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Changes of P, Ca, Al and Fe contents in fringe marshes along a pedogenic chronosequence in the Pearl River estuary, South China

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Soil and plant samples were collected in four fringe marsh zones (i.e., A, B, C and D zones) along a pedogenic chronosequence in the Pearl River estuary in the Spring of 2009. Samples were subjected to a total digestion technique and analyzed for P, Ca, Al and Fe in order to study the changes of nutrient contents, storages in soils and their bioavailabilities to wetland plants (e.g. Cyperus malaccensis) in four zones. Results showed that soil Ca increased with depth along soil profiles, while P, Al and Fe generally kept constant in soil profiles in four zones. Al and Fe contents in the top 10 cm soils showed significant decreases from D to A zone, while a significant increase in Ca contents (P

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