This study aims to investigate the soil environment characteristics of the Abies koreana community, which is currently showing a continuous decline in its size, in order to provide fundamental data for the management and creation of a conservation plan for the Abies koreana communities at the Korean national parks of Sobaeksan, Deogyusan, and Jirisan. Soil depth investigations were conducted at depths deeper than 40 cm into the B horizon at most study sites, except for the Dwaejipyeongjeon and Byeoksoryeong sites. The soil water content exceeded 30% on average, and these soils showed low bulk density levels. The soil texture was found to be the loamy or silty loam type at most study sites. It was also found in a chemical characteristic assessment that the soil samples contained more than 10% organic matter at most study sites. The cation exchange capacity (C.E.C.) and total N concentration levels were also high at most study sites. However, the soil showed low exchangeable K+, Na+, Ca2+, and Mg2+ levels at most study sites. Finally, the pH values were 4.90, 4.53, and 4.60 at soil depths of 10 cm at the Sobaeksan, Deogyusan and Jirisan sites, respectively, outcomes that are notably lower than the average levels in soil from Korean forests according to the literature. This appears to be due to the cold and wet climate of these subalpine regions given the reduced leaf-litter decomposition rate and accumulation of organic acids.
Figures & Tables
Fig. 1. The location of study areas in National Park of Korea.