|• Reduce the thermal amplitude in the soil||• Accumulation of litter intercept light, shading seeds and seedlings, which in turn decreases soil temperature (Krishna and Mohan 2007).|
|• Reduce evapotranspiration (ET) from the soil||• Reduce maximum soil temperatures|
• Creates a barrier to water vapor diffusion (Argao et al. 2009).
|• Diminish water availability||• Litter may retain a large proportion of rainfall (Vitousek and Sanford 1986).|
|• Reduce seed germination and seedling emergences||• Creates a barrier for sprouts and seedling emergence and prevent seeds to reach soils (Chapman and Koch 2007).|
|• Patchy accumulation of plant litter may alter community structure||• Litter of one species may affect the performance of a second species (Chapman and Koch 2007).|
• Litter produced by one species may alter the interaction between a second and a third species (Melo et al. 2013).
|• Increase CO2 efflux||• Microbial decomposition can add more than 20% CO2 efflux to the soil (Krishna and Mohan 2007).|
|• Increase nutrient return to the soil||• Litterfall is a crucial pathway for nutrient return to the soil (Krishna and Mohan 2007).|