Phenolic acids distribution in a peat of the relict community with Serbian spruce in the Tara Mt. forest reserve (Serbia)
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Restoration of tertiary endemorelict Serbian spruce (Picea omorika Pancic) in forest-peat in Tara Mt., the only such finding in the world is rather poor. This could be partially ascribed to the presence of phenolics in peat soil. Content of total phenols and phenolic acids was determined in peat samples taken from: (1) knolls of forest-peat bog with dominance of trees and between the knolls and (2) peat bog knolls with dominance of Agrostis alba and between the knolls where Sphagnum mosses prevailed. In knoll samples of forest-peat bog where there are conditions for growth and development of trees, the amount of free phenolics was up to three times higher compared to that in the peat-bog knoll samples with dominance of A. alba. Amount of bound phenolics between the knolls of forest-peat bog was significantly higher than that between the knolls of the peat bog. Content of bound phenolics. exceeded that of free ones 1.77-12 times. In the forest-peat bog soil, derivatives of benzoic acid mainly originating from woody plants were dominant, while in peat bog cinnamic acid derivatives, originating from A. alba and Sphagnum mosses prevailed. Our results demonstrate that aerobic conditions in knolls enable a more extensive accumulation of free phenolics, while anaerobic conditions between the knolls result in a higher accumulation of bound phenolics. Content and composition of phenolic compounds depend on dominant plants in phytocoenotic microcomplex, as well as characteristics of the microhabitat. (C) 2003 Editions scientifiques et medicales Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.