Soil heterogeneity generated during the topographic restoration of opencast coalmines determines important differences in vegetation dynamics. The relationship between soil and vegetation along a reclaimed mine slope was assessed. Two vegetation patches (grassland and shrubland) were distinguished and compared with the adjacent forest. Seven sampling transects (3:3:1, grassland:shrubland:forest) were implemented for soil and vegetation characterization. Eleven years after reclamation significant differences between the reference community and the reclaimed communities, and along the reclaimed mine slope, were found. A topographic gradient was observed in the vegetation distribution associated with water and organic matter content: Grassland patches occupy the upper parts of the mine slope to where easily oxidizable-carbon/totalcarbon ratio increases and shrubland patches occupy the lower parts towards where water retention capacity increases. The plant species segregation along the mineslope topographic gradient was related to stages of different maturity of vegetation and soil properties. Novel aspects in plant-soil systems understanding in reclaimed mine slopes were addressed.
ETS Ingenierías Agrarias Universidad de Valladolid - Avd. Madrid s/n
34004 - PALENCIA - Localización
INIA-CIFOR - Ctra. A Coruña km 7,5
28040 - MADRID - Localización
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