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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 1, 2023
  2. Abstract

    Fragmentation transforms the environment along forest edges. The prevailing narrative, driven by research in tropical systems, suggests that edge environments increase tree mortality and structural degradation resulting in net decreases in ecosystem productivity. We show that, in contrast to tropical systems, temperate forest edges exhibit increased forest growth and biomass with no change in total mortality relative to the forest interior. We analyze >48,000 forest inventory plots across the north-eastern US using a quasi-experimental matching design. At forest edges adjacent to anthropogenic land covers, we report increases of 36.3% and 24.1% in forest growth and biomass, respectively. Inclusion of edge impacts increases estimates of forest productivity by up to 23% in agriculture-dominated areas, 15% in the metropolitan coast, and +2% in the least-fragmented regions. We also quantify forest fragmentation globally, at 30-m resolution, showing that temperate forests contain 52% more edge forest area than tropical forests. Our analyses upend the conventional wisdom of forest edges as less productive than intact forest and call for a reassessment of the conservation value of forest fragments.

  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2023
  4. Abstract
    The climate is changing in many temperate forests with the amount of forest area dominated by sugar maple experiencing an insulating snowpack expected to shrink between 49 and 95% compared to 1951-2005 values. A reduced snowpack and increased depth and duration of soil frost can injure or kill fine roots, which are essential for plant water and nutrient uptake. These adverse impacts on tree roots can have important impacts on tree growth and ecosystem carbon sequestration. We evaluated the effects of changing winter climate, including snow and soil frost dynamics, by using tree cores to measure sugar maple radial growth rates in the Soil Freezing Study plots at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest. These data were gathered as part of the Hubbard Brook Ecosystem Study (HBES). The HBES is a collaborative effort at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, which is operated and maintained by the USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station. Analysis of these data are published in: Reinmann AB, Susser JR, Demara EMC, and Templer PH. 2019. Declines in northern forest tree growth following snowpack decline and soil freezing. Global Change Biology. 25(2):420-430. https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.14420
  5. Abstract
    Root damage, as relative electrolyte leakage, was assessed following winter freeze-thaw cycle experimental treatments in 2014 and 2015 on all Climate Change Across Seasons Experiment (CCASE) plots. Reference (or control) plots are shared with the collaborating Northern Forest DroughtNet experiment. There are six plots total (each 11 x 14m). Two are warmed 5 degrees C throughout the growing season (Plots 3 and 4). Two others are warmed 5 degrees C in the growing season and have snow removed during winter to induce soil freeze/thaw cycles (Plots 5 and 6). Four kilometers (2.5 mi) of heating cable are buried in the soil to warm these four plots. Two additional plots serve as controls for our experiment (Plots 1 and 2). Analysis and results from these data are presented in Sanders-DeMott 2018. These data were gathered as part of the Hubbard Brook Ecosystem Study (HBES). The HBES is a collaborative effort at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, which is operated and maintained by the USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station. Sanders-DeMott, R., Sorensen, P.O., Reinmann, A.B. et al. Growing season warming and winter freeze–thaw cycles reduce root nitrogen uptake capacity and increase soil solution nitrogen in a northern forest ecosystem. Biogeochemistry 137,More>>
  6. Abstract
    Fine root nitrogen uptake capacity was measured on excised roots prior to experimental treatment in 2013 and throughout the growing seasons of 2014 and 2015 on all Climate Change Across Seasons Experiment (CCASE) plots. Reference (or control) plots are shared with the collaborating Northern Forest DroughtNet experiment. There are six plots total (each 11 x 14m). Two are warmed 5 degrees C throughout the growing season (Plots 3 and 4). Two others are warmed 5 degrees C in the growing season and have snow removed during winter to induce soil freeze/thaw cycles (Plots 5 and 6). Four kilometers (2.5 mi) of heating cable are buried in the soil to warm these four plots. Two additional plots serve as controls for our experiment (Plots 1 and 2). Analysis and results from these data are presented in Sanders-DeMott 2018. These data were gathered as part of the Hubbard Brook Ecosystem Study (HBES). The HBES is a collaborative effort at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, which is operated and maintained by the USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station. Sanders-DeMott, R., Sorensen, P.O., Reinmann, A.B. et al. Growing season warming and winter freeze–thaw cycles reduce root nitrogen uptake capacity and increase soil solution nitrogenMore>>
  7. Abstract
    Resin available soil solution nitrogen was measured during seasonal incubations in 2014 and 2015 on all Climate Change Across Seasons Experiment (CCASE) plots. Reference (or control) plots are shared with the collaborating Northern Forest DroughtNet experiment. There are six plots total (each 11 x 14m). Two are warmed 5 degrees C throughout the growing season (Plots 3 and 4). Two others are warmed 5 degrees C in the growing season and have snow removed during winter to induce soil freeze/thaw cycles (Plots 5 and 6). Four kilometers (2.5 mi) of heating cable are buried in the soil to warm these four plots. Two additional plots serve as controls for our experiment (Plots 1 and 2). Analysis and results from these data are presented in Sanders-DeMott 2018. These data were gathered as part of the Hubbard Brook Ecosystem Study (HBES). The HBES is a collaborative effort at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, which is operated and maintained by the USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station. Sanders-DeMott, R., Sorensen, P.O., Reinmann, A.B. et al. Growing season warming and winter freeze–thaw cycles reduce root nitrogen uptake capacity and increase soil solution nitrogen in a northern forest ecosystem. Biogeochemistry 137, 337–349 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10533-018-0422-5
  8. Abstract Forest fragmentation is ubiquitous across urban and rural areas. While there is mounting evidence that forest fragmentation alters the terrestrial carbon cycle, the extent to which differences in ambient growing conditions between urban and rural landscapes mediate forest response to fragmentation and climate remains unexamined. This study integrates field measurements of forest structure, growth, and soil respiration with climate data and high-resolution land-cover maps to quantify forest carbon storage and sequestration patterns along edge-to-interior gradients. These data were used to contrast the response of temperate broadleaf forests to non-forest edges within rural and urban landscapes. We find that forest growth rates in both rural and urban landscapes nearly double from the forest interior to edge. Additionally, these edge-induced enhancements in forest growth are not offset by concurrent increases in total soil respiration observed across our sites. Forest productivity generally increases near edges because of increases in leaf area, but elevated air temperature at the edge tempers this response and imparts greater sensitivity of forest growth to heat. In particular, the adverse impacts of heat on forest growth are two to three times larger in urban than rural landscapes. We demonstrate that the highly fragmented nature of urban forests comparedmore »to rural forests makes them a stronger carbon sink per unit area, but also much more vulnerable to a warming climate. Collectively, our results highlight the need to include the effects of both urbanization and fragmentation when quantifying regional carbon balance and its response to a changing climate.« less