Tropical Ecology and Conservation [Monteverde Institute]

Creator

Mariel Platt

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Publication Date

March 2003

Abstract

The many hypotheses aimed at describing the physiological, morphological, environmental forces contributing to buttress development have not clearly shown definitive evidence regarding what selective forces are responsible for buttress formation. One hypothesis that has little documented research available is that the presence of buttresses allows for an increased abundance of organic matter and inhibits nutrient leaching from the soil, thus providing the tree with a greater quality soil for localized growth. Twenty-five different soil samples were collected and analyzed for potassium, nitrogen, phosphorus, and pH from both the base of buttressed Quercus spp. and a control site in the cloud forest of Monteverde, Costa Rica. No significant difference was found in the relationship between the presence of buttresses and an increased amount of N, P, K, or a more suitable pH. Results found may be due to nutrient use by the roots of buttressed trees or a slower rate of decomposition due to decreased temperatures in lower montane wet forests verses lowland tropical forests. Hay muchas hipótesis que apuntan a describir las fuerzas fisiológicas, morfológicas y ambientales que contribuyen al desarrollo de gambas, pero no se ha mostrado evidencia definitiva con respecto a qué fuerza selectiva es responsable de su formación. Una hipótesis que ha sido poco investigada predice que con la presencia de gambas se aumenta la abundancia de la materia orgánica e inhibe la lixiviación de nutrientes de la tierra, así proporciona al árbol con un sustrato más nutritivo para el crecimiento. Veinticinco muestras diferentes de tierra fueron analizadas en el contenido de potasio, nitrógeno, fósforo, y de pH en la base de árboles de Quercus y un sitio control cerca, en el bosque nuboso de Monteverde, Costa Rica. Ninguna diferencia significativa se encontró en la relación entre la presencia de gambas y el aumento de N, P, K, o de un pH más adecuado. Los resultados encontrados puede estar relacionados al uso de nutrientes por las raíces de las gambas o a una tasa más lenta de descomposición debido a la baja humedad y temperaturas en el bosque montano bajo, comparado con los bosques de bajura tropicales.

Description

Student affiliation: Department of Environmental Science, University of Oregon Digitized by MVI

Genre

Reports

Holding Location

Monteverde Institute MVI

Identifier

M39-00119

Advantageous development of buttresses displayed in Quercus spp.

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