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Chemical characteristics of some peatlands in southern Poland

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Author(s): M. Malawska | A. Ekonomiuk | B. Wiłkomirski

Journal: Mires and Peat
ISSN 1819-754X

Volume: 1;
Issue: 02;
Start page: 1;
Date: 2006;
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Keywords: peat geochemistry | mire classification | peat species

ABSTRACT
The study described here investigated the differences in chemical characteristics between peat deposits with different geological origin, geomorphology, hydrology and botanical composition. The variation of chemical properties with depth was compared between fen, transition mire and raised bog peat deposits occurring in south and south-west Poland. Degree of decomposition, pH, Na+, K+, Mg2+, Ca2+, N, ash and humic substances content were determined, and cluster analysis was used to describe the chemical variation amongst peat samples and peatland sites. The peat deposits showed high chemical variability between mire types, and even within the same botanical peat type; and peat from geographically distant peatlands could be chemically more similar than peat from different locations within a single mire complex. Thus, purely botanical classifications appear to be of limited utility as indicators of the conditions under which peat formation occurred.
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