Articles | Volume 2, issue 3
Forum article
12 Jul 2016
Forum article |  | 12 Jul 2016

Gone or just out of sight? The apparent disappearance of aromatic litter components in soils

Thimo Klotzbücher, Karsten Kalbitz, Chiara Cerli, Peter J. Hernes, and Klaus Kaiser

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Cited articles

Ahrens, B., Braakhekke, M. C., Guggenberger, G., Schrumpf, M., and Reichstein, M.: Contribution of sorption, DOC transport and microbial interactions to the 14C age of a soil organic carbon profile: Insights from a calibrated process model, Soil Biol. Biochem., 88, 390–402, 2015.
Amelung, W., Brodowski, S., Sandhage-Hofmann, A., and Bo, R.: Combining biomarker with stable isotope analyses for assessing the transformation and turnover of soil organic matter, Adv. Agron., 100, 155–250, 2008.
Buurman, P., Peterse, F., and Almendros Martin, G.: Soil organic matter chemistry in allophonic soils: a pyrolysis-GC/MS study of a Costa Rican Andosol catena, Eur. J. Soil Sci., 58, 1330–1347, 2007.
Castellano, M. J., Mueller, K. E., Olk, D. C., Sawyer, J. E., and Six, J.: Integrating plant litter quality, soil organic matter stabilization, and the carbon saturation concept, Global Change Biol., 21, 3200–3209, 2015.
Cerli, C., Celi, L., Kaiser, K., Guggenberger, G., Johansson, M.-B., Cignetti, A., and Zanini, E.: Changes in humic substances along an age sequence of Norway spriuce stands planted on former agricultural land, Org. Geochem., 39, 1269–1280, 2008.
Short summary
Uncertainties concerning stabilization of organic compounds in soil limit our basic understanding on soil organic matter (SOM) formation and our ability to model and manage effects of global change on SOM stocks. One controversially debated aspect is the contribution of aromatic litter components, such as lignin and tannins, to stable SOM forms. Here, we summarize and discuss the inconsistencies and propose research options to clear them.