchange capacity and the saturation of exchange sites from stemflow-induced soil acidification in three Swedish beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) forests

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Stemflow water acidifies the soil in beech stands impacted by atmospheric deposition. To investigate whether the soil recovers from acidification, stemflow was experimentally removed. A horizon material was sampled at a distance of 10-250 cm From the stems. Before the onset of the experiment, there were stemflow-induced gradients in the saturation of exchange sites with K+, H+ and Na+ that were larger near the stems, while the pH(KCl), the cation-exchange capacity, and the saturation with Ca2+, Mg2+ and Mn2+ were smaller. After 8 yrs of recovery, the pH(KCl) and the saturation with Ca2+ and Mg2+ had increased close to the stems, while the saturation with Na+, H+, Mn2+ and Fe2+ and the C/N ratio had decreased. With some exceptions, e.g. base saturation, the recovery was not complete after 8 yrs. Soil far from stems had also changed similarly, probably because of the ongoing decrease in overall deposition in southern Sweden.


  • G Matschonat
  • Ursula Falkengren-Grerup
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Ecology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-48
JournalScandinavian Journal of Forest Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2000
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Plant Ecology and Systematics (Closed 2011) (011004000)