Shaver, G. R. and F. S. Chapin, III. 1991. Production/biomass relationships and element cycling in contrasting arctic vegetation types. Ecological Monographs 61:1-31.
Primary production, plant biomass, plant element content, and various measures of turnover and element cycling were compared among four contrasting tundra vegetation types near Toolik Lake, Alaska. The study sites were selected to represent extreme examples of the wide variation in plant growth form composition that is typical of northern ecosystems. The aim of the research was to determine whether vegetation types that differ in their dominant plant growth form also differ in their production:biomass relationships and overall patterns of element use. Vascular plant biomass (excluding roots) varied by nearly 9x among sites, from 217 to 1877 g/m super(2). At least 50% of the vascular biomass at all four sites was belowground stems, but the relative allocation to leaves vs. aboveground stems varied greatly. Primary productivity of vascular plants also varied sharply among sites, from 32 to 305 g/m super(2)/yr (not including root production).