Predicting savanna vegetation structure on the basis of plant available moisture (PAM) and plant available nutrients (PAN): a case study from Australia
Article first published online: 31 OCT 2003
1997 Blackwell Science Ltd.
Journal of Biogeography
Volume 24, Issue 6, pages 813–825, 1997-12
How to Cite
Walker, B. and Langridge, J. (1997), Predicting savanna vegetation structure on the basis of plant available moisture (PAM) and plant available nutrients (PAN): a case study from Australia. Journal of Biogeography, 24: 813–825. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2699.1997.00123.x
- Issue published online: 31 OCT 2003
- Article first published online: 31 OCT 2003
- Cited By
- soil moisture;
The use of the plant available moisture (PAM)/plant available nutrients (PAN) concept to compare savanna structure was examined using data from twenty Australian sites. Above-ground biomass was regressed on various combinations of seventeen different estimates of PAM (plant available moisture) and two estimates of PAN (plant available nutrients). The ratios of actual transpirational loss from the subsoil to potential evapotranspiration (PET), and total annual rainfall to PET, were most highly correlated with total biomass. Grass biomass is poorly predicted by PAM on its own, and requires inclusion of woody leaf biomass in the regression. PAN had little effect on total biomass, although it is likely to be important for other, functional aspects of vegetation. The woody : grass ratio is best predicted by an index involving the ratio of subsoil : topsoil moisture. For biomass comparisons the use of a detailed water-balance model to estimate PAM is not warranted.