Articles | Volume 8, issue 1
SOIL, 8, 253–267, 2022
https://doi.org/10.5194/soil-8-253-2022
SOIL, 8, 253–267, 2022
https://doi.org/10.5194/soil-8-253-2022
Original research article
01 Apr 2022
Original research article | 01 Apr 2022

Land use impact on carbon mineralization in well aerated soils is mainly explained by variations of particulate organic matter rather than of soil structure

Steffen Schlüter et al.

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Short summary
We combined microstructure analysis via X-ray CT with carbon mineralization analysis via respirometry of intact soil cores from different land uses. We found that the amount of particulate organic matter (POM) exerted a dominant control on carbon mineralization in well-aerated topsoils, whereas soil moisture and macroporosity did not play role. This is because carbon mineralization mainly occurs in microbial hotspots around degrading POM, where it is decoupled from conditions of the bulk soil.