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Ecological study of soils in the coastal western hemlock zone Lesko, Gyorgy Laszlo

Abstract

The main purpose of this study was to delineate ecosystem forest types within the forest associations of the Coastal Western Hemlock Zone. This aim was realised through the study of the ecotope of 116 sample plots in fifteen different associations. The study involved examination of topographic position and macroscopic soil properties in all sample plots. Twenty-four soil profiles were analysed for chemical properties. The forest associations were divided into two or more forest types or kept as a single forest type. This was done by the author and coworker, L. Orloci, primarily on the basis of ecoptopic information. Results of the study of edaphic factors in relation to plant associations indicate that the moisture regime, soil depth, organic matter/nitrogen ratio and potassium concentration of the soils are the most important factors edaphically differentiating the forest associations. Soil succession studies included in this work suggest that the climate, the kind of vegetation and water economy of the soil determine the course of soil development. Soil succession may initiate on six essentially different kinds of substrata, in the Coastal Western Hemlock Zone. Soil forming processes contributing to development of soils are podzolization, gleyzation, melanization and peat formation in the study area.

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