Tropical tree roots represent an underappreciated carbon pool

Ask someone to draw a tree and s/he will invariably draw a trunk and branchesóleaving the roots out of the picture. In a unique study of tropical tree roots at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute published in PLOS ONE, roots accounted for almost 30 percent of the total biomass of young trees. The authors hope that future estimates of carbon storage and water-use by tropical forests will include information on root biomass and architecture.

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