Articles | Volume 16, issue 6
Research article
 | Highlight paper
21 Mar 2019
Research article | Highlight paper |  | 21 Mar 2019

On the role of soil water retention characteristic on aerobic microbial respiration

Teamrat A. Ghezzehei, Benjamin Sulman, Chelsea L. Arnold, Nathaniel A. Bogie, and Asmeret Asefaw Berhe

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Cited articles

Angert, A., Yakir, D., Rodeghiero, M., Preisler, Y., Davidson, E. A., and Weiner, T.: Using O2 to study the relationships between soil CO2 efflux and soil respiration, Biogeosciences, 12, 2089–2099,, 2015. 
Aravena, J. E., Berli, M., Ruiz, S., Suárez, F., Ghezzehei, T. A., and Tyler, S. W.: Quantifying coupled deformation and water flow in the rhizosphere using X-ray microtomography and numerical simulations, Plant Soil, 376, 95–110,, 2013. 
Arnold, C., Ghezzehei, T. A., and Berhe, A. A.: Decomposition of distinct organic matter pools is regulated by moisture status in structured wetland soils, Soil Biol. Biochem., 81, 28–37,, 2015. 
Birch, H. F.: The effect of soil drying on humus decomposition and nitrogen availability, Plant and Soil, 10, 9–31, 1958. 
Carbone, M. S., Still, C. J., Ambrose, A. R., Dawson, T. E., Williams, A. P., Boot, C. M., Schaeffer, S. M., and Schimel, J. P.: Seasonal and episodic moisture controls on plant and microbial contributions to soil respiration, Oecologia, 167, 265–278,, 2011. 
Short summary
Soil water is a medium from which microbes acquire resources and within which they are able to move. Occupancy and availability of water and oxygen gas in soils are mutually exclusive. In addition, as soil dries the remaining water is held with an increasing degree of adhesive energy, which restricts microbes' ability to extract resources from water. We introduce a mathematical model that describes these interacting effects and organic matter decomposition.
Final-revised paper