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Responses of understory plant diversity to nitrogen (N) additions were investigated in reforested forests of contrasting disturbance regimes in southern China from 2003 to 2008: disturbed forest (withharvesting of understory vegetation and litter) and rehabilitated forest (without harvesting). Experimental additions of N were administered as the following treatments: Control, 50 kg N ha1yr1, and 100kg N ha1yr1. Nitrogen additions did not significantly affect understory plant richness, density,and cover in the disturbed forest. Similarly, no significant response was found for canopy closure in thisforest. In the rehabilitated forest, species richness and density showed no significant response to Nadditions; however, understory cover decreased significantly in the N-treated plots, largely a functionof a significant increase in canopy closure. Our results suggest that responses of plant diversity to N deposition may vary with different land-use history, and rehabilitated forests may be more sensitive to N deposition.


This is the pre-peer reviewed version of the following article: Lu X, J Mo, FS Gilliam, G Yu, W Zhang, Y Fang, and J Huang. 2011. Effects of experimental nitrogen additions on plant diversity in tropical forests of contrasting disturbance regimes in Southern China. Environmental Pollution 159:2228-2235, which has been published in final form at w w w . e l s e v i e r . c o m / l o c a t e / e n v p o l Reprinted with permission.