Great Basin Naturalist


Six study sites were established in each of three community life form types (grass, forb, and shrub) containing as dominants or subdominants either C3 and/or C4 plants. Soil and vegetation samples were analyzed for total nitrogen, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, potassium, sodium, zinc, iron, copper, and manganese. Discriminant analysis and analysis of variance statistics were used to evaluate differences in mineral content of soils and plant tissues. C4 plants in all study sites assimilated higher concentrations of potassium, iron, and calcium than did C3 plants. Forbs in all sites contained the highest concentrations of minerals, followed by shrubs and grasses.