Conveners: Alexander Zimmermann, Miriam Coenders-Gerrits
Co-Conveners: Anke Hildebrandt, Jan Friesen, Pilar Llorens
During the passage of rain through a forest canopy water is redistributed. Most of the water reaches the forest floor as throughfall, some as stemflow, and another fraction of the rain is captured by the canopy and eventually evaporates. Previous studies showed that spatial patterns of throughfall exhibit a pronounced temporal stability in some forests. Yet, whether these patterns influence soil moisture patterns in a way that matters for plant growth or the soils biota is currently not known. Moreover, complex interactions between throughfall- and stemflow-induced spatial patterns and plant induced patterns, e.g. due to root uptake, hydraulic redistribution, and preferential flow are even less understood. Not surprisingly, the influence of climate, soil, and plant species composition on the interaction between water influx to the forest floor and near-surface processes warrants further studies. In this session we welcome contributions that provide new insights into the various aspects of the redistribution of water in forests and its consequences. Novel field experiments as well as new analytical approaches are particularly welcome. Moreover, we invite contributions that present new ideas and data regarding surveying and modelling of throughfall, stemflow, and soil moisture patterns.