Journal of Resources and Ecology ›› 2020, Vol. 11 ›› Issue (3): 290-297.DOI: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764X.2020.03.006

• Rangeland Ecosystem Function and Management • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Effects of Enclosure on Plant and Soil Nutrients in Different Types of Alpine Grassland

WANG Fang1,2, HE Yongtao1,3,*(), FU Gang1, NIU Ben1, ZHANG Haorui1,2, LI Meng1,2, WANG Zhipeng1,2, WANG Xiangtao1,2, ZHANG Xianzhou1,3   

  1. 1. Lhasa Plateau Ecosystem Research Station, Key Laboratory of Ecosystem Network Observation and Modeling, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
    2. University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
    3. College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100190, China
  • Received:2020-03-04 Accepted:2020-04-15 Online:2020-05-30 Published:2020-06-16
  • Contact: HE Yongtao
  • About author:WANG Fang, E-mail:
  • Supported by:
    The Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences(XDA19050502);The Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences(XDA20010201);The National Key Research Projects of China(2017YFA0604801);The National Key Research Projects of China(2016YFC0502001);The National Natural Science Foundation of China(31770477)


Enclosure is one of the most widely used management tools for degraded alpine grassland on the northern Tibetan Plateau, but the responses of different types of grassland to enclosure may vary, and research on these responses can provide a scientific basis for improving ecological conservation. This study took one site for each of three grassland types (alpine meadow, alpine steppe and alpine desert) on the northern Tibetan Plateau as examples, and explored the effects of enclosure on plant and soil nutrients by comparing differences in plant community biomass, leaf-soil nutrient content and their stoichiometry between samples from inside and outside the fence. The results showed that enclosure can significantly increase all aboveground biomass in these three grassland types, but it only increased the 10-20 cm underground biomass in the alpine desert. Enclosure also significantly increased the leaf nutrient content of the dominant plants and contents of total nitrogen (N), total potassium (K), and organic carbon (C) in 10-20 cm soil in alpine desert, thus changing the stoichiometry between C, N and P (phosphorus). However, enclosure significantly increased only the N content of dominant plant leaves in alpine steppe, while other nutrients and stoichiometries of both plant leaves and soil did not show significant differences in alpine meadow and alpine steppe. These results suggested that enclosure has differential effects on these three types of alpine grasslands on the northern Tibetan Plateau, and the alpine desert showed the most active ecological conservation in the responses of its soil and plant nutrients.

Key words: enclosure, alpine meadow, alpine steppe, alpine desert steppe, plant nutrient, soil nutrient