soil microbial biomass carbon
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Dataset for abiotic and biotic responses to woody debris additions in restored old fields in a MBACI experiment
Experimental sites were established in the northern wheat-growing district of western Australia (Lat -29.66°, Long 116.18°) in August 2017, and monitored through to November 2019. We selected five planted old field sites with similar soil types and vegetation composition. Old fields were planted with York gum (Eucalyptus loxophleba Benth.) and dominant shrubs as understorey. At the time of sampling in 2017, vegetation age ranged from 8–13 years and distance from remnant measured 279 m (± 162 m). We established two control and two treatment plots, each measuring 5 m x 5 m, in the interrows of five planted old field sites. Both treatments were randomly assigned to plots within each site. Between August and early November 2017, we measured a total of 30 response variables at each of the control and treatment plots. Response variables included soil physical and chemical properties (bulk density, penetration resistance, soil moisture, nitrogen and carbon pools), microbial biomass, decomposition rate of roiboos and green tea as per the standardized Tea Bag Index (TBI) protocol, herbaceous vegetation cover and richness, and ant abundance and richness, as well as abundance and richness of ant functional groups.