Methods of soil resampling to monitor changes in the chemical concentrations of forest soils

Gregory B. Lawrence, Ivan J. Fernandez, Paul W. Hazlett, Scott W. Bailey, Donald S. Ross, Thomas R. Villars, Angelica Quintana, Rock Ouimet, Michael R. McHale, Chris E. Johnson, Russell D. Briggs, Robert A. Colter, Jason Siemion, Olivia L. Bartlett, Olga Vargas, Michael R. Antidormi, Mary M. Koppers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Recent soils research has shown that important chemical soil characteristics can change in less than a decade, often the result of broad environmental changes. Repeated sampling to monitor these changes in forest soils is a relatively new practice that is not well documented in the literature and has only recently been broadly embraced by the scientific community. The objective of this protocol is therefore to synthesize the latest information on methods of soil resampling in a format that can be used to design and implement a soil monitoring program. Successful monitoring of forest soils requires that a study unit be defined within an area of forested land that can be characterized with replicate sampling locations. A resampling interval of 5 years is recommended, but if monitoring is done to evaluate a specific environmental driver, the rate of change expected in that driver should be taken into consideration. Here, we show that the sampling of the profile can be done by horizon where boundaries can be clearly identified and horizons are sufficiently thick to remove soil without contamination from horizons above or below. Otherwise, sampling can be done by depth interval. Archiving of sample for future reanalysis is a key step in avoiding analytical bias and providing the opportunity for additional analyses as new questions arise.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere54815
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number117
StatePublished - Nov 17 2016


  • Archiving soil samples
  • Forest soil variability
  • Forest soils
  • Repeated soil sampling
  • Soil analysis
  • Soil change
  • Soil monitoring

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Immunology and Microbiology


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