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Sample records for adjacent agricultural soils

  1. Ammonia- and methane-oxidizing microorganisms in high-altitude wetland sediments and adjacent agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Yang, Yuyin; Shan, Jingwen; Zhang, Jingxu; Zhang, Xiaoling; Xie, Shuguang; Liu, Yong

    2014-12-01

    Ammonia oxidation is known to be carried out by ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) and archaea (AOA), while methanotrophs (methane-oxidizing bacteria (MOB)) play an important role in mitigating methane emissions from the environment. However, the difference of AOA, AOB, and MOB distribution in wetland sediment and adjacent upland soil remains unclear. The present study investigated the abundances and community structures of AOA, AOB, and MOB in sediments of a high-altitude freshwater wetland in Yunnan Province (China) and adjacent agricultural soils. Variations of AOA, AOB, and MOB community sizes and structures were found in water lily-vegetated and Acorus calamus-vegetated sediments and agricultural soils (unflooded rice soil, cabbage soil, and garlic soil and flooded rice soil). AOB community size was higher than AOA in agricultural soils and lily-vegetated sediment, but lower in A. calamus-vegetated sediment. MOB showed a much higher abundance than AOA and AOB. Flooded rice soil had the largest AOA, AOB, and MOB community sizes. Principal coordinate analyses and Jackknife Environment Clusters analyses suggested that unflooded and flooded rice soils had relatively similar AOA, AOB, and MOB structures. Cabbage soil and A. calamus-vegetated sediment had relatively similar AOA and AOB structures, but their MOB structures showed a large difference. Nitrososphaera-like microorganisms were the predominant AOA species in garlic soil but were present with a low abundance in unflooded rice soil and cabbage soil. Nitrosospira-like AOB were dominant in wetland sediments and agricultural soils. Type I MOB Methylocaldum and type II MOB Methylocystis were dominant in wetland sediments and agricultural soils. Moreover, Pearson's correlation analysis indicated that AOA Shannon diversity was positively correlated with the ratio of organic carbon to nitrogen (p < 0.05). This work could provide some new insights toward ammonia and methane oxidation in soil and wetland sediment

  2. Comparison of some quality properties of soils around land-mined areas and adjacent agricultural fields.

    PubMed

    Ozturkmen, Ali Rıza; Kavdir, Yasemin

    2012-03-01

    When agricultural lands are no longer used for agriculture and allowed to recover its natural vegetation, soil organic carbon can accumulate in the soil. Measurements of soil organic carbon and aggregate stability changes under various forms of land use are needed for the development of sustainable systems. Therefore, comparison of soil samples taken from both agricultural and nearby area close to land-mined fields where no agricultural practices have been done since 1956 can be a good approach to evaluate the effects of tillage and agriculture on soil quality. The objective of this study was to compare tillage, cropping and no tillage effects on some soil-quality parameters. Four different locations along the Turkey-Syria border were selected to determine effects of tillage and cropping on soil quality. Each location was evaluated separately because of different soil type and treatments. Comparisons were made between non-tilled and non-cropped fallow since 1956 and adjacent restricted lands that were tilled about every 2 years but not planted (T) or adjacent lands tilled and planted with wheat and lentil (P). Three samples were taken from the depths of 0-20 and 20-40 cm each site. Soil organic carbon (SOC), pH ,electrical conductivity, water soluble Ca(++), Mg(++), CO₃⁻² and HCO₃⁻, extractable potassium (K(+)) and sodium (Na(+)), soil texture, ammonium (NH₄⁺-N) and nitrate (NO(3)-N), extractable phosphorous and soil aggregate stability were determined. While the SOC contents of continuous tillage without cropping and continuous tillage and cropping were 2.2 and 11.6 g kg(-1), respectively, it was 30 g kg(-1) in non-tilled and non-planted site. Tillage of soil without the input of any plant material resulted in loss of carbon from the soil in all sites. Soil extractable NO(3)-N contents of non-tilled and non-cropped sites were greatest among all treatments. Agricultural practices increased phosphorus and potassium contents in the soil profile. P(2)O(5

  3. Agricultural Intensification Exacerbates Spillover Effects on Soil Biogeochemistry in Adjacent Forest Remnants

    PubMed Central

    Didham, Raphael K.; Barker, Gary M.; Bartlam, Scott; Deakin, Elizabeth L.; Denmead, Lisa H.; Fisk, Louise M.; Peters, Jennifer M. R.; Tylianakis, Jason M.; Wright, Hannah R.; Schipper, Louis A.

    2015-01-01

    Land-use intensification is a central element in proposed strategies to address global food security. One rationale for accepting the negative consequences of land-use intensification for farmland biodiversity is that it could ‘spare’ further expansion of agriculture into remaining natural habitats. However, in many regions of the world the only natural habitats that can be spared are fragments within landscapes dominated by agriculture. Therefore, land-sparing arguments hinge on land-use intensification having low spillover effects into adjacent protected areas, otherwise net conservation gains will diminish with increasing intensification. We test, for the first time, whether the degree of spillover from farmland into adjacent natural habitats scales in magnitude with increasing land-use intensity. We identified a continuous land-use intensity gradient across pastoral farming systems in New Zealand (based on 13 components of farmer input and soil biogeochemistry variables), and measured cumulative off-site spillover effects of fertilisers and livestock on soil biogeochemistry in 21 adjacent forest remnants. Ten of 11 measured soil properties differed significantly between remnants and intact-forest reference sites, for both fenced and unfenced remnants, at both edge and interior. For seven variables, the magnitude of effects scaled significantly with magnitude of surrounding land-use intensity, through complex interactions with fencing and edge effects. In particular, total C, total N, δ15N, total P and heavy-metal contaminants of phosphate fertilizers (Cd and U) increased significantly within remnants in response to increasing land-use intensity, and these effects were exacerbated in unfenced relative to fenced remnants. This suggests movement of livestock into surrounding natural habitats is a significant component of agricultural spillover, but pervasive changes in soil biogeochemistry still occur through nutrient spillover channels alone, even in fenced

  4. Agricultural intensification exacerbates spillover effects on soil biogeochemistry in adjacent forest remnants.

    PubMed

    Didham, Raphael K; Barker, Gary M; Bartlam, Scott; Deakin, Elizabeth L; Denmead, Lisa H; Fisk, Louise M; Peters, Jennifer M R; Tylianakis, Jason M; Wright, Hannah R; Schipper, Louis A

    2015-01-01

    Land-use intensification is a central element in proposed strategies to address global food security. One rationale for accepting the negative consequences of land-use intensification for farmland biodiversity is that it could 'spare' further expansion of agriculture into remaining natural habitats. However, in many regions of the world the only natural habitats that can be spared are fragments within landscapes dominated by agriculture. Therefore, land-sparing arguments hinge on land-use intensification having low spillover effects into adjacent protected areas, otherwise net conservation gains will diminish with increasing intensification. We test, for the first time, whether the degree of spillover from farmland into adjacent natural habitats scales in magnitude with increasing land-use intensity. We identified a continuous land-use intensity gradient across pastoral farming systems in New Zealand (based on 13 components of farmer input and soil biogeochemistry variables), and measured cumulative off-site spillover effects of fertilisers and livestock on soil biogeochemistry in 21 adjacent forest remnants. Ten of 11 measured soil properties differed significantly between remnants and intact-forest reference sites, for both fenced and unfenced remnants, at both edge and interior. For seven variables, the magnitude of effects scaled significantly with magnitude of surrounding land-use intensity, through complex interactions with fencing and edge effects. In particular, total C, total N, δ15N, total P and heavy-metal contaminants of phosphate fertilizers (Cd and U) increased significantly within remnants in response to increasing land-use intensity, and these effects were exacerbated in unfenced relative to fenced remnants. This suggests movement of livestock into surrounding natural habitats is a significant component of agricultural spillover, but pervasive changes in soil biogeochemistry still occur through nutrient spillover channels alone, even in fenced

  5. Comparative resistance and resilience of soil microbial communities and enzyme activities in adjacent native forest and agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Chaer, Guilherme; Fernandes, Marcelo; Myrold, David; Bottomley, Peter

    2009-08-01

    Degradation of soil properties following deforestation and long-term soil cultivation may lead to decreases in soil microbial diversity and functional stability. In this study, we investigated the differences in the stability (resistance and resilience) of microbial community composition and enzyme activities in adjacent soils under either native tropical forest (FST) or in agricultural cropping use for 14 years (AGR). Mineral soil samples (0 to 5 cm) from both areas were incubated at 40 degrees C, 50 degrees C, 60 degrees C, or 70 degrees C for 15 min in order to successively reduce the microbial biomass. Three and 30 days after the heat shocks, fluorescein diacetate (FDA) hydrolysis, cellulase and laccase activities, and phospholipid-derived fatty acids-based microbial community composition were measured. Microbial biomass was reduced up to 25% in both soils 3 days after the heat shocks. The higher initial values of microbial biomass, enzyme activity, total and particulate soil organic carbon, and aggregate stability in the FST soil coincided with higher enzymatic stability after heat shocks. FDA hydrolysis activity was less affected (more resistance) and cellulase and laccase activities recovered more rapidly (more resilience) in the FST soil relative to the AGR counterpart. In the AGR soil, laccase activity did not show resilience to any heat shock level up to 30 days after the disturbance. Within each soil type, the microbial community composition did not differ between heat shock and control samples at day 3. However, at day 30, FST soil samples treated at 60 degrees C and 70 degrees C contained a microbial community significantly different from the control and with lower biomass regardless of high enzyme resilience. Results of this study show that deforestation followed by long-term cultivation changed microbial community composition and had differential effects on microbial functional stability. Both soils displayed similar resilience to FDA hydrolysis, a

  6. Assessment of heavy metal accumulation in macrophyte, agricultural soil, and crop plants adjacent to discharge zone of sponge iron factory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gupta, S.; Nayek, S.; Saha, R. N.; Satpati, S.

    2008-08-01

    The present study deals with the characterization of effluent released from sponge iron industries and distribution of heavy metals in soil and macrophytes near to effluent discharge channel. Apart from this, accumulation of heavy metals in nearby soil and vegetation system irrigated with effluent-contaminated water is also the subject of this study. Physico-chemical analysis of effluent reveals that the concentration of total suspended solids (TSS), total hardness (TH), iron (Fe2+), and oil and grease are greater than the IS (1981) norms for discharge of water into inland water body. The soil along the sides of the effluent channel also shows higher concentration of heavy metals than the background soil. The enrichment of the heavy metals are in the order of Chromium (Cr) > Iron (Fe) > Manganese (Mn) > Zinc (Zn) > Copper (Cu) > Cadmium (Cd). Macrophytes growing along the sides of the effluent channel also show significant accumulation of heavy metals almost in the same order as accumulated in soil. Higher uptake of heavy metals by these varieties reveals that these species can be used for future phytoremediation. The effluent as well as contaminated water is extensively used for irrigation for growing vegetables like tomato ( Lycopersicon esculatum) in the surrounding areas. Heavy metal accumulation in this agricultural soil are in the sequence of Cr > Fe > Mn > Zn > Cu > Cd. More or less similar type of accumulation pattern are also found in tomato plants except Fe and Zn exceeding Cr and Mn. Transfer Factor of heavy metals from soil to tomato plants (TFS) shows average value of <1, suggesting less uptake of heavy metals from soil. Among the plant parts studied, fruit shows least accumulation. Although tomato plants show some phenotypic changes, the survival of tomato plants as well as least accumulation of metals in fruit reveals their tolerance to heavy metals. Therefore it may be suggested that this plant can be grown successfully in the heavy metal

  7. Root distribution of Pinus pinaster, P. radiata, Eucalyptus globulus and E. kochii and associated soil chemistry in agricultural land adjacent to tree lines.

    PubMed

    Sudmeyer, R A; Speijers, J; Nicholas, B D

    2004-12-01

    We quantified the extent and distribution of roots of four commonly planted tree species (Eucalyptus globulus Labill., Pinus radiata D. Don, P. pinaster Aiton and E. kochii Maiden & Blakely subsp. plenissima C.A. Gardner) in agricultural land adjacent to tree lines, and examined the effect of soil type and root pruning on root morphology. Root distribution in soil adjacent to tree lines was mapped by a trench profile method at 13 sites on the south coast of Western Australia. Soil samples were collected to determine water content and fertility. The lateral extent of tree roots ranged from 10 m for E. kochii to 44 m for P. pinaster. This equated to between 1.5 and 2.5 times tree height (H) for E. globulus and Pinus spp. to 4H for E. kochii. Root density declined logarithmically with distance from the trees and was greatest for P. pinaster and least for E. globulus (P < 0.001). The rate of decrease in root density with distance from the trees was greatest for the Pinus spp. and least for E. kochii (P < 0.05). Root density was generally greatest in the top 0.5 m of the soil profile and decreased with increasing depth. This decrease was relatively gradual in the deep sands, but abrupt in clay subsoil. Root dry mass in the sandy top soil beyond 0.5H ranged between 1.0 and 55.5 Mg km(treeline) (-1) for 6-year-old E. kochii and 50-year-old P. pinaster, respectively. Soil water content generally increased with distance from the trees (P < 0.001). There was no evidence of reduced soil fertility in the top 1.4 m of the soil profile adjacent to the trees. Two to four years after trees had been root pruned, both the lateral extent and vertical distribution of roots were similar for pruned and unpruned trees. The density of roots < 2 mm in diameter was greater for root-pruned trees than for unpruned trees (P < 0.05). We conclude that the study species can compete with agricultural crops based on the lateral extent of their roots and the occurrence of greatest root density

  8. Agriculture: Soils

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Productive soils, a favorable climate, and clean and abundant water resources are essential for growing crops, raising livestock, and for ecosystems to continue to provide the critical provisioning services that humans need.

  9. Determination of selected pesticides in water samples adjacent to agricultural fields and removal of organophosphorus insecticide chlorpyrifos using soil bacterial isolates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hossain, M. S.; Chowdhury, M. Alamgir Zaman; Pramanik, Md. Kamruzzaman; Rahman, M. A.; Fakhruddin, A. N. M.; Alam, M. Khorshed

    2015-06-01

    The use of pesticide for crops leads to serious environmental pollution, therefore, it is essential to monitor and develop approaches to remove pesticide from contaminated environment. In this study, water samples were collected to monitor pesticide residues, and degradation of chlorpyrifos was also performed using soil bacteria. Identification of pesticide residues and determination of their levels were performed by high-performance liquid chromatography with photodiode array detector. Among 12 samples, 10 samples were found contaminated with pesticides. Chlorpyrifos was detected in four tested samples and concentrations ranged from 3.27 to 9.31 μg/l whereas fenitrothion ranging from (Below Detection Limit, <0.1 μg/l) to 33.41 μg/l in the tested samples. Parathion was found in two tested samples at the concentration of 0.73 and 6.23 μg/l. None of the tested samples was found contaminated with Methoxychlor, DDT and Ethion. Three soil bacterial isolates, Pseudomonas peli BG1, Burkholderia caryophylli BG4 and Brevundimonas diminuta PD6 degraded chlorpyrifos completely in 8, 10 and 10 days, respectively, when 20 mg/l chlorpyrifos was supplied as sole source of carbon. Whereas, BG1, BG4 and PD6 took 14, 16 and 16 days, respectively, for complete removal of 50 mg/l chlorpyrifos. Chlorpyrifos degradation rates were found maximum by all three isolates at 2nd day of incubation for both tested concentrations. The results of the present study suggest the need for regular monitoring of pesticide residues in water, to protect the aquatic environment. Chlorpyrifos degrading bacterial isolates can be used to clean up environmental samples contaminated with the organophosphate pesticides.

  10. Antibiotic resistance gene abundances associated with antibiotics and heavy metals in animal manures and agricultural soils adjacent to feedlots in Shanghai; China.

    PubMed

    Ji, Xiuling; Shen, Qunhui; Liu, Fang; Ma, Jing; Xu, Gang; Wang, Yuanlong; Wu, Minghong

    2012-10-15

    Eight antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs), 7 heavy metals, and 6 antibiotics were quantified in manures and soils collected from multiple feedlots in Shanghai. The samples were analyzed to determine if ARG abundances were associated with heavy metal concentration and independent of antibiotics. The results revealed the presence of chloramphenicol, sulfonamides and tetracyclines at concentration ranges of 3.27-17.85, 5.85-33.37 and 4.54-24.66 mg kg(-1), respectively. Typical heavy metals, such as Cu, Zn, and As, were detected at concentration ranges of 32.3-730.1, 75.9-4333.8, and 2.6-617.2 mg kg(-1). All ARGs tested were detected in the collected samples except tetB(P), which was absent in animal manures. Overall, sulfonamide ARGs were more abundant than tetracycline ARGs. Except for sulII, only a weak positive correlation was found between ARGs and their corresponding antibiotics. On the contrary, significant positive correlations (p<0.05) were found between some ARGs and typical heavy metals. For example, sulA and sulIII were strongly correlated with levels of Cu, Zn and Hg. The data demonstrated that the presence of ARGs was relatively independent of their respective antibiotic inducer. In addition to antibiotics, toxic heavy metals, such as Hg, Cu, and Zn, exerted a strong selection pressure and acted as complementary factors for ARG abundance.

  11. Soil moisture: Some fundamentals. [agriculture - soil mechanics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Milstead, B. W.

    1975-01-01

    A brief tutorial on soil moisture, as it applies to agriculture, is presented. Information was taken from books and papers considered freshman college level material, and is an attempt to briefly present the basic concept of soil moisture and a minimal understanding of how water interacts with soil.

  12. Abundance, diversity and functional gene expression of denitrifier communities in adjacent riparian and agricultural zones.

    PubMed

    Dandie, Catherine E; Wertz, Sophie; Leclair, Caissie L; Goyer, Claudia; Burton, David L; Patten, Cheryl L; Zebarth, Bernie J; Trevors, Jack T

    2011-07-01

    Lands under riparian and agricultural management differ in soil properties, water content, plant species and nutrient content and are therefore expected to influence denitrifier communities, denitrification and nitrous oxide (N(2) O) emissions. Denitrifier community abundance, denitrifier community structure, denitrification gene expression and activity were quantified on three dates in a maize field and adjacent riparian zone. N(2) O emissions were greater in the agricultural zone, whereas complete denitrification to N(2) was greater in the riparian zone. In general, the targeted denitrifier community abundance did not change between agricultural and riparian zones. However, nosZ gene expression was greater in the riparian zone than the agricultural zone. The community structure of nirS-gene-bearing denitrifiers differed in June only, whereas the nirK-gene-bearing community structure differed significantly between the riparian and the agricultural zones at all dates. The nirK-gene-bearing community structure was correlated with soil pH, while no significant correlations were found between nirS-gene-bearing community structure and soil environmental variables or N(2) O emissions, denitrification or denitrifier enzyme activity. The results suggested for the nirK and nirS-gene-bearing communities different factors control abundance vs. community structure. The nirK-gene-bearing community structure was also more responsive than the nirS-gene-bearing community structure to change between the two ecosystems.

  13. Biogeochemistry of hydrothermally and adjacent non-altered soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    As a field/lab project, students in the Soil Biogeochemistry class of the University of Nevada, Reno described and characterized seven pedons, developed in hydrothermally and adjacent non-hydrothermally altered andesitic parent material near Reno, NV. Hydrothermally altered soils had considerably lo...

  14. Soil-atmosphere exchange of methane in adjacent cultivated and floodplain forest soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burke, Roger A.; Meyer, Judith L.; Cruse, Jennifer M.; Birkhead, Karen M.; Paul, Michael J.

    1999-04-01

    The soil-atmosphere exchange of methane was measured in adjacent cultivated (corn) and forest (upper floodplain, mixed hardwood) habitats of the southeastern U.S. piedmont for a period of 3 years using closed chambers. We have evaluated the effect of the following factors on soil-atmosphere methane exchange: (1) interannual variability of climatic conditions, (2) landscape position (i.e., river levee versus terrace), and (3) disturbance ranging from intense (cultivation) through moderate (approximately annual flooding events that last from weeks to months) to subtle (approximately annual flooding of a few days duration). We found that mean methane consumption in the cultivated and forested terrace sites was <0.3 mg CH4 m-2 d-1, whereas the mean consumption rate in forested levee sites was about 1.4 mg CH4 m-2 d-1 over the course of the 3 years. Moisture levels in the upper soil (0-5 cm) appear to exert little control of methane exchange in any of the habitats. We observed little seasonal variation in methane flux in the levee sites, in contrast to results observed by others in higher-latitude and tropical forests. Our results suggest that very subtle differences in landscape position and disturbance impact the strength of the soil methane sink. We cannot conclude that agricultural development destroyed the methane sink capacity of these floodplain terrace soils because it was probably already quite low due to periodic disturbance by flooding. Limited measurements of nitrogen cycling suggest that methane flux differences observed among the different habitats are not obviously related to differences in N mineralization or nitrification as in other ecosystems.

  15. Prevalence and Abundance of Florfenicol and Linezolid Resistance Genes in Soils Adjacent to Swine Feedlots

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Qin; Wang, Yang; Wang, Shaolin; Wang, Zheng; Du, Xiang-dang; Jiang, Haiyang; Xia, Xi; Shen, Zhangqi; Ding, Shuangyang; Wu, Congming; Zhou, Bingrui; Wu, Yongning; Shen, Jianzhong

    2016-01-01

    Florfenicol is extensively used in livestock to prevent or cure bacterial infections. However, it is not known whether the administration of florfenicol has resulted in the emergence and dissemination of florfenicol resistance genes (FRGs, including fexA, fexB, cfr, optrA, floR, and pexA) in microbial populations in surrounding farm environments. Here we collected soil samples for the detection of FRGs and the residue of florfenicol from six swine farms with the record of florfenicol usage. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction and metagenomic sequencing revealed a significantly higher relative abundance of FRGs in the soils adjacent to the three swine farms where florfenicol was heavily used compared with the other sites. Meanwhile, the detectable levels of florfenicol were also identified in soils from two of these three farms using ultra-performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry. It appears that amount of florfenicol used on swine farms and the spreading of soils with swine waste could promote the prevalence and abundance of FRGs, including the linezolid resistance genes cfr and optrA, in adjacent soils, and agricultural application of swine manure with florfenicol may have caused a residual level of florfenicol in the soils. PMID:27573068

  16. Dynamic factor analysis of groundwater quality trends in an agricultural area adjacent to Everglades National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muñoz-Carpena, R.; Ritter, A.; Li, Y. C.

    2005-11-01

    The extensive eastern boundary of Everglades National Park (ENP) in south Florida (USA) is subject to one of the most expensive and ambitious environmental restoration projects in history. Understanding and predicting the water quality interactions between the shallow aquifer and surface water is a key component in meeting current environmental regulations and fine-tuning ENP wetland restoration while still maintaining flood protection for the adjacent developed areas. Dynamic factor analysis (DFA), a recent technique for the study of multivariate non-stationary time-series, was applied to study fluctuations in groundwater quality in the area. More than two years of hydrological and water quality time series (rainfall; water table depth; and soil, ground and surface water concentrations of N-NO 3-, N-NH 4+, P-PO 43-, Total P, F -and Cl -) from a small agricultural watershed adjacent to the ENP were selected for the study. The unexplained variability required for determining the concentration of each chemical in the 16 wells was greatly reduced by including in the analysis some of the observed time series as explanatory variables (rainfall, water table depth, and soil and canal water chemical concentration). DFA results showed that groundwater concentration of three of the agrochemical species studied (N-NO 3-, P-PO 43-and Total P) were affected by the same explanatory variables (water table depth, enriched topsoil, and occurrence of a leaching rainfall event, in order of decreasing relative importance). This indicates that leaching by rainfall is the main mechanism explaining concentration peaks in groundwater. In the case of N-NH 4+, in addition to leaching, groundwater concentration is governed by lateral exchange with canals. F -and Cl - are mainly affected by periods of dilution by rainfall recharge, and by exchange with the canals. The unstructured nature of the common trends found suggests that these are related to the complex spatially and temporally varying

  17. Ice nucleation properties of agricultural soil dusts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinke, Isabelle; Funk, Roger; Busse, Jacqueline; Iturri, Antonela; Kirchen, Silke; Leue, Martin; Möhler, Ottmar; Schwartz, Thomas; Sierau, Berko; Toprak, Emre; Ulrich, Andreas; Hoose, Corinna; Leisner, Thomas

    2015-04-01

    Soil dust particles emitted from agricultural areas contain large amounts of organic material such as fungi, bacteria and plant debris. Being carrier for potentially highly ice-active biological particles, agricultural soil dusts are candidates for being very ice-active as well. In this work, we present ice nucleation experiments conducted in the AIDA cloud chamber. We investigated the ice nucleation efficiency of four types of soil dust from different regions of the world. Results are presented for the immersion freezing and the deposition nucleation mode: all soil dusts show higher ice nucleation efficiencies than desert dusts, especially at temperatures above 254 K. For one soil dust sample, the effect of heat treatments was investigated. Heat treatments did not affect the ice nucleation efficiency which presumably excludes primary biological particles as the only source of the increased ice nucleation efficiency. Therefore, organo-mineral complexes or organic compounds may contribute substantially to the high ice nucleation activity of agricultural soil dusts.

  18. Intensive agriculture reduces soil biodiversity across Europe.

    PubMed

    Tsiafouli, Maria A; Thébault, Elisa; Sgardelis, Stefanos P; de Ruiter, Peter C; van der Putten, Wim H; Birkhofer, Klaus; Hemerik, Lia; de Vries, Franciska T; Bardgett, Richard D; Brady, Mark Vincent; Bjornlund, Lisa; Jørgensen, Helene Bracht; Christensen, Sören; Hertefeldt, Tina D'; Hotes, Stefan; Gera Hol, W H; Frouz, Jan; Liiri, Mira; Mortimer, Simon R; Setälä, Heikki; Tzanopoulos, Joseph; Uteseny, Karoline; Pižl, Václav; Stary, Josef; Wolters, Volkmar; Hedlund, Katarina

    2015-02-01

    Soil biodiversity plays a key role in regulating the processes that underpin the delivery of ecosystem goods and services in terrestrial ecosystems. Agricultural intensification is known to change the diversity of individual groups of soil biota, but less is known about how intensification affects biodiversity of the soil food web as a whole, and whether or not these effects may be generalized across regions. We examined biodiversity in soil food webs from grasslands, extensive, and intensive rotations in four agricultural regions across Europe: in Sweden, the UK, the Czech Republic and Greece. Effects of land-use intensity were quantified based on structure and diversity among functional groups in the soil food web, as well as on community-weighted mean body mass of soil fauna. We also elucidate land-use intensity effects on diversity of taxonomic units within taxonomic groups of soil fauna. We found that between regions soil food web diversity measures were variable, but that increasing land-use intensity caused highly consistent responses. In particular, land-use intensification reduced the complexity in the soil food webs, as well as the community-weighted mean body mass of soil fauna. In all regions across Europe, species richness of earthworms, Collembolans, and oribatid mites was negatively affected by increased land-use intensity. The taxonomic distinctness, which is a measure of taxonomic relatedness of species in a community that is independent of species richness, was also reduced by land-use intensification. We conclude that intensive agriculture reduces soil biodiversity, making soil food webs less diverse and composed of smaller bodied organisms. Land-use intensification results in fewer functional groups of soil biota with fewer and taxonomically more closely related species. We discuss how these changes in soil biodiversity due to land-use intensification may threaten the functioning of soil in agricultural production systems.

  19. Mangroves as a major source of soil carbon storage in adjacent seagrass meadows

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Guangcheng; Azkab, Muhammad Husni; Chmura, Gail L.; Chen, Shunyang; Sastrosuwondo, Pramudji; Ma, Zhiyuan; Dharmawan, I. Wayan Eka; Yin, Xijie; Chen, Bin

    2017-01-01

    Mangrove forests have the potential to export carbon to adjacent ecosystems but whether mangrove-derived organic carbon (OC) would enhance the soil OC storage in seagrass meadows adjacent to mangroves is unclear. In this study we examine the potential for the contribution of mangrove OC to seagrass soils on the coast of North Sulawesi, Indonesia. We found that seagrass meadows adjacent to mangroves had significantly higher soil OC concentrations, soil OC with lower δ 13C, and lower bulk density than those at the non-mangrove adjacent meadows. Soil OC storage to 30 cm depth ranged from 3.21 to 6.82 kg C m−2, and was also significantly higher at the mangrove adjacent meadows than those non-adjacent meadows. δ13C analyses revealed that mangrove OC contributed 34 to 83% to soil OC at the mangrove adjacent meadows. The δ13C value of seagrass plants was also different between the seagrasses adjacent to mangroves and those which were not, with lower values measured at the seagrasses adjacent to mangroves. Moreover, we found significant spatial variation in both soil OC concentration and storage, with values decreasing toward sea, and the contribution of mangrove-derived carbon also reduced with distance from the forest. PMID:28186151

  20. Mangroves as a major source of soil carbon storage in adjacent seagrass meadows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Guangcheng; Azkab, Muhammad Husni; Chmura, Gail L.; Chen, Shunyang; Sastrosuwondo, Pramudji; Ma, Zhiyuan; Dharmawan, I. Wayan Eka; Yin, Xijie; Chen, Bin

    2017-02-01

    Mangrove forests have the potential to export carbon to adjacent ecosystems but whether mangrove-derived organic carbon (OC) would enhance the soil OC storage in seagrass meadows adjacent to mangroves is unclear. In this study we examine the potential for the contribution of mangrove OC to seagrass soils on the coast of North Sulawesi, Indonesia. We found that seagrass meadows adjacent to mangroves had significantly higher soil OC concentrations, soil OC with lower δ 13C, and lower bulk density than those at the non-mangrove adjacent meadows. Soil OC storage to 30 cm depth ranged from 3.21 to 6.82 kg C m‑2, and was also significantly higher at the mangrove adjacent meadows than those non-adjacent meadows. δ13C analyses revealed that mangrove OC contributed 34 to 83% to soil OC at the mangrove adjacent meadows. The δ13C value of seagrass plants was also different between the seagrasses adjacent to mangroves and those which were not, with lower values measured at the seagrasses adjacent to mangroves. Moreover, we found significant spatial variation in both soil OC concentration and storage, with values decreasing toward sea, and the contribution of mangrove-derived carbon also reduced with distance from the forest.

  1. Long-term fate of nitrate fertilizer in agricultural soils

    PubMed Central

    Sebilo, Mathieu; Mayer, Bernhard; Nicolardot, Bernard; Pinay, Gilles; Mariotti, André

    2013-01-01

    Increasing diffuse nitrate loading of surface waters and groundwater has emerged as a major problem in many agricultural areas of the world, resulting in contamination of drinking water resources in aquifers as well as eutrophication of freshwaters and coastal marine ecosystems. Although empirical correlations between application rates of N fertilizers to agricultural soils and nitrate contamination of adjacent hydrological systems have been demonstrated, the transit times of fertilizer N in the pedosphere–hydrosphere system are poorly understood. We investigated the fate of isotopically labeled nitrogen fertilizers in a three–decade-long in situ tracer experiment that quantified not only fertilizer N uptake by plants and retention in soils, but also determined to which extent and over which time periods fertilizer N stored in soil organic matter is rereleased for either uptake in crops or export into the hydrosphere. We found that 61–65% of the applied fertilizers N were taken up by plants, whereas 12–15% of the labeled fertilizer N were still residing in the soil organic matter more than a quarter century after tracer application. Between 8–12% of the applied fertilizer had leaked toward the hydrosphere during the 30-y observation period. We predict that additional exports of 15N-labeled nitrate from the tracer application in 1982 toward the hydrosphere will continue for at least another five decades. Therefore, attempts to reduce agricultural nitrate contamination of aquatic systems must consider the long-term legacy of past applications of synthetic fertilizers in agricultural systems and the nitrogen retention capacity of agricultural soils. PMID:24145428

  2. Long-term fate of nitrate fertilizer in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Sebilo, Mathieu; Mayer, Bernhard; Nicolardot, Bernard; Pinay, Gilles; Mariotti, André

    2013-11-05

    Increasing diffuse nitrate loading of surface waters and groundwater has emerged as a major problem in many agricultural areas of the world, resulting in contamination of drinking water resources in aquifers as well as eutrophication of freshwaters and coastal marine ecosystems. Although empirical correlations between application rates of N fertilizers to agricultural soils and nitrate contamination of adjacent hydrological systems have been demonstrated, the transit times of fertilizer N in the pedosphere-hydrosphere system are poorly understood. We investigated the fate of isotopically labeled nitrogen fertilizers in a three-decade-long in situ tracer experiment that quantified not only fertilizer N uptake by plants and retention in soils, but also determined to which extent and over which time periods fertilizer N stored in soil organic matter is rereleased for either uptake in crops or export into the hydrosphere. We found that 61-65% of the applied fertilizers N were taken up by plants, whereas 12-15% of the labeled fertilizer N were still residing in the soil organic matter more than a quarter century after tracer application. Between 8-12% of the applied fertilizer had leaked toward the hydrosphere during the 30-y observation period. We predict that additional exports of (15)N-labeled nitrate from the tracer application in 1982 toward the hydrosphere will continue for at least another five decades. Therefore, attempts to reduce agricultural nitrate contamination of aquatic systems must consider the long-term legacy of past applications of synthetic fertilizers in agricultural systems and the nitrogen retention capacity of agricultural soils.

  3. Seismic analysis of adjacent buildings subjected to double pounding considering soil-structure interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farghaly, Ahmed Abdelraheem

    2017-02-01

    A 2D model of two adjacent buildings with different heights (6 and 12 floors) and foundation levels without separation distance under seismic load and considering SSI is investigated. A special arrangement of contact elements (gap elements) each 1 m of the low height building in the contact zone is taken into consideration to fulfill all possible deformation contact modes which take place under seismic load (earthquake). Soil is modeled by 2D shell elements in contact with foundations of the two adjacent buildings. This paper focuses on the study of double pounding that takes place between the two adjacent buildings in some upper points at superstructure in the contact zone and also at foundation level. The forces of double pounding between the two adjacent buildings, which increase by softening of the soil, give a valuable assessment of straining actions of the two adjacent buildings and change the behavior of soil under the foundations and around basement floor.

  4. Seismic analysis of adjacent buildings subjected to double pounding considering soil-structure interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farghaly, Ahmed Abdelraheem

    2017-03-01

    A 2D model of two adjacent buildings with different heights (6 and 12 floors) and foundation levels without separation distance under seismic load and considering SSI is investigated. A special arrangement of contact elements (gap elements) each 1 m of the low height building in the contact zone is taken into consideration to fulfill all possible deformation contact modes which take place under seismic load (earthquake). Soil is modeled by 2D shell elements in contact with foundations of the two adjacent buildings. This paper focuses on the study of double pounding that takes place between the two adjacent buildings in some upper points at superstructure in the contact zone and also at foundation level. The forces of double pounding between the two adjacent buildings, which increase by softening of the soil, give a valuable assessment of straining actions of the two adjacent buildings and change the behavior of soil under the foundations and around basement floor.

  5. Soil bacterial diversity changes in response to agricultural land use in semi-arid soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, Guo-Chun; Piceno, Yvette M.; Heuer, Holger; Weinert, Nicole; Dohrmann, Anja B.; Carrillo, Angel; Andersen, Gary L.; Castellanos, Thelma; Tebbe, Christoph C.; Smalla, Kornelia

    2013-04-01

    Natural scrublands in semi-arid deserts are increasingly being converted into agricultural lands. The long-term effect of such a transition in land use on soil bacterial communities was explored at two sites typical of semi-arid deserts in Mexico (Baja California). Comparisons were made between soil samples from alfalfa fields and the adjacent scrublands by two complementary methods - denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and PhyloChip hybridization -employed to analyze 16S rRNA gene fragments amplified from total community DNA. DGGE analyses revealed significant effects of the transition on community composition of Bacteria, Actinobacteria, Alpha- and Betaproteobacteria at both sites. PhyloChip hybridization analysis uncovered that the transition negatively affected taxa such as Acidobacteria, Chloroflexi, Acidimicrobiales, Rubrobacterales, Deltaproteobacteria and Clostridia, while Alpha-, Beta- and Gammaproteobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Actinobacteria increased in abundance. The arable soils were lower in organic matter and phosphate concentration, and higher in salinity. Soil parameters that differed between land uses were highly correlated with the community composition of taxa responding to land use. Variation in the bacterial community composition was higher in soils from scrubland than from agriculture, as revealed by DGGE and PhyloChip analyses. The long term use for agriculture resulted in profound changes in the bacterial community composition and physicochemical characteristics of former scrublands, which may affect various soil ecosystem functions.

  6. Transport of agricultural contaminants through karst soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Karst landscapes are common in many agricultural regions in the US. Well-developed karst landscapes are characterized by shallow soils, sinkholes, sinking streams, underground conduits, and springs. In these landscapes surface runoff is minimal and most recharge enters the subsurface relatively quic...

  7. Soil Macronutrient Sensing for Precision Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Accurate measurements of soil macronutrients (i.e., nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium) are needed for efficient agricultural production, including site-specific crop management (SSCM), where fertilizer nutrient application rates are adjusted spatially based on local requirements. Rapid, non-destru...

  8. Terraced agriculture protects soil from erosion: Case studies in Madagascar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rabesiranana, Naivo; Rasolonirina, Martin; Fanantenansoa Solonjara, Asivelo; Nomenjanahary Ravoson, Heritiana; Mabit, Lionel

    2016-04-01

    - Soil degradation is a major concern in Madagascar but quantitative information is not widely available. Due to its impact on the sustainability of agricultural production, there is a clear need to acquire data on the extent and magnitude of soil erosion/sedimentation under various agricultural practices in order to promote effective conservation strategies. Caesium-137 and 210Pbex fallout radionuclides (FRNs) possess particular characteristics that make them effective soil tracers for erosion studies. After fallout, 137Cs and 210Pbex are rapidly adsorbed onto fine soil particles. But to date, combined use of these FRNs has never been used to document soil erosion in Madagascar. The study area is located 40 km east of Antananarivo, in Madagascar highlands. Two adjacent cultivated fields have been selected (i.e. a sloped field and a terraced field) as well as an undisturbed reference site in the vicinity of these agricultural fields. Soil samples were collected along downslope transects using motorized corer. The 137Cs and 210Pb gamma analysis were performed at the Institut National des Sciences et Techniques Nucléaires (INSTN-Madagascar) using a high resolution and low background N-type HPGe detector. Results showed that at the terraced field, 137Cs and 210Pbex inventories reached 145 Bq/m2 to 280 Bq/m2 and 2141 Bq/m2 to 4253 Bq/m2, respectively. At the sloped field, the 137Cs and 210Pbex inventories values ranged from 110 Bq/m2 to 280 Bq/m2 and from 2026 Bq/m2 to 4110 Bq/m2, respectively. The net soil erosion determined for the sloped field were 9.6 t/ha/y and 7.2 t/ha/y for 137Cs and 210Pbex methods, respectively. In contrast, at the terraced field, the net soil erosion rates reached only 3.4 t/ha/y and 3.8 t/ha/y, respectively. The preliminary results of this research highlighted that terraced agricultural practice provides an efficient solution to protect soil resources of the Malagasy highlands.

  9. Bacterial community composition in Brazilian Anthrosols and adjacent soils characterized using culturing and molecular identification.

    PubMed

    O'Neill, B; Grossman, J; Tsai, M T; Gomes, J E; Lehmann, J; Peterson, J; Neves, E; Thies, J E

    2009-07-01

    Microbial community composition was examined in two soil types, Anthrosols and adjacent soils, sampled from three locations in the Brazilian Amazon. The Anthrosols, also known as Amazonian dark earths, are highly fertile soils that are a legacy of pre-Columbian settlement. Both Anthrosols and adjacent soils are derived from the same parent material and subject to the same environmental conditions, including rainfall and temperature; however, the Anthrosols contain high levels of charcoal-like black carbon from which they derive their dark color. The Anthrosols typically have higher cation exchange capacity, higher pH, and higher phosphorus and calcium contents. We used culture media prepared from soil extracts to isolate bacteria unique to the two soil types and then sequenced their 16S rRNA genes to determine their phylogenetic placement. Higher numbers of culturable bacteria, by over two orders of magnitude at the deepest sampling depths, were counted in the Anthrosols. Sequences of bacteria isolated on soil extract media yielded five possible new bacterial families. Also, a higher number of families in the bacteria were represented by isolates from the deeper soil depths in the Anthrosols. Higher bacterial populations and a greater diversity of isolates were found in all of the Anthrosols, to a depth of up to 1 m, compared to adjacent soils located within 50-500 m of their associated Anthrosols. Compared to standard culture media, soil extract media revealed diverse soil microbial populations adapted to the unique biochemistry and physiological ecology of these Anthrosols.

  10. Modelling the effect of agricultural management practices on soil organic carbon stocks: does soil erosion matter?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadeu, Elisabet; Van Wesemael, Bas; Van Oost, Kristof

    2014-05-01

    Over the last decades, an increasing number of studies have been conducted to assess the effect of soil management practices on soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks. At regional scales, biogeochemical models such as CENTURY or Roth-C have been commonly applied. These models simulate SOC dynamics at the profile level (point basis) over long temporal scales but do not consider the continuous lateral transfer of sediment that takes place along geomorphic toposequences. As a consequence, the impact of soil redistribution on carbon fluxes is very seldom taken into account when evaluating changes in SOC stocks due to agricultural management practices on the short and long-term. To address this gap, we assessed the role of soil erosion by water and tillage on SOC stocks under different agricultural management practices in the Walloon region of Belgium. The SPEROS-C model was run for a 100-year period combining three typical crop rotations (using winter wheat, winter barley, sugar beet and maize) with three tillage scenarios (conventional tillage, reduced tillage and reduced tillage in combination with additional crop residues). The results showed that including soil erosion by water in the simulations led to a general decrease in SOC stocks relative to a baseline scenario (where no erosion took place). The SOC lost from these arable soils was mainly exported to adjacent sites and to the river system by lateral fluxes, with magnitudes differing between crop rotations and in all cases lower under conservation tillage practices than under conventional tillage. Although tillage erosion plays an important role in carbon redistribution within fields, lateral fluxes induced by water erosion led to a higher spatial and in-depth heterogeneity of SOC stocks with potential effects on the soil water holding capacity and crop yields. This indicates that studies assessing the effect of agricultural management practices on SOC stocks and other soil properties over the landscape should

  11. Stabilities of ant nests and their adjacent soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Echezona, B. C.; Igwe, C. A.

    2012-10-01

    Nests habour ants and termites and protect them from harsh environmental conditions. The structural stabilities of nests were studied to ascertain their relative vulnerability to environmental stresses. Arboreal-ant nests were pried from different trees, while epigeous-termite nests were excavated from soil surface within the sample area. Soils without any visible sign of ant or termite activity were also sampled 6 m away from the nests as control. Laboratory analysis result showed that irrespective of the tree hosts, the aggregate stabilities of the ant nests were lower than those of the ground termite, with nests formed on Cola nitida significantly showing lower aggregate stability (19.7%) than other antnest structures. Clay dispersion ratio, moisture content, water stable aggregate class <0.25mm and sand mass were each negatively correlated with aggregate stability, while water stable aggregate class1.00-0.50 mm gave a positive correlation. Nest structures were dominated more by water stable aggregate class >2.00 mm but path analysis demonstrated that water stable aggregate class <0.25 mm contributed most to the higher aggregate stability of the termite nest than the other nest. Nest aggregates had greater structural stability compared to the control soil. The higher structural stability of termite nests over other nest and soil was considered a better adaptive mechanism against body desiccation.

  12. Root Induced Heterogeneity In Agricultural Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gomes, C.; Gabai, R.; Weisbrod, N.; Furman, A.

    2012-12-01

    In this study we investigate the role of plant induced heterogeneity on water dynamics in agricultural soils. We conducted three experiments in two sites (one still ongoing) in which a trench was excavated in the root zone of an orchard and the subsurface, to a depth of over 1 m, was instrumented in high resolution with water content, water potential and temperature sensors. High temporal resolution monitoring of soil state was carried for over a year, period that included natural (Mediterranean) climate boundary forcing. In addition, sprinkler, flood, and spray irrigation boundary conditions were forced for short time periods to explore the infiltration process under these conditions. One site was an Avocado orchard planted in red sandy soil while the other, still on-going, is in a grape vineyards irrigated by tap and treated wastewater, planted over alluvial clayey soil. In the vineyard, we are comparing soil irrigated with fresh water to soil irrigated with treated waste water for more than 10 years. Our preliminary results indicate several interesting phenomena. First, the role of plant roots is clearly seen as the major roots act as a conduit for water (and solute), providing a fast bypass of the upper soil. Further, we identified different regions of the subsurface that apparently were of the same texture, but in practice presented very different hydraulic properties. Second, the role of these roots depends on the boundary conditions. That is, the root bypass acts differently when soil is flooded than when flow is strictly unsaturated. As expected, simulation of the experimental results show good fit only if the domain heterogeneity of soil properties was incorporated. Results for the clayey soils were not available at time of abstract submission.

  13. Some features of soil organic matter in parks and adjacent residential areas of Moscow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prokof'eva, T. V.; Rozanova, M. S.; Poputnikov, V. O.

    2013-03-01

    The humus-accumulative horizons of soils from two natural-historical parks of Moscow and the adjacent residential areas were studied. An increase in the concentration of organic matter was observed in the soils of the residential areas. A tendency toward the formation of fulvate humus typical for southern taiga soils persisted in the low-carbonate nongleyed humus-accumulative horizons. At the same time, the transformation rate, character, and content of organic matter in the urban soils were strongly affected by the contamination, calcareous invasion, and remediation of the soils and sediments.

  14. Agriculture on Mars: Soils for Plant Growth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ming, D. W.

    2016-01-01

    Robotic rovers and landers have enabled the mineralogical, chemical, and physical characterization of loose, unconsolidated materials on the surface of Mars. Planetary scientists refer to the regolith material as "soil." NASA is currently planning to send humans to Mars in the mid 2030s. Early missions may rely on the use of onsite resources to enable exploration and self-sufficient outposts on Mars. The martian "soil" and surface environment contain all essential plant growth elements. The study of martian surface materials and how they might react as agricultural soils opens a new frontier for researchers in the soil science community. Other potential applications for surface "soils" include (i) sources for extraction of essential plant-growth nutrients, (ii) sources of O2, H2, CO2, and H2O, (iii) substrates for microbial populations in the degradation of wastes, and (iv) shielding materials surrounding outpost structures to protect humans, plants, and microorganisms from radiation. There are many challenges that will have to be addressed by soil scientists prior to human exploration over the next two decades.

  15. Agricultural legacies in forest environments: tree communities, soil properties, and light availability.

    PubMed

    Flinn, Kathryn M; Marks, P L

    2007-03-01

    Temperate deciduous forests across much of Europe and eastern North America reflect legacies of past land use, particularly in the diversity and composition of plant communities. Intense disturbances, such as clearing forests for agriculture, may cause persistent environmental changes that continue to shape vegetation patterns as landscapes recover. We assessed the long-term consequences of agriculture for environmental conditions in central New York forests, including tree community structure and composition, soil physical and chemical properties, and light availability. To isolate the effects of agriculture, we compared 20 adjacent pairs of forests that were never cleared for agriculture (primary forests) and forests that established 85-100 years ago on plowed fields (secondary forests). Tree communities in primary and secondary forests had similar stem density, though secondary forests had 14% greater basal area. Species composition differed dramatically between the two forest types, with primary forests dominated by Acer saccharum and Fagus grandifolia and secondary forests by Acer rubrum and Pinus strobus. Primary and secondary forests showed no consistent differences in soil physical properties or in the principal gradient of soil fertility associated with soil pH. Within stands, however, soil water content and pH were more variable in primary forests. Secondary forest soils had 15% less organic matter, 16% less total carbon, and 29% less extractable phosphorus in the top 10 cm than adjacent primary stands, though the ranges of the forest types mostly overlapped. Understory light availability in primary and secondary forests was similar. These results suggest that, within 100 years, post-agricultural stands have recovered conditions comparable to less disturbed forests in many attributes, including tree size and number, soil physical properties, soil chemical properties associated with pH, and understory light availability. The principal legacies of

  16. Approximating Phosphorus Leaching from Agricultural Organic Soils by Soil Testing.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Z M; Zhang, T Q; Kessel, C; Tan, C S; O'Halloran, I P; Wang, Y T; Speranzini, D; Van Eerd, L L

    2015-11-01

    Phosphorus applied to soils in excess of crop requirement could create situations favorable to P enrichment in subsurface flow that contributes to eutrophication of surface water. This pathway of P loss can be more severe in muck (i.e., organic) soils where agricultural production is intensive. This study evaluated the suitability of various environmental and agronomic soil P tests initially designed for mineral soils to predict dissolved reactive P (DRP) in subsurface flow from organic soils. Intact soil columns were collected from 44 muck soils in Ontario to provide a wide range of soil test P levels. A lysimeter leaching study was conducted by evenly adding water in an amount equivalent to 5 mm of rainfall. The leachate DRP concentration was linearly related to soil water-extractable P and CaCl-extractable P with values of 0.90 and 0.93, respectively, and to Bray-1 P and FeO-impregnated filter paper extractable P in a split-line model with a change point. Mehlich-3 P and Olsen P, a method recommended for agronomic P calibration in Ontario, were not related to leachate DRP concentration. All P sorption index (PSI) based degree of P saturation (DPS) values were closely related to leachate DRP in split-line models, with the DPS indices expressed as Bray-1 P/PSI and FeO-P/PSI having the highest correlation with leachate DRP concentration. Because it is desirable from practical and economic standpoints that the environmental risk assessment shares the same soil test with agronomic P calibration, the two PSI-based DPS indices as presented can be considered as environmental risk indicators of DRP subsurface loss from organic soils.

  17. Soil respiration in apple orchards, poplar plantations and adjacent grasslands in Artvin, Turkey.

    PubMed

    Tufekcioglu, Aydin; Ozbayram, Ali Kemal; Kucuk, Mehmet

    2009-09-01

    In this study influence of land-use type on soil respiration was investigated in poplar plantation, apple orchard (apple trees with understory grasses) and adjacent grassland sites in Seyitler Area, Artvin, Turkey. Soil respiration was measured approximately monthly in three sampling plots in each land use type from January 2005 to November 2005 using the soda-lime technique. Mean daily soil respiration ranged from 0.63-3.59 g Cm(-2) d(-1). Mean soil respiration in apple orchard, poplar plantation and grassland sites were 1.98, 1.45 and 1.12 g C m(-2) d(-1), respectively. Mean soil respiration was significantly greater in apple orchard than in poplar plantations and grasslands. Seasonal changes in soil respiration were related to soil moisture and temperature changes. Mean soil respiration rate correlated strongly with subsurface soil (15-35cm) pH (R = -0,73; p < 0.05), sand content (R = 0.96, p < 0.001), soil silt content (R = -0.75; p < 0.05), soil clay content (R = -0.83; p < 0.001) and organic matter content (R = 0.88; p < 0.001). No significant correlations were observed between soil respiration and surface (0-15 cm) soil properties and root biomass. Overall, our results indicate that apple orchards with understory grasses have higher soil biological activity compared to poplar and grassland sites.

  18. Soil macronutrient sensing for precision agriculture.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hak-Jin; Sudduth, Kenneth A; Hummel, John W

    2009-10-01

    Accurate measurements of soil macronutrients (i.e., nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium) are needed for efficient agricultural production, including site-specific crop management (SSCM), where fertilizer nutrient application rates are adjusted spatially based on local requirements. Rapid, non-destructive quantification of soil properties, including nutrient levels, has been possible with optical diffuse reflectance sensing. Another approach, electrochemical sensing based on ion-selective electrodes or ion-selective field effect transistors, has been recognized as useful in real-time analysis because of its simplicity, portability, rapid response, and ability to directly measure the analyte with a wide range of sensitivity. Current sensor developments and related technologies that are applicable to the measurement of soil macronutrients for SSCM are comprehensively reviewed. Examples of optical and electrochemical sensors applied in soil analyses are given, while advantages and obstacles to their adoption are discussed. It is proposed that on-the-go vehicle-based sensing systems have potential for efficiently and rapidly characterizing variability of soil macronutrients within a field.

  19. Considerations for sampling contaminants in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Ramsey, Charles A

    2015-01-01

    Sampling agricultural soils for contaminants is relatively new. Existing standard sampling protocols used for the evaluation of soil nutrients are likely insufficient for contaminants. The main reasons are the very low analyte levels and differences in heterogeneity between nutrients and contaminants. To evaluate the adequacy of existing sampling protocols or to develop new protocols, a systematic scientific approach is needed. This approach begins with the development of the Sample Quality Criteria followed by a realistic understanding of the properties of the material to be sampled, most notably its heterogeneity. The Sample Quality Criteria and material properties are inputs into the Theory of Sampling. With these inputs, the Theory of Sampling can be used to determine the specifics of the sampling protocol (e.g., mass, number of increments, tool selection) that must be implemented to control error to reliably estimate the concentration of the analyte(s) of interest. Development of sampling protocols in this manner will ensure sample representativeness and therefore improve data equivalency among various parties involved. This is the only way to provide a sound technical basis for defensible decision making to ensure increased safety of food and feed, specifically with respect to contaminants in agricultural soils.

  20. Soil Organic Carbon dynamics in agricultural soils of Veneto Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bampa, F. B.; Morari, F. M.; Hiederer, R. H.; Toth, G. T.; Giandon, P. G.; Vinci, I. V.; Montanarella, L. M.; Nocita, M.

    2012-04-01

    One of the eight soil threats expressed in the European Commission's Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection (COM (2006)231 final) it's the decline in Soil Organic Matter (SOM). His preservation is recognized as with the objective to ensure that the soils of Europe remain healthy and capable of supporting human activities and ecosystems. One of the key goals of the strategy is to maintain and improve Soil Organic Carbon (SOC) levels. As climate change is identified as a common element in many of the soil threats, the European Commission (EC) intends to assess the actual contribution of the soil protection to climate change mitigation and the effects of climate change on the possible depletion of SOM. A substantial proportion of European land is occupied by agriculture, and consequently plays a crucial role in maintaining natural resources. Organic carbon preservation and sequestration in the EU's agricultural soils could have some potential to mitigate the effects of climate change, particularly linked to preventing certain land use changes and maintaining SOC stocks. The objective of this study is to assess the SOC dynamics in agricultural soils (cropland and grassland) at regional scale, focusing on changes due to land use. A sub-objective would be the evaluation of the most used land management practices and their effect on SOC content. This assessment aims to determine the geographical distribution of the potential GHG mitigation options, focusing on hot spots in the EU, where mitigation actions would be particularly efficient and is linked with the on-going work in the JRC SOIL Action. The pilot area is Veneto Region. The data available are coming from different sources, timing and involve different variables as: soil texture, climate, soil disturbance, managements and nutrients. The first source of data is the LUCAS project (Land Use/Land Cover Area Frame statistical Survey). Started in 2001, the LUCAS project aims to monitor changes in land cover/use and

  1. Soil chemistry adjacent to roads treated with dust control products at Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kunz, Bethany K.

    2016-01-01

    The health of soils along roadways is critical for maximizing habitat quality and minimizing negative ecological effects of roads. Adjacent to unpaved roads, soil chemistry may be altered by the deposition of dust, as well as by road treatment with dust suppressants or soil stabilizer products. If present in roadside soils, these product residues may be available to plants, terrestrial invertebrates, or small mammals. Unfortunately, very few studies have attempted to track the transport of dust suppressants after application. As part of a larger ongoing study on the environmental effects of dust suppressant products on roadside plants and animals, we sampled roadside soils at Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). Replicated road sections at Squaw Creek NWR had been previously treated with two road products—calcium chloride-based durablend-C™ and synthetic iso-alkane EnviroKleen®. In order to quantify the effect of dust suppressant treatment on roadside soils, we took replicated composite soil samples one year after treatment at 1m and 4m from the road’s edge, and analyzed samples for a suite of soil chemistry variables (pH, conductivity, NO3-N, P, K, Ca, Mg, Na and S). We also assessed dust suppressant product residues in the soil. For durablend-C™, we used soil conductivity as an indicator. For EnviroKleen®, we developed a method for extraction and isolation, followed by analysis with gas chromatography/mass spectrometry to look for a specific EnviroKleen® signature. Surprisingly, soil conductivity was not elevated adjacent to road sections treated with durablend-C™, relative to other sections. EnviroKleen® was detectable at both 1m and 4m from treated sections at concentrations from 1 to 1500 mg/kg, and was non-detectable in soils adjacent to the untreated section. The most notable characteristic of soils across all treated and untreated sections at 1m was elevated calcium (up to 30,000 mg/kg), likely as a result of dust deposition from the

  2. Combining agricultural practices key to elevating soil microbial activities

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The concept of soil health is an emerging topic in applied ecology, specifically as it pertains to the agriculture, which utilizes approximately 40% of earth’s land. However, rigorous quantification of soil health and the services provided by soil organisms to support agriculture production (e.g., n...

  3. Acidobacterial community responses to agricultural management of soybean in Amazon forest soils.

    PubMed

    Navarrete, Acácio A; Kuramae, Eiko E; de Hollander, Mattias; Pijl, Agata S; van Veen, Johannes A; Tsai, Siu M

    2013-03-01

    This study focused on the impact of land-use changes and agricultural management of soybean in Amazon forest soils on the abundance and composition of the acidobacterial community. Quantitative real-time PCR (q-PCR) assays and pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA gene were applied to study the acidobacterial community in bulk soil samples from soybean croplands and adjacent native forests, and mesocosm soil samples from soybean rhizosphere. Based on qPCR measurements, Acidobacteria accounted for 23% in forest soils, 18% in cropland soils, and 14% in soybean rhizosphere of the total bacterial signals. From the 16S rRNA gene sequences of Bacteria domain, the phylum Acidobacteria represented 28% of the sequences from forest soils, 16% from cropland soils, and 17% from soybean rhizosphere. Acidobacteria subgroups 1-8, 10, 11, 13, 17, 18, 22, and 25 were detected with subgroup 1 as dominant among them. Subgroups 4, 6, and 7 were significantly higher in cropland soils than in forest soils, which subgroups responded to decrease in soil aluminum. Subgroups 6 and 7 responded to high content of soil Ca, Mg, Mn, and B. These results showed a differential response of the Acidobacteria subgroups to abiotic soil factors, and open the possibilities to explore acidobacterial subgroups as early-warning bioindicators of agricultural soil management effects in the Amazon area.

  4. Soil Carbon Storage and Turnover in an Old-Growth Coastal Redwood Forest and Adjacent Prairie

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McFarlane, K. J.; Torn, M. S.; Mambelli, S.; Dawson, T. E.

    2010-12-01

    Coastal redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) forests store lots of carbon in aboveground tree biomass because redwoods are very long-lived and can grow very large. Redwood is known for its high resistance to decay, a result of high levels of aromatic compounds (tannins) in the tree’s tissues. We tested the hypothesis that because coastal redwoods are highly productive and produce organic matter that is chemically resistant to decay, old-growth redwood forests should store large amounts of stabilized soil carbon. We measured soil C storage to 110 cm depth in an old-growth coastal redwood forest and used physical soil fractionation combined with radiocarbon measurements to determine soil organic matter turnover time. In addition, we measured soil C storage and turnover at an adjacent prairie experiencing the same climate and with soils derived from the same parent material. We found larger soil C stocks to 110 cm at the prairie (350 Mg C ha-1) than the redwood forest (277 Mg C ha-1) even with O-horizons included for the forest. Larger N stocks were also observed at the prairie than the redwood and these differences in stocks were driven by higher C and N concentrations in mineral soils at the prairie. Differences between ecosystems in soil C and N concentrations, C:N ratios, and C and N stocks were observed for the top 50 cm only, suggesting that the influence of the different litter types did not extend to deeper soils. Contrary to what was expected, bulk soil and heavy density-fraction Δ14C values were higher, indicating shorter turnover times, for the redwood forest than the prairie. In summary, we did not observe greater C storage or 14C-based turnover times in old-growth redwood forest compared to adjacent prairie, suggesting chemical recalcitrance of litter inputs does not drive soil C stabilization at these ecosystems.

  5. Sampling for Soil Carbon Stock Assessment in Rocky Agricultural Soils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beem-Miller, Jeffrey P.; Kong, Angela Y. Y.; Ogle, Stephen; Wolfe, David

    2016-01-01

    Coring methods commonly employed in soil organic C (SOC) stock assessment may not accurately capture soil rock fragment (RF) content or soil bulk density (rho (sub b)) in rocky agricultural soils, potentially biasing SOC stock estimates. Quantitative pits are considered less biased than coring methods but are invasive and often cost-prohibitive. We compared fixed-depth and mass-based estimates of SOC stocks (0.3-meters depth) for hammer, hydraulic push, and rotary coring methods relative to quantitative pits at four agricultural sites ranging in RF content from less than 0.01 to 0.24 cubic meters per cubic meter. Sampling costs were also compared. Coring methods significantly underestimated RF content at all rocky sites, but significant differences (p is less than 0.05) in SOC stocks between pits and corers were only found with the hammer method using the fixed-depth approach at the less than 0.01 cubic meters per cubic meter RF site (pit, 5.80 kilograms C per square meter; hammer, 4.74 kilograms C per square meter) and at the 0.14 cubic meters per cubic meter RF site (pit, 8.81 kilograms C per square meter; hammer, 6.71 kilograms C per square meter). The hammer corer also underestimated rho (sub b) at all sites as did the hydraulic push corer at the 0.21 cubic meters per cubic meter RF site. No significant differences in mass-based SOC stock estimates were observed between pits and corers. Our results indicate that (i) calculating SOC stocks on a mass basis can overcome biases in RF and rho (sub b) estimates introduced by sampling equipment and (ii) a quantitative pit is the optimal sampling method for establishing reference soil masses, followed by rotary and then hydraulic push corers.

  6. Sampling for Soil Carbon Stock Assessment in Rocky Agricultural Soils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beem-Miller, Jeffrey P.; Kong, Angela Y. Y.; Ogle, Stephen; Wolfe, David

    Coring methods commonly employed in soil organic C (SOC) stock assessment may not accurately capture soil rock fragment (RF) content or soil bulk density (rho (sub b)) in rocky agricultural soils, potentially biasing SOC stock estimates. Quantitative pits are considered less biased than coring methods but are invasive and often cost-prohibitive. We compared fixed-depth and mass-based estimates of SOC stocks (0.3-meters depth) for hammer, hydraulic push, and rotary coring methods relative to quantitative pits at four agricultural sites ranging in RF content from less than 0.01 to 0.24 cubic meters per cubic meter. Sampling costs were also compared. Coring methods significantly underestimated RF content at all rocky sites, but significant differences (p is less than 0.05) in SOC stocks between pits and corers were only found with the hammer method using the fixed-depth approach at the less than 0.01 cubic meters per cubic meter RF site (pit, 5.80 kilograms C per square meter; hammer, 4.74 kilograms C per square meter) and at the 0.14 cubic meters per cubic meter RF site (pit, 8.81 kilograms C per square meter; hammer, 6.71 kilograms C per square meter). The hammer corer also underestimated rho (sub b) at all sites as did the hydraulic push corer at the 0.21 cubic meters per cubic meter RF site. No significant differences in mass-based SOC stock estimates were observed between pits and corers. Our results indicate that (i) calculating SOC stocks on a mass basis can overcome biases in RF and rho (sub b) estimates introduced by sampling equipment and (ii) a quantitative pit is the optimal sampling method for establishing reference soil masses, followed by rotary and then hydraulic push corers.

  7. The Temperature Dependence of Soil Moisture Characteristics of Agricultural Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salehzadeh, Amir

    1990-01-01

    limits the speed of measurement for typical agricultural soils to about 12-14 hours for each main branch over the potential range 0 to -2000 cm. (2) Although the stripper tensiometer can operate with soil air presures greater than 2 atmospheres gauge, the tensiometer contact problem appears likely to limit the range, at least for certain soils.

  8. Diversity of fungi from the mound nests of Formica ulkei and adjacent non-nest soils.

    PubMed

    Duff, Lyndon B; Urichuk, Theresa M; Hodgins, Lisa N; Young, Jocelyn R; Untereiner, Wendy A

    2016-07-01

    Culture-based methods were employed to recover 3929 isolates of fungi from soils collected in May and July 2014 from mound nests of Formica ulkei and adjacent non-nest sites. The abundance, diversity, and richness of species from nest mounds exceeded those of non-mound soils, particularly in July. Communities of fungi from mounds were more similar to those from mounds than non-mounds; this was also the case for non-mound soils with the exception of one non-mound site in July. Species of Aspergillus, Paecilomyces, and Penicillium were dominant in nest soils and represented up to 81.8% of the taxa recovered. Members of the genus Aspergillus accounted for the majority of Trichocomaceae from nests and were represented almost exclusively by Aspergillus navahoensis and Aspergillus pseudodeflectus. Dominant fungi from non-mound sites included Cladosporium cladosporioides, Geomyces pannorum, and species of Acremonium, Fusarium, Penicillium, and Phoma. Although mound nests were warmer than adjacent soils, the dominance of xerotolerant Aspergillus in soils from mounds and the isolation of the majority of Trichocomaceae at 25 and 35 °C suggests that both temperature and water availability may be determinants of fungal community structure in nests of F. ulkei.

  9. Alterations in soil microbial community composition and biomass following agricultural land use change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Qian; Wu, Junjun; Yang, Fan; Lei, Yao; Zhang, Quanfa; Cheng, Xiaoli

    2016-11-01

    The effect of agricultural land use change on soil microbial community composition and biomass remains a widely debated topic. Here, we investigated soil microbial community composition and biomass [e.g., bacteria (B), fungi (F), Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and Actinomycete (ACT)] using phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) analysis, and basal microbial respiration in afforested, cropland and adjacent uncultivated soils in central China. We also investigated soil organic carbon and nitrogen (SOC and SON), labile carbon and nitrogen (LC and LN), recalcitrant carbon and nitrogen (RC and RN), pH, moisture, and temperature. Afforestation averaged higher microbial PLFA biomass compared with cropland and uncultivated soils with higher values in top soils than deep soils. The microbial PLFA biomass was strongly correlated with SON and LC. Higher SOC, SON, LC, LN, moisture and lower pH in afforested soils could be explained approximately 87.3% of total variation of higher total PLFAs. Afforestation also enhanced the F: B ratios compared with cropland. The basal microbial respiration was higher while the basal microbial respiration on a per-unit-PLFA basis was lower in afforested land than adjacent cropland and uncultivated land, suggesting afforestation may increase soil C utilization efficiency and decrease respiration loss in afforested soils.

  10. Alterations in soil microbial community composition and biomass following agricultural land use change

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Qian; Wu, Junjun; Yang, Fan; Lei, Yao; Zhang, Quanfa; Cheng, Xiaoli

    2016-01-01

    The effect of agricultural land use change on soil microbial community composition and biomass remains a widely debated topic. Here, we investigated soil microbial community composition and biomass [e.g., bacteria (B), fungi (F), Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and Actinomycete (ACT)] using phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) analysis, and basal microbial respiration in afforested, cropland and adjacent uncultivated soils in central China. We also investigated soil organic carbon and nitrogen (SOC and SON), labile carbon and nitrogen (LC and LN), recalcitrant carbon and nitrogen (RC and RN), pH, moisture, and temperature. Afforestation averaged higher microbial PLFA biomass compared with cropland and uncultivated soils with higher values in top soils than deep soils. The microbial PLFA biomass was strongly correlated with SON and LC. Higher SOC, SON, LC, LN, moisture and lower pH in afforested soils could be explained approximately 87.3% of total variation of higher total PLFAs. Afforestation also enhanced the F: B ratios compared with cropland. The basal microbial respiration was higher while the basal microbial respiration on a per-unit-PLFA basis was lower in afforested land than adjacent cropland and uncultivated land, suggesting afforestation may increase soil C utilization efficiency and decrease respiration loss in afforested soils. PMID:27812029

  11. Comparison between soil and biomass carbon in adjacent hardwood and red pine forests

    SciTech Connect

    Perala, D.A.; Rollinger, J.L.; Wilson, D.M.

    1995-06-01

    The distribution of carbon in soil and biomass was studied across Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan, USA, in 40 pole-sized red pine (Pinus resinosa Ait.) plantations paired with adjacent hardwood stands. Pine and hardwood stands shared a common boundary and soil. Hardwood stands were mixed species, naturally regenerated second growth following logging. Carbon in total, standing crop averaged the same in both hardwood and red pine forest types, although the hardwoods averaged 14 years older than red pine. Coarse woody debris, shrubs, and herbs contained little carbon. Only the forest floor carbon pool was significantly different between forest types. Forest floor had a greater mass beneath red pine than hardwoods. There was no difference in total ecosystem carbon between red pine and hardwood stands. Total mineral soil aggregated across the depth profile contained the same total amount of carbon in both pine and hardwood stands; however, the carbon was found in different vertical patterns. Amounts of carbon in the upper levels of soil (0--4 cm) were higher under hardwoods, and amounts were higher under red pine at the 8--16 cm and 16--32 cm soil depths. Where July air temperatures were relatively cool, red pine stored carbon more efficiently both in the forest floor and deep in the soil. Red pine also sequestered more carbon in mineral soil with increasing April--September precipitation.

  12. Nitrogen loss from windblown agricultural soils in the Columbia Plateau

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Wind erosion of agricultural soils can degrade both air quality and soil productivity in the Columbia Plateau of the Pacific Northwest United States. Soils in the region contain fine particles that, when suspended, are highly susceptible to long range transport in the atmosphere. Nitrogen (N) associ...

  13. Can biosolids reduce wind erosion of agricultural soils?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The application of biosolids to agricultural land has the potential to improve soil health and crop production. In addition, organic material contained in biosolids may enhance biological activity, retention of soil water, and soil aggregation. Thus, there is a likelihood that biosolids applied to s...

  14. Agriculture Canada Central Saskatchewan Vector Soils Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Knapp, David; Hall, Forrest G. (Editor); Rostad, Harold

    2000-01-01

    This data set consists of GIS layers that describe the soils of the BOREAS SSA. These original data layers were submitted as vector data in ARC/INFO EXPORT format. These data also include the soil name and soil layer files, which provide additional information about the soils. There are three sets of attributes that include information on the primary, secondary, and tertiary soil type within each polygon. Thus, there is a total of nine main attributes in this data set.

  15. Estimating soil moisture in gullies from adjacent upland measurements through different observation operators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, X.; Wu, P.; Zhao, X.; Zhou, X.; Zhang, B.; Shi, Y.; Wang, J.

    2013-04-01

    SummarySoil moisture datasets in large gullies are rare due to the difficulty of direct sampling in such landform. This study attempted to estimate spatial soil moisture averages in gullies from measurements of adjacent uplands by using observation operators, based on three-year soil moisture datasets in a gully catchment of the Loess Plateau. Soil moisture datasets in 2010 and 2011 were used for developing observation operators and those in 2012 were used for validation. Several nonlinear and linear methods including cumulative distribution function (CDF) matching method, linear regression (LRG) method, mean relative difference (MRD) method and linear rescaling (LRS) method were used to define observation operators. The results showed observation operators significantly improved the predictions compared to when using spatial averages of uplands as the direct surrogates for gullies. Among different methods, the CDF matching method performed best in estimating soil moisture in gullies followed by the LRG, LRS and MRD methods. Validation analysis showed that the linear observation operators such as LRS, MRD and LRG had better temporal transferability than the nonlinear operators. The MRD observation operators for various layers could successfully transfer in time whereas temporal transferability only succeeds to a limited extent for other observation operators. Furthermore, the MRD, LRG and LRS methods exhibited better vertical transferability than the CDF matching method. However, the transferability of observation operators across the whole root zone layers was not successful.

  16. Distribution of tetraether lipids in agricultural soils - differentiation between paddy and upland management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mueller-Niggemann, C.; Utami, S. R.; Marxen, A.; Mangelsdorf, K.; Bauersachs, T.; Schwark, L.

    2015-10-01

    Insufficient knowledge of the composition and variation of isoprenoid and branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (GDGTs) in agricultural soils exists, despite of the potential effect of different management types (e.g. soil/water and redox conditions, cultivated plants) on GDGT distribution. Here, we determined the influence of different soil management types on the GDGT composition in paddy (flooded) and adjacent upland (non-flooded) soils, and if available also forest, bushland and marsh soils. To compare the local effects on GDGT distribution patterns, we collected comparable soil samples in various locations from tropical (Indonesia, Vietnam and Philippines) and subtropical (China and Italy) sites. We found that differences in the distribution of isoprenoid GDGTs (iGDGTs) as well as of branched GDGTs (brGDGTs) are predominantly controlled by management type and only secondarily by climatic exposition. In general upland soil had higher crenarchaeol contents than paddy soil, which on the contrary was more enriched in GDGT-0. The GDGT-0 / crenarchaeol ratio was 3-27 times higher in paddy soil and indicates the enhanced presence of methanogenic archaea, which were additionally linked to the number of rice cultivation cycles per year (higher number of cycles was coupled with an increase in the ratio). The TEX86 values were 1.3 times higher in upland, bushland and forest soils than in paddy soils. In all soils brGDGT predominated over iGDGTs, with the relative abundance of brGDGTs increasing from subtropical to tropical soils. Higher BIT values in paddy soils compared to upland soils together with higher BIT values in soil from subtropical climates indicate effects on the amounts of brGDGT through differences in management as well as climatic zones. In acidic soil CBT values correlated well with soil pH. In neutral to alkaline soils, however, no apparent correlation but an offset between paddy and upland managed soils was detected, which may suggest that soil

  17. Assessment of Bacterial bph Gene in Amazonian Dark Earth and Their Adjacent Soils

    PubMed Central

    Brossi, Maria Julia de Lima; Mendes, Lucas William; Germano, Mariana Gomes; Lima, Amanda Barbosa; Tsai, Siu Mui

    2014-01-01

    Amazonian Anthrosols are known to harbour distinct and highly diverse microbial communities. As most of the current assessments of these communities are based on taxonomic profiles, the functional gene structure of these communities, such as those responsible for key steps in the carbon cycle, mostly remain elusive. To gain insights into the diversity of catabolic genes involved in the degradation of hydrocarbons in anthropogenic horizons, we analysed the bacterial bph gene community structure, composition and abundance using T-RFLP, 454-pyrosequencing and quantitative PCR essays, respectively. Soil samples were collected in two Brazilian Amazon Dark Earth (ADE) sites and at their corresponding non-anthropogenic adjacent soils (ADJ), under two different land use systems, secondary forest (SF) and manioc cultivation (M). Redundancy analysis of T-RFLP data revealed differences in bph gene structure according to both soil type and land use. Chemical properties of ADE soils, such as high organic carbon and organic matter, as well as effective cation exchange capacity and pH, were significantly correlated with the structure of bph communities. Also, the taxonomic affiliation of bph gene sequences revealed the segregation of community composition according to the soil type. Sequences at ADE sites were mostly affiliated to aromatic hydrocarbon degraders belonging to the genera Streptomyces, Sphingomonas, Rhodococcus, Mycobacterium, Conexibacter and Burkholderia. In both land use sites, shannon's diversity indices based on the bph gene data were higher in ADE than ADJ soils. Collectively, our findings provide evidence that specific properties in ADE soils shape the structure and composition of bph communities. These results provide a basis for further investigations focusing on the bio-exploration of novel enzymes with potential use in the biotechnology/biodegradation industry. PMID:24927167

  18. Assessment of bacterial bph gene in Amazonian dark earth and their adjacent soils.

    PubMed

    Brossi, Maria Julia de Lima; Mendes, Lucas William; Germano, Mariana Gomes; Lima, Amanda Barbosa; Tsai, Siu Mui

    2014-01-01

    Amazonian Anthrosols are known to harbour distinct and highly diverse microbial communities. As most of the current assessments of these communities are based on taxonomic profiles, the functional gene structure of these communities, such as those responsible for key steps in the carbon cycle, mostly remain elusive. To gain insights into the diversity of catabolic genes involved in the degradation of hydrocarbons in anthropogenic horizons, we analysed the bacterial bph gene community structure, composition and abundance using T-RFLP, 454-pyrosequencing and quantitative PCR essays, respectively. Soil samples were collected in two Brazilian Amazon Dark Earth (ADE) sites and at their corresponding non-anthropogenic adjacent soils (ADJ), under two different land use systems, secondary forest (SF) and manioc cultivation (M). Redundancy analysis of T-RFLP data revealed differences in bph gene structure according to both soil type and land use. Chemical properties of ADE soils, such as high organic carbon and organic matter, as well as effective cation exchange capacity and pH, were significantly correlated with the structure of bph communities. Also, the taxonomic affiliation of bph gene sequences revealed the segregation of community composition according to the soil type. Sequences at ADE sites were mostly affiliated to aromatic hydrocarbon degraders belonging to the genera Streptomyces, Sphingomonas, Rhodococcus, Mycobacterium, Conexibacter and Burkholderia. In both land use sites, shannon's diversity indices based on the bph gene data were higher in ADE than ADJ soils. Collectively, our findings provide evidence that specific properties in ADE soils shape the structure and composition of bph communities. These results provide a basis for further investigations focusing on the bio-exploration of novel enzymes with potential use in the biotechnology/biodegradation industry.

  19. Biological indicators of soil quality and soil organic matter characteristics in an agricultural management continuum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Relationships among biological indicators of soil quality and soil organic matter characteristics in a claypan soil were evaluated across a continuum of long-term agricultural practices in Missouri, USA. In addition to chemical and physical soil quality indicators, dehydrogenase and phenol oxidase a...

  20. Biological responses of agricultural soils to fly-ash amendment.

    PubMed

    Singh, Rajeev Pratap; Sharma, Bhavisha; Sarkar, Abhijit; Sengupta, Chandan; Singh, Pooja; Ibrahim, Mahamad Hakimi

    2014-01-01

    The volume of solid waste produced in the world is increasing annually, and disposing of such wastes is a growing problem. Fly ash (FA) is a form of solid waste that is derived from the combustion of coal. Research has shown that fly ash may be disposed of by using it to amend agricultural soils. This review addresses the feasibility of amending agricultural field soils with fly ash for the purpose of improvings oil health and enhancing the production of agricultural crops. The current annual production of major coal combustion residues (CCRs) is estimated to be -600 million worldwide, of which about 500 million t (70-80%) is FA (Ahmaruzzaman 2010). More than 112 million t of FA is generated annually in India alone, and projections show that the production (including both FA and bottom ash) may exceed 170 million t per annum by 2015 (Pandey et al. 2009; Pandey and Singh 20 I 0). Managing this industrial by-product is a big challenge, because more is produced each year, and disposal poses a growing environmental problem.Studies on FA clearly shows that its application as an amendment to agricultural soils can significantly improve soil quality, and produce higher soil fertility. What FA application method is best and what level of application is appropriate for any one soil depends on the following factors: type of soil treated, crop grown, the prevailing agro climatic condition and the character of the FA used. Although utilizing FA in agricultural soils may help address solid waste disposal problems and may enhance agricultural production, its use has potential adverse effects also. In particular, using it in agriculture may enhance amounts of radionuclides and heavy metals that reach soils, and may therefore increase organism exposures in some instances.

  1. Amazonian anthrosols support similar microbial communities that differ distinctly from those extant in adjacent, unmodified soils of the same mineralogy.

    PubMed

    Grossman, Julie M; O'Neill, Brendan E; Tsai, Siu Mui; Liang, Biqing; Neves, Eduardo; Lehmann, Johannes; Thies, Janice E

    2010-07-01

    We compared the microbial community composition in soils from the Brazilian Amazon with two contrasting histories; anthrosols and their adjacent non-anthrosol soils of the same mineralogy. The anthrosols, also known as the Amazonian Dark Earths or terra preta, were managed by the indigenous pre-Colombian Indians between 500 and 8,700 years before present and are characterized by unusually high cation exchange capacity, phosphorus (P), and calcium (Ca) contents, and soil carbon pools that contain a high proportion of incompletely combusted biomass as biochar or black carbon (BC). We sampled paired anthrosol and unmodified soils from four locations in the Manaus, Brazil, region that differed in their current land use and soil type. Community DNA was extracted from sampled soils and characterized by use of denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism. DNA bands of interest from Bacteria and Archaea DGGE gels were cloned and sequenced. In cluster analyses of the DNA fingerprints, microbial communities from the anthrosols grouped together regardless of current land use or soil type and were distinct from those in their respective, paired adjacent soils. For the Archaea, the anthrosol communities diverged from the adjacent soils by over 90%. A greater overall richness was observed for Bacteria sequences as compared with those of the Archaea. Most of the sequences obtained were novel and matched those in databases at less than 98% similarity. Several sequences obtained only from the anthrosols grouped at 93% similarity with the Verrucomicrobia, a genus commonly found in rice paddies in the tropics. Sequences closely related to Proteobacteria and Cyanobacteria sp. were recovered only from adjacent soil samples. Sequences related to Pseudomonas, Acidobacteria, and Flexibacter sp. were recovered from both anthrosols and adjacent soils. The strong similarities among the microbial communities present in the anthrosols for

  2. Infrared sensors to map soil carbon in agricultural ecosystems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rapid methods of measuring soil carbon such as near-infrared (NIR) and mid-infrared (MIR) diffuse reflectance spectroscopy have gained interest but problems of accurate and precise measurement still persist resulting from the high spatial variability of soil carbon within agricultural landscapes. T...

  3. Suppression of plant parasitic nematodes in the chinampa agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Zuckerman, B M; Dicklow, M B; Coles, G C; Garcia-E, R; Marban-Mendoza, N

    1989-06-01

    Soil from the chinampa agricultural system in the Valley of Mexico suppressed damage by plant-parasitic nematodes to tomatoes and beans in greenhouse and growth chamber trials. Sterilization of the chinampa soil resulted in a loss of the suppressive effect, thereby indicating that one or more biotic factors were responsible for the low incidence of nematode damage. Nine organisms were isolated from chinampa soil, which showed antinematodal properties in culture. Naturally occurring populations of plant-parasitic nematodes were of lower incidence in chinampa soil than in Chapingo soil.

  4. Soil Type Identification Using Remotely Sensed Data for Agricultural Purpose

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiji, G. Wiselin; Nadar, Pallavi

    2016-09-01

    Soil assessment plays important role in making decisions for Agriculture. In this paper, an approach by integrating the image processing and pattern recognition techniques to find the type of soil has been presented. The soil from the area of interest is selected and soil indices are extracted as features. Indexing technique is used for faster retrieval. The efficiency of the proposed system is proved using sensitivity, specificity, precision and recall. Our empirical evaluation has a superior retrieval performance over the performance of other works. This work is of great use to the farmers, who need to identify their field's soil type.

  5. Measuring the hydraulic conductivity of soil adjacent to tile drains in a heavy clay soil in The Netherlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouma, J.; Van Hoorn, J. W.; Stoffelsen, G. H.

    The hydraulic conductivity, Ksat, of soil adjacent to tile drains in heavy clay soils was measured at twelve locations with a new technique. This technique involves excavation of a cube of soil (25 cm × 25 cm × 25 cm) in situ around a tile fragment. Cutting of the tile leaves it protruding from the cube for ˜5 cm on two sides, also when covering five sides of the cube with a layer of gypsum outside the pit. Flow rates from the tile are measured for two conditions: (1) infiltration into the layer which was previously the lower horizontal soil surface of the cube; and (2) infiltration into the upper surface. The cube is turned upside down to allow the first measurement. The open surface is then covered with gypsum. The cube is turned upside down again and gypsum is removed from the upper surface of the cube (which is the original upper surface of the cube in the pit) to allow the second measurement. The first measurement mainly characterizes undisturbed soil below the drain, the second characterizes soil above the drain (fill). Dye is added to the percolating water to trace patterns of water movement, using micromorphometric techniques. Flow rates are transformed to Ksat-values by using an electrolytic analog model. Measured Ksat-values below the drain had median values of 10 m/day and agreed well with those measured in undisturbed soil at comparable depth, indicating that there are no changes due to either system construction or system operation. The median Ksat for fill above the drain was 5 m/day. The conclusions reached pertain to three types of drains, e.g., one fired-clay pipe and two types of plastic pipe. The dye studies showed that water movement occurred almost exclusively along larger planar voids (cracks), and hardly along channels (rootholes). Water-conducting voids were below 2% by volume.

  6. Effects of different agricultural managements in soil microbial community structure in a semi-arid Mediterranean region.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García-Orenes, Fuensanta; Morugan, Alicia; Mataix-Solera, Jorge; Scow, Kate

    2013-04-01

    Agriculture has been practiced in semi-arid Mediterranean regions for 10.000 years and in many cases these practices have been unsuitable causing land degradation for millennium and an important loss of soil quality. The land management can provide solutions to find the best agricultural practices in order to maintain the soil quality and get a sustainable agriculture model. Microbiological properties are the most sensitive and rapid indicators of soil perturbations and land use managements. The study of microbial community and diversity has an important interest as indicators of changes in soil quality. The main objective of this work was to asses the effect of different agricultural management practices in soil microbial community (evaluated as abundance of phospholipid fatty acids, PLFA). Four different treatments were selected, based on the most commonly practices applied by farmers in the study area, "El Teularet Experimental Station", located at the Enguera Range in the southern part of the Valencia province (eastern Spain). These treatments were: a) ploughing, b) herbicides c) mulch, using the types applied by organic farmers to develop a sustainable agriculture, such as oat straw and d) control that was established as plot where the treatment was abandonment after farming. An adjacent area with the same type of soil, but with natural vegetation was used as a standard or reference high quality soil. Soil samples were taken to evaluate the changes in microbial soil structure, analysing the abundance of PLFA. The results showed a major content of total PLFA in soils treated with oats straw, being these results similar to the content of PLFA in the soil with natural vegetation, also these soils were similar in the distribution of abundance of different PLFA studied. However, the herbicide and tillage treatments showed great differences regarding the soil used as reference (soil under natural vegetation).

  7. Taxonomical and functional microbial responses to agriculture management of Amazon forest soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuramae, Eiko; Navarrete, Acácio; Mendes, Lucas; de Hollander, Mattias; van Veen, Johannes; Tsai, Siu

    2013-04-01

    Land-use change is one of the greatest threats to biodiversity worldwide, and one of the most devastating changes in the use of land, especially in the tropics, is the conversion of forest to crop lands. Southeast Amazon region is considered the largest agricultural frontier in the world, where native forests are converted into soybean crop fields, a fact that highlights the social and economic importance of this system to Brazil. This study firstly, focused on the impact of land-use changes and agriculture management of Amazon forest soils on the size and composition of the acidobacterial community. Taxon-specific quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) and pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA gene were applied to study the acidobacterial community in bulk soil samples from croplands, adjacent native forests and rhizosphere of soybean. Based on qPCR measurements, Acidobacteria accounted for 23%, 18% and 14% of the total bacterial signal in forest soils, cropland soils and soybean rhizosphere samples, respectively. From the sequences of Bacteria domain, the phylum Acidobacteria represented 28%, 16% and 17% of the sequences from forest soils, cropland soils and soybean rhizosphere samples, respectively. Acidobacteria subgroups 2-8, 10, 11, 13, 17, 18, 22 and 25 were detected with subgroup 1 as dominant among them. Subgroups 4, 6 and 7 were significantly higher in cropland soils than in forest soils, which subgroups respond to decrease of soil Aluminium. Subgroups 6 and 7 respond to high content of soil Ca, Mg, Zn, P, Fe, Mn and B. The results showed differential response of the Acidobacteria subgroups to abiotic soil factors, and indicated acidobacterial subgroups as potential early-warning bio-indicators of agricultural soil management effects in the Amazon area. Secondly, using 454 pyrosequencing, we investigated the metabolic diversity of microbial communities colonizing the rhizosphere and the bulk soil associated to soybean. The rhizosphere presented an overrepresentation of

  8. Soil biota and agriculture production in conventional and organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schrama, Maarten; de Haan, Joj; Carvalho, Sabrina; Kroonen, Mark; Verstegen, Harry; Van der Putten, Wim

    2015-04-01

    Sustainable food production for a growing world population requires a healthy soil that can buffer environmental extremes and minimize its losses. There are currently two views on how to achieve this: by intensifying conventional agriculture or by developing organically based agriculture. It has been established that yields of conventional agriculture can be 20% higher than of organic agriculture. However, high yields of intensified conventional agriculture trade off with loss of soil biodiversity, leaching of nutrients, and other unwanted ecosystem dis-services. One of the key explanations for the loss of nutrients and GHG from intensive agriculture is that it results in high dynamics of nutrient losses, and policy has aimed at reducing temporal variation. However, little is known about how different agricultural practices affect spatial variation, and it is unknown how soil fauna acts this. In this study we compare the spatial and temporal variation of physical, chemical and biological parameters in a long term (13-year) field experiment with two conventional farming systems (low and medium organic matter input) and one organic farming system (high organic matter input) and we evaluate the impact on ecosystem services that these farming systems provide. Soil chemical (N availability, N mineralization, pH) and soil biological parameters (nematode abundance, bacterial and fungal biomass) show considerably higher spatial variation under conventional farming than under organic farming. Higher variation in soil chemical and biological parameters coincides with the presence of 'leaky' spots (high nitrate leaching) in conventional farming systems, which shift unpredictably over the course of one season. Although variation in soil physical factors (soil organic matter, soil aggregation, soil moisture) was similar between treatments, but averages were higher under organic farming, indicating more buffered conditions for nutrient cycling. All these changes coincide with

  9. Soil structural changes caused by agricultural machinery

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Effects of tractor traffic with high axle load on the aggregate size distribution, the total soil porosity, and the aggregate porosity were studied in a field experiment on a silty clay loam Greyzem soil. One and three tractors passes were made at pre-irrigated and non-irrigated 10x10 m plots. The v...

  10. About soil cover heterogeneity of agricultural research stations' experimental fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rannik, Kaire; Kõlli, Raimo; Kukk, Liia

    2013-04-01

    Depending on local pedo-ecological conditions (topography, (geo) diversity of soil parent material, meteorological conditions) the patterns of soil cover and plant cover determined by soils are very diverse. Formed in the course of soil-plant mutual relationship, the natural ecosystems are always influenced to certain extent by the other local soil forming conditions or they are site specific. The agricultural land use or the formation of agro-ecosystems depends foremost on the suitability of soils for the cultivation of feed and food crops. As a rule, the most fertile or the best soils of the area, which do not present any or present as little as possible constraints for agricultural land use, are selected for this purpose. Compared with conventional field soils, the requirements for the experimental fields' soil cover quality are much higher. Experimental area soils and soil cover composition should correspond to local pedo-ecological conditions and, in addition to that, represent the soil types dominating in the region, whereas the fields should be as homogeneous as possible. The soil cover heterogeneity of seven arable land blocks of three research stations (Jõgeva, Kuusiku and Olustvere) was studied 1) by examining the large scale (1:10 000) digital soil map (available via the internet), and 2) by field researches using the transect method. The stages of soils litho-genetic and moisture heterogeneities were estimated by using the Estonian normal soils matrix, however, the heterogeneity of top- and subsoil texture by using the soil texture matrix. The quality and variability of experimental fields' soils humus status, was studied more thoroughly from the aspect of humus concentration (g kg-1), humus cover thickness (cm) and humus stocks (Mg ha-1). The soil cover of Jõgeva experimental area, which presents an accumulative drumlin landscape (formed during the last glacial period), consist from loamy Luvisols and associated to this Cambisols. In Kuusiku area

  11. Phenylurea herbicide sorption to biochars and agricultural soil

    PubMed Central

    WANG, DAOYUAN; MUKOME, FUNGAI N. D.; YAN, DENGHUA; WANG, HAO; SCOW, KATE M.; PARIKH, SANJAI J.

    2016-01-01

    Biochar is increasingly been used as a soil amendment to improve water holding capacity, reduce nutrient leaching, increase soil pH and also as a means to reduce contamination through sorption of heavy metals or organic pollutants. The sorption behavior of three phenylurea herbicides (monuron, diuron, linuron) on five biochars (Enhanced Biochar, Hog Waste, Turkey Litter, Walnut Shell and Wood Feedstock) and an agricultural soil (Yolo silt loam) was investigated using a batch equilibration method. Sorption isotherms of herbicides to biochars were well described by the Freundlich model (R2 = 0.93 -- 0.97). The adsorption KF values ranged from 6.94 to 1306.95 mg kg−1 and indicated the sorption of herbicides in the biochars and Yolo soil was in the sequence of linuron > diuron > monuron and walnut shell biochar > wood feedstock biochar > turkey litter biochar > enhanced biochar > hog waste biochar > Yolo soil. These data show that sorption of herbicides to biochar can have both positive (reduced off-site transport) and negative (reduced herbicide efficacy) implications and specific biochar properties, such as H/C ratio and surface area, should be considered together with soil type, agriculture chemical and climate condition in biochar application to agricultural soil to optimize the system for both agricultural and environmental benefits. PMID:26065514

  12. Spillover edge effects: the dispersal of agriculturally subsidized insect natural enemies into adjacent natural habitats.

    PubMed

    Rand, Tatyana A; Tylianakis, Jason M; Tscharntke, Teja

    2006-05-01

    The cross-edge spillover of subsidized predators from anthropogenic to natural habitats is an important process affecting wildlife, especially bird, populations in fragmented landscapes. However, the importance of the spillover of insect natural enemies from agricultural to natural habitats is unknown, despite the abundance of studies examining movement in the opposite direction. Here, we synthesize studies from various ecological sub-disciplines to suggest that spillover of agriculturally subsidized insect natural enemies may be an important process affecting prey populations in natural habitat fragments. This contention is based on (1) the ubiquity of agricultural-natural edges in human dominated landscapes; (2) the substantial literature illustrating that crop and natural habitats share important insect predators; and (3) the clear importance of the landscape matrix, specifically distance to ecological edges, in influencing predator impacts in agroecosystems. Further support emerges from theory on the importance of cross-boundary subsidies for within site consumer-resource dynamics. In particular, high productivity and temporally variable resource abundance in agricultural systems are predicted to result in strong spillover effects. More empirical work examining the prevalence and significance of such natural enemy spillover will be critical to a broader understanding of fragmentation impacts on insect predator-prey interactions.

  13. Cu, Cr and As distribution in soils adjacent to pressure-treated decks, fences and poles.

    PubMed

    Chirenje, Tait; Ma, L Q; Clark, C; Reeves, M

    2003-01-01

    Chromated copper arsenate (CCA)-treated wood has been widely used in the Southeastern United States to protect wood products from microbial and fungal decay. The aims of this study were to (1). determine the distribution of arsenic (As), chromium (Cr), and copper (Cu), in soils surrounding CCA-treated wood structures such as decks, fences and poles; and (2). evaluate the impacts of these structures on As, Cr and Cu loading of the soils. Profile and lateral soil samples were collected under CCA-treated decks and adjacent to poles and fences. The results showed elevation of As, Cr and Cu concentrations close to and under the structures, with mean As concentrations as high as 23 mg x kg(-1) close to utility poles compared with less than 3 mg x kg (-1) at distances of about 1.5 m away. Concentrations of As, Cr, and Cu decreased with depth in areas close to CCA-treated poles. However, these results were only apparent in relatively new structures. A combination of weathering and leaching with time may have reduced the impact in older poles. Increased concentrations of As, Cu and Cr were also observed close to CCA-treated decks and fences, with age showing a similar impact. These results are helpful for CCA-treated wood product users to determine the safe use of these structures.

  14. Changes in soil oribatid communities associated with conversion from conventional to organic agriculture.

    PubMed

    Khalil, Mohamed A; Al-Assiuty, Abdel-Naieem I M; van Straalen, Nico M; Al-Assiuty, Basma A

    2016-02-01

    We investigated the effects of switching from conventional management to organic management on the abundance and community composition of soil-living oribatid mites in clover fields in an experimental agricultural station at Al-Fayoum, Egypt. The site had two adjacent fields with identical vegetation cover but different management. Fifteen random soil samples were collected monthly from each of three plots per field, from October to March. We characterized the soils with respect to various physicochemical variables as well as fungal community composition, and estimated mite densities through core sampling. Organic fields had a significantly more abundant oribatid community than did conventional fields. Also the abundance of soil fungi was greater in the organically managed field. Organic management promoted common oribatid mite species with a wide ecological amplitude that already had a high abundance where such common species are more responsive to changes in agricultural management. However, some species of mite responded indifferent or negative to the switch from conventional to organic management. Overall, the differences between the two ecological systems were mainly quantitative. Species diversities of both mite and fungal communities did not differ much between the two management systems. Diversity (H0) and equitability (E) of soil oribatid communities were higher in conventional plots than in the organic plots during the first 2 months but indistinguishable thereafter. Our study confirmed that organic management stimulates soilorganic matter build-up, with positive effects on both fungal and oribatid mite abundance and possible long-term effects on soil function.

  15. Lunar base agriculture: Soils for plant growth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ming, Douglas W. (Editor); Henninger, Donald L. (Editor)

    1989-01-01

    This work provides information on research and experimentation concerning various aspects of food production in space and particularly on the moon. Options for human settlement of the moon and Mars and strategies for a lunar base are discussed. The lunar environment, including the mineralogical and chemical properties of lunar regolith are investigated and chemical and physical considerations for a lunar-derived soil are considered. It is noted that biological considerations for such a soil include controlled-environment crop production, both hydroponic and lunar regolith-based; microorganisms and the growth of higher plants in lunar-derived soils; and the role of microbes to condition lunar regolith for plant cultivation. Current research in the controlled ecological life support system (CELSS) project is presented in detail and future research areas, such as the growth of higher research plants in CELSS are considered. Optimum plant and microbiological considerations for lunar derived soils are examined.

  16. Changes of Soil Bacterial Diversity as a Consequence of Agricultural Land Use in a Semi-Arid Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Guo-Chun; Piceno, Yvette M.; Heuer, Holger; Weinert, Nicole; Dohrmann, Anja B.; Carrillo, Angel; Andersen, Gary L.; Castellanos, Thelma; Tebbe, Christoph C.; Smalla, Kornelia

    2013-01-01

    Natural scrublands in semi-arid deserts are increasingly being converted into fields. This results in losses of characteristic flora and fauna, and may also affect microbial diversity. In the present study, the long-term effect (50 years) of such a transition on soil bacterial communities was explored at two sites typical of semi-arid deserts. Comparisons were made between soil samples from alfalfa fields and the adjacent scrublands by two complementary methods based on 16S rRNA gene fragments amplified from total community DNA. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analyses revealed significant effects of the transition on community composition of Bacteria, Actinobacteria, Alpha- and Betaproteobacteria at both sites. PhyloChip hybridization analysis uncovered that the transition negatively affected taxa such as Acidobacteria, Chloroflexi, Acidimicrobiales, Rubrobacterales, Deltaproteobacteria and Clostridia, while Alpha-, Beta- and Gammaproteobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Actinobacteria increased in abundance. Redundancy analysis suggested that the community composition of phyla responding to agricultural use (except for Spirochaetes) correlated with soil parameters that were significantly different between the agricultural and scrubland soil. The arable soils were lower in organic matter and phosphate concentration, and higher in salinity. The variation in the bacterial community composition was higher in soils from scrubland than from agriculture, as revealed by DGGE and PhyloChip analyses, suggesting reduced beta diversity due to agricultural practices. The long-term use for agriculture resulted in profound changes in the bacterial community and physicochemical characteristics of former scrublands, which may irreversibly affect the natural soil ecosystem. PMID:23527207

  17. The Living Soil: Exploring Soil Science and Sustainable Agriculture with Your Guide, The Earthworm. Unit I.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weber, Eldon C.; And Others

    This instructional packet introduces students to soil biology, ecology, and specific farming practices that promote sustainable agriculture. It helps students to discover the role of earthworms in improving the environment of all other soil-inhabiting organisms and in making the soil more fertile. The activities (classroom as well as outdoor)…

  18. Soil micronutrients at the plot scale under agricultural and forest soil uses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    da Silva Días, Rosane; Vidal Vázquez, Eva; dos Santos Batista Bonini, Carolina; Marasca, Indiamara; Paz-Ferreiro, Jorge

    2013-04-01

    Land use practices affect soil properties and nutrient supply. Very limited data are available on the heavy metal extractability in northwest Spain. The aim of this study is to analyze long-term effects of land use on the supply, variability and spatial distribution of soil nutrients, which was undertaken by comparison of a forest and a cultivated stand, rich in organic matter content. The study was carried out in an acid, rich in organic matter soil developed over sediments at the province of Lugo, northwestern of Spain. Adjacent plots with were marked on regular square grids with 2-m spacing. Fe, Mn, Zn and Cu were extracted both by Mehlich-3 and DTPA solutions and determined by ICP-MS. General soil chemical and physical properties were routinely analyzed. In arable land microelement concentration ranges were as follows: Fe (100 and 135 mg/Kg), Mn (7.6 and 21.5 mg/Kg), Zn (0.6 and 3.7 mg/Kg), Cu (0.2 and 0.7 mg/Kg). In forest land, these ranges were: Fe (62 and 309 mg/Kg), Mn (0.2 and 2.1 mg/Kg), Zn (0.2 and 2.9 mg/Kg), Cu (0.1 and 0.2 mg/Kg), Microelement concentrations extracted both with DTPA and Mehlich-3 were higher in the cultivated than in the forest stand, being Fe-DTPA the exception. Coefficients of variation were higher for the microelement content of the soil under forest. Principal component analysis was performed to evaluate associations between extractable microelements and general physico-chemical properties. At the study scale, nutrient management is the main factor affecting the agricultural site, whereas soil-plant interactions are probably driving the higher variation within the forest site. Patterns of spatial variability of the study nutrients at the small plot scale were assessed by geostatistical techniques. Results are discussed in the frame of organic matter decline with conventional tillage and sustainable land use.

  19. Sorption and transport of atrazine in an agricultural soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hakan Akyol, Nihat

    2014-05-01

    Sorption and transport of atrazine in an agricultural soil Atrazine is one of the most commonly used herbicides in large quantity worldwide. The objective of this study was to perform some batch and column experiments to examine the transport of atrazine in an agricultural soil from Turkey. Batch experiments indicated that sorption isotherm was nonlinear with a freundlich isotherm over a range of concentration (0.2-10 mg/L) examined. Column experiments showed that transport of atrazine in the soil was moderately retarded compared to non-reactive tracer (R = 2.9-4.0). The degree of retardation decreased with increasing atrazine concentration and residance time had negligable impact on degree of sorption. Flow interruption tests in the column experiments indicated that the rate-limited desorption of atrazine mainly controlled the non-ideal transport of atrazine due to the presence of organic matter fraction (0.83 %) in the soil. Sorption and desorption behavior of atrazine in such soils could have important impacts for risk assessment of atrazine-contaminated soil and should be taken into account in the regulation, management, and remediation of atrazine-contaminated sites. Keywords: Atrazine, Agricultural soil, Batch, Column, Desorption, Rate-limited desorption, Sorption, Transport.

  20. Geogenic and agricultural controls on the geochemical composition of European agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mol, Gerben; Saaltink, Remon; Griffioen, Jasper; Birke, Manfred

    2014-05-01

    Purpose: Concern about the environmental impact of agriculture caused by intensification is growing as large amounts of nutrients and contaminants are introduced into the environment. The aim of this paper is to identify the geogenic and agricultural controls on the elemental composition of European, grazing and agricultural soils. Materials and methods: Robust factor analysis was applied to data series for Al,B,Ca, Cd,Co, Cu, Fe, K, Mg,Mn, Na,Ni, P, S, Se, Sr, U, Zn (ICP-MS) and SiO2, K2O, Na2O, Fe2O3, Al2O3 (XRF) based on the European GEMAS dataset. In addition, the following general soil properties were included: clay content, pH, chemical index of alteration (CIA), loss on ignition (LOI), cation exchange capacity (CEC), total organic carbon (TOC) and total carbon and total sulfur. Furthermore, this dataset was coupled to a dataset containing information of historic P2O5 fertilization across Europe. Also, a mass balance was carried out for Cd, Cu and Zn to determine if concentrations of these elements found in the soils have their origin in historic P2O5 fertilization. Results and discussion: Seven geogenic factors and one agricultural factor were found of which four prominent ones (all geogenic): chemical weathering, reactive iron-aluminum oxide minerals, clay minerals and carbonate minerals. Results for grazing and agricultural soils were near identical, which further proofs the prominence of geogenic controls on the total elemental composition. When the cumulative amount of P2O5 fertilization was considered, no extra agriculture-related factors became visible. The mass balance confirms these observations. Conclusion: Overall, the geological controls are more important for the total soil chemistry in agricultural and grazing land soils than the anthropogenic controls.

  1. Remote sensing of agricultural crops and soils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bauer, M. E. (Principal Investigator)

    1982-01-01

    Research results and accomplishments of sixteen tasks in the following areas are described: (1) corn and soybean scene radiation research; (2) soil moisture research; (3) sampling and aggregation research; (4) pattern recognition and image registration research; and (5) computer and data base services.

  2. Substantial dust loss of bioavailable phosphorus from agricultural soils

    PubMed Central

    Katra, Itzhak; Gross, Avner; Swet, Nitzan; Tanner, Smadar; Krasnov, Helena; Angert, Alon

    2016-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) is an essential element in terrestrial ecosystems. Knowledge on the role of dust in the biogeochemical cycling of phosphorus is very limited with no quantitative information on aeolian (by wind) P fluxes from soils. The aim of this study is to focus on P cycling via dust emissions under common land-use practices in an arid environment by integration of sample analyses and aeolian experiments. The experiments indicate significant P fluxes by PM10 dust due to agricultural land use. Even in a single wind-dust event at moderate velocity (7.0 m s−1), P flux in conventional agricultural fields can reach 1.83 kg km−2, that accumulates to a considerable amount per year at a regional scale. The results highlight a negative yearly balance in P content (up to hundreds kg km−2) in all agricultural soils, and thus more P nutrition is required to maintain efficient yield production. In grazing areas where no P nutrition is applied, the soil degradation process can lead to desertification. Emission of P from soil dust sources has significant implications for soil nutrient resources and management strategies in agricultural regions as well as for loading to the atmosphere and global biogeochemical cycles. PMID:27095629

  3. Substantial dust loss of bioavailable phosphorus from agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Katra, Itzhak; Gross, Avner; Swet, Nitzan; Tanner, Smadar; Krasnov, Helena; Angert, Alon

    2016-04-01

    Phosphorus (P) is an essential element in terrestrial ecosystems. Knowledge on the role of dust in the biogeochemical cycling of phosphorus is very limited with no quantitative information on aeolian (by wind) P fluxes from soils. The aim of this study is to focus on P cycling via dust emissions under common land-use practices in an arid environment by integration of sample analyses and aeolian experiments. The experiments indicate significant P fluxes by PM10 dust due to agricultural land use. Even in a single wind-dust event at moderate velocity (7.0 m s‑1), P flux in conventional agricultural fields can reach 1.83 kg km‑2, that accumulates to a considerable amount per year at a regional scale. The results highlight a negative yearly balance in P content (up to hundreds kg km‑2) in all agricultural soils, and thus more P nutrition is required to maintain efficient yield production. In grazing areas where no P nutrition is applied, the soil degradation process can lead to desertification. Emission of P from soil dust sources has significant implications for soil nutrient resources and management strategies in agricultural regions as well as for loading to the atmosphere and global biogeochemical cycles.

  4. Agriculture, forestry, range, and soils, chapter 2, part C

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1975-01-01

    The feasibility of using microwave systems in agriculture, forestry, range, and soil moisture measurements was studied. Theory and preliminary results show the feasibility of measuring moisture status in the soil. For vegetational resources, crop identification for inventory and for yield and production estimates is most feasible. Apart from moisture- and water-related phenomena, microwave systems are also used to record structural and spatial data related to crops and forests.

  5. Trace metal mobility and microbial community structure in tropical soils: examples from adjacent forest and grassland ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, A. D.; Roberts, J. A.; MacPherson, G. L.; Mauck, B. S.; Stallard, R. F.

    2004-12-01

    Many factors determine the quality and sustainability of a soil environment and changes in land use can impact significantly soil geochemistry and the associated soil microbial communities. Native tropical forests and human-constructed grasslands on Barro Colorado Island provide an excellent setting for comparing changes in soil ecosystems in undisturbed and altered landscapes. The goals of this study were to examine biological, chemical, and mineralogical changes in soil properties as a function of land use changes during the wet and dry seasons. Soil pits were excavated at two study sites, a tropical forest and an adjacent plot that has been converted to grassland, during March 2002 and August 2003. The 1 meter deep pits were sampled at 5 cm intervals and characterized for soil organic matter content, soil moisture, community structure and total lipid biomass of the soil microbial community, mineralogy, and trace metal distribution using a sequential extraction method. Results demonstrate that forested soils exhibit higher organic matter content than grassland soils regardless of soil moisture content. Total lipid biomass of the active soil microbial population decreases with depth in both soils, but is elevated in the forested soil, likely correlating with the organic matter content in this system. Diversity of the soil microbial community, determined by PLFA analysis, decreases sharply at the base of the root zone and general trends in community structure are similar in both soils. XRD analysis of the soils reveal that the weathering profile in the forest has extended to a greater depth, but these differences in the mineralogy profile do not exert significant control on trace element mobility. Vanadium, copper, zinc, and aluminum show strong affinities for the organically bound fraction in both soils.

  6. Assessing different agricultural managements with the use of soil quality indices in a Mediteranean calcareous soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; García-Orenes, Fuensanta; Mataix-Solera, Jorge; Arcenegui, Vicky; Cerdà, Artemi

    2013-04-01

    Soil erosion is a major problem in the Mediterranean region due to the arid conditions and torrential rainfalls, which contribute to the degradation of agricultural land. New strategies must be developed to reduce soil losses and recover or maintain soil functionality in order to achieve a sustainable agriculture. An experiment was designed to evaluate the effect of different agricultural management on soil properties and soil quality. Ten different treatments (contact herbicide, systemic herbicide, ploughing, Oat mulch non-plough, Oats mulch plough, leguminous plant, straw rice mulch, chipped pruned branches, residual-herbicide and agro geo-textile, and three control plots including no tillage or control and long agricultural abandonment (shrub on marls and shrub on limestone) were established in 'El Teularet experimental station' located in the Sierra de Enguera (Valencia, Spain). The soil is a Typic Xerorthent developed over Cretaceous marls in an old agricultural terrace. The agricultural management can modify the soil equilibrium and affect its quality. In this work two soil quality indices (models) developed by Zornoza et al. (2007) are used to evaluate the effects of the different agricultural management along 4 years. The models were developed studying different soil properties in undisturbed forest soils in SE Spain, and the relationships between soil parameters were established using multiple linear regressions. Model 1, that explained 92% of the variance in soil organic carbon (SOC) showed that the SOC can be calculated by the linear combination of 6 physical, chemical and biochemical properties (acid phosphatase, water holding capacity (WHC), electrical conductivity (EC), available phosphorus (P), cation exchange capacity (CEC) and aggregate stability (AS). Model 2 explains 89% of the SOC variance, which can be calculated by means of 7 chemical and biochemical properties (urease, phosphatase, and ß-glucosidase activities, pH, EC, P and CEC). We use the

  7. Properties of 21 Urban Agricultural Soils in Seoul, Korea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, J.; Kim, H. S.; Kim, J. W.

    2012-04-01

    The number of urban agriculture practitioners has been increasing rapidly in Korea like many other urbanized countries recently. The Korean government enacted a law for promoting urban agriculture in 2011. However, urban soil environment can be potential sources of many toxic contaminants including heavy metals making people concern about the safety of the agricultural products from the urban agriculture. The accumulation of heavy metals in soil and plant by overuse of compost from animal waste was one of the raised concerns. This study was carried out to find out properties and total and phytoavailable (1.0 M NH4NO3 extractable) contents of heavy metals (Cd, Pb, Cu, Zn) in 21 urban agricultural soils in Seoul. On the average, the investigated urban soils showed pH1:5 6.89, EC1:5 0.14 dS m-1, organic mater 2.22%, available P2O5 139 mg kg-1, cation exchange capacity (CEC) 11.36 cmolc kg-1 and total nitrogen 0.15%. The average exchangeable-Ca, -Mg, -K and -Na of the 21 samples were 6.71, 1.44, 1.06 and 0.30 cmol+ kg-1, respectively. Total heavy metal concentrations (Cd 0.97-3.17 mg kg-1, average 1.89 mg kg-1; Pb 8.10-46.27 mg kg-1, average 19.96 mg kg-1; Cu 8.97-133.40 mg kg-1, average 38.37 mg kg-1; and Zn 38.97-180.06 mg kg-1, average 97.73 mg kg-1) in urban agricultural soils were lower than those of the warning standard in the area 1 according to the Soil Environmental Conservation Act of Korea. Phytoavailable-Cu, -Pb, and -Zn concentrations of the samples showed 0.02-0.28, N.D-0.09 and 0.01-0.43 mg kg-1, respectively. Phytoavailable-Cd was not detected. The average phytoavailable-Cu concentration from this study was similar to that from the previous phytoavailable-Cu of the highly contaminated soils from nearby abandoned mines, which might be resulted from overuse of compost from animal waste. Results showed a necessity of long-term monitoring of soils for sustainable urban agriculture in Korea.

  8. Ibuprofen adsorption in four agricultural volcanic soils.

    PubMed

    Estevez, Esmeralda; Hernandez-Moreno, Jose Manuel; Fernandez-Vera, Juan Ramon; Palacios-Diaz, Maria Pino

    2014-01-15

    Ibuprofen (IB) is a high environmental risk drug and one of the most frequently prescribed in human medicine. Recently, IB has been detected in Gran Canaria in reclaimed water for irrigation and in groundwater. Adsorption was studied in four volcanic soils from three islands of the Canarian Archipelago. Once the biodegradation process has been excluded from the experimental conditions, a batch method was applied using initial concentrations of 1-5-10-20-50-100-200 mg L(-1) and two soil/water ratios (w/V): 1:5 (OECD, 2000) and 1:1. Non-linear and linearized Langmuir and Freundlich equations were well fitted. The wide IB range tested in our batch studies allowed us to measure experimental adsorption values close to the maximum adsorption capacity (S(max)) as estimated by Langmuir, making it possible thereby to validate the use of the Langmuir equation when there is a burst of contamination at high concentration. The distribution coefficient (Kd), S(max) and Retardation Factor (RF) varied from 0.04 to 0.5 kg L(-1), 4-200 mgk g(-1) and 1.2-1.9, respectively. The lowest S(max) and Kd values were found for the 1:1S/W ratio whereas most batch studies employ 1:5S/W ratios, thus obtaining higher adsorption parameters than when considering field conditions (1:1). Despite the high anion retention of andic soils, similar Kd and RF to those reported for other soils were obtained in 1:5, while high S(max) was found. Our results demonstrate that IB adsorption in volcanic areas responds not only to the soil properties commonly cited in adsorption studies, but also depends on andic properties, sorbent concentration and Dissolved Organic Carbon, the higher values of which are related to the lower Kd and S(max). The low RF and low detection frequency of the IB in groundwater suggests that a) reclaimed water irrigation is not the main source of IB, and b) the existence of some uncontrolled water disposal points in the zone.

  9. Carbon isotope fractionation of methyl bromide during agricultural soil fumigations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bill, M.; Miller, L.G.; Goldstein, Allen H.

    2002-01-01

    The isotopic composition of methyl bromide (CH3Br) has been suggested to be a potentially useful tracer for constraining the global CH3Br budget. In order to determine the carbon isotopic composition of CH3Br emitted from the most significant anthropogenic application (pre-plant fumigation) we directly measured the ??13C of CH3Br released during commercial fumigation. We also measured the isotopic fractionation associated with degradation in agricultural soil under typical field fumigation conditions. The isotopic composition of CH3Br collected in soil several hours after injection of the fumigant was -44.5??? and this value increased to -20.7??? over the following three days. The mean kinetic isotope effect (KIE) associated with degradation of CH3Br in agricultural soil (12???) was smaller than the reported value for methylotrophic bacterial strain IMB-1, isolated from previously fumigated agricultural soil, but was similar to methylotrophic bacterial strain CC495, isolated from a pristine forest litter zone. Using this fractionation associated with the degradation of CH3Br in agricultural soil and the mean ??13C of the industrially manufactured CH3Br (-54.4???), we calculate that the agricultural soil fumigation source has a carbon isotope signature that ranges from -52.8??? to -42.0???. Roughly 65% of industrially manufactured CH3Br is used for field fumigations. The remaining 35% is used for structural and post-harvest fumigations with a minor amount used during industrial chemical manufacturing. Assuming that the structural and post-harvest fumigation sources of CH3Br are emitted without substantial fractionation, we calculate that the ??13C of anthropogenically emitted CH3Br ranges from -53.2??? to -47.5???.

  10. Persistence and Viability of Lecanicillium lecanii in Chinese Agricultural Soil

    PubMed Central

    Peng, De-Liang; Zhou, Jie; Zhang, Xiao-Lin; Zhang, Zhao-Rong; Zhao, Jin-Jin; Wu, Yu-Huan

    2015-01-01

    The entomopathogenic fungus L. lecanii has been developed as biopesticides and used widely for biological control of several insects in agricultural practice. Due to the lack of isolation/count methods for L. lecanii in soil, the persistence of this fungus in soil appears to have attracted no attention. A selective medium and count method for L. lecanii in soil based on cetyl trimethyl ammonium bromide (CTAB) was developed, and then the persistence and viability of this fungus in soil were investigated under field conditions between 2012 and 2014. The results showed that the rate of recovery for L. lecanii in soil on the selective CTAB medium was satisfactory. The minimum CFUs for L. lecanii on the selective medium (0.5 g/L CTAB) was about 102 conidia/g soil. The L. lecanii density in soil declined quickly in the first month after inoculation with fungal conidia, kept stable for 6 to 10 months, and then decreased gradually until undetectable. L. lecanii could persist for at least 14 months in the agricultural soil of northern China. The colony growth, conidia yield and germination rate on plates, as well as the median lethal concentration or times (LC50 or LT50) to aphids, mycelium growth in aphids and sporulation on aphids of L. lecanii did not change significantly during the persistence in soil. In general, the count method developed here was a very useful tool for monitoring the dynamics of natural or introduced L. lecanii populations in soil, and the data on the persistence of L. lecanii in soil reported here were helpful for biological control and environmental risk assessment. PMID:26375030

  11. Is current biochar soil study addressing global soil constraints for sustainable agriculture?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Genxing; Zhang, Dengxiao; Yan, Ming; Niu, Yaru; Liu, Xiaoyu; van Zwieten, Lukas; Chen, De; Bian, Rongjun; Cheng, Kun; Li, Lianqing; Joseph, Stephen; Zheng, Jinwei; Zhang, Xuhui; Zheng, Jufeng; Crowley, David; Filley, Timothy

    2016-04-01

    Global soil degradation has been increasingly threatened sustainability of world agriculture. Use of biochar from bio-wastes has been proposed as a global option for its great potential in tackling soil degradation and mitigating climate change in agriculture. For last 10 years, there have been greatly increasing interests in application of charred biomass, more recently termed biochar, as a soil amendment for addressing soil constraints for sustainable agriculture. Biochar soil studies could deliver reliable information for appropriate application of biochar to soils where for sustainable agriculture has been challenged. Here we review the literature of 798 publications reporting biochar soil studies by August, 2015 to address potential gaps in understanding of biochar's role in agriculture. We have found some substantial biases and gaps inherent in the current biochar studies. 1) The majority of published studies were from developed regions where the soils are less constrained and were much more frequent in laboratory and glasshouse pot experiments than field studies under realistic agriculture. 2) The published biochar soil studies have used more often small kiln or lab prepared biochar than commercial scale biochars, more often wood and municipal waste derived biochars than crop straw biochars. Overall, the lack of long-term well designed field studies using biochar produced in commercial processes may have limited our current understanding of biochar's potential to enhance global crop production and climate change mitigation. We have also recommended a global alliance between longer-term research experiments and biochar production facilities to foster the uptake of this important technology at a global scale. Keywords: biochar, soil study, literature review, research gap, global perspective, quantitative assessment, sustainable agriculture

  12. Cesium and strontium sorption behavior in amended agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mehmood, Khalid; Hofmann, Diana; Burauel, Peter; Vereecken, Harry; Berns, Anne E.

    2014-05-01

    Biogas digestates and biochar are emerging soil amendments. Biochar is a byproduct of pyrolysis process which is thermal decomposition of biomass to produce syngas and bio-oil. The use of biochar for soil amendment is being promoted for higher crop yields and carbon sequestration. Currently, the numbers of biogas plants in Germany are increasing to meet the new energy scenarios. The sustainability of biogas industry requires proper disposal options for digestate. Biogas digestates being rich in nutrients are beneficial to enhance agricultural productions. Contrary to the agronomical benefits of these organic amendments, their use can influence the mobility and bioavailability of soil contaminants due to nutrients competition and high organic matter content. So far, the impact of such amendments on highly problematic contaminants like radionuclides is not truly accounted for. In the present study, sorption-desorption behavior of cesium and strontium was investigated in three soils of different origin and texture. Two agricultural soils, a loamy sand and a silty soil, were amended with biochar and digestate in separate experiments, with field application rates of 25 Mg/ha and 34 Mg/ha, respectively. For comparison a third soil, a forest soil, was incubated without any amendment. The amendments were mixed into the top 20 cm of the field soils, resulting in final concentrations of 8-9 g biochar/Kg soil and 11-12 g digestate/Kg soil. The soils were incubated for about six months at room temperature. Sorption-desorption experiments were performed with CsCl and SrCl2 after pre-equilibrating the soils with CaCl2 solutions. The amendments with field application rates did not have a significant effect on the relevant soil parameters responsible for the sorption behavior of the two radionuclides. Comparatively, the soil type lead to distinctive differences in sorption-desorption dynamics of the two radionuclides. Cesium showed a higher affinity for silty soil followed by

  13. Can biochar serve as a toop to reduce soil GHG costs of agricultural production in the long term?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kammann, Claudia; Finke, Christoph; Schröder, Matthias; Schmidt, Hans-Peter; Lima, Amanda; Teixeira, Wenceslau; Clough, Tim; Müller, Christoph

    2013-04-01

    With a growing world population and growing demands for bioenergy there is an urgent need to improve the greenhouse gas (GHG) emission-to-yield ratio of agricultural production. 'Young, production-fresh biochar has repeatedly been observed to reduce N2O emissions in a variety of agricultural soils, but it is unknown how long initial N2O-reducing effects will persist. Biochar-amended soils may even develop a potential for higher N2O emissions decades after Biochar application due to the formation of higher soil organic matter stocks when mineral N is applied. Unfortunately the longest-running field trials are not older than a few years, thus our ability for predictions is rather limited. To investigate the long-term effect that Biochar addition to soils may have on soil GHG emissions we conducted three different laboratory incubation studies with potential 'long-term analogs' that may offer insights: (I) N-rich Biochar-manure compost, versus pure manure-compost, or manure-compost were the same amount of untreated, fresh Biochar was added; (II) temperate soil from a 100-year old charcoal making (kiln) site in Germany compared to the original adjacent forest soil; and (III) two tropical Terra preta soils (secondary forest and cultivation) compared to their respective adjacent ferralsols. None of the studies indicated that old, "aged" Biochar in soils or substrates will increase the risk for N2O losses. The Biochar-compost (I) still had significantly reduced N2O emissions, or was the same as the control. However, its biological activity (respiration) was significantly increased (122% of ctrl). In contrast, the fresh Biochar addition significantly reduced N2O emissions to 39% of the control, accompanied by significantly reduced respiration rates (50% of ctrl.). The kiln-area soil (II), compared to the corresponding adjacent forest soil (both at 60% of their respective WHCmax), did not exhibit higher N2O emissions after N-fertilization over the course of one month. The

  14. Electrokinetic treatment of an agricultural soil contaminated with heavy metals.

    PubMed

    Figueroa, Arylein; Cameselle, Claudio; Gouveia, Susana; Hansen, Henrik K

    2016-07-28

    The high organic matter content in agricultural soils tends to complex and retain contaminants such as heavy metals. Electrokinetic remediation was tested in an agricultural soil contaminated with Co(+2), Zn(+2), Cd(+2), Cu(+2), Cr(VI), Pb(+2) and Hg(+2). The unenhanced electrokinetic treatment was not able to remove heavy metals from the soil due to the formation of precipitates in the alkaline environment in the soil section close to the cathode. Moreover, the interaction between metals and organic matter probably limited metal transportation under the effect of the electric field. Citric acid and ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) were used in the catholyte as complexing agents in order to enhance the extractability and removal of heavy metals from soil. These complexing agents formed negatively charged complexes that migrated towards the anode. The acid front electrogenerated at the anode favored the dissolution of heavy metals that were transported towards the cathode. The combined effect of the soil pH and the complexing agents resulted in the accumulation of heavy metals in the center of the soil specimen.

  15. Soil carbon and soil respiration in conservation agriculture with vegetables in Siem Reap, Cambodia

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A balance between food production and environmental protection is required to sustainably feed a growing population. The resource saving concept of conservation agriculture aims to achieve this balance through implementing simultaneously three conservation practices; no-till, continuous soil cover, ...

  16. Phosphorus leaching from agricultural soils of the Delmarva Peninsula, USA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Leaching of phosphorus (P) mobilizes edaphic and applied sources of P and is a primary pathway of concern in agricultural soils of the Delmarva Peninsula, which defines the eastern boundary of the eutrophic Chesapeake Bay. We evaluated P leaching before and after poultry litter application from inta...

  17. GEMAS: Distribution of major elements in Polish agricultural soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dusza-Dobek, Aleksandra; Pasieczna, Anna; Kwecko, Paweł

    2014-05-01

    Amount and quality of produced food is highly dependent on soil chemical properties and composition. The GEMAS project (Geochemical Mapping of Agricultural and Grazing Land Soil of Europe) has provided new homogeneous geochemical data for Polish agricultural soils. This study presents the distribution of common major elements such as CaO, MgO, Fe2O3, Al2O3, K2O, Na2O, SiO2, determined in 129 samples of agricultural soil of Poland. The total element concentrations obtained by X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (XRF) were compared with the results from aqua regia acid digestion determined by ICP-MS. The distribution patterns of selected major elements reveal two major geochemical provinces - the northern province and the southern province, distinguished with respect to the natural geochemical background and resulting from the geological evolution of the region. The soil of the northern province (Polish Lowland), dominated by glacial deposits, show low contents of CaO, MgO, Fe2O3, Al2O3, K2O, Na2O, and high contents of SiO2. High silica content reflects the presence of sand-rich deposits which belong to the larger European feature with cover sands and loess of mainly Weichselian age and stretching from Ukraine to western Germany and Denmark. The southern province is characterised by high concentrations of almost all major elements (except SiO2). Soils in the Sudetes, Upper Silesia and the Carpathian Mountains developed in majority on pre-Quaternary rocks. In the Sudetes, soil formed on magmatic and metamorphic rocks of Paleozoic age. In the Carpathians and Upper Silesia, the flysch and molasse formations containing various material of magmatic and sedimentary origin constitute the immediate substratum of soil.

  18. Organic matter and soil structure in the Everglades Agricultural Area

    SciTech Connect

    Wright, Alan L.; Hanlon, Edward A.

    2013-01-01

    This publication pertains to management of organic soils (Histosols) in the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA). These former wetland soils are a major resource for efficient agricultural production and are important globally for their high organic matter content. Recognition of global warming has led to considerable interest in soils as a repository for carbon. Soils rich in organic matter essentially sequester or retain carbon in the profile and can contribute directly to keeping that sequestered carbon from entering the atmosphere. Identification and utilization of management practices that minimize the loss of carbon from organic soils to the atmosphere can minimize effects on global warming and increase the longevity of subsiding Histosols for agricultural use. Understanding and predicting how these muck soils will respond to current and changing land uses will help to manage soil carbon. The objectives of this document are to: a. Discuss organic soil oxidation relative to storing or releasing carbon and nitrogen b. Evaluate effects of cultivation (compare structure for sugarcane vs. uncultivated soil) Based upon the findings from the land-use comparison (sugarcane or uncultivated), organic carbon was higher with cultivation in the lower depths. There is considerable potential for minimum tillage and residue management to further enhance carbon sequestration in the sugarcane system. Carbon sequestration is improved and soil subsidence is slowed with sugarcane production, and both of these are positive outcomes. Taking action to increase or maintain carbon sequestration appears to be appropriate but may introduce some risk to farming operations. Additional management methods are needed to reduce this risk. For both the longevity of these organic soils and from a global perspective, slowing subsidence through BMP implementation makes sense. Since these BMPs also have considerable societal benefit, it remains to be seen if society will help to offset a part or all

  19. Observation of soil moisture variability in agricultural and grassland field soils using a wireless sensor network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Priesack, Eckart; Schuh, Max

    2014-05-01

    Soil moisture dynamics is a key factor of energy and matter exchange between land surface and atmosphere. Therefore long-term observation of temporal and spatial soil moisture variability is important in studying impacts of climate change on terrestrial ecosystems and their possible feedbacks to the atmosphere. Within the framework of the network of terrestrial environmental observatories TERENO we installed at the research farm Scheyern in soils of two fields (of ca. 5 ha size each) the SoilNet wireless sensor network (Biogena et al. 2010). The SoilNet in Scheyern consists of 94 sensor units, 45 for the agricultural field site and 49 for the grassland site. Each sensor unit comprises 6 SPADE sensors, two sensors placed at the depths 10, 30 and 50 cm. The SPADE sensor (sceme.de GmbH, Horn-Bad Meinberg Germany) consists of a TDT sensor to estimate volumetric soil water content from soil electrical permittivity by sending an electromagnetic signal and measuring its propagation time, which depends on the soil dielectric properties and hence on soil water content. Additionally the SPADE sensor contains a temperature sensor (DS18B20). First results obtained from the SoilNet measurements at both fields sites will be presented and discussed. The observed high temporal and spatial variability will be analysed and related to agricultural management and basic soil properties (bulk density, soil texture, organic matter content and soil hydraulic characteristics).

  20. Uncertainty assessments and hydrological implications of climate change in two adjacent agricultural catchments of a rapidly urbanizing watershed.

    PubMed

    Oni, S K; Futter, M N; Molot, L A; Dillon, P J; Crossman, J

    2014-03-01

    Lake Simcoe is the most important inland lake in Southern Ontario. The watershed is predominantly agricultural and under increasing pressure from urbanization, leading to changing runoff patterns in rivers draining to the lake. Uncertainties in rainfall-runoff modeling in tributary catchments of the Lake Simcoe Watershed (LSW) can be an order of magnitude larger than pristine watersheds, hampering water quality predictions and export calculations. Here we conduct a robust assessment to constrain the uncertainty in hydrological simulations and projections in the LSW using two representative adjacent agricultural catchments. Downscaled CGCM 3 projections using A1B and A2 emission scenarios projected increases of 4°C in air temperature and a 26% longer growing season. The fraction of precipitation falling as snow will decrease. Spring runoff is an important event in LSW but individual HBV best calibrated parameter sets under-predicted peak flows by up to 32%. Using an ensemble of behavioral parameter sets achieved credible representations of present day hydrology and constrained uncertainties in future projections. Parameter uncertainty analysis showed that the catchments differ in terms of their snow accumulation/melt and groundwater dynamics. Human activities exacerbate the differences in hydrological response. Model parameterization in one catchment could not generate credible hydrological simulations in the other. We cautioned against extrapolating results from monitored to ungauged catchments in managed watersheds like the LSW.

  1. Microbial Community Structure and Enzyme Activities in Semiarid Agricultural Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acosta-Martinez, V. A.; Zobeck, T. M.; Gill, T. E.; Kennedy, A. C.

    2002-12-01

    The effect of agricultural management practices on the microbial community structure and enzyme activities of semiarid soils of different textures in the Southern High Plains of Texas were investigated. The soils (sandy clay loam, fine sandy loam and loam) were under continuous cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) or in rotations with peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.), sorghum (Sorghum bicolor L.) or wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), and had different water management (irrigated or dryland) and tillage (conservation or conventional). Microbial community structure was investigated using fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) analysis by gas chromatography and enzyme activities, involved in C, N, P and S cycling of soils, were measured (mg product released per kg soil per h). The activities of b-glucosidase, b-glucosaminidase, alkaline phosphatase, and arylsulfatase were significantly (P<0.05) increased in soils under cotton rotated with sorghum or wheat, and due to conservation tillage in comparison to continuous cotton under conventional tillage. Principal component analysis showed FAME profiles of these soils separated distinctly along PC1 (20 %) and PC2 (13 %) due to their differences in soil texture and management. No significant differences were detected in FAME profiles due to management practices for the same soils in this sampling period. Enzyme activities provide early indications of the benefits in microbial populations and activities and soil organic matter under crop rotations and conservation tillage in comparison to the typical practices in semiarid regions of continuous cotton and conventional tillage.

  2. Forest and grassland cover types reduce net greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Baah-Acheamfour, Mark; Carlyle, Cameron N; Lim, Sang-Sun; Bork, Edward W; Chang, Scott X

    2016-11-15

    Western Canada's prairie region is extensively cultivated for agricultural production, which is a large source of greenhouse gas emissions. Agroforestry systems are common land uses across Canada, which integrate trees into the agricultural landscape and could play a substantial role in sequestering carbon and mitigating increases in atmospheric GHG concentrations. We measured soil CO2, CH4 and N2O fluxes and the global warming potential of microbe-mediated net greenhouse gas emissions (GWPm) in forest and herbland (areas without trees) soils of three agroforestry systems (hedgerow, shelterbelt and silvopasture) over two growing seasons (May through September in 2013 and 2014). We measured greenhouse gas fluxes and environmental conditions at 36 agroforestry sites (12 sites for each system) located along a south-north oriented soil/climate gradient of increasing moisture availability in central Alberta, Canada. The temperature sensitivity of soil CO2 emissions was greater in herbland (4.4) than in forest (3.1), but was not different among agroforestry systems. Over the two seasons, forest soils had 3.4% greater CO2 emission, 36% higher CH4 uptake, and 66% lower N2O emission than adjacent herbland soils. Combining the CO2 equivalents of soil CH4 and N2O fluxes with the CO2 emitted via heterotrophic (microbial) respiration, forest soils had a smaller GWPm than herbland soils (68 and 89kgCO2ha(-1), respectively). While emissions of total CO2 were silvopasture>hedgerow>shelterbelt, soils under silvopasture had 5% lower heterotrophic respiration, 15% greater CH4 uptake, and 44% lower N2O emission as compared with the other two agroforestry systems. Overall, the GWPm of greenhouse gas emissions was greater in hedgerow (88) and shelterbelt (85) than in the silvopasture system (76kgCO2ha(-1)). High GWPm in the hedgerow and shelterbelt systems reflects the greater contribution from the monoculture annual crops within these systems. Opportunities exist for reducing soil

  3. Strategies for soil-based precision agriculture in cotton

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neely, Haly L.; Morgan, Cristine L. S.; Stanislav, Scott; Rouze, Gregory; Shi, Yeyin; Thomasson, J. Alex; Valasek, John; Olsenholler, Jeff

    2016-05-01

    The goal of precision agriculture is to increase crop yield while maximizing the use efficiency of farm resources. In this application, UAV-based systems are presenting agricultural researchers with an opportunity to study crop response to environmental and management factors in real-time without disturbing the crop. The spatial variability soil properties, which drive crop yield and quality, cannot be changed and thus keen agronomic choices with soil variability in mind have the potential to increase profits. Additionally, measuring crop stress over time and in response to management and environmental conditions may enable agronomists and plant breeders to make more informed decisions about variety selection than the traditional end-of-season yield and quality measurements. In a previous study, seed-cotton yield was measured over 4 years and compared with soil variability as mapped by a proximal soil sensor. It was found that soil properties had a significant effect on seed-cotton yield and the effect was not consistent across years due to different precipitation conditions. However, when seed-cotton yield was compared to the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), as measured using a multispectral camera from a UAV, predictions improved. Further improvement was seen when soil-only pixels were removed from the analysis. On-going studies are using UAV-based data to uncover the thresholds for stress and yield potential. Long-term goals of this research include detecting stress before yield is reduced and selecting better adapted varieties.

  4. Pyrosequencing Reveals Changes in Soil Bacterial Communities after Conversion of Yungas Forests to Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Montecchia, Marcela S.; Tosi, Micaela; Soria, Marcelo A.; Vogrig, Jimena A.; Sydorenko, Oksana; Correa, Olga S.

    2015-01-01

    The Southern Andean Yungas in Northwest Argentina constitute one of the main biodiversity hotspots in the world. Considerable changes in land use have taken place in this ecoregion, predominantly related to forest conversion to croplands, inducing losses in above-ground biodiversity and with potential impact on soil microbial communities. In this study, we used high-throughput pyrosequencing of the 16S ribosomal RNA gene to assess whether land-use change and time under agriculture affect the composition and diversity of soil bacterial communities. We selected two areas dedicated to sugarcane and soybean production, comprising both short- and long-term agricultural sites, and used the adjacent native forest soils as a reference. Land-use change altered the composition of bacterial communities, with differences between productive areas despite the similarities between both forests. At the phylum level, only Verrucomicrobia and Firmicutes changed in abundance after deforestation for sugarcane and soybean cropping, respectively. In cultivated soils, Verrucomicrobia decreased sharply (~80%), while Firmicutes were more abundant. Despite the fact that local diversity was increased in sugarcane systems and was not altered by soybean cropping, phylogenetic beta diversity declined along both chronosequences, evidencing a homogenization of soil bacterial communities over time. In spite of the detected alteration in composition and diversity, we found a core microbiome resistant to the disturbances caused by the conversion of forests to cultivated lands and few or none exclusive OTUs for each land-use type. The overall changes in the relative abundance of copiotrophic and oligotrophic taxa may have an impact in soil ecosystem functionality. However, communities with many taxa in common may also share many functional attributes, allowing to maintain at least some soil ecosystem services after forest conversion to croplands. PMID:25793893

  5. Sediment from Agricultural Constructed Wetland Immobilizes Soil Phosphorus.

    PubMed

    Laakso, Johanna; Uusitalo, Risto; Leppänen, Janette; Yli-Halla, Markku

    2017-03-01

    Phosphorus (P) losses from agricultural soils impair the quality of receiving surface waters by enhancing eutrophication. This study tested the potential of using sediment from agricultural constructed wetlands (CWs) to immobilize soil P using two soils differing in texture and soil test P (STP). A silty clay soil (SIC) with high STP (24 mg ammonium acetate-extractable P [P] L) and a sandy loam soil (SL) with excessive STP (210 mg P L) were incubated with increasing amounts of clayey CW sediment. The soil-sediment mixtures were studied with the quantity/intensity (Q/I) technique, using chemical extractions, and by exposing the mixtures to simulated rainfall. In both Q/I and simulated rainfall tests, P solubility steadily decreased with increasing sediment proportion in the mixtures. However, in chemical extractions this effect was observed only at high sediment addition rates (10 or 50% [v/v] sediment). At a practically feasible sediment addition rate of 5%, dissolved reactive P (DRP) in percolating water from simulated rainfall decreased by 55% in SIC and by 54% in SL ( < 0.001 in both cases). Particulate P (PP) also showed a decreasing trend with increasing sediment addition rate. Upon prolonged simulated rainfall, the decreasing effect of sediment on DRP and PP declined somewhat. The effects of sediment addition can be attributed partly to increased salt concentrations in the sediment, which have a short-term effect on P mobilization, but mostly to increased concentrations of Al and Fe (hydr)oxides, increasing long-term P sorption capacity. Adding CW sediment at a rate of up to 5% of surface soil volume to soils could provide an alternative to chemical treatment (e.g., with metal salts) for immobilizing P in small, high-risk P leaching areas, such as around drinking troughs in pastures.

  6. Adsorption and degradation of five selected antibiotics in agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Pan, Min; Chu, L M

    2016-03-01

    Large quantities of antibiotics are being added to agricultural fields worldwide through the application of wastewater, manures and biosolids, resulting in antibiotic contamination and elevated environmental risks in terrestrial environments. Most studies on the environmental fate of antibiotics focus on aquatic environments or wastewater treatment plants. Little is known about the behavior of antibiotics at environmentally relevant concentrations in agricultural soil. In this study we evaluated the adsorption and degradation of five different antibiotics (tetracycline, sulfamethazine, norfloxacin, erythromycin, and chloramphenicol) in sterilized and non-sterilized agricultural soils under aerobic and anaerobic conditions. Adsorption was highest for tetracycline (Kd, 1093 L/kg), while that for sulfamethazine was negligible (Kd, 1.365 L/kg). All five antibiotics were susceptible to microbial degradation under aerobic conditions, with half-lives ranging from 2.9 to 43.3 d in non-sterilized soil and 40.8 to 86.6 d in sterilized soil. Degradation occurred at a higher rate under aerobic conditions but was relatively persistent under anaerobic conditions. For all the antibiotics, a higher initial concentration was found to slow down degradation and prolong persistence in soil. The degradation behavior of the antibiotics varied in relation to their physicochemical properties as well as the microbial activities and aeration of the recipient soil. The poor adsorption and relative persistence of sulfamethazine under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions suggest that it may pose a higher risk to groundwater quality. An equation was proposed to predict the fate of antibiotics in soil under different field conditions, and assess their risks to the environment.

  7. A simple model of carbon in the soil profile for agricultural soils in Northwestern Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taghizadeh-Toosi, Arezoo; Hutchings, Nicholas J.; Vejlin, Jonas; Christensen, Bent T.; Olesen, Jørgen E.

    2014-05-01

    World soil carbon (C) stocks are second to those in the ocean, and represent three times as much C as currently present in the atmosphere. The amount of C in soil may play a significant role in carbon exchanges between the atmosphere and the terrestrial environment. The C-TOOL model is a three-pool linked soil organic carbon (SOC) model in well-drained mineral soils under agricultural land management to allow generalized parameterization for estimating effects of management measures at medium to long time scales for the entire soil profile (0-100 cm). C-TOOL has been developed to enable simulations of SOC turnover in soil using temperature dependent first order kinetics for describing decomposition. Compared with many other SOC models, C-TOOL applies a less complicated structure, which facilitates easier calibration, and it requires only few inputs (i.e., average monthly air temperature, soil clay content,soil carbon-to-nitrogen ratio, and C inputs to the soil from plants and other sources). C-TOOL was parameterized using SOC and radiocarbon data from selected long-term field treatments in United Kingdom, Sweden and Denmark. However, less data were available for evaluation of subsoil C (25-100 cm) from the long-term experiments applied. In Denmark a national 7×7 km grid net was established in 1986 for soil C monitoring down to 100 cm depth. The results of SOC showed a significant decline from 1997 to 2009 in the 0-50 cm soil layer. This was mainly attributed to changes in the 25-50 cm layer, where a decline in SOC was found for all soil texture types. Across the period 1986 to 2009 there was clear tendency for increasing SOC on the sandy soils and reductions on the loamy soils. This effect is linked to land use, since grasslands and dairy farms are more abundant in the western parts of Denmark, where most of the sandy soils are located. The results and the data from soil monitoring have been used to validate the C-TOOL modelling approach used for accounting of

  8. Soil microbial communities as suitable bioindicators of trace metal pollution in agricultural volcanic soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parelho, Carolina; dos Santos Rodrigues, Armindo; do Carmo Barreto, Maria; Gonçalo Ferreira, Nuno; Garcia, Patrícia

    2015-04-01

    Summary: The biological, chemical and physical properties of soil confer unique characteristics that enhance or influence its overall biodiversity. The adaptive character of soil microbial communities (SMCs) to metal pollution allows discriminating soil health, since changes in microbial populations and activities may function as excellent indicators of soil pollutants. Volcanic soils are unique naturally fertile resources, extensively used for agricultural purposes and with particular physicochemical properties that may result in accumulation of toxic substances, such as trace metals (TM). In our previous works, we identified priority TM affecting agricultural Andosols under different agricultural land uses. Within this particular context, the objectives of this study were to (i) assess the effect of soil TM pollution in different agricultural systems (conventional, traditional and organic) on the following soil properties: microbial biomass carbon, basal soil respiration, metabolic quotient, enzymatic activities (β-glucosidase, acid phosphatase and dehydrogenase) and RNA to DNA ratio; and (ii) evaluate the impact of TM in the soil ecosystem using the integrated biomarker response (IBR) based on a set of biochemical responses of SMCs. This multi-biomarker approach will support the development of the "Trace Metal Footprint" for different agricultural land uses in volcanic soils. Methods: The study was conducted in S. Miguel Island (Azores, Portugal). Microbial biomass carbon was measured by chloroform-fumigation-incubation-assay (Vance et al., 1987). Basal respiration was determined by the Jenkinson & Powlson (1976) technique. Metabolic quotient was calculated as the ratio of basal respiration to microbial biomass C (Sparkling & West, 1988). The enzymatic activities of β-glucosidase and acid phosphatase were determined by the Dick et al. (1996) method and dehydrogenase activity by the Rossel et al. (1997) method. The RNA and DNA were co-extracted from the same

  9. Grass mulching effect on infiltration, surface runoff and soil loss of three agricultural soils in Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Adekalu, K O; Olorunfemi, I A; Osunbitan, J A

    2007-03-01

    Mulching the soil surface with a layer of plant residue is an effective method of conserving water and soil because it reduces surface runoff, increases infiltration of water into the soil and retard soil erosion. The effectiveness of using elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum) as mulching material was evaluated in the laboratory using a rainfall simulator set at rainfall intensities typical of the tropics. Six soil samples, two from each of the three major soil series representing the main agricultural soils in South Western Nigeria were collected, placed on three different slopes, and mulched with different rates of the grass. The surface runoff, soil loss, and apparent cumulative infiltration were then measured under each condition. The results with elephant grass compared favorably with results from previous experiments using rice straw. Runoff and soil loss decreased with the amount of mulch used and increased with slope. Surface runoff, infiltration and soil loss had high correlations (R = 0.90, 0.89, and 0.86, respectively) with slope and mulch cover using surface response analysis. The mean surface runoff was correlated negatively with sand content, while mean soil loss was correlated positively with colloidal content (clay and organic matter) of the soil. Infiltration was increased and soil loss was reduced greatly with the highest cover. Mulching the soils with elephant grass residue may benefit late cropping (second cropping) by increasing stored soil water for use during dry weather and help to reduce erosion on sloping land.

  10. Environmental behavior of benalaxyl and furalaxyl enantiomers in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Qin, Fang; Gao, Yong X; Guo, Bao Y; Xu, Peng; Li, Jian Z; Wang, Hui L

    2014-01-01

    The enantioselective environmental behavior of the chiral fungicides benalaxy and furalaxyl in agricultural soils in China was studied. Although sorption onto soils was non-enantioselective, the leaching of benalaxy and furalaxyl was enantioselective in soil columns. The concentrations of the S-enantiomers of both fungicides in the leachates were higher than the R-enantiomers. This can be attributed to enantioselective degradation of the two fungicides in the soil column. Enantioselective degradation of the two fungicides was verified by soil dissipation experiments, and the R-enantiomers degraded faster than the S-enantiomers in partial soils. The half-life was 27.7-57.8 days for S-benalaxyl, 20.4-53.3 days for R-benalaxyl, 19.3-49.5 days for S-furalaxyl and 11.4-34.7 days for R-furalaxyl. The degradation process of the two fungicide enantiomers followed the first-order kinetics (R(2) > 0.96). Compared to furalaxyl, benalaxyl degraded more slowly and degradation was less enantioselective. These results are attributed to the influence of soil physicochemical properties, soil microorganisms, and environmental factors.

  11. Biodegradability of a polyacrylate superabsorbent in agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Wilske, Burkhard; Bai, Mo; Lindenstruth, Beate; Bach, Martin; Rezaie, Zahra; Frede, Hans-Georg; Breuer, Lutz

    2014-01-01

    Superabsorbent polymers (SAP) are used, inter alia, as soil amendment to increase the water holding capacity of soils. Biodegradability of soil conditioners has become a desired key characteristic to protect soil and groundwater resources. The present study characterized the biodegradability of one acrylate based SAP in four agricultural soils and at three temperatures. Mineralisation was measured as the (13)CO₂ efflux from (13)C-labelled SAP in soil incubations. The SAP was either single-labelled in the carboxyl C-atom or triple-labelled including additionally the two C-atoms interlinked in the SAP backbone. The dual labelling allowed estimating the degradation of the polyacrylate main chain. The (13)CO₂ efflux from samples was measured using an automated system including wavelength-scanned cavity ring-down spectroscopy. Based on single-labelled SAP, the mean degradation after 24 weeks varied between 0.45% in loamy sand and 0.82% in loam. However, the differences between degradation rates in different soils were not significant due to a large intra-replicate variability. Similarly, mean degradation did not differ significantly between effective temperature regimes of 20° and 30 °C after 12 weeks. Results from the triple-labelled SAP were lower as compared to their single-labelled variant. Detailed results suggest that the polyacrylate main chain degraded in the soils, if at all, at rates of 0.12-0.24 % per 6 months.

  12. Relating results from earthworm toxicity tests to agricultural soil

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beyer, W.N.; Greig-Smith, P.W.

    1992-01-01

    The artificial soil tests of the European Economic Community and of the Organization for Economic Cooperation produce data relating earthworm mortality to pesticide concentrations in soil under laboratory conditions. To apply these results to agricultural soils it is necessary to relate these concentrations to amounts of pesticide applied per area. This paper reviews the relevant published literature and suggests a simple relation for regulatory use. Hazards to earthworms from pesticides are suggested to be greatest soon after application, when the pesticides may be concentrated in a soil layer a few millimeters thick. For estimating exposure of earthworms, however, a thicker soil layer should be considered, to account for their movement through soil. During favorable weather conditions, earthworms belonging to species appropriate to the artificial soil test have been reported to confine their activity to a layer about 5 cm. If a 5-cm layer is accepted as relevant for regulatory purposes, then an application of 1 kg/ha would be equivalent to 1-67 ppm (dry) in the artificial soil test.

  13. Changes in Soil Microbial Community Structure Influenced by Agricultural Management Practices in a Mediterranean Agro-Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    García-Orenes, Fuensanta; Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; Zornoza, Raul; Scow, Kate

    2013-01-01

    Agricultural practices have proven to be unsuitable in many cases, causing considerable reductions in soil quality. Land management practices can provide solutions to this problem and contribute to get a sustainable agriculture model. The main objective of this work was to assess the effect of different agricultural management practices on soil microbial community structure (evaluated as abundance of phospholipid fatty acids, PLFA). Five different treatments were selected, based on the most common practices used by farmers in the study area (eastern Spain): residual herbicides, tillage, tillage with oats and oats straw mulching; these agricultural practices were evaluated against an abandoned land after farming and an adjacent long term wild forest coverage. The results showed a substantial level of differentiation in the microbial community structure, in terms of management practices, which was highly associated with soil organic matter content. Addition of oats straw led to a microbial community structure closer to wild forest coverage soil, associated with increases in organic carbon, microbial biomass and fungal abundances. The microbial community composition of the abandoned agricultural soil was characterised by increases in both fungal abundances and the metabolic quotient (soil respiration per unit of microbial biomass), suggesting an increase in the stability of organic carbon. The ratio of bacteria:fungi was higher in wild forest coverage and land abandoned systems, as well as in the soil treated with oat straw. The most intensively managed soils showed higher abundances of bacteria and actinobacteria. Thus, the application of organic matter, such as oats straw, appears to be a sustainable management practice that enhances organic carbon, microbial biomass and activity and fungal abundances, thereby changing the microbial community structure to one more similar to those observed in soils under wild forest coverage. PMID:24260409

  14. Changes in soil microbial community structure influenced by agricultural management practices in a mediterranean agro-ecosystem.

    PubMed

    García-Orenes, Fuensanta; Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; Zornoza, Raul; Cerdà, Artemi; Scow, Kate

    2013-01-01

    Agricultural practices have proven to be unsuitable in many cases, causing considerable reductions in soil quality. Land management practices can provide solutions to this problem and contribute to get a sustainable agriculture model. The main objective of this work was to assess the effect of different agricultural management practices on soil microbial community structure (evaluated as abundance of phospholipid fatty acids, PLFA). Five different treatments were selected, based on the most common practices used by farmers in the study area (eastern Spain): residual herbicides, tillage, tillage with oats and oats straw mulching; these agricultural practices were evaluated against an abandoned land after farming and an adjacent long term wild forest coverage. The results showed a substantial level of differentiation in the microbial community structure, in terms of management practices, which was highly associated with soil organic matter content. Addition of oats straw led to a microbial community structure closer to wild forest coverage soil, associated with increases in organic carbon, microbial biomass and fungal abundances. The microbial community composition of the abandoned agricultural soil was characterised by increases in both fungal abundances and the metabolic quotient (soil respiration per unit of microbial biomass), suggesting an increase in the stability of organic carbon. The ratio of bacteria:fungi was higher in wild forest coverage and land abandoned systems, as well as in the soil treated with oat straw. The most intensively managed soils showed higher abundances of bacteria and actinobacteria. Thus, the application of organic matter, such as oats straw, appears to be a sustainable management practice that enhances organic carbon, microbial biomass and activity and fungal abundances, thereby changing the microbial community structure to one more similar to those observed in soils under wild forest coverage.

  15. Agriculture intensifies soil moisture decline in Northern China

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, Yaling; Pan, Zhihua; Zhuang, Qianlai; Miralles, Diego; Teuling, Adriann; Zhang, Tonglin; An, Pingli; Dong, Zhiqiang; Zhang, Jingting; He, Di; Wang, Liwei; Pan, Xuebiao; Bai, Wei; Niyogi, Dev

    2015-07-09

    Northern China is one of the most densely populated regions in the world. Agricultural activities have intensified since the 1980s to provide food security to the country. However, this intensification has likely contributed to an increasing scarcity in water resources, which may in turn be endangering food security. Based on in-situ measurements of soil moisture collected in agricultural plots during 1983–2012, we find that topsoil (0–50 cm) volumetric water content during the growing season has declined significantly (p<0.01), with a trend of -0.011 to -0.015 m3 m-3 per decade. Observed discharge declines for the three large river basins are consistent with the effects of agricultural intensification, although other factors (e.g. dam constructions) likely have contributed to these trends. Practices like fertilizer application have favoured biomass growth and increased transpiration rates, thus reducing available soil water. In addition, the rapid proliferation of water-expensive crops (e.g., maize) and the expansion of the area dedicated to food production have also contributed to soil drying. Adoption of alternative agricultural practices that can meet the immediate food demand without compromising future water resources seem critical for the sustainability of the food production system.

  16. Agriculture intensifies soil moisture decline in Northern China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yaling; Pan, Zhihua; Zhuang, Qianlai; Miralles, Diego G; Teuling, Adriaan J; Zhang, Tonglin; An, Pingli; Dong, Zhiqiang; Zhang, Jingting; He, Di; Wang, Liwei; Pan, Xuebiao; Bai, Wei; Niyogi, Dev

    2015-07-09

    Northern China is one of the most densely populated regions in the world. Agricultural activities have intensified since the 1980s to provide food security to the country. However, this intensification has likely contributed to an increasing scarcity in water resources, which may in turn be endangering food security. Based on in-situ measurements of soil moisture collected in agricultural plots during 1983-2012, we find that topsoil (0-50 cm) volumetric water content during the growing season has declined significantly (p < 0.01), with a trend of -0.011 to -0.015 m(3) m(-3) per decade. Observed discharge declines for the three large river basins are consistent with the effects of agricultural intensification, although other factors (e.g. dam constructions) likely have contributed to these trends. Practices like fertilizer application have favoured biomass growth and increased transpiration rates, thus reducing available soil water. In addition, the rapid proliferation of water-expensive crops (e.g., maize) and the expansion of the area dedicated to food production have also contributed to soil drying. Adoption of alternative agricultural practices that can meet the immediate food demand without compromising future water resources seem critical for the sustainability of the food production system.

  17. Agriculture intensifies soil moisture decline in Northern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Yaling; Pan, Zhihua; Zhuang, Qianlai; Miralles, Diego G.; Teuling, Adriaan J.; Zhang, Tonglin; An, Pingli; Dong, Zhiqiang; Zhang, Jingting; He, Di; Wang, Liwei; Pan, Xuebiao; Bai, Wei; Niyogi, Dev

    2015-07-01

    Northern China is one of the most densely populated regions in the world. Agricultural activities have intensified since the 1980s to provide food security to the country. However, this intensification has likely contributed to an increasing scarcity in water resources, which may in turn be endangering food security. Based on in-situ measurements of soil moisture collected in agricultural plots during 1983-2012, we find that topsoil (0-50 cm) volumetric water content during the growing season has declined significantly (p < 0.01), with a trend of -0.011 to -0.015 m3 m-3 per decade. Observed discharge declines for the three large river basins are consistent with the effects of agricultural intensification, although other factors (e.g. dam constructions) likely have contributed to these trends. Practices like fertilizer application have favoured biomass growth and increased transpiration rates, thus reducing available soil water. In addition, the rapid proliferation of water-expensive crops (e.g., maize) and the expansion of the area dedicated to food production have also contributed to soil drying. Adoption of alternative agricultural practices that can meet the immediate food demand without compromising future water resources seem critical for the sustainability of the food production system.

  18. Agriculture intensifies soil moisture decline in Northern China

    DOE PAGES

    Liu, Yaling; Pan, Zhihua; Zhuang, Qianlai; ...

    2015-07-09

    Northern China is one of the most densely populated regions in the world. Agricultural activities have intensified since the 1980s to provide food security to the country. However, this intensification has likely contributed to an increasing scarcity in water resources, which may in turn be endangering food security. Based on in-situ measurements of soil moisture collected in agricultural plots during 1983–2012, we find that topsoil (0–50 cm) volumetric water content during the growing season has declined significantly (p<0.01), with a trend of -0.011 to -0.015 m3 m-3 per decade. Observed discharge declines for the three large river basins are consistentmore » with the effects of agricultural intensification, although other factors (e.g. dam constructions) likely have contributed to these trends. Practices like fertilizer application have favoured biomass growth and increased transpiration rates, thus reducing available soil water. In addition, the rapid proliferation of water-expensive crops (e.g., maize) and the expansion of the area dedicated to food production have also contributed to soil drying. Adoption of alternative agricultural practices that can meet the immediate food demand without compromising future water resources seem critical for the sustainability of the food production system.« less

  19. Agriculture intensifies soil moisture decline in Northern China

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yaling; Pan, Zhihua; Zhuang, Qianlai; Miralles, Diego G.; Teuling, Adriaan J.; Zhang, Tonglin; An, Pingli; Dong, Zhiqiang; Zhang, Jingting; He, Di; Wang, Liwei; Pan, Xuebiao; Bai, Wei; Niyogi, Dev

    2015-01-01

    Northern China is one of the most densely populated regions in the world. Agricultural activities have intensified since the 1980s to provide food security to the country. However, this intensification has likely contributed to an increasing scarcity in water resources, which may in turn be endangering food security. Based on in-situ measurements of soil moisture collected in agricultural plots during 1983–2012, we find that topsoil (0–50 cm) volumetric water content during the growing season has declined significantly (p < 0.01), with a trend of −0.011 to −0.015 m3 m−3 per decade. Observed discharge declines for the three large river basins are consistent with the effects of agricultural intensification, although other factors (e.g. dam constructions) likely have contributed to these trends. Practices like fertilizer application have favoured biomass growth and increased transpiration rates, thus reducing available soil water. In addition, the rapid proliferation of water-expensive crops (e.g., maize) and the expansion of the area dedicated to food production have also contributed to soil drying. Adoption of alternative agricultural practices that can meet the immediate food demand without compromising future water resources seem critical for the sustainability of the food production system. PMID:26158774

  20. Ice Nucleation Activity of Various Agricultural Soil Dust Aerosol Particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schiebel, Thea; Höhler, Kristina; Funk, Roger; Hill, Thomas C. J.; Levin, Ezra J. T.; Nadolny, Jens; Steinke, Isabelle; Suski, Kaitlyn J.; Ullrich, Romy; Wagner, Robert; Weber, Ines; DeMott, Paul J.; Möhler, Ottmar

    2016-04-01

    Recent investigations at the cloud simulation chamber AIDA (Aerosol Interactions and Dynamics in the Atmosphere) suggest that agricultural soil dust has an ice nucleation ability that is enhanced up to a factor of 10 compared to desert dust, especially at temperatures above -26 °C (Steinke et al., in preparation for submission). This enhancement might be caused by the contribution of very ice-active biological particles. In addition, soil dust aerosol particles often contain a considerably higher amount of organic matter compared to desert dust particles. To test agricultural soil dust as a source of ice nucleating particles, especially for ice formation in warm clouds, we conducted a series of laboratory measurements with different soil dust samples to extend the existing AIDA dataset. The AIDA has a volume of 84 m3 and operates under atmospherically relevant conditions over wide ranges of temperature, pressure and humidity. By controlled adiabatic expansions, the ascent of an air parcel in the troposphere can be simulated. As a supplement to the AIDA facility, we use the INKA (Ice Nucleation Instrument of the KArlsruhe Institute of Technology) continuous flow diffusion chamber based on the design by Rogers (1988) to expose the sampled aerosol particles to a continuously increasing saturation ratio by keeping the aerosol temperature constant. For our experiments, soil dust was dry dispersed into the AIDA vessel. First, fast saturation ratio scans at different temperatures were performed with INKA, sampling soil dust aerosol particles directly from the AIDA vessel. Then, we conducted the AIDA expansion experiment starting at a preset temperature. The combination of these two different methods provides a robust data set on the temperature-dependent ice activity of various agriculture soil dust aerosol particles with a special focus on relatively high temperatures. In addition, to extend the data set, we investigated the role of biological and organic matter in more

  1. Organochlorine insecticide residues in soils and soil invertebrates from agricultural lands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gish, C.D.

    1970-01-01

    Soils and earthworms and other soil invertebrates were collected from 67 agricultural fields in eight States. Samples were analyzed by gas chromatography for DDE, DDD, DDT, aldrin, dieldrin, endrin, heptachlor, heptachlor epoxide, and gamma-chlordane insecticides. Organochlorine insecticides in soils averaged 1.5 ppm, dry weight, and in earthworms, 13.8 ppm. Residues in earthworms averaged nine times that in soils. Residues ranged from a trace to 19.1 ppm in soils and from a trace to 159.4 ppm in earthworms. Residues in beetle larvae from two fields averaged 0.6 ppm; in snails from two fields, 3.5 ppm; and in slugs from four fields, 89.0 ppm. Amounts of insecticides in earthworms varied directly with amounts in soils. Coefficients of correlation between residues in soils and residues in earthworms usually were significant for DDE, DDD, and DDT regardless of crop or soil type.

  2. Pole preservatives in soils adjacent to in-service utility poles in the United States. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Taylor, B.B.; Ripp, J.A.; Sims, R.; Ladwig, K.

    1997-12-01

    As a result of increasing concerns regarding the environmental fate of wood preservatives, EPRI carried out a study of soils in the vicinity of in-service wood pole sites. More than 8,000 soil samples adjacent to 180 PCP-treated and 22 creosote-treated wood poles were collected and analyzed for chemicals of interest. The results showed that concentrations of wood preservative chemicals tended to be highest in soils located in very close proximity to the poles with rapid decreases in concentrations observed with distance from the poles. Soil partitioning, biodegradation, and modeling studies on PCP were also completed to augment the soil data and to provide additional information on the release, migration, and fate of wood preservatives at in-service pole sites.

  3. Strong soil source of carbonyl sulfide in an agricultural field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maseyk, K. S.; Seibt, U.; Berry, J. A.; Billesbach, D. P.; Campbell, J.; Torn, M. S.

    2012-12-01

    A promising new approach to constrain biosphere-atmosphere carbon and water exchange is the use of carbonyl sulfide (COS). COS is taken up by leaves via the same pathway as CO2, leading to a close coupling of vegetation COS and CO2 fluxes during photosynthesis. Therefore it has been proposed that the gross fluxes of photosynthesis and respiration can be quantified through the concurrent measurements of COS and CO2. A necessary requirement for this approach at ecosystem and continental scales are estimates of soil COS fluxes. Soil is largely considered a sink for COS, but our knowledge of in situ soil COS fluxes remains very limited. We measured soil COS fluxes in a wheat field in Oklahoma from April to June 2012, using a novel combination of an automated soil chamber coupled to a COS laser analyzer. We provide the first continuous record of soil COS fluxes under natural conditions, and report on a phenomenon that has not been observed before. In contrast to the majority of published results, we found that the agricultural soil was a strong source of COS under most conditions during the campaign. The COS flux over the study period was highly correlated with soil temperature. Up to a soil temperature of around 15°C, the soil acted as a COS sink. Above 15°C, it acted a source of COS, with fluxes of up to 25 pmol m-2 s-1. To locate the source of the COS production, we investigated different soil components. Wheat roots were found to be emitting COS under all conditions. Root-free soil was a COS sink up to a soil temperature of around 25°C, but turned into a COS source at higher soil temperatures. We also observed COS production from the roots of several other species, indicating that this may be a widespread phenomenon. Using eddy covariance data of COS and CO2 that was collected concurrently with the soil measurements, we also demonstrate how the soil COS source can be taken into account when partitioning net ecosystem exchange into photosynthesis and respiration.

  4. Soil strength and macropore volume limit root elongation rates in many UK agricultural soils

    PubMed Central

    Valentine, Tracy A.; Hallett, Paul D.; Binnie, Kirsty; Young, Mark W.; Squire, Geoffrey R.; Hawes, Cathy; Bengough, A. Glyn

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Simple indicators of crop and cultivar performance across a range of soil types and management are needed for designing and testing sustainable cropping practices. This paper determined the extent to which soil chemical and physical properties, particularly soil strength and pore-size distribution influences root elongation in a wide range of agricultural top soils, using a seedling-based indicator. Methods Intact soil cores were sampled from the topsoil of 59 agricultural fields in Scotland, representing a wide geographic spread, range of textures and management practices. Water release characteristics, dry bulk density and needle penetrometer resistance were measured on three cores from each field. Soil samples from the same locations were sieved, analysed for chemical characteristics, and packed to dry bulk density of 1·0 g cm−3 to minimize physical constraints. Root elongation rates were determined for barley seedlings planted in both intact field and packed soil cores at a water content close to field capacity (–20 kPa matric potential). Key Results Root elongation in field soil was typically less than half of that in packed soils. Penetrometer resistance was typically between 1 and 3 MPa for field soils, indicating the soils were relatively hard, despite their moderately wet condition (compared with <0·2 MPa for packed soil). Root elongation was strongly linked to differences in physical rather than chemical properties. In field soil root elongation was related most closely to the volume of soil pores between 60 µm and 300 µm equivalent diameter, as estimated from water-release characteristics, accounting for 65·7 % of the variation in the elongation rates. Conclusions Root elongation rate in the majority of field soils was slower than half of the unimpeded (packed) rate. Such major reductions in root elongation rates will decrease rooting volumes and limit crop growth in soils where nutrients and water are scarce. PMID:22684682

  5. Application of soil quality indices to assess the status of agricultural soils irrigated with treated wastewaters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morugán-Coronado, A.; Arcenegui, V.; García-Orenes, F.; Mataix-Solera, J.; Mataix-Beneyto, J.

    2012-12-01

    The supply of water is limited in some parts of the Mediterranean region, such as southeastern Spain. The use of treated wastewater for the irrigation of agricultural soils is an alternative to using better-quality water, especially in semi-arid regions. On the other hand, this practice can modify some soil properties, change their relationships, the equilibrium reached and influence soil quality. In this work two soil quality indices were used to evaluate the effects of irrigation with treated wastewater in soils. The indices were developed studying different soil properties in undisturbed soils in SE Spain, and the relationships between soil parameters were established using multiple linear regressions. This study was carried out in three areas of Alicante Province (SE Spain) irrigated with wastewater, including four study sites. The results showed slight changes in some soil properties as a consequence of irrigation with wastewater, the obtained levels not being dangerous for agricultural soils, and in some cases they could be considered as positive from an agronomical point of view. In one of the study sites, and as a consequence of the low quality wastewater used, a relevant increase in soil organic matter content was observed, as well as modifications in most of the soil properties. The application of soil quality indices indicated that all the soils of study sites are in a state of disequilibrium regarding the relationships between properties independent of the type of water used. However, there were no relevant differences in the soil quality indices between soils irrigated with wastewater with respect to their control sites for all except one of the sites, which corresponds to the site where low quality wastewater was used.

  6. GEMAS: Unmixing magnetic properties of European agricultural soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fabian, Karl; Reimann, Clemens; Kuzina, Dilyara; Kosareva, Lina; Fattakhova, Leysan; Nurgaliev, Danis

    2016-04-01

    High resolution magnetic measurements provide new methods for world-wide characterization and monitoring of agricultural soil which is essential for quantifying geologic and human impact on the critical zone environment and consequences of climatic change, for planning economic and ecological land use, and for forensic applications. Hysteresis measurements of all Ap samples from the GEMAS survey yield a comprehensive overview of mineral magnetic properties in European agricultural soil on a continental scale. Low (460 Hz), and high frequency (4600 Hz) magnetic susceptibility k were measured using a Bartington MS2B sensor. Hysteresis properties were determined by a J-coercivity spectrometer, built at the paleomagnetic laboratory of Kazan University, providing for each sample a modified hysteresis loop, backfield curve, acquisition curve of isothermal remanent magnetization, and a viscous IRM decay spectrum. Each measurement set is obtained in a single run from zero field up to 1.5 T and back to -1.5 T. The resulting data are used to create the first continental-scale maps of magnetic soil parameters. Because the GEMAS geochemical atlas contains a comprehensive set of geochemical data for the same soil samples, the new data can be used to map magnetic parameters in relation to chemical and geological parameters. The data set also provides a unique opportunity to analyze the magnetic mineral fraction of the soil samples by unmixing their IRM acquisition curves. The endmember coefficients are interpreted by linear inversion for other magnetic, physical and chemical properties which results in an unprecedented and detailed view of the mineral magnetic composition of European agricultural soils.

  7. Greenhouse gas fluxes from agricultural soils of Kenya and Tanzania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenstock, Todd S.; Mpanda, Mathew; Pelster, David E.; Butterbach-Bahl, Klaus; Rufino, Mariana C.; Thiong'o, Margaret; Mutuo, Paul; Abwanda, Sheila; Rioux, Janie; Kimaro, Anthony A.; Neufeldt, Henry

    2016-06-01

    Knowledge of greenhouse gas (GHG) fluxes in soils is a prerequisite to constrain national, continental, and global GHG budgets. However, data characterizing fluxes from agricultural soils of Africa are markedly limited. We measured carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrous oxide (N2O), and methane (CH4) fluxes at 10 farmer-managed sites of six crop types for 1 year in Kenya and Tanzania using static chambers and gas chromatography. Cumulative emissions ranged between 3.5-15.9 Mg CO2-C ha-1 yr-1, 0.4-3.9 kg N2O-N ha-1 yr-1, and -1.2-10.1 kg CH4-C ha-1 yr-1, depending on crop type, environmental conditions, and management. Manure inputs increased CO2 (p = 0.03), but not N2O or CH4, emissions. Soil cultivation had no discernable effect on emissions of any of the three gases. Fluxes of CO2 and N2O were 54-208% greater (p < 0.05) during the wet versus the dry seasons for some, but not all, crop types. The heterogeneity and seasonality of fluxes suggest that the available data describing soil fluxes in Africa, based on measurements of limited duration of only a few crop types and agroecological zones, are inadequate to use as a basis for estimating the impact of agricultural soils on GHG budgets. A targeted effort to understand the magnitude and mechanisms underlying African agricultural soil fluxes is necessary to accurately estimate the influence of this source on the global climate system and for determining mitigation strategies.

  8. Micronutrient Fractionation in Coal Mine-Affected Agricultural Soils, India.

    PubMed

    Agrawal, Rahul; Kumar, Bijendra; Priyanka, Kumari; Narayan, Chandravir; Shukla, Kriti; Sarkar, Jhuma; Anshumali

    2016-04-01

    Assessment of the anthropogenic impacts on bioavailability, mobility, immobility and toxicity of four micronutrients (Cu, Fe, Mn, and Zn) were carried out by Community Bureau of Reference (BCR) fractionation scheme in agricultural soils (n = 10) around Jharia coalfield, eastern India. The relative abundance of micronutrients was as follows: Fe > Mn > Zn > Cu. The enrichment factor was >1 for Zn (6.1) and Cu (1.8) near coal mining area indicated toward soil pollution due to coal mining activities and application of inorganic fertilizers. The I geo values of micronutrients were <0 suggest no pollution with respect to Cu, Fe, Mn and Zn. Correlation analysis showed geogenic origin of soil micronutrients and derived mainly from weathering of minerals present in the parent rock. The mean values of Cu, Mn and Zn were less than certified reference material indicating highly leached agricultural soils in the study region. BCR fractionation of micronutrients showed that a single element could not reveal all types of chemical reactions occurring in soil consortium.

  9. Changes in soil fungal communities across a landscape of agricultural soil land-uses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berthrong, S. T.; Buckley, D. H.; Drinkwater, L. E.

    2012-12-01

    Agricultural management is a major driver of changes in soils and their resident microbial communities, but we do not yet have a clear picture of how agriculture affects soil fungi. This is an important gap in our knowledge since fungi play an important role in many soil processes. Previous research has suggested that organic management practices can lead to an increase in soil fungal community diversity, which could have impacts on soil processes and alter the long term trajectory of soil quality in agricultural systems. Also, the relationship between management effects, biogeography, and soil fungi is not clear. The biogeography of macroscopic species is well described by taxa-area relationships and distance decay models, and recent research has suggested that certain subsets of fungi (e.g. AMF, litter sapotrophs) demonstrate similar patterns. However there is little information on how soil fungi as a whole are distributed across a landscape with soils under different managements. The goal of this project was to examine how different management practices alter soil fungal communities across a landscape of agricultural fields in upstate NY. We asked several specific questions: 1) Do different types of agricultural land-uses lead to divergent or convergent communities of soil fungi? 2) If soil type is held constant, do soil fungal communities diverge with geographic distance? 3) What are the major fungal groups that change in response to soil management, and are they cosmopolitan or endemic across the landscape? We studied these questions across agricultural fields in upstate NY that ranged from conventional corn, organic grains/corn, and long-term pasture. We sampled four fields (conventional, 10 and 20 year organic, and pasture) that had identical soils types and ranged from 100 m to 4 km apart. We utilized a multiplexed pyrosequencing approach on genomic DNA to analyze the structure of the soils' fungal communities. This approach allowed us to study soil fungi

  10. Evaluation of spatial variability of soil arsenic adjacent to a disused cattle-dip site, using model-based geostatistics.

    PubMed

    Niazi, Nabeel K; Bishop, Thomas F A; Singh, Balwant

    2011-12-15

    This study investigated the spatial variability of total and phosphate-extractable arsenic (As) concentrations in soil adjacent to a cattle-dip site, employing a linear mixed model-based geostatistical approach. The soil samples in the study area (n = 102 in 8.1 m(2)) were taken at the nodes of a 0.30 × 0.35 m grid. The results showed that total As concentration (0-0.2 m depth) and phosphate-extractable As concentration (at depths of 0-0.2, 0.2-0.4, and 0.4-0.6 m) in soil adjacent to the dip varied greatly. Both total and phosphate-extractable soil As concentrations significantly (p = 0.004-0.048) increased toward the cattle-dip. Using the linear mixed model, we suggest that 5 samples are sufficient to assess a dip site for soil (As) contamination (95% confidence interval of ±475.9 mg kg(-1)), but 15 samples (95% confidence interval of ±212.3 mg kg(-1)) is desirable baseline when the ultimate goal is to evaluate the effects of phytoremediation. Such guidelines on sampling requirements are crucial for the assessment of As contamination levels at other cattle-dip sites, and to determine the effect of phytoremediation on soil As.

  11. Hyperspectral mapping of crop and soils for precision agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whiting, Michael L.; Ustin, Susan L.; Zarco-Tejada, Pablo; Palacios-Orueta, Alicia; Vanderbilt, Vern C.

    2006-08-01

    Precision agriculture requires high spectral and spatial resolution imagery for advanced analyses of crop and soil conditions to increase environmental protection and producers' sustainability. GIS models that anticipate crop responses to nutrients, water, and pesticides require high spatial detail to generate application prescription maps. While the added precision of geo-spatial interpolation to field scouting generates improved zone maps and are an improvement over field-wide applications, it is limited in detail due to expense, and lacks the high precision required for pixel level applications. Multi-spectral imagery gives the spatial detail required, but broad band indexes are not sensitive to many variables in the crop and soil environment. Hyperspectral imagery provides both the spatial detail of airborne imagery and spectral resolution for spectroscopic and narrow band analysis techniques developed over recent decades in the laboratory that will advance precise determination of water and bio-physical properties of crops and soils. For several years, we have conducted remote sensing investigations to improve cotton production through field spectrometer measurements, and plant and soil samples in commercial fields and crop trials. We have developed spectral analyses techniques for plant and soil conditions through determination of crop water status, effectiveness of pre-harvest defoliant applications, and soil characterizations. We present the most promising of these spectroscopic absorption and narrow band index techniques, and their application to airborne hyperspectral imagery in mapping the variability in crops and soils.

  12. Knowledge needs, available practices, and future challenges in agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Key, Georgina; Whitfield, Mike G.; Cooper, Julia; De Vries, Franciska T.; Collison, Martin; Dedousis, Thanasis; Heathcote, Richard; Roth, Brendan; Mohammed, Shamal; Molyneux, Andrew; Van der Putten, Wim H.; Dicks, Lynn V.; Sutherland, William J.; Bardgett, Richard D.

    2016-10-01

    The goal of this study is to clarify research needs and identify effective practices for enhancing soil health. This was done by a synopsis of soil literature that specifically tests practices designed to maintain or enhance elements of soil health. Using an expert panel of soil scientists and practitioners, we then assessed the evidence in the soil synopsis to highlight practices beneficial to soil health, practices considered detrimental, and practices that need further investigation. A partial Spearman's correlation was used to analyse the panel's responses. We found that increased certainty in scientific evidence led to practices being considered to be more effective due to them being empirically justified. This suggests that for practices to be considered effective and put into practice, a substantial body of research is needed to support the effectiveness of the practice. This is further supported by the high proportion of practices (33 %), such as changing the timing of ploughing or amending the soil with crops grown as green manures, that experts felt had unknown effectiveness, usually due to insufficiently robust evidence. Only 7 of the 27 reviewed practices were considered to be beneficial, or likely to be beneficial in enhancing soil health. These included the use of (1) integrated nutrient management (organic and inorganic amendments); (2) cover crops; (3) crop rotations; (4) intercropping between crop rows or underneath the main crop; (5) formulated chemical compounds (such as nitrification inhibitors); (6) control of traffic and traffic timing; and (7) reducing grazing intensity. Our assessment, which uses the Delphi technique, is increasingly used to improve decision-making in conservation and agricultural policy, identified practices that can be put into practice to benefit soil health. Moreover, it has enabled us to identify practices that need further research and a need for increased communication between researchers, policy-makers, and

  13. Acidification processes and soil leaching influenced by agricultural practices revealed by strontium isotopic ratios

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierson-Wickmann, Anne-Catherine; Aquilina, Luc; Weyer, Christina; Molénat, Jérôme; Lischeid, Gunnar

    2009-08-01

    In natural river systems, the chemical and isotopic composition of stream- and ground waters are mainly controlled by the geology and water-rock interactions. The leaching of major cations from soils has been recognized as a possible consequence of acidic deposition from atmosphere for over 30 years. Moreover, in agricultural areas, the application of physiological acid fertilizers and nitrogen fertilizers in the ammonia form may enhance the cation leaching through the soil profile into ground- and surface waters. This origin of leached cations has been studied on two small and adjacent agricultural catchments in Brittany, western France. The study catchments are drained by two first-order streams, and mainly covered with cambisoils, issued from the alteration and weathering of a granodiorite basement. Precipitations, soil water- and NH 4 acetate-leachates, separated minerals, and stream waters have been investigated. Chemical element ratios, such as Ba/Sr, Na/Sr and Ca/Sr ratios, as well as Sr isotopic ratios are used to constrain the relative contribution from potential sources of stream water elements. Based on Sr isotopic ratio and element concentration, soil water- and NH 4 acetate leaching indicates (1) a dominant manure/slurry contribution in the top soil, representing a cation concentrated pool, with low 87Sr/ 86Sr ratios; (2) in subsoils, mineral dissolution is enhanced by fertilizer application, becoming the unique source of cations in the saprolite. The relatively high weathering rates encountered implies significant sources of cations which are not accessory minerals, but rather plagioclase and biotite dissolution. Stream water has a very different isotopic and chemical composition compared to soil water leaching suggesting that stream water chemistry is dominated by elements issued from mineral and rock weathering. Agriculture, by applications of chemical and organic fertilizers, can influence the export of major base cations, such as Na +. Plagioclase

  14. Soil acidification and the importance of liming agricultural soils with particular reference to the United Kingdom.

    PubMed

    Goulding, K W T

    2016-09-01

    Soil acidification is caused by a number of factors including acidic precipitation and the deposition from the atmosphere of acidifying gases or particles, such as sulphur dioxide, ammonia and nitric acid. The most important causes of soil acidification on agricultural land, however, are the application of ammonium-based fertilizers and urea, elemental S fertilizer and the growth of legumes. Acidification causes the loss of base cations, an increase in aluminium saturation and a decline in crop yields; severe acidification can cause nonreversible clay mineral dissolution and a reduction in cation exchange capacity, accompanied by structural deterioration. Soil acidity is ameliorated by applying lime or other acid-neutralizing materials. 'Liming' also reduces N2O emissions, but this is more than offset by CO 2 emissions from the lime as it neutralizes acidity. Because crop plants vary in their tolerance to acidity and plant nutrients have different optimal pH ranges, target soil pH values in the UK are set at 6.5 (5.8 in peaty soils) for cropped land and 6.0 (5.3 in peaty soils) for grassland. Agricultural lime products can be sold as 'EC Fertiliser Liming Materials' but, although vital for soil quality and agricultural production, liming tends to be strongly influenced by the economics of farming. Consequently, much less lime is being applied in the UK than required, and many arable and grassland soils are below optimum pH.

  15. Sewage sludge applied to agricultural soil: Ecotoxicological effects on representative soil organisms.

    PubMed

    Carbonell, G; Pro, J; Gómez, N; Babín, M M; Fernández, C; Alonso, E; Tarazona, J V

    2009-05-01

    Application of sewage sludge to agricultural lands is a current practice in EU. European legislation permits its use when concentrations of metals in soil do not increase above the maximum permissible limits. In order to assess the fate and the effects on representative soil organisms of sewage sludge amendments on agricultural lands, a soil microcosm (multi-species soil system-MS3) experiment was performed. The MS3 columns were filled with spiked soil at three different doses: 30, 60 and 120tha(-1) fresh wt. Seed plants (Triticum aestivum, Vicia sativa and Brassica rapa) and earthworms (Eisenia fetida) were introduced into the systems. After a 21-d exposure period, a statistically significant increase for Cd, Cu, Zn and Hg concentrations was found for the soils treated with the highest application rate. Dose-related increase was observed for nickel concentrations in leachates. Plants and earthworm metal body burden offer much more information than metal concentrations and help to understand the potential for metal accumulation. Bioaccumulation factor (BAF(plant-soil)) presented a different behavior among species and large differences for BAF(earthworm-soil), from control or sewage-amended soil, for Cd and Hg were found. B. rapa seed germination was reduced. Statistically significant decrease in fresh biomass was observed for T. aestivum and V. sativa at the highest application rate, whereas B. rapa biomass decreased at any application rate. Enzymatic activities (dehydrogenase and phosphatase) as well as respiration rate on soil microorganisms were enlarged.

  16. Agricultural management explains historic changes in regional soil carbon stocks

    PubMed Central

    van Wesemael, Bas; Paustian, Keith; Meersmans, Jeroen; Goidts, Esther; Barancikova, Gabriela; Easter, Mark

    2010-01-01

    Agriculture is considered to be among the economic sectors having the greatest greenhouse gas mitigation potential, largely via soil organic carbon (SOC) sequestration. However, it remains a challenge to accurately quantify SOC stock changes at regional to national scales. SOC stock changes resulting from SOC inventory systems are only available for a few countries and the trends vary widely between studies. Process-based models can provide insight in the drivers of SOC changes, but accurate input data are currently not available at these spatial scales. Here we use measurements from a soil inventory dating from the 1960s and resampled in 2006 covering the major soil types and agricultural regions in Belgium together with region-specific land use and management data and a process-based model. The largest decreases in SOC stocks occurred in poorly drained grassland soils (clays and floodplain soils), consistent with drainage improvements since 1960. Large increases in SOC in well drained grassland soils appear to be a legacy effect of widespread conversion of cropland to grassland before 1960. SOC in cropland increased only in sandy lowland soils, driven by increasing manure additions. Modeled land use and management impacts accounted for more than 70% of the variation in observed SOC changes, and no bias could be demonstrated. There was no significant effect of climate trends since 1960 on observed SOC changes. SOC monitoring networks are being established in many countries. Our results demonstrate that detailed and long-term land management data are crucial to explain the observed SOC changes for such networks. PMID:20679194

  17. Agricultural management explains historic changes in regional soil carbon stocks.

    PubMed

    van Wesemael, Bas; Paustian, Keith; Meersmans, Jeroen; Goidts, Esther; Barancikova, Gabriela; Easter, Mark

    2010-08-17

    Agriculture is considered to be among the economic sectors having the greatest greenhouse gas mitigation potential, largely via soil organic carbon (SOC) sequestration. However, it remains a challenge to accurately quantify SOC stock changes at regional to national scales. SOC stock changes resulting from SOC inventory systems are only available for a few countries and the trends vary widely between studies. Process-based models can provide insight in the drivers of SOC changes, but accurate input data are currently not available at these spatial scales. Here we use measurements from a soil inventory dating from the 1960s and resampled in 2006 covering the major soil types and agricultural regions in Belgium together with region-specific land use and management data and a process-based model. The largest decreases in SOC stocks occurred in poorly drained grassland soils (clays and floodplain soils), consistent with drainage improvements since 1960. Large increases in SOC in well drained grassland soils appear to be a legacy effect of widespread conversion of cropland to grassland before 1960. SOC in cropland increased only in sandy lowland soils, driven by increasing manure additions. Modeled land use and management impacts accounted for more than 70% of the variation in observed SOC changes, and no bias could be demonstrated. There was no significant effect of climate trends since 1960 on observed SOC changes. SOC monitoring networks are being established in many countries. Our results demonstrate that detailed and long-term land management data are crucial to explain the observed SOC changes for such networks.

  18. Adsorption of the antiepileptic carbamazepine onto agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Calisto, Vania; Esteves, Valdemar I

    2012-05-01

    Carbamazepine is an antiepileptic pharmaceutical which is commonly found in environmental matrices. It passes through wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) almost completely unaffected and has been found to be highly persistent in the environment. The application of sludge in agricultural fields and the use of WWTP effluents for irrigation constitute a potential source of soil contamination. Consequently, the assessment of the interaction between carbamazepine and soils is of crucial importance to understand its fate in the environment. To monitor the sorption behavior of carbamazepine onto agricultural soils, batch equilibrium experiments were performed using soils subjected to distinct long-term fertilizations. In order to follow the adsorption experiments, an UV spectral deconvolution methodology was applied and the results compared with those from micellar electrokinetic chromatography. The results obtained by both methods did not present significant statistical differences at 95% confidence level. Therefore, it was proven that, in the context of adsorption studies, UV spectral deconvolution is a valid alternative to common chromatographic methods, with the major advantage of being a simple and fast procedure. The adsorption of carbamazepine onto the selected soils was satisfactorily described by the Freundlich model. The obtained Freundlich parameters (K(F)) (between 1.79 ± 0.07 and 4.8 ± 0.2 mg kg(-1) (mg L(-1))(-N)) indicate that the adsorption behavior of carbamazepine is dependent on the soil fertilization. Also, it is not extensively sorbed, indicating that carbamazepine present in soils can be a potential source of contamination of surface and ground waters through run-off and infiltration.

  19. Environmental fate of double-stranded RNA in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Dubelman, Samuel; Fischer, Joshua; Zapata, Fatima; Huizinga, Kristin; Jiang, Changjian; Uffman, Joshua; Levine, Steven; Carson, David

    2014-01-01

    A laboratory soil degradation study was conducted to determine the biodegradation potential of a DvSnf7 dsRNA transcript derived from a Monsanto genetically modified (GM) maize product that confers resistance to corn rootworm (CRW; Diabrotica spp.). This study provides new information to improve the environmental assessment of dsRNAs that become pesticidal through an RNAi process. Three agricultural soils differing in their physicochemical characteristics were obtained from the U.S., Illinois (IL; silt loam), Missouri (MO; loamy sand) and North Dakota (ND; clay loam), and exposed to the target dsRNA by incorporating insect-protected maize biomass and purified (in vitro-transcribed) DvSnf7 RNA into soil. The GM and control (non-GM maize) materials were added to each soil and incubated at ca. 22 °C for 48 hours (h). Samples were collected at 12 time intervals during the incubation period, extracted, and analyzed using QuantiGene molecular analysis and insect bioassay methods. The DT50 (half-life) values for DvSnf7 RNA in IL, MO, and ND soils were 19, 28, and 15 h based on QuantiGene, and 18, 29, and 14 h based on insect bioassay, respectively. Furthermore, the DT90 (time to 90% degradation) values for DvSnf7 RNA in all three soils were <35 h. These results indicate that DvSnf7 RNA was degraded and biological activity was undetectable within approximately 2 days after application to soil, regardless of texture, pH, clay content and other soil differences. Furthermore, soil-incorporated DvSnf7 RNA was non-detectable in soil after 48 h, as measured by QuantiGene, at levels ranging more than two orders of magnitude (0.3, 1.5, 7.5 and 37.5 µg RNA/g soil). Results from this study indicate that the DvSnf7 dsRNA is unlikely to persist or accumulate in the environment. Furthermore, the rapid degradation of DvSnf7 dsRNA provides a basis to define relevant exposure scenarios for future RNA-based agricultural products.

  20. Estimating the distribution of radionuclides in agricultural soils - dependence on soil parameters.

    PubMed

    Hormann, Volker; Fischer, Helmut W

    2013-10-01

    In this study it is shown how radionuclide distributions in agricultural soils and their dependence on soil parameters can be quantitatively estimated. The most important sorption and speciation processes have been implemented into a numerical model using the geochemical code PHREEQC that is able to include specific soil and soil solution compositions. Using this model, distribution coefficients (Kd values) for the elements Cs, Ni, U and Se have been calculated for two different soil types. Furthermore, the dependencies of these Kd values on various soil parameters (e.g. pH value or organic matter content) have been evaluated. It is shown that for each element, an individual set of soil parameters is relevant for its solid-liquid distribution. The model may be used for the calculation of input parameters used by reference biosphere models (e.g. used for the risk assessment of nuclear waste repositories).

  1. Single application of Sewage Sludge to an Alluvial Agricultural Soil - impacts on Soil Quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suhadolc, M.; Graham, D. B.; Hagn, A.; Doerfler, U.; Schloter, M.; Schroll, R.; Munch, J. C.; Lobnik, F.

    2009-04-01

    Limited information exists on the effects of sewage sludge on soil quality with regard to their ability to maintain soil functions. We studied effects of sewage sludge amendment on soil chemical properties, microbial community structure and microbial degradation of the herbicide glyphosate. Three months soil column leaching experiment has been conducted using alluvial soils (Eutric Fluvisol) with no prior history of sludge application. The soil was loamy with pH 7,4 and organic matter content of 3,5%. Soil material in the upper 2 cm of columns was mixed with dehydrated sewage sludge which was applied in amounts corresponding to the standards governing the use of sewage sludge for agricultural land. Sludge did increase some nutrients (total N, NH4+, available P and K, organic carbon) and some heavy metals contents (Zn, Cu, Pb) in soil. However, upper limits for heavy metals in agricultural soils were not exceeded. Results of heavy metal availability in soil determined by sequential extraction will be also presented. Restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analyses of 16s/18s rDNA, using universal fungal and bacterial primers, revealed clear shifts in bacterial and fungal community structure in the upper 2 cm of soils after amendment. Fungal fingerprints showed greater short term effects of sewage sludge, whereas sewage sludge seems to have prolonged effects on soil bacteria. Furthermore, sewage sludge amendment significantly increased glyphosate degradation from 21.6±1% to 33.6±1% over a 2 months period. The most probable reasons for shifts in microbial community structure and increased degradation of glyphosate are beneficial alterations to the physical-chemical characteristics of the soil. Negative effects of potentially toxic substances present in the sewage sludge on soil microbial community functioning were not observed with the methods used in our study.

  2. Prehistorically modified soils of central Amazonia: a model for sustainable agriculture in the twenty-first century.

    PubMed

    Glaser, Bruno

    2007-02-28

    Terra Preta soils of central Amazonia exhibit approximately three times more soil organic matter, nitrogen and phosphorus and 70 times more charcoal compared to adjacent infertile soils. The Terra Preta soils were generated by pre-Columbian native populations by chance or intentionally adding large amounts of charred residues (charcoal), organic wastes, excrements and bones. In this paper, it is argued that generating new Terra Preta sites ('Terra Preta nova') could be the basis for sustainable agriculture in the twenty-first century to produce food for billions of people, and could lead to attaining three Millennium Development Goals: (i) to combat desertification, (ii) to sequester atmospheric CO2 in the long term, and (iii) to maintain biodiversity hotspots such as tropical rainforests. Therefore, large-scale generation and utilization of Terra Preta soils would decrease the pressure on primary forests that are being extensively cleared for agricultural use with only limited fertility and sustainability and, hence, only providing a limited time for cropping. This would maintain biodiversity while mitigating both land degradation and climate change. However, it should not be overlooked that the infertility of most tropical soils (and associated low population density) is what could have prevented tropical forests undergoing large-scale clearance for agriculture. Increased fertility may increase the populations supported by shifting cultivation, thereby maintaining and increasing pressure on forests.

  3. Landscape evolution by soil redistribution in a Mediterranean agricultural context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ciampalini, Rossano; Follain, Stéphane; Le Bissonnais, Yves

    2010-05-01

    Soils and landscapes are frequently subjected to rapid evolutions induced by climate changes and humans disturbances. Early, soil scientists had already sought to identify the dynamic interactions between soils and landscapes. Soil redistribution modelling is an appropriate analyse methodology widely utilized (Kirkby, 1985; Van Oost et al., 2000; Van Rompaey et al., 2001; Minasny and McBratney, 1999; Van Oost et al., 2005; Govers et al., 2006) to understand space time evolution in soil and landscape processes at short and medium term. The aims of this research is to develop a model able to simulate soil evolution as affected by soil redistribution processes (e.g. water-erosion processes and mechanical erosion) and to use pedological knowledge acquired from a field study coupled with the present research. The LandSoil model, here proposed, is an event based model, dimensioned for fine spatial [1 m] and medium [10 -100 years] temporal scales, taking into account a detailed representation of the agricultural landscape structure. It is composed of three modules for soil erosion/redistribution: rill erosion (Souchère et al., 2003); interrill erosion (Cerdan et al., 2002); and tillage erosion based on the mechanistic rules developed by Govers et al., 1994. After each rain and tillage event a new topography is evaluated as well as all the geometric landscape parameters. Specificities of the model are: i) long-term landscape analysis and topography balance after each rainfall; ii) evaluation of water erosion and soil mechanistic redistribution (tillage erosion); iii) taking in consideration of the landscape geometry, especially connectivity, as a significant information in describing the landscape and useful in modelling (Landscape structure management and landscape design); and iv) utilisation of various and different climate scenarios thanks to the event based model. Subsequently we apply this model to study the effect of different scenarios of land management and

  4. Cleanup Verification Package for the 118-F-8:4 Fuel Storage Basin West Side Adjacent and Side Slope Soils

    SciTech Connect

    L. D. Habel

    2008-03-18

    This cleanup verification package documents completion of remedial action, sampling activities, and compliance with cleanup criteria for the 118-F-8:4 Fuel Storage Basin West Side Adjacent and Side Slope Soils. The rectangular-shaped concrete basin on the south side of the 105-F Reactor building served as an underwater collection, storage, and transfer facility for irradiated fuel elements discharged from the reactor.

  5. Rhamnolipid surface thermodynamic properties and transport in agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Renfro, Tyler Dillard; Xie, Weijie; Yang, Guang; Chen, Gang

    2014-03-01

    Rhamnolipid is a biosurfactant produced by several Pseudomonas species, which can wet hydrophobic soils by lowering the cohesive and/or adhesive surface tension. Because of its biodegradability, rhamnolipid applications bring minimal adverse impact on the soil and groundwater as compared with that of chemical wetting agents. Subsequently, rhamnolipid applications have more advantages when used to improve irrigation in the agricultural soil, especially under draught conditions. In the presence of rhamnolipid, water surface tension dropped linearly with the increase of rhamnolipid concentration until the rhamnolipid critical micelle concentration (CMC) of 30 mg/L was reached. Below the CMC, rhamnolipid had linear adsorption isotherms on the soil with a partition coefficient of 0.126 L/kg. Rhamnolipid transport breakthrough curves had a broad and diffuse infiltration front, indicating retention of rhamnolipid on the soil increased with time. Rhamnolipid transport was found to be well represented by the advection-dispersion equation based on a local equilibrium assumption. When applied at concentrations above the CMC, the formed rhamnolipid micelles prevented rhamnolipid adsorption (both equilibrium adsorption and kinetic adsorption) in the soil. It was discovered in this research that rhamnolipid surface thermodynamic properties played the key role in controlling rhamnolipid transport. The attractive forces between rhamnolipid molecules contributed to micelle formation and facilitated rhamnolipid transport.

  6. Prehistoric agricultural depletion of soil nutrients in Hawai'i.

    PubMed

    Hartshorn, A S; Chadwick, O A; Vitousek, P M; Kirch, P V

    2006-07-18

    We investigated the fate of soil nutrients after centuries of indigenous dryland agriculture in Hawai'i using a coupled geochemical and archaeological approach. Beginning approximately 500 years ago, farmers began growing dryland taro and sweet potato on the leeward slopes of East Maui. Their digging sticks pierced a subsurface layer of cinders, enhancing crop access to the soil water stored below the intact cinders. Cultivation also catalyzed nutrient losses, directly by facilitating leaching of mobile nutrients after disturbing a stratigraphic barrier to vertical water movement, and indirectly by increasing mineral weathering and subsequent uptake and harvest. As a result, centuries of cultivation lowered volumetric total calcium, magnesium, sodium, potassium, and phosphorus content by 49%, 28%, 75%, 37%, and 32%, respectively. In the absence of written records, we used the difference in soil phosphorus to estimate that prehistoric yields were sufficient to meet local demand over very long time frames, but the associated acceleration of nutrient losses could have compromised subsequent yields.

  7. Value of Available Global Soil Moisture Products for Agricultural Monitoring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mladenova, Iliana; Bolten, John; Crow, Wade; de Jeu, Richard

    2016-04-01

    The first operationally derived and publicly distributed global soil moil moisture product was initiated with the launch of the Advanced Scanning Microwave Mission on the NASA's Earth Observing System Aqua satellite (AMSR-E). AMSR-E failed in late 2011, but its legacy is continued by AMSR2, launched in 2012 on the JAXA Global Change Observation Mission-Water (GCOM-W) mission. AMSR is a multi-frequency dual-polarization instrument, where the lowest two frequencies (C- and X-band) were used for soil moisture retrieval. Theoretical research and small-/field-scale airborne campaigns, however, have demonstrated that soil moisture would be best monitored using L-band-based observations. This consequently led to the development and launch of the first L-band-based mission-the ESA's Soil Moisture Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission (2009). In early 2015 NASA launched the second L-band-based mission, the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP). These satellite-based soil moisture products have been demonstrated to be invaluable sources of information for mapping water stress areas, crop monitoring and yield forecasting. Thus, a number of agricultural agencies routinely utilize and rely on global soil moisture products for improving their decision making activities, determining global crop production and crop prices, identifying food restricted areas, etc. The basic premise of applying soil moisture observations for vegetation monitoring is that the change in soil moisture conditions will precede the change in vegetation status, suggesting that soil moisture can be used as an early indicator of expected crop condition change. Here this relationship was evaluated across multiple microwave frequencies by examining the lag rank cross-correlation coefficient between the soil moisture observations and the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). A main goal of our analysis is to evaluate and inter-compare the value of the different soil moisture products derived using L-band (SMOS

  8. Effect of integrating straw into agricultural soils on soil infiltration and evaporation.

    PubMed

    Cao, Jiansheng; Liu, Changming; Zhang, Wanjun; Guo, Yunlong

    2012-01-01

    Soil water movement is a critical consideration for crop yield in straw-integrated fields. This study used an indoor soil column experiment to determine soil infiltration and evaporation characteristics in three forms of direct straw-integrated soils (straw mulching, straw mixing and straw inter-layering). Straw mulching is covering the land surface with straw. Straw mixing is mixing straw with the top 10 cm surface soil. Then straw inter-layering is placing straw at the 20 cm soil depth. There are generally good correlations among the mulch integration methods at p < 0.05, and with average errors/biases <10%. Straw mixing exhibited the best effect in terms of soil infiltration, followed by straw mulching. Due to over-burden weight-compaction effect, straw inter-layering somehow retarded soil infiltration. In terms of soil water evaporation, straw mulching exhibited the best effect. This was followed by straw mixing and then straw inter-layering. Straw inter-layering could have a long-lasting positive effect on soil evaporation as it limited the evaporative consumption of deep soil water. The responses of the direct straw integration modes to soil infiltration and evaporation could lay the basis for developing efficient water-conservation strategies. This is especially useful for water-scarce agricultural regions such as the arid/semi-arid regions of China.

  9. Distribution of organic carbon in physical fractions of soils as affected by agricultural management

    SciTech Connect

    Sindhu, Jagadamma; Lal, Dr. Rattan

    2010-08-01

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) is distributed heterogeneously among different-sized primary particles and aggregates. Further, the SOC associated with different physical fractions respond differently to managements. Therefore, this study was conducted with the objective to quantify the SOC associated with all the three structural levels of SOC (particulate organic matter, soil separates and aggregate-size fractions) as influenced by long-term change in management. The study also aims at reevaluating the concept that the SOC sink capacity of individual size-fractions is limited. Long-term tillage and crop rotation effects on distribution of SOC among fractions were compared with soil from adjacent undisturbed area under native vegetation for the mixed, mesic, Typic Fragiudalf of Wooster, OH. Forty five years of no-till (NT) management resulted in more SOC accumulation in soil surface (0 7.5 cm) than in chisel tillage and plow tillage (PT) treatments. However, PT at this site resulted in a redistribution of SOC from surface to deeper soil layers. The soils under continuous corn accumulated significantly more SOC than those under corn soybean rotation at 7.5 45 cm depth. Although soil texture was dominated by the silt-sized particles, most of the SOC pool was associated with the clay fraction. Compared to PT, the NT treatment resulted in (i) significantly higher proportion of large macroaggregates (>2,000 m) and (ii) 1.5 2.8 times higher SOC concentrations in all aggregate-size classes. A comparative evaluation using radar graphs indicated that among the physical fractions, the SOC associated with sand and silt fractions quickly changed with a land use conversion from native vegetation to agricultural crops. A key finding of this study is the assessment of SOC sink capacity of individual fractions, which revealed that the clay fraction of agricultural soils continues to accumulate more SOC, albeit at a slower rate, with progressive increase in total SOC concentration

  10. Soil Management Effects on Gas Fluxes from an Organic Soil Agricultural System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jennewein, S. P.; Bhadha, J. H.; Lang, T. A.; Singh, M.; Daroub, S. H.; McCray, M.

    2015-12-01

    The role of soil management on gas flux isn't well understood for Histosols of the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) of southern Florida. The region is responsible for roughly half of sugarcane (Saccharum spp. hybrids) production in the USA along with supplying winter vegetable crops to the eastern USA. Future productivity in the EAA is jeopardized by soil subsidence resulting from oxidation of organic matter. Establishing the role of tillage, water-table depth, nitrogen fertilizer, and soil depth on gas flux will help determine how effective various managements are on conserving soil. Ongoing lysimeter and field studies examined effects of management practices (water-table, tillage, and nitrogen fertilizer), and soil depth on, gas emission and microbial biomass. The trials were set in Belle Glade, FL, on Lauderhill muck (Lithic Haplosaprists). Results to be presented include soil microbial biomass and soil gas (CO2, CH4, and N2O) flux. This study provides insight into management effectiveness and agriculture sustainability on shallow muck soils of the EAA and will help farmers mitigate problems associated with soil subsidence and seasonally high water-tables.

  11. Ranking factors affecting emissions of GHG from incubated agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    García-Marco, S; Ravella, S R; Chadwick, D; Vallejo, A; Gregory, A S; Cárdenas, L M

    2014-07-01

    Agriculture significantly contributes to global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and there is a need to develop effective mitigation strategies. The efficacy of methods to reduce GHG fluxes from agricultural soils can be affected by a range of interacting management and environmental factors. Uniquely, we used the Taguchi experimental design methodology to rank the relative importance of six factors known to affect the emission of GHG from soil: nitrate (NO3(-)) addition, carbon quality (labile and non-labile C), soil temperature, water-filled pore space (WFPS) and extent of soil compaction. Grassland soil was incubated in jars where selected factors, considered at two or three amounts within the experimental range, were combined in an orthogonal array to determine the importance and interactions between factors with a L16 design, comprising 16 experimental units. Within this L16 design, 216 combinations of the full factorial experimental design were represented. Headspace nitrous oxide (N2O), methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations were measured and used to calculate fluxes. Results found for the relative influence of factors (WFPS and NO3(-) addition were the main factors affecting N2O fluxes, whilst glucose, NO3(-) and soil temperature were the main factors affecting CO2 and CH4 fluxes) were consistent with those already well documented. Interactions between factors were also studied and results showed that factors with little individual influence became more influential in combination. The proposed methodology offers new possibilities for GHG researchers to study interactions between influential factors and address the optimized sets of conditions to reduce GHG emissions in agro-ecosystems, while reducing the number of experimental units required compared with conventional experimental procedures that adjust one variable at a time.

  12. Ranking factors affecting emissions of GHG from incubated agricultural soils

    PubMed Central

    García-Marco, S; Ravella, S R; Chadwick, D; Vallejo, A; Gregory, A S; Cárdenas, L M

    2014-01-01

    Agriculture significantly contributes to global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and there is a need to develop effective mitigation strategies. The efficacy of methods to reduce GHG fluxes from agricultural soils can be affected by a range of interacting management and environmental factors. Uniquely, we used the Taguchi experimental design methodology to rank the relative importance of six factors known to affect the emission of GHG from soil: nitrate (NO3−) addition, carbon quality (labile and non-labile C), soil temperature, water-filled pore space (WFPS) and extent of soil compaction. Grassland soil was incubated in jars where selected factors, considered at two or three amounts within the experimental range, were combined in an orthogonal array to determine the importance and interactions between factors with a L16 design, comprising 16 experimental units. Within this L16 design, 216 combinations of the full factorial experimental design were represented. Headspace nitrous oxide (N2O), methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations were measured and used to calculate fluxes. Results found for the relative influence of factors (WFPS and NO3− addition were the main factors affecting N2O fluxes, whilst glucose, NO3− and soil temperature were the main factors affecting CO2 and CH4 fluxes) were consistent with those already well documented. Interactions between factors were also studied and results showed that factors with little individual influence became more influential in combination. The proposed methodology offers new possibilities for GHG researchers to study interactions between influential factors and address the optimized sets of conditions to reduce GHG emissions in agro-ecosystems, while reducing the number of experimental units required compared with conventional experimental procedures that adjust one variable at a time. PMID:25177207

  13. Agricultural soil moisture experiment, Colby, Kansas 1978: Measured and predicted hydrological properties of the soil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arya, L. M. (Principal Investigator)

    1980-01-01

    Predictive procedures for developing soil hydrologic properties (i.e., relationships of soil water pressure and hydraulic conductivity to soil water content) are presented. Three models of the soil water pressure-water content relationship and one model of the hydraulic conductivity-water content relationship are discussed. Input requirements for the models are indicated, and computational procedures are outlined. Computed hydrologic properties for Keith silt loam, a soil typer near Colby, Kansas, on which the 1978 Agricultural Soil Moisture Experiment was conducted, are presented. A comparison of computed results with experimental data in the dry range shows that analytical models utilizing a few basic hydrophysical parameters can produce satisfactory data for large-scale applications.

  14. Use of treated wastewater in agriculture: effects on soil environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levy, Guy J.; Lado, Marcos

    2014-05-01

    Disposal of treated sewage, both from industrial and domestic origin (herein referred to as treated wastewater [TWW]), is often considered as an environmental hazard. However, in areas afflicted by water scarcity, especially in semi-arid and arid regions, where the future of irrigated agriculture (which produces approximately one third of crop yield and half the return from global crop production) is threatened by existing or expected shortage of fresh water, the use of TWW offers a highly effective and sustainable strategy to exploit a water resource. However, application of TWW to the soil is not free of risks both to organisms (e.g., crops, microbiota) and to the soil. Potential risks may include reduction in biological activity (including crop yield) due to elevated salinity and specific ion toxicity, migration of pollutants towards surface- and ground-water, and deterioration of soil structure. In recent years, new evidence about the possible negative impact of long-term irrigation with TWW on soil structure and physical and chemo-physical properties has emerged, thus putting the sustainability of irrigation with TWW in question. In this presentation, some aspects of the effects of long-term irrigation with TWW on soil properties are shown.

  15. The economics of soil C sequestration and agricultural emissions abatement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexander, P.; Paustian, K.; Smith, P.; Moran, D.

    2015-04-01

    Carbon is a critical component of soil vitality and is crucial to our ability to produce food. Carbon sequestered in soils also provides a further regulating ecosystem service, valued as the avoided damage from global climate change. We consider the demand and supply attributes that underpin and constrain the emergence of a market value for this vital global ecosystem service: markets being what economists regard as the most efficient institutions for allocating scarce resources to the supply and consumption of valuable goods. This paper considers how a potentially large global supply of soil carbon sequestration is reduced by economic and behavioural constraints that impinge on the emergence of markets, and alternative public policies that can efficiently transact demand for the service from private and public sector agents. In essence, this is a case of significant market failure. In the design of alternative policy options, we consider whether soil carbon mitigation is actually cost-effective relative to other measures in agriculture and elsewhere in the economy, and the nature of behavioural incentives that hinder policy options. We suggest that reducing the cost and uncertainties of mitigation through soil-based measures is crucial for improving uptake. Monitoring and auditing processes will also be required to eventually facilitate wide-scale adoption of these measures.

  16. Vertical distribution of phosphorus in agricultural drainage ditch soils.

    PubMed

    Vaughan, Robert E; Needelman, Brian A; Kleinman, Peter J A; Allen, Arthur L

    2007-01-01

    Pedological processes such as gleization and organic matter accumulation may affect the vertical distribution of P within agricultural drainage ditch soils. The objective of this study was to assess the vertical distribution of P as a function of horizonation in ditch soils at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore Research Farm in Princess Anne, Maryland. Twenty-one profiles were sampled from 10 agricultural ditches ranging in length from 225 to 550 m. Horizon samples were analyzed for total P; water-extractable P; Mehlich-3 P; acid ammonium oxalate-extractable P, Fe, and Al (P ox, Fe ox, Al ox); pH; and organic C (n = 126). Total P ranged from 27 to 4882 mg kg(-1), P ox from 4 to 4631 mg kg(-1), Mehlich-3 P from 2 to 401 mg kg(-1), and water-extractable P from 0 to 17 mg kg(-1). Soil-forming processes that result in differences between horizons had a strong relationship with various P fractions and P sorption capacity. Fibric organic horizons at the ditch soil surface had the greatest mean P ox, Fe ox, and Al ox concentrations of any horizon class. Gleyed A horizons had a mean Fe ox concentrations 2.6 times lower than dark A horizons and were significantly lower in total P and P ox. Variation in P due to organic matter accumulation and gleization provide critical insight into short- and long-term dynamics of P in ditch soils and should be accounted for when applying ditch management practices.

  17. An inventory of trace elements inputs to French agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Belon, E; Boisson, M; Deportes, I Z; Eglin, T K; Feix, I; Bispo, A O; Galsomies, L; Leblond, S; Guellier, C R

    2012-11-15

    The inputs of ten trace elements (As, Cd, Cu, Cr, Hg, Mo, Ni, Pb, Se, Zn) to French agricultural soils have been assessed. The six main sources considered were: pesticides, mineral fertilizers, animal manure, liming materials, sludge and composts and atmospheric deposition. Data were collected to compute inputs at both national and regional (departmental) scales. The inventory methodology is based on two principles: data are traceable and easy to update. At a national scale, the inventory showed that trace elements inputs can be ranked: Zn≫Cu≫Cr>Pb>Ni>As=Mo>Se>Cd>Hg. Animal manure, mineral fertilizers and pesticides are the predominant sources of TEs. These results are globally in agreement with literature data though atmospheric deposition is shown to be lower than in more industrial countries such as China and United Kingdom where similar surveys were conducted. The inputs of trace elements vary strongly between regions in relation with agricultural activities. This inventory (and the related database) provides basis for developing and monitoring policies to control and reduce trace elements contamination of agricultural soils at both national and regional (departmental) scales.

  18. GEMAS: Mineral magnetic properties of European agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuzina, Dilyara; Kosareva, Lina; Fattakhova, Leysan; Fabian, Karl; Nourgaliev, Danis; Reimann, Clemens

    2015-04-01

    The GEMAS survey of European agricultural soil provides a unique opportunity to create the first comprehensive overview of mineral magnetic properties in agricultural soil on a continental scale. Samples from the upper 20 cm were taken in large agricultural fields (Ap-sample) at a density of 1 site/2500 km2. After air drying and sieving to < 2 mm, low (460 Hz), and high frequency (4600 Hz) magnetic susceptibility k was measured on 2500 samples using a Bartington MS2B sensor to obtain frequency dependence of magnetic susceptibility kfd. Hysteresis properties are determined using a J coercivity spectrometer, built in the paleomagnetic laboratory of Kazan University, providing for each sample a modified hysteresis loop, backfield curve, acquisition curve of isothermal remanent magnetization, and a viscous IRM decay spectrum. Each measurement set is obtained in a single run from zero field up to 1.5 T and back to -1.5 T, taking approximately 15 minutes. This allows to measure a wide range of magnetic parameters for large sample collections. Because the GEMAS geochemical atlas provides a comprehensive set of geochemical measurements characterizing the individual soil samples, the new data allow to study magnetic parameters in relation to chemical and geological parameters. The results show a clear large scale spatial distribution with e.g. broad distinct lows of k over sandy sediments of the last glaciation in central northern Europe and other sedimentary basins. More localized positive k anomalies occur near young volcanism, or old basalts exposed on the surface. On the other hand, frequency dependence of k displays a much more scattered behavior, indicating either high noise level, or large local variability. Clearly distinguishable, small-scale patterns in the randomized data set indicate that the latter is more likely. This indicates that local influences on soil magnetic properties, including anthropogenic effects, may be easier detected by frequency dependence

  19. Searsville Sediment Experiment: What is the ideal agricultural soil?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leal, J.; Lo, D.; Patel, N.; Gu, S.

    2014-12-01

    The purpose of this experiment is to decide whether or not the sediment located within Searsville Dam at the Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve is well suited for agricultural soil. By utilizing various combinations of sediment, farm soil, compost, and horse manure to grow basil plants, we underwent an exploratory study in order to better understand what type of materials and nutrients plants can best thrive within. Our general experiment protocol includes watering the crops with irrigation every day while young, and then limiting that water exposure to only Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays as they become more established. The basil is growing in pots filled with the different amounts of material, and are arranged randomly to prevent certain plants from getting more sunlight than others. The whole experiment plot is covered with a thin white fabric and secured with bricks and wood to keep out pests in the garden. In order to observe trends in the basil development, plant height and leaf number is recorded once every week. During the third week of the study we performed soil texture tests, and within the fourth week we calculated pH data. We discovered that the sediment our project focuses upon is 10-18% clay and 50% sand which categorizes it as loam, and the Stanford farm soil that serves as our control group contains 20-26% clay and 30% sand so it is a silt loam material. The pH tests also showed an average of 7.45 for sediment, 7.3 for farm soil, 7.85 for compost, and 7.65 for horse manure. By looking at all of the data recorded over the five-week time period, we have so far noticed that the 50% sediment and 50% horse manure combination consistently has the best height increase as well as leaf size and content. The 50% sediment and 50% compost mixture has also performed well in those terms, and is therefore a possibility for the best agricultural soil. However, future lab work conducted by Stanford students to examine the nutrient content of the basil tissue, along

  20. Expanding soil health assessment methods for agricultural systems of the southern great plains

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In agricultural systems, soil health (also referred as soil quality) is critical for sustainable production and ecosystem services. Soil health analyses dependent upon singular parameters fail to account for the host of interactions occurring within the soil ecosystem. Soil health is in flux with m...

  1. Soil Respiration in Different Agricultural and Natural Ecosystems in an Arid Region

    PubMed Central

    Lai, Liming; Zhao, Xuechun; Jiang, Lianhe; Wang, Yongji; Luo, Liangguo; Zheng, Yuanrun; Chen, Xi; Rimmington, Glyn M.

    2012-01-01

    The variation of different ecosystems on the terrestrial carbon balance is predicted to be large. We investigated a typical arid region with widespread saline/alkaline soils, and evaluated soil respiration of different agricultural and natural ecosystems. Soil respiration for five ecosystems together with soil temperature, soil moisture, soil pH, soil electric conductivity and soil organic carbon content were investigated in the field. Comparing with the natural ecosystems, the mean seasonal soil respiration rates of the agricultural ecosystems were 96%–386% higher and agricultural ecosystems exhibited lower CO2 absorption by the saline/alkaline soil. Soil temperature and moisture together explained 48%, 86%, 84%, 54% and 54% of the seasonal variations of soil respiration in the five ecosystems, respectively. There was a significant negative relationship between soil respiration and soil electrical conductivity, but a weak correlation between soil respiration and soil pH or soil organic carbon content. Our results showed that soil CO2 emissions were significantly different among different agricultural and natural ecosystems, although we caution that this was an observational, not manipulative, study. Temperature at the soil surface and electric conductivity were the main driving factors of soil respiration across the five ecosystems. Care should be taken when converting native vegetation into cropland from the point of view of greenhouse gas emissions. PMID:23082234

  2. Biochar has no effect on soil respiration across Chinese agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiaoyu; Zheng, Jufeng; Zhang, Dengxiao; Cheng, Kun; Zhou, Huimin; Zhang, Afeng; Li, Lianqing; Joseph, Stephen; Smith, Pete; Crowley, David; Kuzyakov, Yakov; Pan, Genxing

    2016-06-01

    Biochar addition to soil has been widely accepted as an option to enhance soil carbon sequestration by introducing recalcitrant organic matter. However, it remains unclear whether biochar will negate the net carbon accumulation by increasing carbon loss through CO2 efflux from soil (soil respiration). The objectives of this study were to address: 1) whether biochar addition increases soil respiration; and whether biochar application rate and biochar type (feedstock and pyrolyzing system) affect soil respiration. Two series of field experiments were carried out at 8 sites representing the main crop production areas in China. In experiment 1, a single type of wheat straw biochar was amended at rates of 0, 20 and 40 tha(-1) in four rice paddies and three dry croplands. In experiment 2, four types of biochar (varying in feedstock and pyrolyzing system) were amended at rates of 0 and 20 tha(-1) in a rice paddy under rice-wheat rotation. Results showed that biochar addition had no effect on CO2 efflux from soils consistently across sites, although it increased topsoil organic carbon stock by 38% on average. Meanwhile, CO2 efflux from soils amended with 40 t of biochar did not significantly higher than soils amended with 20 t of biochar. While the biochars used in Experiment 2 had different carbon pools and physico-chemical properties, they had no effect on soil CO2 efflux. The soil CO2 efflux following biochar addition could be hardly explained by the changes in soil physic-chemical properties and in soil microbial biomass. Thus, we argue that biochar will not negate the net carbon accumulation by increasing carbon loss through CO2 efflux in agricultural soils.

  3. Soil phosphorus mobilization in the rhizosphere of cover crops has little effect on phosphorus cycling in California agricultural soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    External phosphorus (P) inputs to agricultural soils are needed to replace soil P removed by harvest and maintain soil fertility. Alternative fertilization approaches that maintain soil fertility while reducing P inputs could improve current practices that often result in excessive P application and...

  4. An Underground Revolution: Biodiversity and Soil Ecological Engineering for Agricultural Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Bender, S Franz; Wagg, Cameron; van der Heijden, Marcel G A

    2016-06-01

    Soil organisms are an integral component of ecosystems, but their activities receive little recognition in agricultural management strategies. Here we synthesize the potential of soil organisms to enhance ecosystem service delivery and demonstrate that soil biodiversity promotes multiple ecosystem functions simultaneously (i.e., ecosystem multifunctionality). We apply the concept of ecological intensification to soils and we develop strategies for targeted exploitation of soil biological traits. We compile promising approaches to enhance agricultural sustainability through the promotion of soil biodiversity and targeted management of soil community composition. We present soil ecological engineering as a concept to generate human land-use systems, which can serve immediate human needs while minimizing environmental impacts.

  5. Future trends in soil cadmium concentration under current cadmium fluxes to European agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Six, L; Smolders, E

    2014-07-01

    The gradual increase of soil cadmium concentrations in European soils during the 20th century has prompted environmental legislation to limit soil cadmium (Cd) accumulation. Mass balances (input-output) reflecting the period 1980-1995 predicted larger Cd inputs via phosphate (P) fertilizers and atmospheric deposition than outputs via crop uptake and leaching. This study updates the Cd mass balance for the agricultural top soils of EU-27+Norway (EU-27+1). Over the past 15 years, the use of P fertilizers in the EU-27+1 has decreased by 40%. The current mean atmospheric deposition of Cd in EU is 0.35 g Cd ha(-1) yr(-1), this is strikingly smaller than values used in the previous EU mass balances (~3 g Cd ha(-1) yr(-1)). Leaching of Cd was estimated with most recent data of soil solution Cd concentrations in 151 soils, which cover the range of European soil properties. No significant time trends were found in the data of net applications of Cd via manure, compost, sludge and lime, all being small sources of Cd at a large scale. Modelling of the future long-term changes in soil Cd concentrations in agricultural top soils under cereal or potato culture predicts soil Cd concentrations to decrease by 15% over the next 100 years in an average scenario, with decreasing trends in some scenarios being more prevalent than increasing trends in other scenarios. These Cd balances have reverted from the general positive balances estimated 10 or more years ago. Uncertainty analysis suggests that leaching is the most uncertain relative to other fluxes.

  6. Plant-soil feedbacks and soil sickness: from mechanisms to application in agriculture.

    PubMed

    Huang, Li-Feng; Song, Liu-Xia; Xia, Xiao-Jian; Mao, Wei-Hua; Shi, Kai; Zhou, Yan-Hong; Yu, Jing-Quan

    2013-02-01

    Negative plant-soil feedbacks play an important role in soil sickness, which is one of the factors limiting the sustainable development of intensive agriculture. Various factors, such as the buildup of pests in the soil, disorder in physico-chemical soil properties, autotoxicity, and other unknown factors may contribute to soil sickness. A range of autotoxins have been identified, and these exhibit their allelopathic potential by influencing cell division, water and ion uptake, dark respiration, ATP synthesis, redox homeostasis, gene expression, and defense responses. Meanwhile, there are great interspecific and intraspecific differences in the uptake and accumulation of autotoxins, which contribute to the specific differences in growth in response to different autotoxins. Importantly, the autotoxins also influence soil microbes and vice versa, leading to an increased or decreased degree of soil sickness. In many cases, autotoxins may enhance soilborne diseases by predisposing the roots to infection by soilborne pathogens through a direct biochemical and physiological effect. Some approaches, such as screening for low autotoxic potential and disease-resistant genotypes, proper rotation and intercropping, proper soil and plant residue management, adoption of resistant plant species as rootstocks, introduction of beneficial microbes, physical removal of phytotoxins, and soil sterilization, are proposed. We discuss the challenges that we are facing and possible approaches to these.

  7. Streptococcus suis sorption on agricultural soils: role of soil physico-chemical properties.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Wenqiang; Liu, Xing; Huang, Qiaoyun; Cai, Peng

    2015-01-01

    Understanding pathogen sorption on natural soil particles is crucial to protect public health from soilborne and waterborne diseases. Sorption of pathogen Streptococcus suis on 10 agricultural soils was examined, and its correlations with soil physico-chemical properties were also elucidated. S. suis sorption isotherms conformed to the linear equation, with partition coefficients (Ks) ranging from 12.7 mL g(-1) to 100.1 mL g(-1). Bacteria were observed to sorb on the external surfaces of soil aggregates by scanning electron microscopy. Using Pearson correlation and linear regression analysis, solution pH was found to have significant negative correlations with Ks. Stepwise multiple regression and path analysis revealed that pH and cation exchange capacity (CEC) were the main factors influencing sorption behaviors. The obtained overall model (Ks=389.6-45.9×pH-1.3×CEC, R(2)=0.943, P<0.001) can accurately predict Ks values. However, the variability in Ks was less dependent on soil organic matter, specific surface area, soil texture and zeta potential, probably due to the internal-surface shielding phenomenon of soil aggregates. Additionally, the sorption trends cannot be interpreted by interaction energy barriers calculated using the Derjaguin-Landau-Verwey-Overbeek (DLVO) theory, suggesting the limits of DLVO theory in describing pathogen sorption on natural soils. Our results also indicated soil pH and CEC should be preferentially considered when modeling S. suis sorption process.

  8. Diversities of phthalate esters in suburban agricultural soils and wasteland soil appeared with urbanization in China.

    PubMed

    Kong, Shaofei; Ji, Yaqin; Liu, Lingling; Chen, Li; Zhao, Xueyan; Wang, Jiajun; Bai, Zhipeng; Sun, Zengrong

    2012-11-01

    The distribution of six priority phthalic acid esters (PAEs) in suburban farmland, vegetable, orchard and wasteland soils of Tianjin were obtained with gas chromatography-mass spectrometer analysis in 2009. Results showed that total PAEs varied from 0.05 to 10.4 μg g(-1), with the median value as 0.32 μg g(-1). Di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate and di-n-butyl phthalate are most abundant species. PAEs concentrations for the four types of soils exhibited decreasing order as vegetable soil > wasteland soil > farmland soil > orchard soil. PAEs exhibited elevated levels in more developed regions when compared with other studies. The agricultural plastic film could elevate the PAEs contents in soils. Principal component analysis indicated the emission from cosmetics and personal care products and plasticizers were important sources for PAEs in suburban soils in Tianjin. The higher PAEs contents in wasteland soils from suburban area should be paid more attention owing to large amounts of solid wastes appeared with the ongoing urbanization.

  9. Roads in northern hardwood forests affect adjacent plant communities and soil chemistry in proportion to the maintained roadside area.

    PubMed

    Neher, Deborah A; Asmussen, David; Lovell, Sarah Taylor

    2013-04-01

    The spatial extent of the transported materials from three road types was studied in forest soil and vegetative communities in Vermont. Hypotheses were two-fold: 1) soil chemical concentrations above background environment would reflect traffic volume and road type (highway>2-lane paved>gravel), and 2) plant communities close to the road and near roads with greater traffic will be disturbance-tolerant and adept at colonization. Soil samples were gathered from 12 randomly identified transects for each of three road types classified as "highway," "two-lane paved," and "gravel." Using GIS mapping, transects were constructed perpendicular to the road, and samples were gathered at the shoulder, ditch, backslope, 10 m from the edge of the forest, and 50 m from road center. Sample locations were analyzed for a suite of soil elements and parameters, as well as percent area coverage by plant species. The main effects from roads depended on the construction modifications required for a roadway (i.e., vegetation clearing and topography modification). The cleared area defined the type of plant community and the distance that road pollutants travel. Secondarily, road presence affected soil chemistry. Metal concentrations (e.g., Pb, Cd, Cu, and Zn) correlated positively with road type. Proximity to all road types made the soils more alkaline (pH 7.7) relative to the acidic soil of the adjacent native forest (pH 5.6). Roadside microtopography had marked effects on the composition of plant communities based on the direction of water flow. Ditch areas supported wetland plant species, greater soil moisture and sulfur content, while plant communities closer to the road were characteristic of drier upland zones. The area beyond the edge of the forest did not appear to be affected chemically or physically by any of the road types, possibly due to the dense vegetation that typically develops outside of the managed right-of-way.

  10. Performance of soil particle-size distribution models for describing deposited soils adjacent to constructed dams in the China Loess Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Pei; Shao, Ming-an; Horton, Robert

    2011-02-01

    Soil particle-size distributions (PSD) have been used to estimate soil hydraulic properties. Various parametric PSD models have been proposed to describe the soil PSD from sparse experimental data. It is important to determine which PSD model best represents specific soils. Fourteen PSD models were examined in order to determine the best model for representing the deposited soils adjacent to dams in the China Loess Plateau; these were: Skaggs (S-1, S-2, and S-3), fractal (FR), Jaky (J), Lima and Silva (LS), Morgan (M), Gompertz (G), logarithm (L), exponential (E), log-exponential (LE), Weibull (W), van Genuchten type (VG) as well as Fredlund (F) models. Four-hundred and eighty samples were obtained from soils deposited in the Liudaogou catchment. The coefficient of determination (R 2), the Akaike's information criterion (AIC), and the modified AIC (mAIC) were used. Based upon R 2 and AIC, the three- and four-parameter models were both good at describing the PSDs of deposited soils, and the LE, FR, and E models were the poorest. However, the mAIC in conjunction with R 2 and AIC results indicated that the W model was optimum for describing PSD of the deposited soils for emphasizing the effect of parameter number. This analysis was also helpful for finding out which model is the best one. Our results are applicable to the China Loess Plateau.

  11. Review of samples of tailings, soils and stream sediment adjacent to and downstream from the Ruth Mine, Inyo County, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rytuba, James J.; Kim, Christopher S.; Goldstein, Daniel N.

    2011-01-01

    The Ruth Mine and mill are located in the western Mojave Desert in Inyo County, California (fig. 1). The mill processed gold-silver (Au-Ag) ores mined from the Ruth Au-Ag deposit, which is adjacent to the mill site. The Ruth Au-Ag deposit is hosted in Mesozoic intrusive rocks and is similar to other Au-Ag deposits in the western Mojave Desert that are associated with Miocene volcanic centers that formed on a basement of Mesozoic granitic rocks (Bateman, 1907; Gardner, 1954; Rytuba, 1996). The volcanic rocks consist of silicic domes and associated flows, pyroclastic rocks, and subvolcanic intrusions (fig. 2) that were emplaced into Mesozoic silicic intrusive rocks (Troxel and Morton, 1962). The Ruth Mine is on Federal land managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Tailings from the mine have been eroded and transported downstream into Homewood Canyon and then into Searles Valley (figs. 3, 4, 5, and 6). The BLM provided recreational facilities at the mine site for day-use hikers and restored and maintained the original mine buildings in collaboration with local citizen groups for use by visitors (fig. 7). The BLM requested that the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in collaboration with Chapman University, measure arsenic (As) and other geochemical constituents in soils and tailings at the mine site and in stream sediments downstream from the mine in Homewood Canyon and in Searles Valley (fig. 3). The request was made because initial sampling of the site by BLM staff indicated high concentrations of As in tailings and soils adjacent to the Ruth Mine. This report summarizes data obtained from field sampling of mine tailings and soils adjacent to the Ruth Mine and stream sediments downstream from the mine on June 7, 2009. Our results permit a preliminary assessment of the sources of As and associated chemical constituents that could potentially impact humans and biota.

  12. Soil conservation under climate change: use of recovery biomasses on agricultural soil subjected to the passage of agricultural machinery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergonzoli, S.; Beni, C.; Servadio, P.

    2012-04-01

    Biomass administration is a good practice to preserve the soil fertility in climate change conditions. A test regarding the use of compost derived by wine distillation residues was conducted in the coastal area sited west of Rome, on a sandy soil in continuous cropping with carrot, two cycles per year, with a consequent deep environmental impact. The soil was fertilized with different systems: T = unfertilized soil; F = fertigation 200 kg N ha-1; FC = fertigation 100 kg N ha-1 plus half agronomic dose of compost 4 t ha-1; C2 = double compost dose 16 t ha-1; C4 = quadruple compost dose 32 t ha-1. The functional qualities of the soil, subjected to the passage of agricultural machineries, were determined through the following parameters: bulk density, shear strength, water infiltration rate, organic matter and nitrogen content, cation exchange capacity. At the summer harvest, yield of carrots, their sugar content, firmness and nutrients concentration were determined. The plots only amended (C2 and C4), compared to other treatments, presented lower bulk density (1.36 and 1.28 Mg m-3 respectively), higher shear strength (9 and 8 kPa respectively), as well as increased hydraulic conductivity. In these treatments (C2 and C4), in addition, occurred a higher content of organic matter (0.95 and 1.07% respectively) and nitrogen (0.11 and 0.12% respectively) and increased CEC (541 and 556 respectively) respect to the T treatment that was 521 meq 100g-1. In plots T and F, the organic matter content was reduced at the end of the field test. The yield of carrots increased in FC, C2, and C4, compared to the other treatments. In plots C4, however, morphological changes were induced in approximately 30% of tap-roots, due to the excessive compost dose. In treatments C2 and C4 was observed a reduction of the concentration of Na in the roots, as opposed to the higher concentration of Ca and K and trace elements. The administration of compost has also induced the increase of soluble

  13. CO2 emissions from organic soils under agricultural use

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bader, Cédric; Leifeld, Jens; Müller, Moritz; Schulin, Rainer

    2015-04-01

    The organic soils of peatlands represent a major global sink for terrestrial carbon. Agricultural use of organic soils requires drainage, changing conditions in these soils from anoxic to oxic. As a consequence, the organic carbon that had been accumulated often over millennia is rapidly mineralized, so that these soils then are no longer a sink but become a source of CO2. The aim of our study is to analyse the amount and origin of CO2 emitted from organic soils under three land-use types (forest, arable cropland and grassland). Our study area is located in the Bernese Lakeland (CH). The peatlands of this region were drained in the 1870ies, and the site as well as the surrounding area are now managed by a state prison. Since decades our study site is under the same land-use. In Oktober 2013 we took 4 replicate soil cores of all land-uses with respect to a certain distance from a major drainage ditch. Each core was analysed for its bulk density and carbon content. 9 soil samples from a depth of 20-30 cm were analysed for their F14C and δ13C values and later divided into 18 subsamples. Half of them were mixed with 0.2-0.4 g of labelled corn stalk enriched in δ13C (δ13C=2000) in order to mimic plant residue inputs in the field. The moisture content of these samples was equilibrated at a pF-value of 2 before incubating the samples in a Respicond VII analyser for several weeks at 20° C. By trapping the respired CO2 in NaOH and precipitating it as BaCO3 we were able to analyse its F14C and δ13C value. This enabled us to determine to what extent the CO2 originated from old peat, young plant residues or the added maize stalk. Generally the cropland samples showed the highest respiration rates, lowest F14C values and highest carbon stocks. The organic soils under the forest were degraded the most and showed low respiration rates. Analyzing the F14C values of the CO2 revealed that peat contributes most to the respiration and its degradation is fastest in the cropland

  14. Estimating Annual Soil Carbon Loss in Agricultural Peatland Soils Using a Nitrogen Budget Approach

    PubMed Central

    Kirk, Emilie R.; van Kessel, Chris; Horwath, William R.; Linquist, Bruce A.

    2015-01-01

    Around the world, peatland degradation and soil subsidence is occurring where these soils have been converted to agriculture. Since initial drainage in the mid-1800s, continuous farming of such soils in the California Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (the Delta) has led to subsidence of up to 8 meters in places, primarily due to soil organic matter (SOM) oxidation and physical compaction. Rice (Oryza sativa) production has been proposed as an alternative cropping system to limit SOM oxidation. Preliminary research on these soils revealed high N uptake by rice in N fertilizer omission plots, which we hypothesized was the result of SOM oxidation releasing N. Testing this hypothesis, we developed a novel N budgeting approach to assess annual soil C and N loss based on plant N uptake and fallow season N mineralization. Through field experiments examining N dynamics during growing season and winter fallow periods, a complete annual N budget was developed. Soil C loss was calculated from SOM-N mineralization using the soil C:N ratio. Surface water and crop residue were negligible in the total N uptake budget (3 – 4 % combined). Shallow groundwater contributed 24 – 33 %, likely representing subsurface SOM-N mineralization. Assuming 6 and 25 kg N ha-1 from atmospheric deposition and biological N2 fixation, respectively, our results suggest 77 – 81 % of plant N uptake (129 – 149 kg N ha-1) was supplied by SOM mineralization. Considering a range of N uptake efficiency from 50 – 70 %, estimated net C loss ranged from 1149 – 2473 kg C ha-1. These findings suggest that rice systems, as currently managed, reduce the rate of C loss from organic delta soils relative to other agricultural practices. PMID:25822494

  15. Estimating annual soil carbon loss in agricultural peatland soils using a nitrogen budget approach.

    PubMed

    Kirk, Emilie R; van Kessel, Chris; Horwath, William R; Linquist, Bruce A

    2015-01-01

    Around the world, peatland degradation and soil subsidence is occurring where these soils have been converted to agriculture. Since initial drainage in the mid-1800s, continuous farming of such soils in the California Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (the Delta) has led to subsidence of up to 8 meters in places, primarily due to soil organic matter (SOM) oxidation and physical compaction. Rice (Oryza sativa) production has been proposed as an alternative cropping system to limit SOM oxidation. Preliminary research on these soils revealed high N uptake by rice in N fertilizer omission plots, which we hypothesized was the result of SOM oxidation releasing N. Testing this hypothesis, we developed a novel N budgeting approach to assess annual soil C and N loss based on plant N uptake and fallow season N mineralization. Through field experiments examining N dynamics during growing season and winter fallow periods, a complete annual N budget was developed. Soil C loss was calculated from SOM-N mineralization using the soil C:N ratio. Surface water and crop residue were negligible in the total N uptake budget (3 - 4 % combined). Shallow groundwater contributed 24 - 33 %, likely representing subsurface SOM-N mineralization. Assuming 6 and 25 kg N ha-1 from atmospheric deposition and biological N2 fixation, respectively, our results suggest 77 - 81 % of plant N uptake (129 - 149 kg N ha-1) was supplied by SOM mineralization. Considering a range of N uptake efficiency from 50 - 70 %, estimated net C loss ranged from 1149 - 2473 kg C ha-1. These findings suggest that rice systems, as currently managed, reduce the rate of C loss from organic delta soils relative to other agricultural practices.

  16. Quantification Of Erosion Rates Of Agriculturally Used Soils By Artificial

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jha, Abhinand

    2010-05-01

    0.0.1 1. Introduction to soil erosion measurement by radionuclides Soil erosion by water, wind and tillage affects both agriculture and the natural environment. Studying this phenomenon would be one of the advancements in science. Soil erosion occurs worldwide and since the last two decades it has been a main topic of discussion all over the world. The use of environmental radionuclides such as 90Sr, 137Cs to study medium term soil erosion (40 yrs) started in the early 1990's. Using these new techniques better knowledge about erosion can be gained and this knowledge can be implemented for erosion risk management. The erosion and sedimentation study by using man-made and natural radioisotopes is a key technique, which has developed over the past 30 years. Fallout 137Cs and Cosmogenic 7Be are radionuclides that have been used to provide independent measurements of soil-erosion and sediment-deposition rates and patterns [1] [2] [3] [4]. Erosion measurements using radionuclides 137Cs, 7Be Caesium-137 from atmospheric nuclear-weapons tests in the 1950s and 1960s (Fig.1) is a unique tracer of erosion and sedimentation, since there are no natural sources of 137Cs. Unique events such as the Chernobyl accident in April 1986 caused regional dispersal of 137Cs that affects the total global deposition budget. This yearly pattern of fallout can be used to develop a chronology of deposition horizons in lakes, reservoirs, and floodplains. 137Cs can be easily measured by gamma spectroscopy. Using 137Cs is a fast and cheap method to study erosion-deposition processes compared to the traditional methods like silt bags. PIC Figure 1: Global 137Cs fallout (Modified from SAAS Bulletin 353, Part E, DDR, 1986) When 137Cs, 7Be reach the soil surface by wet and dry deposition, they are quickly and strongly adsorbed by ion exchange and are essentially non exchangeable in most environments. Each radionuclide is distributed differently in the soil because of differences in half-lives (30 yrs

  17. Soil organic carbon fractionation for improving agricultural soil quality diagnosis in different management practices.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trigalet, Sylvain; Chartin, Caroline; Kruger, Inken; Carnol, Monique; Van Oost, Kristof; van Wesemael, Bas

    2016-04-01

    Preserving ecosystem functions of soil organic matter (SOM) in soils is a key challenge. The need for an efficient diagnosis of SOM state in agricultural soils is a priority in order to facilitate the detection of changes in soil quality as a result of changes in management practices. The nature of SOM is complex and cannot readily be monitored due to the heterogeneity of its components. Assessment of the SOM level dynamics, typically characterized as the bulk soil organic carbon (SOC), can be refined by taking into account carbon pools with different turnover rates and stability. Fractionating bulk SOC in meaningful soil organic fractions helps to better diagnose SOC status. By separating carbon associated with clay and fine silt particles (stable carbon with slow turnover rate) and carbon non-associated with this fraction (labile and intermediate carbon with higher turnover rates), effects of management can be detected more efficiently at different spatial and temporal scales. Until now, most work on SOC fractionation has focused on small spatial scales along management or time gradients. The present case study focuses on SOC fractionation applied in order to refine the interpretation of organic matter turnover and SOC sequestration for regional units in Wallonia with comparable climate, management and, to a certain extent, soil conditions. In each unit, random samples from specific land uses are analyzed in order to assess the Normal Operative Ranges (NOR) of SOC fraction contents for each unit and land use combination. Thus, SOC levels of the different fractions of a specific field in a given unit can be compared to its corresponding NOR. It will help to better diagnose agricultural soil quality in terms of organic carbon compared to a bulk SOC diagnosis.

  18. Deep ploughing increases agricultural soil organic matter stocks.

    PubMed

    Alcántara, Viridiana; Don, Axel; Well, Reinhard; Nieder, Rolf

    2016-08-01

    Subsoils play an important role within the global C cycle, since they have high soil organic carbon (SOC) storage capacity due to generally low SOC concentrations. However, measures for enhancing SOC storage commonly focus on topsoils. This study assessed the long-term storage and stability of SOC in topsoils buried in arable subsoils by deep ploughing, a globally applied method for breaking up hard pans and improving soil structure to optimize crop growing conditions. One effect of deep ploughing is translocation of SOC formed near the surface into the subsoil, with concomitant mixing of SOC-poor subsoil material into the 'new' topsoil. Deep-ploughed croplands represent unique long-term in situ incubations of SOC-rich material in subsoils. In this study, we sampled five loamy and five sandy soils that were ploughed to 55-90 cm depth 35-50 years ago. Adjacent, similarly managed but conventionally ploughed subplots were sampled as reference. The deep-ploughed soils contained on average 42 ± 13% more SOC than the reference subplots. On average, 45 years after deep ploughing, the 'new' topsoil still contained 15% less SOC than the reference topsoil, indicating long-term SOC accumulation potential in the topsoil. In vitro incubation experiments on the buried sandy soils revealed 63 ± 6% lower potential SOC mineralisation rates and also 67 ± 2% lower SOC mineralisation per unit SOC in the buried topsoils than in the reference topsoils. Wider C/N ratio in the buried sandy topsoils than in the reference topsoils indicates that deep ploughing preserved SOC. The SOC mineralisation per unit SOC in the buried loamy topsoils was not significantly different from that in the reference topsoils. However, 56 ± 4% of the initial SOC was preserved in the buried topsoils. It can be concluded that deep ploughing contributes to SOC sequestration by enlarging the storage space for SOC-rich material.

  19. Validating a high-resolution digital soil map for precision agriculture across multiple fields

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Digital soil mapping (DSM) for precision agriculture (PA) management is aimed at developing models that predict soil properties or classes using legacy soil data, sensors, and environmental covariates. The utility of DSM for PA is based on its ability to provide useful spatial soil information for o...

  20. Assessing microbial activities in metal contaminated agricultural volcanic soils--An integrative approach.

    PubMed

    Parelho, C; Rodrigues, A S; Barreto, M C; Ferreira, N G C; Garcia, P

    2016-07-01

    Volcanic soils are unique naturally fertile resources, extensively used for agricultural purposes and with particular physicochemical properties that may result in accumulation of toxic substances, such as trace metals. Trace metal contaminated soils have significant effects on soil microbial activities and hence on soil quality. The aim of this study is to determine the soil microbial responses to metal contamination in volcanic soils under different agricultural land use practices (conventional, traditional and organic), based on a three-tier approach: Tier 1 - assess soil microbial activities, Tier 2 - link the microbial activity to soil trace metal contamination and, Tier 3 - integrate the microbial activity in an effect-based soil index (Integrative Biological Response) to score soil health status in metal contaminated agricultural soils. Our results showed that microbial biomass C levels and soil enzymes activities were decreased in all agricultural soils. Dehydrogenase and β-glucosidase activities, soil basal respiration and microbial biomass C were the most sensitive responses to trace metal soil contamination. The Integrative Biological Response value indicated that soil health was ranked as: organic>traditional>conventional, highlighting the importance of integrative biomarker-based strategies for the development of the trace metal "footprint" in Andosols.

  1. Occurrence of emerging contaminants in agricultural soils, sewage sludge and waters in Valencia (E Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boluda, Rafael; Marimon, Lupe; Atzeni, Stefania; Mormeneo, Salvador; Iranzo, María; Zueco, Jesús; Gamón, Miguel; Sancenón, José; Romera, David; Gil, Carlos; Amparo Soriano, Maria; Granell, Clara; Roca, Núria; Bech, Jaume

    2013-04-01

    In recent years, studies into the presence and distribution of emerging contaminants (ECs), like pharmaceutical products, some pesticides and mycotoxins in the natural environment, are receiving considerable attention. Thus, the presence of these compounds in waters, soils and wastes in different locations including agricultural systems has been stressed; very few studies into this matter are available in Spain. The main source of ECs in the environment is wastewater spillage from wastewater treatment plants (WTP), where these compounds arrive from the sewer system network. The objective of this study was to determine the levels of 35 ECs constituted by nine pharmaceutical products, 23 fungicides and three mycotoxins in soils, sewages sludge and waters adjacent to WTP from an agriculture area of Valencia (E Spain) influenced by intense urban and industrial activity. Seven samples from sludge, 13 soil samples and eight samples of waters from the area of influence of WTP were collected. The ECs extraction were performed using 5 g of fresh sample and a mixture of acetonitrile with 1% formic acid and water at the 3:1 ratio by shaking for 45 min and then centrifuging at 4,000 rpm for 5 min. The extract was filtered and determination was done by HPLC system connected to a 3200-Qtrap de triple quadrupole mass spectrometer with an electrospray ion source. The results showed that soil-ECs concentrations were 10 times lower that in sewage sludge. The smaller number of detections and detected compounds should also be stressed. As in previous cases, fungicides azole (tebuconazole and tricyclazole), along with boscalid, were the most detected compounds with concentrations of between 100 and 400 µg kg-1 dw. In second place, propiconazole and azoxystrobin stood out, followed by carbendazim, dimetomorph, pyraclostrobin and propamocarb. The following drugs and mycotoxins were detected to have a higher to lower concentration (1-40 µg kg-1): telmisartan, irbesartan, venlafaxine

  2. Carbonyl sulfide and dimethyl sulfide fluxes in an urban lawn and adjacent bare soil in Guangzhou, China.

    PubMed

    Yi, Zhigang; Wang, Xinming

    2011-01-01

    Carbonyl sulfide (COS) and dimethyl sulfide (DMS) fluxes from an urban Cynodon dactylon lawn and adjacent bare soil were measured during April-July 2005 in Guangzhou, China. Both the lawn and bare soil acted as sinks for COS and sources for DMS. The mean fluxes of COS and DMS in the lawn (-19.27 and 18.16 pmol/(m2 sec), respectively) were significantly higher than those in the bare soil (-9.89 and 9.35 pmol/(m2 sec), respectively). Fluxes of COS and DMS in mowed lawn were also higher than those in bare soils. Both COS and DMS fluxes showed diurnal variation with detectable but much lower values in the nighttime than in the daytime. COS fluxes were related significantly to temperature and the optimal temperature for COS uptake was 29 degrees C. While positive linear correlations were found between DMS fluxes and temperature. COS fluxes increased linearly with ambient COS mixing ratios, and had a compensation point of 336 ppt.

  3. Influence of sustainable management on aggregate stability and soil organic matter on agricultural soil of southern Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morugan-Coronado, Alicia; Arcenegui, Victoria; Mataix-Solera, Jorge; Gomez-Lucas, Ignacio; Garcia-Orenes, Fuensanta

    2016-04-01

    Intensive agriculture has increased crop yields but also posed severe environmental problems. Unsustainable land management such as excessive tillage can lead to a loss of soil fertility and a drastic reduction in the aggregate stability and soil organic matter content. However sustainable agriculture can keep good crop yields with minimal impact on ecological factors conserving the soil quality and its ecosystem services. Sustainable agriculture management promotes the maintenance of soil organic matter levels providing plant nutrients through the microbial decomposition of organic materials. Also this management has a positive effect on soil structure with the improvement of stability of aggregates. The resistance of soil aggregates to the slaking and dispersive effects of water (aggregate stability) is important for maintaining the structure in arable soils. Our purpose was to investigate and compare the effects of sustainable agricultural practices versus intensive agriculture on aggregate stability and soil organic matter. Three agricultural areas are being monitored in the southern of Spain, two of them with citrus orchards (AL) and (FE) and one with grapevine(PA). In all of them two agricultural treatments are being developed, organic with no-tillage management(O) and inorganic fertilization with herbicide application and intensive tillage (I). The sustainable agricultural management (manure, no tillage and vegetation cover) contributed to the improve of soil conditions, increasing organic matter and aggregate stability. Meanwhile, herbicide treatment and intensive tillage with inorganic fertilization managements resulted in the decreasing of aggregate stability and low levels of soil organic carbon. Soil organic matter content is generally low in all unsustainable treatments plots and tends to decline in aggregate stability and soil physical condition. In both treatments the crop yield are comparable.

  4. Selenium speciation and extractability in Dutch agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Supriatin, Supriatin; Weng, Liping; Comans, Rob N J

    2015-11-01

    The study aimed to understand selenium (Se) speciation and extractability in Dutch agricultural soils. Top soil samples were taken from 42 grassland fields and 41 arable land fields in the Netherlands. Total Se contents measured in aqua regia were between 0.12 and 1.97 mg kg(-1) (on average 0.58 mg kg(-1)). Organic Se after NaOCl oxidation-extraction accounted for on average 82% of total Se, whereas inorganic selenite (selenate was not measurable) measured in ammonium oxalate extraction using HPLC-ICP-MS accounted for on average 5% of total Se. The predominance of organic Se in the soils is supported by the positive correlations between total Se (aqua regia) and total soil organic matter content, and Se and organic C content in all the other extractions performed in this study. The amount of Se extracted followed the order of aqua regia > 1 M NaOCl (pH8) > 0.1 M NaOH>ammonium oxalate (pH3) > hot water>0.43 M HNO3 > 0.01 M CaCl2. None of these extractions selectively extracts only inorganic Se, and relative to other extractions 0.43 M HNO3 extraction contains the lowest fraction of organic Se, followed by ammonium oxalate extraction. In the 0.1M NaOH extraction, the hydrophobic neutral (HON) fraction of soil organic matter is richer in Se than in the hydrophilic (Hy) and humic acid (HA) fractions. The organic matter extracted in 0.01 M CaCl2 and hot water is in general richer in Se compared to the organic matter extracted in 0.1M NaOH, and other extractions (HNO3, ammonium oxalate, NaOCl, and aqua regia). Although the extractability of Se follows to a large extent the extractability of soil organic carbon, there is several time variations in the Se to organic C ratios, reflecting the changes in composition of organic matter extracted.

  5. Impact of woodchip biochar amendment on the sorption and dissipation of pesticide acetamiprid in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Yu, Xiang-Yang; Mu, Chang-Li; Gu, Cheng; Liu, Cun; Liu, Xian-Jin

    2011-11-01

    Pyrolysis of vegetative biomass into biochar and application of the more stable form of carbon to soil have been shown to be effective in reducing the emission of greenhouse gases, improving soil fertility, and sequestering soil contaminants. However, there is still lack of information about the impact of biochar amendment in agricultural soils on the sorption and environmental fate of pesticides. In this study, we investigated the sorption and dissipation of a neonicotinoid insecticide acetamiprid in three typical Chinese agricultural soils, which were amended by a red gum wood (Eucalyptus spp.) derived biochar. Our results showed that the amendment of biochar (0.5% (w/w)) to the soils could significantly increase the sorption of acetamiprid, but the magnitudes of enhancement were varied. Contributions of 0.5% newly-added biochar to the overall sorption of acetamiprid were 52.3%, 27.4% and 11.6% for red soil, paddy soil and black soil, respectively. The dissipation of acetamiprid in soils amended with biochar was retarded compared to that in soils without biochar amendment. Similar to the sorption experiment, in soil with higher content of organic matter, the retardation of biochar on the dissipation of acetamiprid was lower than that with lower content of organic matter. The different effects of biochar in agricultural soils may attribute to the interaction of soil components with biochar, which would block the pore or compete for binding site of biochar. Aging effect of biochar application in agricultural soils and field experiments need to be further investigated.

  6. Plant-Parasitic Nematodes in Maine Agricultural Soils

    PubMed Central

    Huettel, W N.; Francl, L. J.; Henn, A.; Bourgoin, T.

    1990-01-01

    In a survey of plant-parasitic nematodes associated with agricultural crops in nine Maine counties, 744 soil samples from 26 potential host plants were analyzed between November 1987 and January 1989. The most commonly encountered nematode genus was Pratylenchus, occurring in 85% of the samples from most crops, except blueberries and onions. Pratylenchus penetrans and P. crenatus were found commonly as species mixtures, with P. penetrans composing 40-80% of the mixture. Meloidogyne hapla was encountered in 16% of the samples in four counties, generally in potato rotations. Other nematodes encountered were Aphelenchoides spp., Criconemella curvature, Ditylenchus spp., Helicotylenchus pseudorobustus, H. digonicus, Heterodera trifolii, Paratylenchus projectus, Trichodorus spp., Tylenchorhynchus maximus, and Xiphinema americanum. Potato fields were the most heavily sampled and thus weighted the statewide results. PMID:19287791

  7. Effects of agricultural intensification in the tropics on soil carbon losses and soil fertility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guillaume, Thomas; Buttler, Alexandre; Kuzyakov, Yakov

    2016-04-01

    Tropical forest conversion to agricultural land leads to strong decrease of soil organic carbon (SOC). Nonetheless, the impacts of SOC losses on soil fertility remain unclear. We quantified SOC losses in forest, oil palm plantations, extensive rubber plantations and rubber monocultures on Sumatra Island (Indonesia). Furthermore, we assessed the response of biological (basal respiration, microbial biomass, acid phosphatase) and chemical fertility indicators (light fraction of OM, DOC, total N, available P) to SOC losses. We used a new approach based on (non-)linear regressions between SOC losses and the indicators, normalized to natural ecosystem values, to assess the sensitivity or resistance of fertility indicators to SOC losses. Carbon contents in the Ah horizon under oil palm and intensive rubber plantations were strongly reduced: up to 70% and 62%, respectively. The decrease was lower under extensive rubber (41%). The negative impact of land-use changes on all measured indicators increased in the following sequence: extensive rubber < rubber < oil palm. Basal respiration, microbial biomass and nutrients were comparatively resistant to SOC losses, whereas the light fraction of OM was lost faster than the SOC. The resistance of the microbial activity to SOC losses is an indication that microbial-mediated soil functions sustain SOC losses. However, responses of basal respiration and microbial biomass to SOC losses were non-linear. Below 2.7% C content, the relationship was reversed. The basal respiration decreased faster than the SOC, resulting in a stronger drop of microbial activity under oil palm compared to rubber, despite small difference in C content. We conclude that the new approach allows a quantitative assessment of the sensitivity and threshold of various soil functions to land-use changes and consequently, can be used to assess their resistance to agricultural intensification. Therefore, this method is appropriate to evaluate the environmental impacts

  8. Regional Limits to Sequestration of Atmospheric C in Soils: Influence of Soil C Fractions and Agricultural Practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conant, R. T.; Six, J.; Paustian, K.; Paul, E. A.

    2001-05-01

    Agricultural management has substantial effects on C output from soil, primarily through tillage, and on quantity and amount of C input to soil through residue management. The dynamics of agricultural management impacts are reasonably well understood and soil C responses are adequately predicted by a number of soil organic matter models in most systems. However, some data suggests that responses to increases in residue return do not always lead to increased soil C, as most models would predict; some soils appear to be saturated with respect to C. Therefore, models may over-predict the capacity of soils to stabilize soil C in some regions. Similarly, soil C levels may be near saturation in some systems and estimates of C sequestration potential in these systems may be too large. Conversely, soils in other regions are substantially below saturation level and could stabilize significant amounts of C in soils. The purpose of this presentation is to explore the implications of the concept of soil C saturation to identify areas (1) likely to be saturated with respect to soil C, (2) likely to become saturated with changes in agricultural management, and (3) areas far from saturation capable of stabilizing large amounts of C in soil. We compare output from a new model that explicitly accounts for limits to physical protection of soil organic matter with a more traditional soil organic matter model for a range of long-term agricultural research plots with different cultivation, rotation, and fertilization treatments. The result is a map of soils saturated with respect to C and of areas with soil C saturation deficits of varying magnitude.

  9. Potential of Biological Agents in Decontamination of Agricultural Soil.

    PubMed

    Javaid, Muhammad Kashif; Ashiq, Mehrban; Tahir, Muhammad

    2016-01-01

    Pesticides are widely used for the control of weeds, diseases, and pests of cultivated plants all over the world, mainly since the period after the Second World War. The use of pesticides is very extensive to control harm of pests all over the globe. Persistent nature of most of the synthetic pesticides causes serious environmental concerns. Decontamination of these hazardous chemicals is very essential. This review paper elaborates the potential of various biological agents in decontamination of agricultural soils. The agricultural crop fields are contaminated by the periodic applications of pesticides. Biodegradation is an ecofriendly, cost-effective, highly efficient approach compared to the physical and chemical methods which are expensive as well as unfriendly towards environment. Biodegradation is sensitive to the concentration levels of hydrogen peroxide and nitrogen along with microbial community, temperature, and pH changes. Experimental work for optimum conditions at lab scale can provide very fruitful results about specific bacterial, fungal strains. This study revealed an upper hand of bioremediation over physicochemical approaches. Further studies should be carried out to understand mechanisms of biotransformation.

  10. Potential of Biological Agents in Decontamination of Agricultural Soil

    PubMed Central

    Javaid, Muhammad Kashif; Ashiq, Mehrban; Tahir, Muhammad

    2016-01-01

    Pesticides are widely used for the control of weeds, diseases, and pests of cultivated plants all over the world, mainly since the period after the Second World War. The use of pesticides is very extensive to control harm of pests all over the globe. Persistent nature of most of the synthetic pesticides causes serious environmental concerns. Decontamination of these hazardous chemicals is very essential. This review paper elaborates the potential of various biological agents in decontamination of agricultural soils. The agricultural crop fields are contaminated by the periodic applications of pesticides. Biodegradation is an ecofriendly, cost-effective, highly efficient approach compared to the physical and chemical methods which are expensive as well as unfriendly towards environment. Biodegradation is sensitive to the concentration levels of hydrogen peroxide and nitrogen along with microbial community, temperature, and pH changes. Experimental work for optimum conditions at lab scale can provide very fruitful results about specific bacterial, fungal strains. This study revealed an upper hand of bioremediation over physicochemical approaches. Further studies should be carried out to understand mechanisms of biotransformation. PMID:27293964

  11. Classification and soil moisture determination of agricultural fields

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vandenbroek, A. C.; Groot, J. S.

    1993-01-01

    During the Mac-Europe campaign of 1991 several SAR (Synthetic Aperature Radar) experiments were carried out in the Flevoland test area in the Netherlands. The test site consists of a forested and an agricultural area with more than 15 different crop types. The experiments took place in June and July (mid to late growing season). The area was monitored by the spaceborne C-band VV polarized ERS-1, the Dutch airborne PHARS with similar frequency and polarization and the three-frequency PP-, L-, and C-band) polarimetric AIRSAR system of NASA/JPL. The last system passed over on June 15, 3, 12, and 28. The last two dates coincided with the overpasses of the PHARS and the ERS-1. Comparison of the results showed that backscattering coefficients from the three systems agree quite well. In this paper we present the results of a study of crop type classification (section 2) and soil moisture determination in the agricultural area (section 3). For these studies we used field averaged Stokes matrices extracted from the AIRSAR data (processor version 3.55 or 3.56).

  12. Linking trace metals and agricultural land use in volcanic soils--a multivariate approach.

    PubMed

    Parelho, C; Rodrigues, A S; Cruz, J V; Garcia, P

    2014-10-15

    The concern about the environmental impacts caused by agriculture intensification is growing as large amounts of nutrients and contaminants are introduced into soil ecosystems. Volcanic soils are unique naturally fertile resources extensively used for agricultural purposes, with particular physical and chemical properties that may result in possible accumulation of toxic substances, such as metals. Within this particular geological context, the present study aims to evaluate the impact of different agricultural systems (conventional, traditional and organic) in trace metal (TM) soil pollution and define the tracers for each one. Physicochemical properties and TM contents in agricultural topsoils were determined. Enrichment Factors (EF) were calculated to distinguish geogenic and anthropogenic contribution to TM contents in agricultural soils. An ensemble of multivariate statistical analyses (PCA and FDA) was performed to reduce the multidimensional space of variables and samples, thus defining a set of TM as tracers of distinct agricultural farming systems. Results show that agricultural soils have low organic matter content (<5%) compared to reference soil (>30%); in addition, electric conductivity in conventional farming soils is higher (262.3 ± 162.6 μS cm(-1)) while pH is lower (5.8 ± 0.3). Regarding metal inputs, V, Ba and Hg soil contents are mainly of geogenic origin, while Li, P, K, Cr, Mn, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Mo, Cd and Pb result primarily from anthropogenic inputs. Li revealed to be a tracer of agricultural pollution in conventional farming soils, whereas V allowed the discrimination of traditional farming soils. This study points to agriculture as a diffuse source of anthropogenic TM soil pollution and is the first step to identify priority chemicals affecting agricultural Andosols.

  13. Can conservation trump impacts of climate change and extremes on soil erosion in agricultural landscapes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Preservation of top soil is critical for the long term sustainability of agricultural productivity, food security, and biodiversity. However, today’s growing population and increasing demand for food and fiber is stressing the agricultural soil and water resources. Climate change imposes additional ...

  14. Heavy metals accumulation in parts of paddy Oryza sativa L. grown in paddy field adjacent to ultrabasic soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hadif, Waqeed Mahdi; Rahim, Sahibin Abd; Sahid, Ismail; Bhuiyan, Atiqur Rahman; Ibrahim, Izyanti

    2015-09-01

    The present study was carried out to evaluate the accumulation and translocation of heavy metals from soil around the root zone to various parts of the paddy plant, namely the roots, stems, leaves and rice grains. This study was conducted in 2014 in paddy field adjacent to ultrabasic soil (field 1 and 2) located in Ranau, Sabah and one field (Field 3) taken as control located at the UKM experimental plot in peninsular of Malaysia. The plant species used in the present investigation is Paddy Batu. The heavy metals studied were Chromium (Cr), Iron (Fe) and Nickel (Ni). Heavy metals in soil and plant were extracted by wet digestion method. Heavy metals present in paddy plants and soils extract were measured using the ICP-MS. Heavy metals concentrations in the plant parts in descending order is the root > leaves > stem > rice grain. Lower concentration of all heavy metals in soils and plant parts was shown by the control site (Field 3) in UKM Bangi. Higher concentration of heavy metals occurred in the roots compared to other above ground parts (stem, leaves, and grains) of the paddy plant in all of the paddy field. The bioaccumulation factor (BAF) of heavy metals in all locations were recorded in descending order as Ni > Cr > Fe, the BAF values for all metals in the rice grains were low, whereas the BAF values were recorded high for Ni in all locations. The results also showed that Fe was the most predominant metal ion in the roots, followed by Ni then Cr.

  15. Leucaena leucocephala and adjacent native limestone forest habitats contrast in soil properties on Tinian Island.

    PubMed

    Marler, Thomas E; Dongol, Nirmala; Cruz, Gil N

    2016-01-01

    An ex situ germplasm collection of the endangered Cycas micronesica was established in a transition zone between biodiverse native forest and mature stands of the invasive species Leucaena leucocephala. Soil chemical properties were determined for the 2 tree cover types to inform management decisions. Total carbon, total nitrogen, calcium, and net ammonification were greater in native forest cover than in L. leucocephala patches. Net nitrification and net mineralization were greater under L. leucocephala cover. Trace metals also differed between the 2 forest cover types, with chromium, cobalt, and nickel accumulating to greater concentration under L. leucocephala cover and zinc accumulating to greater concentration under native forest cover. The results indicated that L. leucocephala cover generated substantial changes in soil chemical properties when compared with native forest tree cover, illuminating one means by which understory vegetation may be affected by changes in invasive tree cover.

  16. Leucaena leucocephala and adjacent native limestone forest habitats contrast in soil properties on Tinian Island

    PubMed Central

    Marler, Thomas E.; Dongol, Nirmala; Cruz, Gil N.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT An ex situ germplasm collection of the endangered Cycas micronesica was established in a transition zone between biodiverse native forest and mature stands of the invasive species Leucaena leucocephala. Soil chemical properties were determined for the 2 tree cover types to inform management decisions. Total carbon, total nitrogen, calcium, and net ammonification were greater in native forest cover than in L. leucocephala patches. Net nitrification and net mineralization were greater under L. leucocephala cover. Trace metals also differed between the 2 forest cover types, with chromium, cobalt, and nickel accumulating to greater concentration under L. leucocephala cover and zinc accumulating to greater concentration under native forest cover. The results indicated that L. leucocephala cover generated substantial changes in soil chemical properties when compared with native forest tree cover, illuminating one means by which understory vegetation may be affected by changes in invasive tree cover. PMID:27829978

  17. Dynamics of soil organic carbon and microbial activity in treated wastewater irrigated agricultural soils along soil profiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jüschke, Elisabeth; Marschner, Bernd; Chen, Yona; Tarchitzky, Jorge

    2010-05-01

    Treated wastewater (TWW) is an important source for irrigation water in arid and semiarid regions and already serves as an important water source in Jordan, the Palestinian Territories and Israel. Reclaimed water still contains organic matter (OM) and various compounds that may effect microbial activity and soil quality (Feigin et al. 1991). Natural soil organic carbon (SOC) may be altered by interactions between these compounds and the soil microorganisms. This study evaluates the effects of TWW irrigation on the quality, dynamics and microbial transformations of natural SOC. Priming effects (PE) and SOC mineralization were determined to estimate the influence of TWW irrigation on SOC along soil profiles of agricultural soils in Israel and the Westbank. The used soil material derived from three different sampling sites allocated in Israel and The Palestinian Authority. Soil samples were taken always from TWW irrigated sites and control fields from 6 different depths (0-10, 10-20, 20-30, 30-50, 50-70, 70-100 cm). Soil carbon content and microbiological parameters (microbial biomass, microbial activities and enzyme activities) were investigated. In several sites, subsoils (50-160 cm) from TWW irrigated plots were depleted in soil organic matter with the largest differences occurring in sites with the longest TWW irrigation history. Laboratory incubation experiments with additions of 14C-labelled compounds to the soils showed that microbial activity in freshwater irrigated soils was much more stimulated by sugars or amino acids than in TWW irrigated soils. The lack of such "priming effects" (Hamer & Marschner 2005) in the TWW irrigated soils indicates that here the microorganisms are already operating at their optimal metabolic activity due to the continuous substrate inputs with soluble organic compounds from the TWW. The fact that PE are triggered continuously due to TWW irrigation may result in a decrease of SOC over long term irrigation. Already now this could be

  18. Unexpected stimulation of soil methane uptake as emergent property of agricultural soils following bio-based residue application.

    PubMed

    Ho, Adrian; Reim, Andreas; Kim, Sang Yoon; Meima-Franke, Marion; Termorshuizen, Aad; de Boer, Wietse; van der Putten, Wim H; Bodelier, Paul L E

    2015-10-01

    Intensification of agriculture to meet the global food, feed, and bioenergy demand entail increasing re-investment of carbon compounds (residues) into agro-systems to prevent decline of soil quality and fertility. However, agricultural intensification decreases soil methane uptake, reducing, and even causing the loss of the methane sink function. In contrast to wetland agricultural soils (rice paddies), the methanotrophic potential in well-aerated agricultural soils have received little attention, presumably due to the anticipated low or negligible methane uptake capacity in these soils. Consequently, a detailed study verifying or refuting this assumption is still lacking. Exemplifying a typical agricultural practice, we determined the impact of bio-based residue application on soil methane flux, and determined the methanotrophic potential, including a qualitative (diagnostic microarray) and quantitative (group-specific qPCR assays) analysis of the methanotrophic community after residue amendments over 2 months. Unexpectedly, after amendments with specific residues, we detected a significant transient stimulation of methane uptake confirmed by both the methane flux measurements and methane oxidation assay. This stimulation was apparently a result of induced cell-specific activity, rather than growth of the methanotroph population. Although transient, the heightened methane uptake offsets up to 16% of total gaseous CO2 emitted during the incubation. The methanotrophic community, predominantly comprised of Methylosinus may facilitate methane oxidation in the agricultural soils. While agricultural soils are generally regarded as a net methane source or a relatively weak methane sink, our results show that methane oxidation rate can be stimulated, leading to higher soil methane uptake. Hence, even if agriculture exerts an adverse impact on soil methane uptake, implementing carefully designed management strategies (e.g. repeated application of specific residues) may

  19. Economic Potential of Greenhouse Gas Emission Reductions: Comparative Role for Soil Sequestration in Agriculture and Forestry

    SciTech Connect

    Mccarl, Bruce A.; Schneider, Uwe; Murray, Brian; Williams, Jimmy; Sands, Ronald D.

    2001-05-14

    This paper examines the relative contribution of agricultural and forestry activities in an emission reduction program, focusing in part on the relative desirability of sequestration in forests and agricultural soils. The analysis considers the effects of competition for land and other resources between agricultural activities, forestry activities and traditional production. In addition, the paper examines the influence of saturation and volatility.

  20. Proximal Soil Sensing – A Contribution for Species Habitat Distribution Modelling of Earthworms in Agricultural Soils?

    PubMed Central

    Schirrmann, Michael; Joschko, Monika; Gebbers, Robin; Kramer, Eckart; Zörner, Mirjam; Barkusky, Dietmar; Timmer, Jens

    2016-01-01

    Background Earthworms are important for maintaining soil ecosystem functioning and serve as indicators of soil fertility. However, detection of earthworms is time-consuming, which hinders the assessment of earthworm abundances with high sampling density over entire fields. Recent developments of mobile terrestrial sensor platforms for proximal soil sensing (PSS) provided new tools for collecting dense spatial information of soils using various sensing principles. Yet, the potential of PSS for assessing earthworm habitats is largely unexplored. This study investigates whether PSS data contribute to the spatial prediction of earthworm abundances in species distribution models of agricultural soils. Methodology/Principal Findings Proximal soil sensing data, e.g., soil electrical conductivity (EC), pH, and near infrared absorbance (NIR), were collected in real-time in a field with two management strategies (reduced tillage / conventional tillage) and sandy to loam soils. PSS was related to observations from a long-term (11 years) earthworm observation study conducted at 42 plots. Earthworms were sampled from 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.2 m³ soil blocks and identified to species level. Sensor data were highly correlated with earthworm abundances observed in reduced tillage but less correlated with earthworm abundances observed in conventional tillage. This may indicate that management influences the sensor-earthworm relationship. Generalized additive models and state-space models showed that modelling based on data fusion from EC, pH, and NIR sensors produced better results than modelling without sensor data or data from just a single sensor. Regarding the individual earthworm species, particular sensor combinations were more appropriate than others due to the different habitat requirements of the earthworms. Earthworm species with soil-specific habitat preferences were spatially predicted with higher accuracy by PSS than more ubiquitous species. Conclusions/Significance Our

  1. Hydrological controls on heterotrophic soil respiration across an agricultural landscape

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Water availability is an important determinant of variation in soil respiration, but a consistent relationship between soil water and the relative flux rate of carbon dioxide across different soil types remains elusive. Using large undisturbed soil columns (N = 12), we evaluated soil water controls...

  2. Enhancing soil sorption capacity of an agricultural soil by addition of three different organic wastes.

    PubMed

    Rojas, Raquel; Morillo, José; Usero, José; Delgado-Moreno, Laura; Gan, Jay

    2013-08-01

    This study evaluated the ability of three unmodified organic residues (composted sewage sludge, RO1; chicken manure, RO2; and a residue from olive oil production called 'orujillo', RO3) and a soil to sorb six pesticides (atrazine, lindane, alachlor, chlorpyrifos, chlorfenvinphos and endosulfan sulfate) and thereby explored the potential environmental value of these organic residues for mitigating pesticide pollution in agricultural production and removing contaminants from wastewater. Pesticide determination was carried out using gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry. Adsorption data were analyzed by the Langmuir and Freundlich adsorption approaches. Experimental results showed that the Freundlich isotherm model best described the adsorption process and that Kf values increased with an increase in organic matter (OM) content of the amended soil. The order of adsorption of pesticides on soils was: chlorpyrifos≥endosulfan sulfate>chlorfenvinphos≥lindane>alachlor≥atrazine. The sorption was greater for the most hydrophobic compounds and lower for the most polar ones, as corroborated by a negative correlation between Kf values and solubility. Sorption increased with an increase in organic matter. Sorption capacity was positively correlated with the organic carbon (OC) content. The organic amendment showing the maximum sorption capacity was RO3 in all cases, except for chlorfenvinphos, in which it was RO2. The order of adsorption capacity of the amendments depended on the pesticide and the organic dosage. In the case of the 10% amendment the order was RO3>RO2>RO1>soil, except for chlorfenvinphos, in which it was RO2>RO3>RO1>soil, and atrazine, where RO2 and RO3 amendments had the same effect on the soil sorption capacity (RO2≥RO3>RO1>soil).

  3. Increasing Efficiency of Water Use in Agriculture through Management of Soil Water Repellency to Optimize Soil and Water Productivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Demie; Kostka, Stan; McMillan, Mica; Gadd, Nick

    2010-05-01

    Water's ability to infiltrate and disperse in soils, and soil's ability to receive, transport, retain, filter and release water are important factors in the efficient use of water in agriculture. Deteriorating soil conditions, including development of soil water repellency, negatively impact hydrological processes and, consequently, the efficiency of rainfall and irrigation. Soil water repellency is increasingly being identified in diverse soils and cropping systems. Recently research has been conducted on the use of novel soil surfactants (co-formulations of alkyl polyglycoside and block copolymer surfactants) to avoid or overcome soil water repellency and enhance water distribution in soils. Results indicate that this is an effective and affordable approach to maintaining or restoring soil and water productivity in irrigated cropping systems. Results from studies conducted in Australia and the United States to determine how this technology modifies soil hydrological behavior and crop yields will be presented. A range of soils and various crops, including potatoes, corn, apples and grapes, were included. Several rates were compared to controls for effect on soil moisture levels, soil water distribution, and crop yield. An economic analysis was also conducted in some trials. Treatments improved rootzone water status, significantly increased crop yield and quality, and in some cases allowed significant reductions in water requirements. Where assessed, a positive economic return was generated. This technology holds promise as a strategy for increasing efficiency of water use in agriculture.

  4. Validating a digital soil map with corn yield data for precision agriculture decision support

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Variability in soil and landscape characteristics is known to challenge producers in implementing site-specific crop management strategies in precision agriculture (PA). There are growing numbers of digital soil mapping (DSM) procedures that build upon traditional soil survey information by employin...

  5. Optimum soil frost depth to alleviate climate change effects in cold region agriculture.

    PubMed

    Yanai, Yosuke; Iwata, Yukiyoshi; Hirota, Tomoyoshi

    2017-03-21

    On-farm soil frost control has been used for the management of volunteer potatoes (Solanum tuberosum L.), a serious weed problem caused by climate change, in northern Japan. Deep soil frost penetration is necessary for the effective eradication of unharvested small potato tubers; however, this process can delay soil thaw and increase soil wetting in spring, thereby delaying agricultural activity initiation and increasing nitrous oxide emissions from soil. Conversely, shallow soil frost development helps over-wintering of unharvested potato tubers and nitrate leaching from surface soil owing to the periodic infiltration of snowmelt water. In this study, we synthesised on-farm snow cover manipulation experiments to determine the optimum soil frost depth that can eradicate unharvested potato tubers without affecting agricultural activity initiation while minimising N pollution from agricultural soil. The optimum soil frost depth was estimated to be 0.28-0.33 m on the basis of the annual maximum soil frost depth. Soil frost control is a promising practice to alleviate climate change effects on agriculture in cold regions, which was initiated by local farmers and further promoted by national and local research institutes.

  6. Optimum soil frost depth to alleviate climate change effects in cold region agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Yanai, Yosuke; Iwata, Yukiyoshi; Hirota, Tomoyoshi

    2017-01-01

    On-farm soil frost control has been used for the management of volunteer potatoes (Solanum tuberosum L.), a serious weed problem caused by climate change, in northern Japan. Deep soil frost penetration is necessary for the effective eradication of unharvested small potato tubers; however, this process can delay soil thaw and increase soil wetting in spring, thereby delaying agricultural activity initiation and increasing nitrous oxide emissions from soil. Conversely, shallow soil frost development helps over-wintering of unharvested potato tubers and nitrate leaching from surface soil owing to the periodic infiltration of snowmelt water. In this study, we synthesised on-farm snow cover manipulation experiments to determine the optimum soil frost depth that can eradicate unharvested potato tubers without affecting agricultural activity initiation while minimising N pollution from agricultural soil. The optimum soil frost depth was estimated to be 0.28–0.33 m on the basis of the annual maximum soil frost depth. Soil frost control is a promising practice to alleviate climate change effects on agriculture in cold regions, which was initiated by local farmers and further promoted by national and local research institutes. PMID:28322258

  7. Terra Pretas: Charcoal Amendments Influence on Relict Soils and Modern Agriculture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ricigliano, Kristin

    2011-01-01

    Most soils found in the Amazon region are characterized by highly weathered profiles that are incapable of longterm agricultural production. However, small patches of highly fertile relict soil referred to as Terra Pretas, are also found in the Amazon region, and have maintained their integrity for thousands of years. These soils were…

  8. A soil quality and metabolic activity assessment after fifty-seven years of agricultural management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil quality assessment is a proactive process for understanding the long-term effects of soil and crop management practices within agricultural watersheds. The objective of this study was to assess the impact of management on the soil quality in fields with 57 yrs of known management history. The f...

  9. Simulating Soil Organic Carbon Dynamics in Long-term Agricultural Experiments Using CQESTR

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil carbon (C) models are useful for examining the complex interactions between climate, crop, and soil management practices and their influences on long-term changes in soil organic carbon (SOC). The CQESTR model was developed to evaluate the effect of agricultural management practices on short- a...

  10. Optimum soil frost depth to alleviate climate change effects in cold region agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yanai, Yosuke; Iwata, Yukiyoshi; Hirota, Tomoyoshi

    2017-03-01

    On-farm soil frost control has been used for the management of volunteer potatoes (Solanum tuberosum L.), a serious weed problem caused by climate change, in northern Japan. Deep soil frost penetration is necessary for the effective eradication of unharvested small potato tubers; however, this process can delay soil thaw and increase soil wetting in spring, thereby delaying agricultural activity initiation and increasing nitrous oxide emissions from soil. Conversely, shallow soil frost development helps over-wintering of unharvested potato tubers and nitrate leaching from surface soil owing to the periodic infiltration of snowmelt water. In this study, we synthesised on-farm snow cover manipulation experiments to determine the optimum soil frost depth that can eradicate unharvested potato tubers without affecting agricultural activity initiation while minimising N pollution from agricultural soil. The optimum soil frost depth was estimated to be 0.28–0.33 m on the basis of the annual maximum soil frost depth. Soil frost control is a promising practice to alleviate climate change effects on agriculture in cold regions, which was initiated by local farmers and further promoted by national and local research institutes.

  11. Climatic and agricultural drivers of soil erosion in Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Irvine, Brian; Kirkby, Mike; Fleskens, Luuk

    2015-04-01

    Soil erosion was the most frequently identified driver of land degradation across a selection of global research sites within the DESIRE-EU project. The PESERA model was adopted in the project to upscale field results and consider the potential biophysical impact both with and without stakeholder selected sustainable land management (SLM) technologies in place. The PESERA model was combined with the DESMICE economic model and focussed on forecasting the regional effects of combating desertification both in environmental and socio-economical terms. The PESERA-DESMICE approach is further developed in the WAHARA project to consider the potential of a range of water harvesting technologies to improve biophysical conditions. Modelling in the WAHARA project considers detail of water harvesting technologies at the study site scale through to a coarser application at the continental scale with the latter being informed by the detail provided by study site observations an approach adopted in DESIRE-EU. The PESERA-DESMICE approach considers the difference between a baseline scenario and a (water harvesting) technology scenario at both scales in terms of productivity, financial viability and scope for reducing erosion risk. This paper considers the continental scale and focuses on estimating the impact of in-situ water harvesting technologies across Africa under current and future agricultural and climate pressure. PESERA is adopted in this continental application as it implicitly considers the impact of land-use and climate and can be readily amended to simulate in-situ WHT. Input data for PESERA; land use, management (crop type and planting dates), soil data and topography are derived from global data resources. Climate data for present and future scenarios are available through the QUEST-GSI initiative, where future scenarios are based on the outputs of seven GCM's.

  12. Detecting buried archaeological soils with TGA in an agricultural terrace setting in Northern Calabria, Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koster, K.; Guttmann-Bond, E.; Kluiving, S.; van Leusen, M.

    2012-04-01

    Agricultural terraces are geomorphologic features created by humans. These structures protect farming land by reducing soil erosion, they collect water in their hydrological infrastructure, and preserve crops and vegetation. Their construction could however negatively affect underlying soils and archaeology present in those soils. However, if a terrace is constructed on a hill slope without destroying the underlying soil, the agricultural terrace could create a stable environment in regard to erosion, and preserve the underlying soil and potential archaeological remains in it. In order to detect soils within agricultural terraces in Northern-Calabria, Italy, Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA) was performed on exposures of four agricultural terraces, two agricultural fields in a non-terraced setting and five natural geomorphological features. Results are the detection of a buried soil horizon which contains archaeological remains dating from the Hellenistic period 60 cm below the surface of an agricultural terrace, and a buried soil horizon which contains archaeological remains dating from the Hellenistic period at the interface of an agricultural field and a river valley. Both soil horizons were indentified by an increase in organic components, and a decrease in calcium carbonates relative to their surrounding context. Conclusions are that the construction of agricultural terraces and fields does not necessarily lead to the destruction of underlying soils. This could open new doors for archaeological field investigations in agricultural areas in southern Italy. This study was conducted as part of the Raganello Archaeological Project of the Groningen Institute of Archaeology, Rijks Universiteit Groningen, in collaboration with the Institute for Geo- and Bioarchaeology at the VU University Amsterdam.

  13. Effects of agricultural practices of three crops on the soil communities under Mediterranean conditions: field evaluation.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leitão, Sara; José Cerejeira, Maria; Abreu, Manuela; Sousa, José Paulo

    2014-05-01

    Sustainable agricultural production relies on soil communities as the main actors in key soil processes necessary to maintain sustainable soil functioning. Soil biodiversity influences soil physical and chemical characteristics and thus the sustainability of crop and agro-ecosystems functioning. Agricultural practices (e.g.: soil tillage, pesticides and fertilizer applications, irrigation) may affects negatively or positively soil biodiversity and abundances by modifying the relationships between organisms in the soil ecosystem. The present study aimed to study the influence of agricultural practices of three crops (potato, onion and maize) under Mediterranean climate conditions on soil macro- and mesofauna during their entire crop cycles. Effects on soil communities were assessed at a higher tier of environmental risk assessment comprising field testing of indigenous edaphic communities in a selected study-site located in a major agriculture region of Central Portugal, Ribatejo e Oeste, neighbouring protected wetlands. A reference site near the agricultural field site was selected as a Control site to compare the terrestrial communities' composition and variation along the crop cycle. The field soil and Control site soil are sandy loam soils. Crops irrigation was performed by center-pivot (automated sprinkler that rotates in a half a circle area) and by sprinklers. Soil macro- and mesofauna were collected at both sites (field and Control) using two methodologies through pitfall trapping and soil sampling. The community of soil macro- and mesofauna of the three crops field varied versus control site along the crops cycles. Main differences were due to arachnids, coleopterans, ants and adult Diptera presence and abundance. The feeding activity of soil fauna between control site and crop areas varied only for potato and onion crops vs. control site but not among crops. Concentration of pesticides residues in soil did not cause apparent negative effects on the soil

  14. Variations in the bioavailability of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in industrial and agricultural soils after bioremediation.

    PubMed

    Guo, Meixia; Gong, Zongqiang; Allinson, Graeme; Tai, Peidong; Miao, Renhui; Li, Xiaojun; Jia, Chunyun; Zhuang, Jie

    2016-02-01

    The aim of this study was to demonstrate the variations in bioavailability remaining in industrial and agricultural soils contaminated by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) after bioremediation. After inoculation of Mycobacterium sp. and Mucor sp., PAH biodegradation was tested on a manufactured gas plant (MGP) soil and an agricultural soil. PAH bioavailability was assessed before and after biodegradation using solid-phase extraction (Tenax-TA extraction) and solid-phase micro-extraction (SPME) to represent bioaccessibility and chemical activity of PAHs, respectively. Only 3- and 4-ring PAHs were noticeably biodegradable in the MGP soil. PAH biodegradation in the agricultural soil was different from that in the MGP soil. The rapidly desorbing fractions (F(rap)) extracted by Tenax-TA and the freely dissolved concentrations of 3- and 4-ring PAHs determined by SPME from the MGP soil decreased after 30 days biodegradation; those values of the 5- and 6-ring PAHs changed to a lesser degree. For the agricultural soil, the F(rap) values of the 3- and 4-ring PAHs also decreased after the biodegradation experiment. The Tenax-TA extraction and the SPME have the potential to assess variations in the bioavailability of PAHs and the degree of biodegradation in contaminated MGP soils. In addition, Tenax-TA extraction is more sensitive than SPME when used in the agricultural soil.

  15. Soil type as factor controlling the effects of forest transformation to agricultural use in soil aggregation and related properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chrenková, Katarína; Mataix-Solera, Jorge; Dlapa, Pavel; Arcenegui, Victoria

    2014-05-01

    The stability of aggregates has an important role in soil functioning and its behavior to avoid erosion and degradation, the ability to transfer liquids and gases, which are important features for crop production and ecosystem health (Tisdall and Oades, 1982). It's also a property that is highly influenced by land use and management (Angers et al., 1993). The stability of aggregates provides key information about the capacity of soil functions that defines the soil quality. This study has aimed to identify the long-term effects of forest transformation on agricultural use on soil structure and related properties. For the research was chosen seven localities in the Alicante Province (E Spain) with different soil types in all cases to compare how the land use changes can affect as a function of soil type and characteristics. In every site, samples were collected from agricultural land use (dry crops with tillage management), and in forest areas close to them with similar soil type that are used as references. On the samples, selected physical and chemical properties were analyzed such as Soil aggregate stability (AS), Organic matter (OM), Mean weight diameter (MWD) of aggregates and Water repellency (WR). As expected, in all cases the AS was significant lower in agricultural sites than in forest. But in some cases the differences were much higher than in others. In forest sites the AS varied between 46 to 82% while in agricultural sites ranged between 14 to 45%. The results showed strong positive correlation of AS with OM. The lowest initial values of AS were found in wettable sandy soils. The agricultural land use lead to relative decrease in AS by 39 to 79% compared to forest soils, indicating that some soils are much more vulnerable to land use than others. These differences can be explained mainly because intrinsic soil properties, such as OM content, texture, and WR. Particularly, the decrease in OM content and absence of WR are responsible for the decrease in

  16. Estimations of soil fertility in physically degraded agricultural soils through selective accounting of fine earth and gravel fractions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagaraja, Mavinakoppa S.; Bhardwaj, Ajay Kumar; Prabhakara Reddy, G. V.; Srinivasamurthy, Chilakunda A.; Kumar, Sandeep

    2016-06-01

    Soil fertility and organic carbon (C) stock estimations are crucial to soil management, especially that of degraded soils, for productive agricultural use and in soil C sequestration studies. Currently, estimations based on generalized soil mass (hectare furrow basis) or bulk density are used which may be suitable for normal agricultural soils, but not for degraded soils. In this study, soil organic C, available nitrogen (N), available phosphorus (P2O5) and available potassium (K2O), and their stocks were estimated using three methods: (i) generalized soil mass (GSM, 2 million kg ha-1 furrow soil), (ii) bulk-density-based soil mass (BDSM) and (iii) the proportion of fine earth volume (FEV) method, for soils sampled from physically degraded lands in the eastern dry zone of Karnataka State in India. Comparative analyses using these methods revealed that the soil organic C, N, P2O and K2O stocks determined by using BDSM were higher than those determined by the GSM method. The soil organic C values were the lowest in the FEV method. The GSM method overestimated soil organic C, N, P2O and K2O by 9.3-72.1, 9.5-72.3, 7.1-66.6 and 9.2-72.3 %, respectively, compared to FEV-based estimations for physically degraded soils. The differences among the three methods of estimation were lower in soils with low gravel content and increased with an increase in gravel volume. There was overestimation of soil organic C and soil fertility with GSM and BDSM methods. A reassessment of methods of estimation was, therefore, attempted to provide fair estimates for land development projects in degraded lands.

  17. Changes in soil microbial community structure following the abandonment of agricultural terraces in mountainous areas of Eastern Spain

    PubMed Central

    Zornoza, R.; Guerrero, C.; Mataix-Solera, J.; Scow, K.M.; Arcenegui, V.; Mataix-Beneyto, J.

    2012-01-01

    In Eastern Spain, almond trees have been cultivated in terraced orchards for centuries, forming an integral part of the Mediterranean forest scene. In the last decades, orchards have been abandoned due to changes in society. This study investigates effects of changes in land use from forest to agricultural land and the posterior land abandonment on soil microbial community, and the influence of soil physico-chemical properties on the microbial community composition (assessed as abundances of phospholipids fatty acids, PLFA). For this purpose, three land uses (forest, agricultural and abandoned agricultural) at four locations in SE Spain were selected. Multivariate analysis showed a substantial level of differentiation in microbial community structure according to land use. The microbial communities of forest soils were highly associated with soil organic matter content. However, we have not found any physical or chemical soil property capable of explaining the differences between agricultural and abandoned agricultural soils. Thus, it was suggested that the cessation of the perturbation caused by agriculture and shifts in vegetation may have led to changes in the microbial community structure. PLFAs indicative of fungi and ratio of fungal to bacterial PLFAs were higher in abandoned agricultural soils, whereas the relative abundance of bacteria was higher in agricultural soils. Actinomycetes were generally lower in abandoned agricultural soils, while the proportions of vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhyzal fungi were, as a general trend, higher in agricultural and abandoned agricultural soils than in forests. Total microbial biomass and richness increased as agricultural < abandoned agricultural < forest soils. PMID:22291451

  18. Changes in soil microbial community structure following the abandonment of agricultural terraces in mountainous areas of Eastern Spain.

    PubMed

    Zornoza, R; Guerrero, C; Mataix-Solera, J; Scow, K M; Arcenegui, V; Mataix-Beneyto, J

    2009-07-01

    In Eastern Spain, almond trees have been cultivated in terraced orchards for centuries, forming an integral part of the Mediterranean forest scene. In the last decades, orchards have been abandoned due to changes in society. This study investigates effects of changes in land use from forest to agricultural land and the posterior land abandonment on soil microbial community, and the influence of soil physico-chemical properties on the microbial community composition (assessed as abundances of phospholipids fatty acids, PLFA). For this purpose, three land uses (forest, agricultural and abandoned agricultural) at four locations in SE Spain were selected. Multivariate analysis showed a substantial level of differentiation in microbial community structure according to land use. The microbial communities of forest soils were highly associated with soil organic matter content. However, we have not found any physical or chemical soil property capable of explaining the differences between agricultural and abandoned agricultural soils. Thus, it was suggested that the cessation of the perturbation caused by agriculture and shifts in vegetation may have led to changes in the microbial community structure. PLFAs indicative of fungi and ratio of fungal to bacterial PLFAs were higher in abandoned agricultural soils, whereas the relative abundance of bacteria was higher in agricultural soils. Actinomycetes were generally lower in abandoned agricultural soils, while the proportions of vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhyzal fungi were, as a general trend, higher in agricultural and abandoned agricultural soils than in forests. Total microbial biomass and richness increased as agricultural < abandoned agricultural < forest soils.

  19. Assessing and monitoring soil quality at agricultural waste disposal areas-Soil Indicators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doula, Maria; Kavvadias, Victor; Sarris, Apostolos; Lolos, Polykarpos; Liakopoulou, Nektaria; Hliaoutakis, Aggelos; Kydonakis, Aris

    2014-05-01

    The necessity of elaborating indicators is one of the priorities identified by the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). The establishment of an indicator monitoring system for environmental purposes is dependent on the geographical scale. Some indicators such as rain seasonality or drainage density are useful over large areas, but others such as soil depth, vegetation cover type, and land ownership are only applicable locally. In order to practically enhance the sustainability of land management, research on using indicators for assessing land degradation risk must initially focus at local level because management decisions by individual land users are taken at this level. Soils that accept wastes disposal, apart from progressive degradation, may cause serious problems to the surrounding environment (humans, animals, plants, water systems, etc.), and thus, soil quality should be necessarily monitored. Therefore, quality indicators, representative of the specific waste type, should be established and monitored periodically. Since waste composition is dependent on their origin, specific indicators for each waste type should be established. Considering agricultural wastes, such a specification, however, could be difficult, since almost all agricultural wastes are characterized by increased concentrations of the same elements, namely, phosphorous, nitrogen, potassium, sulfur, etc.; contain large amounts of organic matter; and have very high values of chemical oxygen demand (COD), biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), and electrical conductivity. Two LIFE projects, namely AgroStrat and PROSODOL are focused on the identification of soil indicators for the assessment of soil quality at areas where pistachio wastes and olive mill wastes are disposed, respectively. Many soil samples were collected periodically for 2 years during PROSODOL and one year during AgroStrat (this project is in progress) from waste disposal areas and analyzed for 23 parameters

  20. Lead in Urban Soils: A Real or Perceived Concern for Urban Agriculture?

    PubMed

    Brown, Sally L; Chaney, Rufus L; Hettiarachchi, Ganga M

    2016-01-01

    Urban agriculture is growing in cities across the United States. It has the potential to provide multiple benefits, including increased food security. Concerns about soil contamination in urban areas can be an impediment to urban agriculture. Lead is the most common contaminant in urban areas. In this paper, direct (soil ingestion via outdoor and indoor exposure) and indirect (consumption of food grown in Pb-contaminated soils) exposure pathways are reviewed. It is highly unlikely that urban agriculture will increase incidences of elevated blood Pb for children in urban areas. This is due to the high likelihood that agriculture will improve soils in urban areas, resulting in reduced bioavailability of soil Pb and reduced fugitive dust. Plant uptake of Pb is also typically very low. The exceptions are low-growing leafy crops where soil-splash particle contamination is more likely and expanded hypocotyl root vegetables (e.g., carrot). However, even with higher bioaccumulation factors, it is not clear that the Pb in root vegetables or any other crops will be absorbed after eating. Studies have shown limited absorption of Pb when ingested with food. Best management practices to assure minimal potential for exposure are also common practices in urban gardens. These include the use of residuals-based composts and soil amendments and attention to keeping soil out of homes. This review suggests that benefits associated with urban agriculture far outweigh any risks posed by elevated soil Pb.

  1. Comparison of soil microbial respiration and carbon turnover under perennial and annual biofuel crops in two agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szymanski, L. M.; Marin-Spiotta, E.; Sanford, G. R.; Jackson, R. D.; Heckman, K. A.

    2015-12-01

    Bioenergy crops have the potential to provide a low carbon-intensive alternative to fossil fuels. More than a century of agricultural research has shown that conventional cropping systems can reduce soil organic matter (SOM) reservoirs, which cause long-term soil nutrient loss and C release to the atmosphere. In the face of climate change and other human disruptions to biogeochemical cycles, identifying biofuel crops that can maintain or enhance soil resources is desirable for the sustainable production of bioenergy. The objective of our study was to compare the effects of four biofuel crop treatments on SOM dynamics in two agricultural soils: Mollisols at Arlington Agricultural Research Station in Wisconsin and Alfisols at Kellogg Biological Station in Michigan, USA. We used fresh soils collected in 2013 and archived soils from 2008 to measure the effects of five years of crop management. Using a one-year long laboratory soil incubation coupled with a regression model and radiocarbon measurements, we separated soils into three SOM pools and their corresponding C turnover times. We found that the active pool, or biologically available C, was more sensitive to management and is an earlier indicator of changes to soil C dynamics than bulk soil C measurements. There was no effect of treatment on the active pool size at either site; however, the percent C in the active pool decreased, regardless of crop type, in surface soils with high clay content. At depth, the response of the slow pool differed between annual and perennial cropping systems. The distribution of C among SOM fractions varied between the two soil types, with greater C content associated with the active fraction in the coarser textured-soil and greater C content associated with the slow-cycling fraction in the soils with high clay content. These results suggest that the effects of bioenergy crops on soil resources will vary geographically, with implications for the carbon-cost of biocrop production.

  2. Soil hydrological and soil property changes resulting from termite activity on agricultural fields in Burkina Faso

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mettrop, I.; Cammeraat, L. H.; Verbeeten, E.

    2009-04-01

    Termites are important ecosystem-engineers in subtropical and tropical regions. The effect of termite activity affecting soil infiltration is well documented in the Sahelian region. Most studies find increased infiltration rates on surfaces that are affected by termite activity in comparison to crusted areas showing non-termite presence. Crusted agricultural fields in the Sanmatenga region in Burkina Faso with clear termite activity were compared to control fields without visual ground dwelling termite activity. Fine scale rainfall simulations were carried out on crusted termite affected and control sites. Furthermore soil moisture change, bulk density, soil organic matter as well as general soil characteristics were studied. The top soils in the study area were strongly crusted (structural crust) after the summer rainfall and harvest of millet. They have a loamy sand texture underlain by a shallow sandy loam Bt horizon. The initial soil moisture conditions were significantly higher on the termite plots when compared to control sites. It was found that the amount of runoff produced on the termite plots was significantly higher, and also the volumetric soil moisture content after the experiments was significantly lower if compared to the control plots. Bulk density showed no difference whereas soil organic matter was significantly higher under termite affected areas, in comparison to the control plots. Lab tests showed no significant difference in hydrophobic behavior of the topsoil and crust material. Micro and macro-structural properties of the topsoil did not differ significantly between the termite sites and the control sites. The texture of the top 5 cm of the soil was also found to be not significantly different. The infiltration results are contradictory to the general literature, which reports increased infiltration rates after prolonged termite activity although mostly under different initial conditions. The number of nest entrances was clearly higher in

  3. The plot size effect on soil erosion on rainfed agriculture land under different land uses in eastern Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerdà, A.; Bodí, M. B.; Burguet, M.; Segura, M.; Jovani, C.

    2009-04-01

    Soil erosion at slope scale is dependent on the size of the plot. This is because soil erosion is a scale-dependent process due to the spatial variability in infiltration, the potential for sediment to be captured by vegetation and other roughness components, and the changes in erosion rates and processes with increasing amounts of runoff. The effects of plot size may also vary with land use, as plot size may be less important in areas with a more homogeneous plant cover or bares soils; meanwhile the soil transmission losses will higher on vegetation covered soils and on patchy distributed plants. A series of study plots were established in 2003 at the El Teularet experimental Station in the Sierra de Enguera in eastern Spain. The overall goal is to assess runoff and erosion rates from different land uses at different spatial scales. Thirteen sets of plots have been established, and each set consists of five adjacent plots that vary in size from 1 m2 (1 x 1 m), 2 m2 (1 x 2 m), 4 m2 (1 x 4 m), 16 m2 (2 x 8 m) and 48 m2 (3 m wide x 16 m length). Each set of plots has a different land use, and the land uses being tested in the first year of this study are fallow, ploughed but unplanted, untilled oats and beans, tilled oats and beans, straw mulch, mulched with chipped olive branches, a geotextile developed to control erosion on agricultural fields, scrub oaks (Quercus coccifera), gorse (Ulex parviflorus), and three herbicide treatments—a systemic herbicide, a contact herbicide, and a persistent herbicide. From those plots, three plots were selected to analyse the effect of the size of the plot on the soil erosion assessment. Herbicide (bare), Catch crops (oat) and scrubland were selected to analyze the soil losses during 2004 and 2005. The results shows that sediment delivery is highly dependent on the land use and land management as the scrubland contributed with null sediment yield, meanwhile the herbicide reached the largest soil loss. The soil erosion was higher

  4. Soil and geography are more important determinants of indigenous arbuscular mycorrhizal communities than management practices in Swiss agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Jansa, Jan; Erb, Angela; Oberholzer, Hans-Rudolf; Smilauer, Petr; Egli, Simon

    2014-04-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are ubiquitous soil fungi, forming mutualistic symbiosis with a majority of terrestrial plant species. They are abundant in nearly all soils, less diverse than soil prokaryotes and other intensively studied soil organisms and thus are promising candidates for universal indicators of land management legacies and soil quality degradation. However, insufficient data on how the composition of indigenous AMF varies along soil and landscape gradients have hampered the definition of baselines and effect thresholds to date. Here, indigenous AMF communities in 154 agricultural soils collected across Switzerland were profiled by quantitative real-time PCR with taxon-specific markers for six widespread AMF species. To identify the key determinants of AMF community composition, the profiles were related to soil properties, land management and site geography. Our results indicate a number of well-supported dependencies between abundances of certain AMF taxa and soil properties such as pH, soil fertility and texture, and a surprising lack of effect of available soil phosphorus on the AMF community profiles. Site geography, especially the altitude and large geographical distance, strongly affected AMF communities. Unexpected was the apparent lack of a strong land management effect on the AMF communities as compared to the other predictors, which could be due to the rarity of highly intensive and unsustainable land management in Swiss agriculture. In spite of the extensive coverage of large geographical and soil gradients, we did not identify any taxon suitable as an indicator of land use among the six taxa we studied.

  5. Quantification of parameters controlling the carbon stocks in German agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vos, Cora; Don, Axel; Freibauer, Annette; Heidkamp, Arne; Prietz, Roland

    2016-04-01

    Within the framework of UNFCCC, Germany is obligated to report on its greenhouse gas emissions from soils. This also includes the emissions in the agricultural sector. Changes in soil carbon stocks are a major source of CO2 that need to be reported. Until now there are only regional inventories of the soil carbon stocks in the agricultural sector while for the forestry sector a repeated national inventory exists. In order to report on changes in soil carbon stocks in agricultural soils, a consistent, representative and quantitative dataset of agricultural soil properties, especially on carbon stocks and management data is necessary. In the course of the German Agricultural Soil Inventory 3109 agricultural sites are examined. Up to January 2016, 2450 sites were sampled. The sites are sampled in five depth increments and all samples are analyzed in the same laboratory. Of the sampled sites the laboratory analyses are completed for 1312 sites. The samples of all depth increments were analyzed for their texture, bulk density, pH, electric conductivity, stone and root content, organic and inorganic carbon content and nitrogen content. The data are coupled with management data covering the past ten years and with climate data. They are analyzed with multivariate statistical techniques (e.g. mixed effects models, additive models, random forest) to quantify the parameters that control the carbon stocks in German agricultural soils. First descriptive results show that the mean soil carbon stocks down to a depth of 100 cm are 126.1 t ha-1 (range 8.9-1158.9 t ha-1). The mean stocks only for croplands are 102.6 t ha-1 (range 8.9-1158.9 t ha-1), while for grasslands the mean stock is 184.1 t ha-1 (range 19.4-937.8 t ha-1). In total the soil scientists found a surprisingly high proportion of disturbed and unusual soil profiles, indicating intensive human modifications of agricultural soils through e.g. deep ploughing. The data set of the German Agricultural Soil Inventory is the

  6. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons bioavailability in industrial and agricultural soils: Linking SPME and Tenax extraction with bioassays.

    PubMed

    Guo, Meixia; Gong, Zongqiang; Li, Xiaojun; Allinson, Graeme; Rookes, James; Cahill, David

    2017-06-01

    The aims of this study were to evaluate the bioavailability of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in industrial and agricultural soils using chemical methods and a bioassay, and to study the relationships between the methods. This was conducted by comparing the quantities of PAHs extracted from two manufactured gas plant (MGP) soils and an agricultural soil with low level contamination by solid-phase micro-extraction (SPME) and Tenax-TA extraction with the quantities taken up by the earthworm (Eisenia fetida). In addition, a biodegradation experiment was conducted on one MGP soil (MGP-A) to clarify the relationship between PAH removal by biodegradation and the variation in PAH concentrations in soil pore water. Results demonstrated that the earthworm bioassay could not be used to examine PAH bioavailability in the tested MGP soils; which was the case even in the diluted MGP-A soils after biodegradation. However, the bioassay was successfully applied to the agricultural soil. These results suggest that earthworms can only be used for bioassays in soils with low toxicity. In general, rapidly desorbing concentrations extracted by Tenax-TA could predict PAH concentrations accumulated in earthworms (R(2)=0.66), while SPME underestimated earthworm concentrations by a factor of 2.5. Both SPME and Tenax extraction can provide a useful tool to predict PAH bioavailability for earthworms, but Tenax-TA extraction was proven to be a more sensitive and precise method than SPME for the prediction of earthworm exposure in the agricultural soil.

  7. Bacterial Indicator of Agricultural Management for Soil under No-Till Crop Production

    PubMed Central

    Rosa, Silvina M.; Simonetti, Leandro; Duval, Matías E.; Galantini, Juan A.; Bedano, José C.; Wall, Luis G.; Erijman, Leonardo

    2012-01-01

    The rise in the world demand for food poses a challenge to our ability to sustain soil fertility and sustainability. The increasing use of no-till agriculture, adopted in many areas of the world as an alternative to conventional farming, may contribute to reduce the erosion of soils and the increase in the soil carbon pool. However, the advantages of no-till agriculture are jeopardized when its use is linked to the expansion of crop monoculture. The aim of this study was to survey bacterial communities to find indicators of soil quality related to contrasting agriculture management in soils under no-till farming. Four sites in production agriculture, with different soil properties, situated across a west-east transect in the most productive region in the Argentinean pampas, were taken as the basis for replication. Working definitions of Good no-till Agricultural Practices (GAP) and Poor no-till Agricultural Practices (PAP) were adopted for two distinct scenarios in terms of crop rotation, fertilization, agrochemicals use and pest control. Non-cultivated soils nearby the agricultural sites were taken as additional control treatments. Tag-encoded pyrosequencing was used to deeply sample the 16S rRNA gene from bacteria residing in soils corresponding to the three treatments at the four locations. Although bacterial communities as a whole appeared to be structured chiefly by a marked biogeographic provincialism, the distribution of a few taxa was shaped as well by environmental conditions related to agricultural management practices. A statistically supported approach was used to define candidates for management-indicator organisms, subsequently validated using quantitative PCR. We suggest that the ratio between the normalized abundance of a selected group of bacteria within the GP1 group of the phylum Acidobacteria and the genus Rubellimicrobium of the Alphaproteobacteria may serve as a potential management-indicator to discriminate between sustainable vs. non

  8. Bacterial indicator of agricultural management for soil under no-till crop production.

    PubMed

    Figuerola, Eva L M; Guerrero, Leandro D; Rosa, Silvina M; Simonetti, Leandro; Duval, Matías E; Galantini, Juan A; Bedano, José C; Wall, Luis G; Erijman, Leonardo

    2012-01-01

    The rise in the world demand for food poses a challenge to our ability to sustain soil fertility and sustainability. The increasing use of no-till agriculture, adopted in many areas of the world as an alternative to conventional farming, may contribute to reduce the erosion of soils and the increase in the soil carbon pool. However, the advantages of no-till agriculture are jeopardized when its use is linked to the expansion of crop monoculture. The aim of this study was to survey bacterial communities to find indicators of soil quality related to contrasting agriculture management in soils under no-till farming. Four sites in production agriculture, with different soil properties, situated across a west-east transect in the most productive region in the Argentinean pampas, were taken as the basis for replication. Working definitions of Good no-till Agricultural Practices (GAP) and Poor no-till Agricultural Practices (PAP) were adopted for two distinct scenarios in terms of crop rotation, fertilization, agrochemicals use and pest control. Non-cultivated soils nearby the agricultural sites were taken as additional control treatments. Tag-encoded pyrosequencing was used to deeply sample the 16S rRNA gene from bacteria residing in soils corresponding to the three treatments at the four locations. Although bacterial communities as a whole appeared to be structured chiefly by a marked biogeographic provincialism, the distribution of a few taxa was shaped as well by environmental conditions related to agricultural management practices. A statistically supported approach was used to define candidates for management-indicator organisms, subsequently validated using quantitative PCR. We suggest that the ratio between the normalized abundance of a selected group of bacteria within the GP1 group of the phylum Acidobacteria and the genus Rubellimicrobium of the Alphaproteobacteria may serve as a potential management-indicator to discriminate between sustainable vs. non

  9. Occurrences and toxicological risk assessment of eight heavy metals in agricultural soils from Kenya, Eastern Africa.

    PubMed

    Mungai, Teresiah Muciku; Owino, Anita Awino; Makokha, Victorine Anyango; Gao, Yan; Yan, Xue; Wang, Jun

    2016-09-01

    The concentration distribution and toxicological assessment of eight heavy metals including lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu), chromium (Cr), nickel (Ni), mercury (Hg), arsenic (As), and zinc (Zn) in agricultural soils from Kenya, Eastern Africa, were investigated in this study. The results showed mean concentrations of eight heavy metals of Zn, Pb, Cr, Cu, As, Ni, Hg, and Cd in agricultural soils as 247.39, 26.87, 59.69, 88.59, 8.93, 12.56, 8.06, and 0.42 mg kg(-1), respectively. These mean values of eight heavy metals were close to the toxicity threshold limit of USEPA standard values of agricultural soils, indicating potential toxicological risk to the food chain. Pollution index values revealed that eight heavy metals severely decreased in the order Hg > Cd > As > Cu > Pb > Zn > Ni > Cr and the mean value of the overall pollution index of Hg and Cd was 20.31, indicating severe agriculture ecological risk. Potential pollution sources of eight heavy metals in agricultural soils were mainly from anthropogenic activities and natural dissolution. The intensification of human agricultural activities, the growing industrialization, and the rapid urbanization largely influenced the concentration levels of heavy metals in Kenya, Eastern Africa. Moreover, the lack of agricultural normalization management and poor enforcement of environmental laws and regulations further intensified the widespread pollution of agricultural soils in Kenya.

  10. Mineralogy of agricultural soil of selected regions of South Western Karnataka, Peninsular India.

    PubMed

    Smitha, P G; Byrappa, K; Ranganathaiah, C

    2015-07-01

    Agricultural soils of selected regions of Southwestern Karnataka, Peninsular India, were subjected to systematic mineralogical characterization along with the study of soil physical properties. Physical properties such as soil texture and micro porosity were studied using particle size analyses and positron annihilation lifetime analysis (PALS) technique, respectively. The latter was used to analyze micro porosity of agricultural soil. Both major and minor minerals were identified and confirmed by some analytical techniques like thin section study, powder X-ray diffraction, X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy.

  11. Changes in Soil Chemistry and Agricultural Return Flow in an Integrated Seawater Agriculture System (ISAS) Demonstration in Abu Dhabi

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ning, Q.; Matiin, W. A.; Ahmad, F.

    2012-12-01

    Growing halophytes using Integrated Seawater Agriculture Systems (ISAS) offers a sustainable solution for the generation of biomass feedstock for carbon neutral biofuels - halophytes do not enter the foodchain and they do not compete with food-crops for natural resources. A field demonstration of ISAS in the coastal regions of Abu Dhabi, UAE, scheduled to start in 2013, will likely face a number of region-specific challenges not encountered in past demonstrations of ISAS at coastal locations in Mexico and Eritrea. The arid climate, unique soil chemistry (evaporite deposits, especially gypsum), and hypersaline coastal hydrogeology of Abu Dhabi will affect long-term halophyte agricultural productivity when Arabian Gulf seawater is applied to coastal soils as part of ISAS. Therefore, the changes in irrigation return flow quality and soil chemistry must be monitored closely over time to establish transient salt and water balances in order to assess the sustainability of ISAS in the region. As an initial phase of the ISAS demonstration project, numerical modeling of different seawater loadings onto coastal soils was conducted to estimate the chemical characteristics of soil and the irrigation return flow over time. These modeling results will be validated with field monitoring data upon completion of one year of ISAS operation. The results from this study could be used to (i) determine the optimal saline water loading that the soils at the ISAS site can tolerate, (ii) potential for sodicity of the soil with saline water application, (iii) impacts of land application of saline water on underlying coastal groundwater, and (iv) develop strategies to control soil water activities in favor of halophyte agricultural productivity.

  12. Impact of an intensive management on soil biochemical and biological properties in an agricultural soil of Southern Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scotti, R.; D'Ascoli, R.; Rao, M. A.; Marzaioli, R.; Rutigliano, F. A.; Gianfreda, L.

    2009-04-01

    An intensive management of agricultural soils is widely carried out to increase vegetation productivity. Nevertheless, the large use of machineries, chemical fertilizers and pesticides can often cause, in time, a substantial decline in soil fertility by affecting soil physical and chemical properties and, in turn, growth and activity of soil microbial community. In fact, alteration in soil structure, nutrient losses and, in particular, changes in quality and quantity of soil organic matter are some of the principal soil degradation processes deriving from an intensive agricultural management that can affect, in different ways, soil biochemical and biological properties. The aim of this research was to assess the impact of intensive management on agricultural soils by measuring soil physical, chemical and biochemical/biological properties. The use of appropriate indicators as quantitative tools could allow to assess soil quality. Moreover, although soil physical and chemical properties have received great attention, soil biochemical/biological properties, such as enzyme activities and microbial biomass, functionally related properties involved in the nutrient cycles, can be considered as sensitive indicators of soil quality and health changes because, they show a faster turn over compared to soil organic matter. Our attention was focused on the Plane of Sele river (Campania region, Italy), an area characterized by an intensive agriculture and greenhouse cultures. Twenty-five farms were chosen, with the aid of regional soil map, in order to get soils with different physical and chemical properties. As common trait, the selected farms, all with greenhouse cultures, used no organic amendments but only mineral compounds to fertilize soils. Moreover, to better understand the impact of intensive agricultural practices on soil of each farm, control soils from orchards or uncultivated plots were chosen. In each farm soil samples were collected in three different plots

  13. Capturing the Spatial Variability of Microbial Communties within Agricultural Soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Understanding patterns in spatial variability of soil microbial communities can provide important insights into the mechanisms that control ecosystem function. The level of replication required to adequately characterize the variability of soil communities across both small and large geographic and ...

  14. Using data mining to predict soil quality after application of biosolids in agriculture.

    PubMed

    Cortet, Jérôme; Kocev, Dragi; Ducobu, Caroline; Džeroski, Sašo; Debeljak, Marko; Schwartz, Christophe

    2011-01-01

    The amount of biosolids recycled in agriculture has steadily increased during the last decades. However, few models are available to predict the accompanying risks, mainly due to the presence of trace element and organic contaminants, and benefits for soil fertility of their application. This paper deals with using data mining to assess the benefits and risks of biosolids application in agriculture. The analyzed data come from a 10-yr field experiment in northeast France focusing on the effects of biosolid application and mineral fertilization on soil fertility and contamination. Biosolids were applied at agriculturally recommended rates. Biosolids had a significant effect on soil fertility, causing in particular a persistent increase in plant-available phosphorus (P) relative to plots receiving mineral fertilizer. However, soil fertility at seeding and crop management method had greater effects than biosolid application on soil fertility at harvest, especially soil nitrogen (N) content. Levels of trace elements and organic contaminants in soils remained below legal threshold values. Levels of extractable metals correlated more strongly than total metal levels with other factors. Levels of organic contaminants, particularly polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, were linked to total metal levels in biosolids and treated soil. This study confirmed that biosolid application at rates recommended for agriculture is a safe option for increasing soil fertility. However, the quality of the biosolids selected has to be taken into account. The results also indicate the power of data mining in examining links between parameters in complex data sets.

  15. Organic matter composition of soil macropore surfaces under different agricultural management practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glæsner, Nadia; Leue, Marin; Magid, Jacob; Gerke, Horst H.

    2016-04-01

    Understanding the heterogeneous nature of soil, i.e. properties and processes occurring specifically at local scales is essential for best managing our soil resources for agricultural production. Examination of intact soil structures in order to obtain an increased understanding of how soil systems operate from small to large scale represents a large gap within soil science research. Dissolved chemicals, nutrients and particles are transported through the disturbed plow layer of agricultural soil, where after flow through the lower soil layers occur by preferential flow via macropores. Rapid movement of water through macropores limit the contact between the preferentially moving water and the surrounding soil matrix, therefore contact and exchange of solutes in the water is largely restricted to the surface area of the macropores. Organomineral complex coated surfaces control sorption and exchange properties of solutes, as well as availability of essential nutrients to plant roots and to the preferentially flowing water. DRIFT (Diffuse Reflectance infrared Fourier Transform) Mapping has been developed to examine composition of organic matter coated macropores. In this study macropore surfaces structures will be determined for organic matter composition using DRIFT from a long-term field experiment on waste application to agricultural soil (CRUCIAL, close to Copenhagen, Denmark). Parcels with 5 treatments; accelerated household waste, accelerated sewage sludge, accelerated cattle manure, NPK and unfertilized, will be examined in order to study whether agricultural management have an impact on the organic matter composition of intact structures.

  16. Distribution and sources of organochlorine pesticides in agricultural soils from central China.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Qun; Wang, Jingjing; Meng, Beidi; Cheng, Junqi; Lin, Guoping; Chen, Jiachun; Zheng, Dan; Yu, Yanhong

    2013-07-01

    There is little information on the organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) residues in agricultural soils of Wuhan, the largest city in central China. Surface soil samples were collected from agricultural soils in Wuhan and analyzed to determine twenty-one OCPs. According to the measured concentrations and detection frequencies, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethanes (DDTs), hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs), heptachlor (HEPT), hexachlorobenzene (HCB) and aldrin were the predominant compounds in soil. DDTs accounted for 77.10% of total OCPs, followed by HCHs (7.83%), aldrin (4.21%), HEPTs (2.82%) and HCB (1.53%). The total DDT concentrations ranged from nd to 1198.0ngg(-1) and the main contaminated areas were distributed in Hannan and Xinzhou districts of Wuhan. The total HCH concentrations ranged from nd to 100.58ngg(-1) in soil and relatively higher levels were observed in soil samples from Huangpi and Hannan districts. Source analysis showed that OCPs residues except heptachlor originated mainly from historical application, besides slight recent introduction at some sites. Based on the China National Soil Quality Standard, DDT pollution in most samples of Wuhan agricultural soils could be considered as no and low contamination, while the level of HCHs was classified as no pollution. Our study indicated that there existed potential exposure risk of OCPs in Wuhan agricultural soils although the use of OCPs has been banned.

  17. The non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug diclofenac is readily biodegradable in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Al-Rajab, Abdul Jabbar; Sabourin, Lyne; Lapen, David R; Topp, Edward

    2010-12-01

    Diclofenac, 2-[2-[(2,6-dichlorophenyl)amino]phenyl]acetic acid, is an important non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug widely used for human and animals to reduce inflammation and pain. Diclofenac could potentially reach agricultural lands through the application of municipal biosolids or wastewater, and in the absence of any environmental fate data, we evaluated its persistence in agricultural soils incubated in the laboratory. (14)C-Diclofenac was rapidly mineralized without a lag when added to soils varying widely in texture (sandy loam, loam, clay loam). Over a range of temperature and moisture conditions extractable (14)C-diclofenac residues decreased with half lives <5days. No extractable transformation products were detectable by HPLC. Diclofenac mineralization in the loam soil was abolished by heat sterilization. Addition of biosolids to sterile or non-sterile soil did not accelerate the dissipation of diclofenac. These findings indicate that diclofenac is readily biodegradable in agricultural soils.

  18. Response of Soil Properties and Microbial Communities to Agriculture: Implications for Primary Productivity and Soil Health Indicators

    PubMed Central

    Trivedi, Pankaj; Delgado-Baquerizo, Manuel; Anderson, Ian C.; Singh, Brajesh K.

    2016-01-01

    Agricultural intensification is placing tremendous pressure on the soil’s capacity to maintain its functions leading to large-scale ecosystem degradation and loss of productivity in the long term. Therefore, there is an urgent need to find early indicators of soil health degradation in response to agricultural management. In recent years, major advances in soil meta-genomic and spatial studies on microbial communities and community-level molecular characteristics can now be exploited as ‘biomarker’ indicators of ecosystem processes for monitoring and managing sustainable soil health under global change. However, a continental scale, cross biome approach assessing soil microbial communities and their functional potential to identify the unifying principles governing the susceptibility of soil biodiversity to land conversion is lacking. We conducted a meta-analysis from a dataset generated from 102 peer-reviewed publications as well as unpublished data to explore how properties directly linked to soil nutritional health (total C and N; C:N ratio), primary productivity (NPP) and microbial diversity and composition (relative abundance of major bacterial phyla determined by next generation sequencing techniques) are affected in response to agricultural management across the main biomes of Earth (arid, continental, temperate and tropical). In our analysis, we found strong statistical trends in the relative abundance of several bacterial phyla in agricultural (e.g., Actinobacteria and Chloroflexi) and natural (Acidobacteria, Proteobacteria, and Cyanobacteria) systems across all regions and these trends correlated well with many soil properties. However, main effects of agriculture on soil properties and productivity were biome-dependent. Our meta-analysis provides evidence on the predictable nature of the microbial community responses to vegetation type. This knowledge can be exploited in future for developing a new set of indicators for primary productivity and

  19. Soil organic carbon as a factor in passive microwave retrievals of soil water content over agricultural croplands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manns, Hida R.; Berg, Aaron A.; Colliander, Andreas

    2015-09-01

    Remote sensing has the potential to deliver global soil water content (SWC) on vast scales with frequent revisit times for progress in the fields of climate, weather forecasting, agriculture and hydrology. Although surface roughness, vegetation and soil texture have been established as sources of variability in passive microwave interpretation, soil organic carbon (SOC) has not typically been considered as a factor that affects SWC estimation during field sampling campaigns. SOC was observed along with soil texture and bulk density during the Soil Moisture Active Passive Validation Experiment in 2012 (SMAPVEX12), the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) satellite algorithm development field sampling campaign held June 6 to July 19 in Southern Manitoba, Canada. Aerial measurements from the PALS (Passive Active L-band System) instrument were recorded over agricultural fields and forest areas from aircraft while SWC was measured simultaneously on the ground with resistance probes on 17 sampling dates. Additionally, fields were sampled for surface roughness, vegetation growth and water content, soil and vegetation temperature and soil physical characteristics. A soil core was collected on each field each sampling time to assess bulk density, soil particle size and SOC. SOC accounted for more variability in the anomalies between PALS and ground sampled SWC than sand, clay or bulk density, although all soil variables explained significant variability. With analysis by partial least squares multiple regression over 11 sampling dates and 39 fields where both ground and PALS data were well represented, only SOC contributed significantly to the regression of SWC beyond the variance all soil variables had in common. The significance of SOC in the relative SWC anomalies was highest in very wet and very dry conditions and in loam soil over all sampling dates, while bulk density was more significant in sand soils. This analysis suggests SOC is a simple variable that incorporates

  20. Carbon amendment and soil depth affect the distribution and abundance of denitrifiers in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Barrett, M; Khalil, M I; Jahangir, M M R; Lee, C; Cardenas, L M; Collins, G; Richards, K G; O'Flaherty, V

    2016-04-01

    The nitrite reductase (nirS and nirK) and nitrous oxide reductase-encoding (nosZ) genes of denitrifying populations present in an agricultural grassland soil were quantified using real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays. Samples from three separate pedological depths at the chosen site were investigated: horizon A (0-10 cm), horizon B (45-55 cm), and horizon C (120-130 cm). The effect of carbon addition (treatment 1, control; treatment 2, glucose-C; treatment 3, dissolved organic carbon (DOC)) on denitrifier gene abundance and N2O and N2 fluxes was determined. In general, denitrifier abundance correlated well with flux measurements; nirS was positively correlated with N2O, and nosZ was positively correlated with N2 (P < 0.03). Denitrifier gene copy concentrations per gram of soil (GCC) varied in response to carbon type amendment (P < 0.01). Denitrifier GCCs were high (ca. 10(7)) and the bac:nirK, bac:nirS, bac:nir (T) , and bac:nosZ ratios were low (ca. 10(-1)/10) in horizon A in all three respective treatments. Glucose-C amendment favored partial denitrification, resulting in higher nir abundance and higher N2O fluxes compared to the control. DOC amendment, by contrast, resulted in relatively higher nosZ abundance and N2 emissions, thus favoring complete denitrification. We also noted soil depth directly affected bacterial, archaeal, and denitrifier abundance, possibly due to changes in soil carbon availability with depth.

  1. Multivariate regulation of soil CO2 and N2 O pulse emissions from agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Liang, Liyin L; Grantz, David A; Jenerette, G Darrel

    2016-03-01

    Climate and land-use models project increasing occurrence of high temperature and water deficit in both agricultural production systems and terrestrial ecosystems. Episodic soil wetting and subsequent drying may increase the occurrence and magnitude of pulsed biogeochemical activity, affecting carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) cycles and influencing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In this study, we provide the first data to explore the responses of carbon dioxide (CO2 ) and nitrous oxide (N2 O) fluxes to (i) temperature, (ii) soil water content as percent water holding capacity (%WHC), (iii) substrate availability throughout, and (iv) multiple soil drying and rewetting (DW) events. Each of these factors and their interactions exerted effects on GHG emissions over a range of four (CO2 ) and six (N2 O) orders of magnitude. Maximal CO2 and N2 O fluxes were observed in environments combining intermediate %WHC, elevated temperature, and sufficient substrate availability. Amendments of C and N and their interactions significantly affected CO2 and N2 O fluxes and altered their temperature sensitivities (Q10 ) over successive DW cycles. C amendments significantly enhanced CO2 flux, reduced N2 O flux, and decreased the Q10 of both. N amendments had no effect on CO2 flux and increased N2 O flux, while significantly depressing the Q10 for CO2 , and having no effect on the Q10 for N2 O. The dynamics across DW cycles could be attributed to changes in soil microbial communities as the different responses to wetting events in specific group of microorganisms, to the altered substrate availabilities, or to both. The complex interactions among parameters influencing trace gas fluxes should be incorporated into next generation earth system models to improve estimation of GHG emissions.

  2. Mineralization of soil organic matter in biochar amended agricultural landscape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chintala, R.; Clay, D. E.; Schumacher, T. E.; Kumar, S.; Malo, D. D.

    2015-12-01

    Pyrogenic biochar materials have been identified as a promising soil amendment to enhance climate resilience, increase soil carbon recalcitrance and achieve sustainable crop production. A three year field study was initiated in 2013 to study the impact of biochar on soil carbon and nitrogen storage on an eroded Maddock soil series - Sandy, Mixed, Frigid Entic Hapludolls) and deposition Brookings clay loam (Fine-Silty, Mixed, Superactive, Frigid Pachic Hapludolls) landscape positions. Three biochars produced from corn stover (Zea mays L.), Ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Lawson and C. Lawson) wood residue, and switchgrass (Panicum virgatum L.) were incorporated at 9.75 Mg ha-1 rate (≈7.5 cm soil depth and 1.3 g/cm3 soil bulk density) with a rototiller. The changes in chemical fractionation of soil carbon (soluble C, acid hydrolyzable C, total C, and δ13 C) and nitrogen (soluble N, acid hydrolyzable N, total N, and δ14 N) were monitored for two soil depths (0-7.5 and 7.5 - 15 cm). Soluble and acid hydrolyzable fractions of soil C and N were influenced by soil series and were not significantly affected by incorporation of biochars. Based on soil and plant samples to be collected in the fall of 2015, C and N budgets are being developed using isotopic and non-isotopic techniques. Laboratory studies showed that the mean residence time for biochars used in this study ranged from 400 to 666 years. Laboratory and field studies will be compared in the presentation.

  3. Lead in urban soils - A real or perceived concern for urban agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Urban agriculture is growing in cities across the U.S. and it has the potential to provide multiple benefits including increased food security. Concerns about soil contamination in urban areas can be an impediment to urban agriculture. Lead is the most common contaminant in urban areas. A review ...

  4. Bioavailability and soil-to-plant transfer factors as indicators of potentially toxic element contamination in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Adamo, Paola; Iavazzo, Pietro; Albanese, Stefano; Agrelli, Diana; De Vivo, Benedetto; Lima, Annamaria

    2014-12-01

    Soil pollution in agricultural lands poses a serious threat to food safety, and suggests the need for consolidated methods providing advisory indications for soil management and crop production. In this work, the three-step extraction procedure developed by the EU Measurement and Testing Programme and two soil-to-plant transfer factors (relative to total and bioavailable concentration of elements in soil) were applied on polluted agricultural soils from southern Italy to obtain information on the retention mechanisms of metals in soils and on their level of translocation to edible vegetables. The study was carried out in the Sarno river plain of Campania, an area affected by severe environmental degradation potentially impacting the health of those consuming locally produced vegetables. Soil samples were collected in 36 locations along the two main rivers flowing into the plain. In 11 sites, lettuce plants were collected at the normal stage of consumption. According to Italian environmental law governing residential soils, and on the basis of soil background reference values for the study area, we found diffuse pollution by Be, Sn and Tl, of geogenic origin, Cr and Cu from anthropogenic sources such as tanneries and intensive agriculture, and more limited pollution by Pb, Zn and V. It was found that metals polluting soils as a result of human activities were mainly associated to residual, oxidizable and reducible phases, relatively immobile and only potentially bioavailable to plants. By contrast, the essential elements Zn and Cu showed a tendency to become more readily mobile and bioavailable as their total content in soil increased and were more easily transported to the edible parts of lettuce than other pollutants. According to our results, current soil pollution in the studied area does not affect the proportion of metals taken up by lettuce plants and there is a limited health risk incurred.

  5. The impact of agricultural soil usage on activity and abundance of ammonifying bacteria in selected soils from Poland.

    PubMed

    Wolińska, Agnieszka; Szafranek-Nakonieczna, Anna; Banach, Artur; Błaszczyk, Mieczysław; Stępniewska, Zofia

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the study was to demonstrate the impact of soil agricultural usage on the abundance of ammonifying bacteria (AB) and their activity, expressed as arginine ammonification (AA). Five agriculturally exploited types of soils (FAO): Haplic Luvisol, Brunic Arenosol, Mollic Gleysol, Eutric Fluvisol, and Rendzina Leptosol were studied. The controls were non-agricultural soils of the same type located in close proximity to agricultural sites. The tested soils varied in terms of pH (4.18-7.08), total carbon (8.39-34.90 g kg(-1)), easily degradable carbon content (0.46-1.11 g kg(-1)), moisture (5.20-13.50 %), and nitrogen forms (mg kg(-1)): 1.68-27.17, 0.036-0.862, 0.012-3.389 for nitrate nitrogen, nitrite nitrogen, and ammonia nitrogen, respectively. The AB abundance in agricultural soils ranged from 1.1 to 6.4 × 10(4) cfu g(-1), while in the controls it was significantly higher-from 2.0 to 110 × 10(4) cfu g(-1) of soil. Also, AA in the controls was three-times higher than in the agricultural soils. Strong associations between AA and the abundance of AB in the control (r = 0.954***) and agricultural soils (r = 0.833***) were proved. In the agricultural soils, the AB abundance and AA were influenced by pH (r = 0.746*** and r = 0.520***) and carbon content (r = 0.488*** and r = 0.391***). The AB abundance was also affected by easily degradable carbon (r = 0.517**) and nitrite nitrogen (r = 0.376*), whilst ammonium nitrogen influenced AA (r = 0.451*). Our results indicate that the abundance of AB and AA may be good indicators of soil biological conditions.

  6. Sulfonylurea herbicides in an agricultural catchment basin and its adjacent wetland in the St. Lawrence River basin.

    PubMed

    de Lafontaine, Yves; Beauvais, Conrad; Cessna, Allan J; Gagnon, Pierre; Hudon, Christiane; Poissant, Laurier

    2014-05-01

    The use of sulfonylurea herbicides (SU) has increased greater than 100 times over the past 30 years in both Europe and North America. Applied at low rates, their presence, persistence and potential impacts on aquatic ecosystems remain poorly studied. During late-spring to early fall in 2009-2011, concentrations of 9 SU were assessed in two agricultural streams and their receiving wetland, an enlargement of the St. Lawrence River (Canada). Six SU in concentrations >LOQ (10 ng L(-1)) were detected in 10% or less of surface water samples. Rimsulfuron was detected each year, sulfosulfuron and nicosulfuron in two years and the others in one year only, suggesting that application of specific herbicides varied locally between years. Detection frequency and concentrations of SU were not significantly associated with total precipitation which occurred 1 to 5d before sampling. Concentrations and fate of SU differed among sites due to differences in stream dynamics and water quality characteristics. The persistence of SU in catchment basin streams reflected the dissipation effects associated with stream discharge. Maximum concentrations of some SU (223 and 148 ng L(-1)) were occasionally above the baseline level (100 ng L(-1)) for aquatic plant toxicity, implying potential toxic stress to flora in the streams. Substantially lower concentrations (max 55 ng L(-1)) of SU were noted at the downstream wetland site, likely as a result from dilution and mixing with St. Lawrence River water, and represent less toxicological risk to the wetland flora. Sporadic occurrence of SU at low concentrations in air and rain samples indicated that atmospheric deposition was not an important source of herbicides to the study area.

  7. Use of USLE/GIS methodology for predicting soil loss in a semiarid agricultural watershed.

    PubMed

    Erdogan, Emrah H; Erpul, Günay; Bayramin, Ilhami

    2007-08-01

    The Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) is an erosion model to estimate average soil loss that would generally result from splash, sheet, and rill erosion from agricultural plots. Recently, use of USLE has been extended as a useful tool predicting soil losses and planning control practices in agricultural watersheds by the effective integration of the GIS-based procedures to estimate the factor values in a grid cell basis. This study was performed in the Kazan Watershed located in the central Anatolia, Turkey, to predict soil erosion risk by the USLE/GIS methodology for planning conservation measures in the site. Rain erosivity (R), soil erodibility (K), and cover management factor (C) values of the model were calculated from erosivity map, soil map, and land use map of Turkey, respectively. R values were site-specifically corrected using DEM and climatic data. The topographical and hydrological effects on the soil loss were characterized by LS factor evaluated by the flow accumulation tool using DEM and watershed delineation techniques. From resulting soil loss map of the watershed, the magnitude of the soil erosion was estimated in terms of the different soil units and land uses and the most erosion-prone areas where irreversible soil losses occurred were reasonably located in the Kazan watershed. This could be very useful for deciding restoration practices to control the soil erosion of the sites to be severely influenced.

  8. Ruminant Grazing of Cover Crops: Effects on Soil Properties and Agricultural Production

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poffenbarger, Hanna

    2010-01-01

    Integrating livestock into a cropping system by allowing ruminant animals to graze cover crops may yield economic and environmental benefits. The effects of grazing on soil physical properties, soil organic matter, nitrogen cycling and agricultural production are presented in this literature review. The review found that grazing cover crops…

  9. Greenhouse gas fluxes of drained organic and flooded mineral agricultural soils in the United States

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Drained organic soils for agriculture represent less than 1% of the area used for crops in the United States (US). However, emission of carbon dioxide (CO2) from microbial oxidation of drained organic soils offsets almost half of the contributions that carbon sequestration of other cropping systems ...

  10. Predicting agricultural management influence on long-term soil organic carbon dynamics: implications for biofuel production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Long-term field experiments (LTE) are ideal for predicting the influence of agricultural management on soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics and examining biofuel crop residue removal policy questions. Our objectives were (i) to simulate SOC dynamics in LTE soils under various climates, crop rotations,...

  11. Relative skills of soil moisture and vegetation optical depth retrievals for agricultural drought monitoring

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil moisture condition is an important indicator for agricultural drought monitoring. Through the Land Parameter Retrieval Model (LPRM), vegetation optical depth (VOD) as well as surface soil moisture (SM) can be retrieved simultaneously from brightness temperature observations from the Advanced Mi...

  12. Stagnating crop yields: An overlooked risk for the carbon balance of agricultural soils?

    PubMed

    Wiesmeier, Martin; Hübner, Rico; Kögel-Knabner, Ingrid

    2015-12-01

    The carbon (C) balance of agricultural soils may be largely affected by climate change. Increasing temperatures are discussed to cause a loss of soil organic carbon (SOC) due to enhanced decomposition of soil organic matter, which has a high intrinsic temperature sensitivity. On the other hand, several modeling studies assumed that potential SOC losses would be compensated or even outperformed by an increased C input by crop residues into agricultural soils. This assumption was based on a predicted general increase of net primary productivity (NPP) as a result of the CO2 fertilization effect and prolonged growing seasons. However, it is questionable if the crop C input into agricultural soils can be derived from NPP predictions of vegetation models. The C input in European croplands is largely controlled by the agricultural management and was strongly related to the development of crop yields in the last decades. Thus, a glance at past yield development will probably be more instructive for future estimations of the C input than previous modeling approaches based on NPP predictions. An analysis of European yield statistics indicated that yields of wheat, barley and maize are stagnating in Central and Northern Europe since the 1990s. The stagnation of crop yields can probably be related to a fundamental change of the agricultural management and to climate change effects. It is assumed that the soil C input is concurrently stagnating which would necessarily lead to a decrease of agricultural SOC stocks in the long-term given a constant temperature increase. Remarkably, for almost all European countries that are faced with yield stagnation indications for agricultural SOC decreases were already found. Potentially adverse effects of yield stagnation on the C balance of croplands call for an interdisciplinary investigation of its causes and a comprehensive monitoring of SOC stocks in agricultural soils of Europe.

  13. [Characterization and soil environmental safety assessment of super absorbent polymers in agricultural application].

    PubMed

    Li, Xi; Liu, Yu-Rong; Zheng, Yuan-Ming; He, Ji-Zheng

    2014-01-01

    Super absorbent polymers (SAPs) are compounds that can absorb a lot of water which can be several folds of their original size and weight. They can increase soil water content and aggregates, promote fertilizer utilization efficiency, and stimulate crop growth. Therefore, SAPs have been widely regarded as a potential agent for water-saving agriculture. In this paper, we reviewed the advances of SAPs in materials, properties and applications in agriculture and pointed out that the absence of influences of SAPs on soil microbial ecology was the main issue in current studies. In regard to the adverse effects on soil environment caused by misuse of SAPs, we should address the systematic safety assessment of SAPs application in the soil, especially the effects on the soil microorganisms, which should be an important part of chemicals risk assessment in the soil application.

  14. Remote sensing for detection of soil limitations in agricultural areas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frazee, C. J.; Heil, R. D.; Westin, F. C.

    1970-01-01

    Automatic analysis of soil limitations studied by an automatic color TV density slicing system was accomplished. This system color codes the density range of the value component of color of an image. Maps of soil limitations or other similar soil groups are produced by photographing the color coded representation of an area. The planimeter feature of the density slicing system measures the area of each soil limitation providing information on the importance of a soil limitation in an area. The results of this study suggest that an automatic color TV density slicing system has great potential not only for identifying and mapping similar soil areas, but also for indicating the percentage composition of an area.

  15. Remote sensing for detection of soil limitations in agricultural areas.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frazee, C. J.; Myers, V. I.; Westin, F. C.

    1971-01-01

    Research was initiated to establish remote sensing techniques for recognizing and mapping soil limitations to land use. Analysis of soils with limitations to land use because of dense subsoil (claypan) and unfavorable topography (convex sloping or depressional areas) was accomplished by experienced soil scientists utilizing a density slicing system. Maps of soil limitations were produced by photographing the color encoded density slicing analysis of an area. The percentage of each soil limitation was measured by the planimeter feature of the density slicing system. The initial results indicate that a density slicing system has great potential not only for delineating areas of similar soil limitations but also for indicating the percentage composition of an area.

  16. Occurrence and diversity of tetracycline resistance genes in the agricultural soils of South Korea.

    PubMed

    Kim, Song Yeob; Kuppusamy, Saranya; Kim, Jang Hwan; Yoon, Young-Eun; Kim, Kwon-Rae; Lee, Yong Bok

    2016-11-01

    Reports on the occurrence and diversity of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and genes, which are considered to be emerging pollutants worldwide, have, to date, not been published on South Korean agricultural soils. This is the first study to investigate the persistence of tetracycline (oxytetracycline, tetracycline, and chlortetracycline)-resistant bacterial community and genes in natural and long-term fertilized (NPK, pig, and cattle manure composts) agricultural soils in South Korea. The results showed that oxytetracycline and chlortetracycline could be the dominant residues in animal manures; regular fertilization of manures, particularly pig manures, may be the prime cause for the spread and abundance of tetracycline resistance in South Korean agricultural soils. Both the country's natural and agricultural soils are reservoirs of antibiotic-resistant species. Of the 113 tetracycline-resistant isolates identified (19 typical bacterial genera and 36 distinct species), approximately 40 to 99 % belonged to Gram-positive bacteria and Bacillus constituted the predominant genera. Of the 24 tet genes targeted, tetG, tetH, tetK, tetY, tetO, tetS, tetW, and tetQ were detected in all soil samples, highlighting their predominance and robust adaptability in soils. Meanwhile, it is suggested that tetC, tetE, tetZ, tetM, tetT, and tetP(B) are the common residues in pig manures, and furthermore, the treatment of soils with pig manures may wield a different impact on the tet gene resistome in agricultural soils. This study thus highlights the necessity for regulating the usage of tetracyclines in South Korean animal farming. This must be followed by proper monitoring of the subsequent usage of animal manures especially that derived from pig farms located in agricultural soils.

  17. Organic Phosphorus Characterisation in Agricultural Soils by Enzyme Addition Assays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jarosch, Klaus; Frossard, Emmanuel; Bünemann, Else K.

    2013-04-01

    Phosphorus (P) is a non-renewable resource and it is a building block of many molecules indispensable for life. Up to 80 per cent of total soil P can be in organic form. Hydrolysability and thereby availability to plants and microorganisms differ strongly among the multitude of chemical forms of soil organic P. A recent approach to characterise organic P classes is the addition of specific enzymes which hydrolyse organic P to inorganic orthophosphate, making it detectable by colorimetry. Based on the substrate specificity of the added enzymes, conclusions about the hydrolysed forms of organic P can then be made. The aim of this study was to determine the applicability of enzyme addition assays for the characterisation of organic P species in soil:water suspensions of soils with differing properties. To this end, ten different soil samples originating from four continents, with variable pH (in water) values (4.2-8.0), land management (grassland or cropped land) and P fertilization intensity were analysed. Three different enzymes were used (acid phosphatase, nuclease and phytase). Acid phosphatase alone or in combination with nuclease was applied to determine the content of P in simple monoesters (monoester-like P) and P in DNA (DNA-like P), while P hydrolysed from myo-inositol hexakisphosphate (Ins6P-like P) was calculated from P release after incubation with phytase minus P release by acid phosphatase. To reduce sorption of inorganic P on soil particles of the suspension, especially in highly weathered soils, soil specific EDTA additions were determined in extensive pre-tests. The results of these pre-tests showed that recoveries of at least 30 per cent could be achieved in all soils. Thus, detection of even small organic P pools, such as DNA-like P, was possible in all soils if a suitable EDTA concentration was chosen. The enzyme addition assays provided information about the hydrolysable quantities of the different classes of soil organic P compounds as affected

  18. Effects of Surfactants on Cryptosporidium parvum Mobility in Agricultural Soils from Illinois and Utah

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darnault, C. J.; Koken, E.; Jacobson, A. R.; Powelson, D.

    2011-12-01

    The occurence of the parasitic protozoan Cryptosporidium parvum in rural and agricultural watersheds due to agricultural activities and wildlife is inevitable. Understanding the behavior of C. parvum oocysts in the environment is critical for the protection of public health and the environment. To better understand the mechanisms by which the pathogen moves through soils and contaminates water resources, we study their mobility under conditions representative of real-world scenarios, where both C. parvum and chemicals that affect their fate are present in soils. Surfactants occur widely in soils due to agricultural practices such as wastewater irrigation and the application of pesticides or soil wetting agents. They affect water tension and, consequently, soil infiltration processes and the air-water interfaces in soil pores where C. parvum may be retained. We investigate the effects of surfactants on the mobility of C. parvum oocysts in agricultural soils from Illinois and Utah under unsaturated flow conditions. As it is critical to examine C. parvum in natural settings, we also developed a quantification method using RT-PCR for monitoring C. parvum oocysts in environmental soil and water samples. We optimized physico-chemical parameters to disrupt C. parvum oocysts and extract their DNA, and developed isolation methods to separate C. parvum oocysts from colloids in natural soil samples. The results of this research will lead to the development of an accurate and sensitive molecular method for the monitoring of C. parvum oocysts in environmental soil and water samples, and will further our understanding of the mechanisms controlling the behavior of C. parvum oocysts in soils, in particular the role of vadose zone processes, sorption to soil and surfactants.

  19. Presence of organoarsenicals used in cotton production in agricultural water and soil of the Southern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bednar, A.J.; Garbarino, J.R.; Ranville, J.F.; Wildeman, T.R.

    2002-01-01

    Arsenicals have been used extensively in agriculture in the United States as insecticides and herbicides. Mono- and disodium methylarsonate and dimethylarsinic acid are organoarsenicals used to control weeds in cotton fields and as defoliation agents applied prior to cotton harvesting. Because the toxicity of most organoarsenicals is less than that of inorganic arsenic species, the introduction of these compounds into the environment might seem benign. However, biotic and abiotic degradation reactions can produce more problematic inorganic forms of arsenic, such as arsenite [As(III)] and arsenate [As(V)]. This study investigates the occurrences of these compounds in samples of soil and associated surface and groundwaters. Preliminary results show that surface water samples from cotton-producing areas have elevated concentrations of methylarsenic species (>10 ??g of As/L) compared to background areas (<1 ??g of As/L). Species transformations also occur between surface waters and adjacent soils and groundwaters, which also contain elevated arsenic. The data indicate that point sources of arsenic related to agriculture might be responsible for increased arsenic concentrations in local irrigation wells, although the elevated concentrations did not exceed the new (2002) arsenic maximum contaminant level of 10 ??g/L in any of the wells sampled thus far.

  20. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in soil and roots respond differently to phosphorus inputs in an intensively managed calcareous agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wei; Zhang, Yunlong; Jiang, Shanshan; Deng, Yan; Christie, Peter; Murray, Philip J; Li, Xiaolin; Zhang, Junling

    2016-04-22

    Understanding the diversity and community structure of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) is important for potentially optimizing their role in mining phosphorus (P) in agricultural ecosystems. Here, we conduct a comprehensive study to investigate the vertical distribution of AMF in a calcareous field and their temporal structure in maize-roots with fertilizer P application over a three-year period. The results showed that soil available-P response to P fertilization but maize yields did not. Phosphorus fertilization had no-significant effect on richness of AMF except at greater soil-depths. High P-supply reduced root colonization while optimum-P tended to increase colonization and fungal richness on all sampling occasions. Crop phenology might override P-supply in determining the community composition of active root inhabiting fungi. Significant differences in the community structure of soil AMF were observed between the controls and P treatments in surface soil and the community shift was attributable mainly to available-P, N/P and pH. Vertical distribution was related mainly to soil electrical conductivity and Na content. Our results indicate that the structure of AMF community assemblages is correlated with P fertilization, soil depth and crop phenology. Importantly, phosphorus management must be integrated with other agricultural-practices to ensure the sustainability of agricultural production in salinized soils.

  1. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in soil and roots respond differently to phosphorus inputs in an intensively managed calcareous agricultural soil

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Wei; Zhang, Yunlong; Jiang, Shanshan; Deng, Yan; Christie, Peter; Murray, Philip J.; Li, Xiaolin; Zhang, Junling

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the diversity and community structure of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) is important for potentially optimizing their role in mining phosphorus (P) in agricultural ecosystems. Here, we conduct a comprehensive study to investigate the vertical distribution of AMF in a calcareous field and their temporal structure in maize-roots with fertilizer P application over a three-year period. The results showed that soil available-P response to P fertilization but maize yields did not. Phosphorus fertilization had no-significant effect on richness of AMF except at greater soil-depths. High P-supply reduced root colonization while optimum-P tended to increase colonization and fungal richness on all sampling occasions. Crop phenology might override P-supply in determining the community composition of active root inhabiting fungi. Significant differences in the community structure of soil AMF were observed between the controls and P treatments in surface soil and the community shift was attributable mainly to available-P, N/P and pH. Vertical distribution was related mainly to soil electrical conductivity and Na content. Our results indicate that the structure of AMF community assemblages is correlated with P fertilization, soil depth and crop phenology. Importantly, phosphorus management must be integrated with other agricultural-practices to ensure the sustainability of agricultural production in salinized soils. PMID:27102357

  2. Unusually high soil nitrogen oxide emissions influence air quality in a high-temperature agricultural region

    PubMed Central

    Oikawa, P. Y.; Ge, C.; Wang, J.; Eberwein, J. R.; Liang, L. L.; Allsman, L. A.; Grantz, D. A.; Jenerette, G. D.

    2015-01-01

    Fertilized soils have large potential for production of soil nitrogen oxide (NOx=NO+NO2), however these emissions are difficult to predict in high-temperature environments. Understanding these emissions may improve air quality modelling as NOx contributes to formation of tropospheric ozone (O3), a powerful air pollutant. Here we identify the environmental and management factors that regulate soil NOx emissions in a high-temperature agricultural region of California. We also investigate whether soil NOx emissions are capable of influencing regional air quality. We report some of the highest soil NOx emissions ever observed. Emissions vary nonlinearly with fertilization, temperature and soil moisture. We find that a regional air chemistry model often underestimates soil NOx emissions and NOx at the surface and in the troposphere. Adjusting the model to match NOx observations leads to elevated tropospheric O3. Our results suggest management can greatly reduce soil NOx emissions, thereby improving air quality. PMID:26556236

  3. Unusually high soil nitrogen oxide emissions influence air quality in a high-temperature agricultural region.

    PubMed

    Oikawa, P Y; Ge, C; Wang, J; Eberwein, J R; Liang, L L; Allsman, L A; Grantz, D A; Jenerette, G D

    2015-11-10

    Fertilized soils have large potential for production of soil nitrogen oxide (NOx=NO+NO2), however these emissions are difficult to predict in high-temperature environments. Understanding these emissions may improve air quality modelling as NOx contributes to formation of tropospheric ozone (O3), a powerful air pollutant. Here we identify the environmental and management factors that regulate soil NOx emissions in a high-temperature agricultural region of California. We also investigate whether soil NOx emissions are capable of influencing regional air quality. We report some of the highest soil NOx emissions ever observed. Emissions vary nonlinearly with fertilization, temperature and soil moisture. We find that a regional air chemistry model often underestimates soil NOx emissions and NOx at the surface and in the troposphere. Adjusting the model to match NOx observations leads to elevated tropospheric O3. Our results suggest management can greatly reduce soil NOx emissions, thereby improving air quality.

  4. Carbon Structural Investigations of Concentric Layers Within Macro-aggregates From Forest and Agricultural Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dria, K. J.; Gamblin, D. E.; Smucker, A. J.; Park, E.; Filley, T. R.

    2004-12-01

    Much of the current research on the potential of agricultural and forest soils to act as sinks for greenhouse gases focuses on the capacity of the systems to form long-term stabilized fractions of soil organic matter (SOM). One proposed mechanism is that carbon is sequestered within soil aggregate interiors during the aggregation process. Repeated wetting-drying cycles change internal pore geometries and associated microhabitats and create more stable macro-aggregates. Research by Smucker and coworkers (EGU Abstracts, 2004) suggest that the exterior portions of aggregates contain greater concentrations of C and N than their interiors, establishing gradients of \\ä13C values across these aggregates. We present the results of a study to test if there exists molecular evidence of such gradients. Soil samples from forest, conventional tillage (CT) and no tillage (NT) agriculture ecosystems in Hoytville and Wooster LTER sites were gently sieved into various size fractions. Soil macro-aggregates (6.3-9.5mm) were peeled, by mechanical erosion chambers, into concentric layers and separated into exterior, transitional and interior regions. Alkaline CuO oxidation was used to determine the composition of lignin, suberin, and cutin biopolymers to determine changes in source and degradative states of SOM. Preliminary results indicate that both soils show similar relative yields of lignin and hydroxyl fatty acids with a greater abundance of lignin than cutin and suberin acids. Greater abundances (per 100mg organic carbon) of CuO products were observed in the native forest than in either agricultural system. The lignin in the NT agricultural soil was least oxidized, followed by the forest soils, then the CT agricultural soils. For both soils, slight trends in biopolymer concentrations were observed between the exterior, transitional and interior regions of the aggregates from the forest and CT or NT ecosystems.

  5. Testing the validity of a Cd soil quality standard in representative Mediterranean agricultural soils under an accumulator crop.

    PubMed

    Recatalá, L; Sánchez, J; Arbelo, C; Sacristán, D

    2010-12-01

    The validity of a quality standard for cadmium (Cd) in representative agricultural Mediterranean soils under an accumulator crop (Lactuca sativa L.) is evaluated in this work considering both its effect on the crop growth (biomass production) and the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. Four soils with different properties relevant to regulate the behaviour of heavy metals were selected from the Valencian Region, a representative area of the European Mediterranean Region. For all soils, the effective concentration of added Cd causing 50% inhibition (EC(50)) on the biomass production was much higher than the minimum legal concentration used to declare soils as contaminated by cadmium, i.e. 100 times the baseline value for Cd, in Spain (Spanish Royal Decree 9/2005). As expected, Cd toxicity in the crop was higher in the soils having less carbonate content. On the other hand, for all soils, from the second dose on, which represents 10-times the baseline value for Cd, the metal content in crops exceeded the maximum level established for leaf crops by the European legislation (Regulation EC no. 466/2001). Soil salinity and coarse textures make the accumulation of Cd in the edible part of the plant easier. Therefore, the legal baseline soil cadmium content established by the Spanish legislation seems not valid neither from the point of view of the effect on the crop growth nor from the point of view of the metal accumulation in the edible part of the plant. In order to realistically declare contaminated soils by heavy metals, soil quality standards should be proposed taking into account the soil properties. Further research in other agricultural areas of the region would improve the basis for proposing adequate soil quality standards for heavy metals as highlighted by the European Thematic Strategy for Soil Protection.

  6. Persistence and dissipation pathways of the antidepressant sertraline in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Li, Hongxia; Sumarah, Mark W; Topp, Edward

    2013-05-01

    Sertraline is a widely-used antidepressant that is one of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. It has been detected in biosolids and effluents from sewage treatment plants. Since sertraline can reach agriculture land through the application of municipal biosolids or reclaimed water, the persistence and dissipation pathways of (3)H-sertraline were determined in laboratory incubations using three agriculture soils varying in textures and properties. The total solvent extractable radioactivity decreased in all three soils with times to dissipate 50% of material (DT50) ranging from 48.1±3.5 (loam soil) to 84.5±13.8 (clay soil) days. Two hydroxylated sertraline transformation products were identified in all three soils by high performance liquid chromatography with time-of-flight mass spectrometry (HPLC-TOF-MS), but the accumulation did not exceed 10% of the initial parent concentration. The addition of liquid municipal biosolids to the loam soil had no effect on the rate of sertraline dissipation, or production of transformation products. In summary, sertraline was persistent in agricultural soils with major dissipation pathways including the production of non-extractable soil-bound residues, and accumulation of hydroxylated transformation products. The biologically active sertraline transformation product norsertraline was not detected in soil.

  7. [Arsenic accumulation in different agricultural soils in Shouguang of Shandong Province].

    PubMed

    Zeng, Xi-bai; Li, Lian-fang; Bai, Ling-yu; Mei, Xu-rong; Yang, Jia-bo; Hu, Liu-jie

    2007-02-01

    The study on the soil arsenic (As) accumulation under different types of agricultural use in Shouguang of Shandong Province showed that farmland soils had an average As content of 9. 63 mg x kg(-1) , with the highest being 15. 15 mg x kg(-1) . Compared with the local background value (9. 3 mg As x kg(-1)) , 53. 1% of soil samples was detected as As enrichment. The soil As content was high in the west, east and north parts of Shouguang, relatively lower in the middle part, and the lowest in the south part. Different agricultural use had an obvious effect on the soil As content, which was decreased in the order of wheat/maize land > cotton field > protected vegetable land > uncovered vegetable land. Such a difference in soil As content was mainly affected by agricultural activities. With the increasing year of vegetable planting, soil As content had an increasing trend, because the As input from pig dung and chicken feces was the main source of soil As in protected vegetable land. Soil As enrichment could be reduced to some degree by applying soybean cake fertiliz-

  8. Impacts of soil sealing on potential agriculture in Egypt using remote sensing and GIS techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohamed, Elsayed Said; Belal, Abdelaziz; Shalaby, Adel

    2015-10-01

    This paper highlights the impacts of soil sealing on the agricultural soils in Nile Delta using remote sensing and GIS. The current work focuses on two aims. The first aim is to evaluate soil productivity lost to urban sprawl, which is a significant cause of soil sealing in Nile Delta. The second aim is to evaluate the Land Use and Land Cover Changes (LU LC) from 2001 to 2013 in El-Gharbia governorate as a case study. Three temporal data sets of images from two different sensors: Landsat 7 Enhanced Thematic Mapper (ETM+) with 30 m resolution acquired in 2001 and Landsat 8 acquired in 2013 with 30 m resolution, and Egypt sat acquired in 2010 with 7.8 m resolution, consequently were used. Four different supervised classification techniques (Maximum Likelihood (ML), Minimum Distance, Neural Networks (NN); and Support Vector Machine (SVM) were applied to monitor the changes of LULC in the investigated area. The results showed that the agricultural soils of the investigated area are characterized by high soil productivity depending on its chemical and physical properties. During 2010-2013, soil sealing took place on 1397 ha from the study area which characterized by soil productivity classes ranging between I and II. It is expected that the urban sprawl will be increased to 12.4% by 2020 from the study area, which means that additional 3400 ha of productive soils will be lost from agriculture. However, population growth is the most significant factor effecting urban sprawl in Nile Delta.

  9. Spatial variability of soil moisture regimes at different scales: implications in the context of precision agriculture.

    PubMed

    Voltz, M

    1997-01-01

    Precision agriculture is based on the concept of soil-specific management, which aims to adapt management within a field according to specific site conditions in order to maximize production and minimize environmental damage. This paper examines how the nature and sources of variation in soil moisture regimes affect our ability to simulate soil water behaviour within a field with adequate precision in order to advise optimal soil-specific management. Field examples of variation in soil moisture regimes are described to illustrate the difficulties involved. A discussion identifies three main points. First, it is recognized that the current modelling approaches to soil moisture regimes do not sufficiently account for local heterogeneities in soil and crop characteristics such as soil morphology and rooting patterns. Second, the estimation of within-field variation of soil hydraulic properties is difficult because of large short-range variation of the properties and general lack of observed data; one way to overcome this problem is to seek new measurement techniques or to find easy-to-measure auxiliary variables spatially correlated to the variables of interest. Last, as pollution impacts often become noticeable to society at scales larger than the scale of agricultural management, hydrological modelling can serve for linking both scales and advising agricultural practices that minimize undesirable pollution effects.

  10. Levels and vertical distribution of PCBs in agricultural and natural soils from Sweden.

    PubMed

    Armitage, James M; Hanson, Marsha; Axelman, Johan; Cousins, Ian T

    2006-12-01

    Soils represent an important reservoir for persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in the terrestrial environment and thus the fate of contaminants deposited to the surface soils is important to understand. Since only a limited number of studies of the vertical distribution of POPs are available in the literature, the purpose of this study was to collect and analyze PCB concentrations in different layers of soil cores taken at agricultural and non-agricultural sites in Sweden. PCB concentrations at the agricultural site were nearly uniform on a dry weight basis throughout the depth considered (0-12 cm) while a distinct gradient with depth was observed at the five non-agricultural sites. On an organic carbon normalized basis, the concentration gradient was maintained at three of the non-agricultural sites while a more uniform distribution was observed at the other two sites. A statistically significant relationship between dry weight soil concentrations and organic carbon content was determined for all PCB congeners in the surface layers (0-1 cm) but not in the deeper layers (4-5 cm, 9-10 cm). These results were interpreted in relation to vertical soil transport processes and then the implications for environmental fate models including soil compartments were discussed.

  11. Estimation of Anthropogenic Uranium Concentration in Japanese Agricultural Soils from Phosphatic Fertilizers

    SciTech Connect

    Tagami, K.; Uchida, S.; Takeda, H.

    2006-07-01

    In this study, estimation of excess amount of uranium in Japanese agricultural soils due to phosphatic fertilizer application were carried out, by measuring concentrations of total U and Th in 82 soils collected throughout Japan by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Since Japanese non-agricultural fields have an average U/Th ratio of 0.23, thus, using U/Th ratios in non-agricultural areas, we thought that it is possible to calculate amounts of excess U due to the application of fertilizers. It was estimated that about 50% of total U in paddy field soils (range: 4-78%) and about 48% of total U in upland field soils (range: 4-74%) were originated from the phosphatic fertilizers. (authors)

  12. Enhancing agricultural forecasting using SMOS surface soil moisture retrievals

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    With the onset of data availability from the ESA Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (SMOS) mission (Kerr and Levine, 2008) and the expected 2015 launch of the NASA Soil Moisture Active and Passive (SMAP) mission (Entekhabi et al., 2010), the next five years should see a significant expansion in our ab...

  13. Soil and Water Challenges for Pacific Northwest Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil and water conservation has been a major concern in the Inland Pacific Northwest since the onset of farming 125 years ago. Some of the highest historic water erosion rates in the USA have occurred on steep slopes in the Palouse region where soil loss averaged 45 Mg ha-1 yr-1 and could reach 450 ...

  14. Sorption and desorption of indaziflam degradates in several agricultural soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Processes regulating pesticide fate in the environment are influenced by the physicochemical properties of pesticides and soils. Sorption-desorption are important processes as they regulate movement of pesticides in soil. Although sorption-desorption is widely studied for herbicides, studies involvi...

  15. Fate and availability of glyphosate and AMPA in agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Simonsen, Louise; Fomsgaard, Inge S; Svensmark, Bo; Spliid, Niels Henrik

    2008-06-01

    The fate of glyphosate and its degradation product aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA) was studied in soil. Labeled glyphosate was used to be able to distinguish the measured quantities of glyphosate and AMPA from the background values since the soil was sampled in a field where glyphosate had been used formerly. After addition of labeled glyphosate, the disappearance of glyphosate and the formation and disappearance of AMPA were monitored. The resulting curves were fitted according to a new EU guideline. The best fit of the glyphosate degradation data was obtained using a first-order multi compartment (FOMC) model. DT(50) values of 9 days (glyphosate) and 32 days (AMPA) indicated relatively rapid degradation. After an aging period of 6 months, the leaching risk of each residue was determined by treating the soil with pure water or a phosphate solution (pH 6), to simulate rain over a non-fertilized or fertilized field, respectively. Significantly larger (p < 0.05) amounts of aged glyphosate and AMPA were extracted from the soil when phosphate solution was used as an extraction agent, compared with pure water. This indicates that the risk of leaching of aged glyphosate and AMPA residues from soil is greater in fertilized soil. The blank soil, to which 252 g glyphosate/ha was applied 21 months before this study, contained 0.81 ng glyphosate/g dry soil and 10.46 ng AMPA/g dry soil at the start of the study. Blank soil samples were used as controls without glyphosate addition. After incubation of the blank soil samples for 6 months, a significantly larger amount of AMPA was extracted from the soil treated with phosphate solution than from that treated with pure water. To determine the degree of uptake of aged glyphosate residues by crops growing in the soil, (14)C-labeled glyphosate was applied to soil 6.5 months prior to sowing rape and barley seeds. After 41 days, 0.006 +/- 0.002% and 0.005 +/- 0.001% of the applied radioactivity was measured in rape and barley

  16. Soil, land use time, and sustainable intensification of agriculture in the Brazilian Cerrado region.

    PubMed

    Trabaquini, Kleber; Galvão, Lênio Soares; Formaggio, Antonio Roberto; de Aragão, Luiz Eduardo Oliveira E Cruz

    2017-02-01

    The Brazilian Cerrado area is in rapid decline because of the expansion of modern agriculture. In this study, we used extensive field data and a 30-year chronosequence of Landsat images (1980-2010) to assess the effects of time since conversion of Cerrado into agriculture upon soil chemical attributes and soybean/corn yield in the Alto do Rio Verde watershed. We determined the rates of vegetation conversion into agriculture, the agricultural land use time since conversion, and the temporal changes in topsoil (0-20 cm soil depth) and subsurface (20-40 cm) chemical attributes of the soils. In addition, we investigated possible associations between fertilization/over-fertilization and land use history detected from the satellites. The results showed that 61.8% of the native vegetation in the Alto do Rio Verde watershed was already converted into agriculture with 31% of soils being used in agriculture for more than 30 years. While other fertilizers in cultivated soils (e.g., Ca(+2), Mg(+2), and P) have been compensated over time by soil management practices to keep crop yield high, large reductions in C org (38%) and N tot (29%) were observed in old cultivated areas. Furthermore, soybean and cornfields having more than 10 years of farming presented higher values of P and Mg(+2) than the ideal levels necessary for plant development. Therefore, increased risks of over-fertilization of the soils and environmental contamination with these macronutrients were associated with soybean and cornfields having more than 10 years of farming, especially those with more than 30 years of agricultural land use.

  17. Soil CO2 emissions in terms of irrigation management in an agricultural soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zornoza, Raúl; Acosta, José A.; María de la Rosa, José; Faz, Ángel; Domingo, Rafael; Pérez-Pastor, Alejandro; Ángeles Muñoz, María

    2014-05-01

    Irrigation water restrictions in the Mediterranean area are reaching worrying proportions and represent a serious threat to traditional crops and encourage the movement of people who choose to work in other activities. This situation has created a growing interest in water conservation, particularly among practitioners of irrigated agriculture, the main recipient of water resources (>80%). For these and other reasons, the scientific and technical irrigation scheduling of water use to maintain and even improve harvest yield and quality has been and will remain a major challenge for irrigated agriculture. Apart from environmental and economic benefits by water savings, deficit irrigation may contribute to reduce soil CO2 emissions and enhance C sequestration in soils. The reduction of soil moisture levels decreases microbial activity, with the resulting slowing down of organic matter mineralization. Besides, the application of water by irrigation may increment the precipitation rate of carbonates, favoring the storage of C, but depending on the source of calcium or bicarbonate, the net reaction can be either storage or release of C. Thus, the objective of this study was to assess if deficit irrigation, besides contributing to water savings, can reduce soil CO2 emissions and favor the accumulation of C in soils in stable forms. The experiment was carried out along 2012 in a commercial orchard from southeast Spain cultivated with nectarine trees (Prunus persica cv. 'Viowhite'). The irrigation system was drip localized. Three irrigation treatments were assayed: a control (CT), irrigated to satisfy the total hydric needs of the crop; a first deficit irrigation (DI1), irrigated as CT except for postharvest period (16 June - 28 October) were 50% of CT was applied; and a second deficit irrigation (DI2), irrigated as DI1, except for two periods in which irrigation was suppressed (16 June-6 July and 21 July-17 August). Each treatment was setup in triplicate, randomly

  18. Soil Incubation Study to Assess the Impacts of Manure Application and Climate Change on Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Agricultural Soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schiavone, K.; Barbieri, L.; Adair, C.

    2015-12-01

    Agricultural fields in Vermont's Lake Champlain Basin have problems with the loss of nutrients due to runoff which creates eutrophic conditions in the lakes, ponds and rivers. In efforts to retain nitrogen and other nutrients in the soil farmers have started to inject manure rather than spraying it. Our understanding of the effects this might have on the volatilization of nitrogen into nitrous oxide is limited. Already, agriculture produces 69% of the total nitrous oxide emissions in the US. Understanding that climate change will affect the future of agriculture in Vermont, we set up a soil core incubation test to monitor the emissions of CO₂ and N₂O using a Photoacoustic Gas Sensor (PAS). Four 10 cm soil cores were taken from nine different fertilizer management plots in a No Till corn field; Three Injected plots, three Broadcast plots, and three Plow plots. Frozen soil cores were extracted in early April, and remained frozen before beginning the incubation experiment to most closely emulate three potential spring environmental conditions. The headspace was monitored over one week to get emission rates. This study shows that environmental and fertilizer treatments together do not have a direct correlation to the amount of CO₂ and N₂O emissions from agricultural soil. However, production of CO₂ was 26% more in warmer environmental conditions than in variable(freeze/thaw) environmental conditions. The injected fertilizer produced the most emissions, both CO₂ and N₂O. The total N₂O emissions from Injected soil cores were 2.2x more than from traditional broadcast manure cores. We believe this is likely due to the addition of rich organic matter under anaerobic soil conditions. Although, injected fertilizer is a better application method for reducing nutrient runoff, the global warming potential of N₂O is 298 times that of CO₂. With climate change imminent, assessing the harmful effects and benefits of injected fertilizer is a crucial next step in

  19. Multi and hyperspectral digital-imaging-based techniques for agricultural soil characterization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonifazi, Giuseppe; Menesatti, Paolo; Millozza, Mario

    2004-11-01

    Soil characterization and monitoring in agriculture represent the primary key-factors influencing its productivity and the quality of the produced products. A correct and continuous knowledge of agricultural soil characteristics can help to optimize its use and its degree of exploitation both in absolute terms and with reference to specific cultivations. Soil characterization is conventionally performed adopting integrated physical-chemical analyses based on soil portion (samples), properly sampled, classified and then delivered to specialized laboratories. Such an approach obviously requires a chain of actions and it is time consuming. In this work it is examined the possibility offered by multi and hyperspectral digital imaging based spectrophotometric techniques in order to perform fast, reliable and low cost "in situ" analyses to identify and quantify specific soil attributes, of primary importance in agriculture, as: water, basic nutrients and organic matter content. The proposed hardware and software (HW&SW) integrated architecture have been specifically developed, and their response investigated, with the specific aim to contribute to study a set of "flexible", and very simple, procedures to apply in order to be utilized to operate, not only in agricultural soil characterization, but also in other fields as the environmental monitoring and polluted soils reclamation.

  20. Which Factors Determine Metal Accumulation in Agricultural Soils in the Severely Human-Coupled Ecosystem?

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Li; Cao, Shanshan; Wang, Jihua; Lu, Anxiang

    2016-01-01

    Agricultural soil is typically an important component of urban ecosystems, contributing directly or indirectly to the general quality of human life. To understand which factors influence metal accumulation in agricultural soils in urban ecosystems is becoming increasingly important. Land use, soil type and urbanization indicators all account for considerable differences in metal accumulation in agricultural soils, and the interactions between these factors on metal concentrations were also examined. Results showed that Zn, Cu, and Cd concentrations varied significantly among different land use types. Concentrations of all metals, except for Cd, were higher in calcareous cinnamon soil than in fluvo-aquic soil. Expansion distance and road density were adopted as urbanization indicators, and distance from the urban center was significantly negatively correlated with concentrations of Hg, and negatively correlated with concentrations of Zn, and road density was positively correlated with Cd concentrations. Multivariate analysis of variance indicated that Hg concentration was significantly influenced by the four-way interaction among all factors. The results in this study provide basic data to support the management of agricultural soils and to help policy makers to plan ahead in Beijing. PMID:27196922

  1. Soil dioxins levels at agriculture sites and natural preserve areas of Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Jou, Jin-juh; Lin, Kae-Long; Chung, Jen-Chir; Liaw, Shu-Liang

    2007-08-17

    In this study, agriculture soil in Taiwan has been sampled and analyzed to determine the background level of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/DF) in the agricultural and nature preserve areas. Another objective is to investigate relationship between soil characteristics and air deposition in Taiwan. The results indicate that in nature preserve areas the topsoil shows an extraordinary profile of PCDD/DF compared to that in the air deposition. The PCDD/DF levels of the low-contaminated agricultural soils are compatible with those of the nature preserves soils. However, in the highly-contaminated agricultural soils, there is an abrupt jump in their concentrations, 10-100 times higher. The overall I-TEQ values of the background topsoils range from 0.101 to 15.2 ng I-TEQ/kg. Near industrial/urban areas in Taiwan the PCDD/DF are slightly higher compared to those in the low concentration group. Typically, the PCDD/DF background values found in this survey fall in the 90% confidence interval and can thus, be deemed the background levels in Taiwan. Ninety-five percent of these data are below the European and American soil standard of 10 ng I-TEQ/kg d.w. The PCDD/DF profile with one neighborhood soil sample was shown no significant difference.

  2. Field potential soil variability index to identify precision agriculture opportunity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Precision agriculture (PA) technologies used for identifying and managing within-field variability are not widely used despite decades of advancement. Technological innovations in agronomic tools, such as canopy reflectance or electrical conductivity sensors, have created opportunities to achieve a ...

  3. Dynamics of soil organic matter pools after agricultural abandonment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novara, Agata; Gristina, Luciano; Rühl Rühl, Juliane; La Mantia, Tommaso; Badalucco, Luigi; Kuzyakov, Yakov; Laudicina, Vito Armando

    2014-05-01

    Changes of land use from croplands to natural vegetation usually increase Carbon (C) stocks in soil. However, the contribution of old and new C to various pools still is not clearly analyzed. We measured the δ13C signature of soil organic carbon (SOC) pools after vegetation change from vineyard (C3) to grassland (C4) under Mediterranean climate to assess the changes of old and new C in total SOC, microbial biomass (MB), dissolved organic C (DOC), and CO2 efflux from soil. Development of the perennial grass Hyparrhenia hirta (C4) on vineyard abandoned for 15 or 35 years ago increased C stocks for 13% and 16%, respectively (in the upper 15 cm). This increase was linked to the incorporation of new C in SOC and with exchange of 25% of old C by new C after 35 years. The maximal incorporation of new C was observed in MB, thus reflecting the maximal turnover and availability of this pool. The DOC was produced mainly from old C of soil organic matter (SOM), showing that under Mediterranean climate DOC will be mainly produced not from fresh litter but from old SOM sources. Decomposition of SOM during a 51 days laboratory incubation was higher in cultivated vineyard than H. hirta soils. Based on changes in δ13C values of SOM, MB, DOC and CO2 in C3 soil and in soils after 15 and 35 years of C4 plant colonization, we separated 13C fractionation in soil from changes of isotopic composition by preferential utilization of substrates with different availability. The utilization pattern in this soil under Mediterranean climate was different from that in temperate ecosystems.

  4. Improving the prediction of arsenic contents in agricultural soils by combining the reflectance spectroscopy of soils and rice plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Tiezhu; Wang, Junjie; Chen, Yiyun; Wu, Guofeng

    2016-10-01

    2290 nm, leaf spectral bands near 700, 890 and 900 nm in PLSR models were important wavelengths for soil arsenic prediction. Moreover, soil arsenic showed significantly positive correlations with soil organic matter (r = 0.62, p < 0.01) and leaf arsenic (r = 0.77, p < 0.01), and a significantly negative correlation with leaf chlorophyll (r = -0.67, p < 0.01). The results showed that the prediction of arsenic contents using soil and leaf spectra may be based on their relationships with soil organic matter and leaf chlorophyll contents, respectively. Although RPD of 1.47 was below the recommended RPD of >2 for soil analysis, arsenic prediction in agricultural soils can be improved by combining the leaf and soil spectra.

  5. Study on ozone treatment of soil for agricultural application of surface dielectric barrier discharge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagatomo, Takuya; Abiru, Tomoya; Mitsugi, Fumiaki; Ebihara, Kenji; Nagahama, Kazuhiro

    2016-01-01

    Recently, application of plasma technologies to the agricultural field has attracted much interest because residual pesticides and excessive nitrogen oxides contained in plants, soil, and groundwater have become a serious issue worldwide. Since almost all of the atmospheric discharge plasma generates ozone, the effects of ozone are among the key factors for their agricultural applications. We have proposed the use of ozone generated using surface barrier discharge plasma for soil disinfection or sterilization. In this work, the ozone consumption coefficient and diffusion coefficient in soil were measured by the ultraviolet absorption method. The pH(H2O) and amount of nitrogen nutrient in soil after ozone diffusion treatment were studied and plant growth was observed simultaneously. The effect of ozone treatment on the amount of DNA in soil was also investigated and compared with that determined from the obtained ozone consumption coefficient.

  6. Genetic and functional diversity of ubiquitous DNA viruses in selected Chinese agricultural soils

    PubMed Central

    Han, Li-Li; Yu, Dan-Ting; Zhang, Li-Mei; Shen, Ju-Pei; He, Ji-Zheng

    2017-01-01

    Viral community structures in complex agricultural soils are largely unknown. Electron microscopy and viromic analyses were conducted on six typical Chinese agricultural soil samples. Tailed bacteriophages, spherical and filamentous viral particles were identified by the morphological analysis. Based on the metagenomic analysis, single-stranded DNA viruses represented the largest viral component in most of the soil habitats, while the double-stranded DNA viruses belonging to the Caudovirales order were predominanted in Jiangxi-maize soils. The majority of functional genes belonged to the subsystem “phages, prophages, transposable elements, and plasmids”. Non-metric multidimensional analysis of viral community showed that the environment medium type was the most important driving factor for the viral community structure. For the major viral groups detected in all samples (Microviridae and Caudovirales), the two groups gathered viruses from different sites and similar genetic composition, indicating that viral diversity was high on a local point but relatively limited on a global scale. This is a novel report of viral diversity in Chinese agricultural soils, and the abundance, taxonomic, and functional diversity of viruses that were observed in different types of soils will aid future soil virome studies and enhance our understanding of the ecological functions of soil viruses. PMID:28327667

  7. Soil conservation in the 21st century: why we need smart agricultural intensification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Govers, Gerard; Merckx, Roel; van Wesemael, Bas; Van Oost, Kristof

    2017-03-01

    Soil erosion severely threatens the soil resource and the sustainability of agriculture. After decades of research, this problem still persists, despite the fact that adequate technical solutions now exist for most situations. This begs the question as to why soil conservation is not more rapidly and more generally implemented. Studies show that the implementation of soil conservation measures depends on a multitude of factors but it is also clear that rapid change in agricultural systems only happens when a clear economic incentive is present for the farmer. Conservation measures are often more or less cost-neutral, which explains why they are often less generally adopted than expected. This needs to be accounted for when developing a strategy on how we may achieve effective soil conservation in the Global South, where agriculture will fundamentally change in the next century. In this paper we argue that smart intensification is a necessary component of such a strategy. Smart intensification will not only allow for soil conservation to be made more economical, but will also allow for significant gains to be made in terms of soil organic carbon storage, water efficiency and biodiversity, while at the same time lowering the overall erosion risk. While smart intensification as such will not lead to adequate soil conservation, it will facilitate it and, at the same time, allow for the farmers of the Global South to be offered a more viable future.

  8. Genetic and functional diversity of ubiquitous DNA viruses in selected Chinese agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Li-Li; Yu, Dan-Ting; Zhang, Li-Mei; Shen, Ju-Pei; He, Ji-Zheng

    2017-03-01

    Viral community structures in complex agricultural soils are largely unknown. Electron microscopy and viromic analyses were conducted on six typical Chinese agricultural soil samples. Tailed bacteriophages, spherical and filamentous viral particles were identified by the morphological analysis. Based on the metagenomic analysis, single-stranded DNA viruses represented the largest viral component in most of the soil habitats, while the double-stranded DNA viruses belonging to the Caudovirales order were predominanted in Jiangxi-maize soils. The majority of functional genes belonged to the subsystem “phages, prophages, transposable elements, and plasmids”. Non-metric multidimensional analysis of viral community showed that the environment medium type was the most important driving factor for the viral community structure. For the major viral groups detected in all samples (Microviridae and Caudovirales), the two groups gathered viruses from different sites and similar genetic composition, indicating that viral diversity was high on a local point but relatively limited on a global scale. This is a novel report of viral diversity in Chinese agricultural soils, and the abundance, taxonomic, and functional diversity of viruses that were observed in different types of soils will aid future soil virome studies and enhance our understanding of the ecological functions of soil viruses.

  9. Ecosystem Services in Agricultural Landscapes: A Spatially Explicit Approach to Support Sustainable Soil Management

    PubMed Central

    Crossman, Neville D.; MacEwan, Richard J.; Wallace, D. Dugal; Bennett, Lauren T.

    2014-01-01

    Soil degradation has been associated with a lack of adequate consideration of soil ecosystem services. We demonstrate a broadly applicable method for mapping changes in the supply of two priority soil ecosystem services to support decisions about sustainable land-use configurations. We used a landscape-scale study area of 302 km2 in northern Victoria, south-eastern Australia, which has been cleared for intensive agriculture. Indicators representing priority soil services (soil carbon sequestration and soil water storage) were quantified and mapped under both a current and a future 25-year land-use scenario (the latter including a greater diversity of land uses and increased perennial crops and irrigation). We combined diverse methods, including soil analysis using mid-infrared spectroscopy, soil biophysical modelling, and geostatistical interpolation. Our analysis suggests that the future land-use scenario would increase the landscape-level supply of both services over 25 years. Soil organic carbon content and water storage to 30 cm depth were predicted to increase by about 11% and 22%, respectively. Our service maps revealed the locations of hotspots, as well as potential trade-offs in service supply under new land-use configurations. The study highlights the need to consider diverse land uses in sustainable management of soil services in changing agricultural landscapes. PMID:24616632

  10. Phosphorus in agricultural soils: drivers of its distribution at the global scale.

    PubMed

    Ringeval, Bruno; Augusto, Laurent; Monod, Hervé; van Apeldoorn, Dirk; Bouwman, Lex; Yang, Xiaojuan; Achat, David L; Chini, Louise P; Van Oost, Kristof; Guenet, Bertrand; Wang, Rong; Decharme, Bertrand; Nesme, Thomas; Pellerin, Sylvain

    2017-01-09

    Phosphorus (P) availability in soils limits crop yields in many regions of the World, while excess of soil P triggers aquatic eutrophication in other regions. Numerous processes drive the global spatial distribution of P in agricultural soils, but their relative roles remain unclear. Here, we combined several global data sets describing these drivers with a soil P dynamics model to simulate the distribution of P in agricultural soils and to assess the contributions of the different drivers at the global scale. We analysed both the labile inorganic P (PILAB ), a proxy of the pool involved in plant nutrition and the total soil P (PTOT ). We found that the soil biogeochemical background corresponding to P inherited from natural soils at the conversion to agriculture (BIOG) and farming practices (FARM) were the main drivers of the spatial variability in cropland soil P content but that their contribution varied between PTOT vs. PILAB . When the spatial variability was computed between grid cells at half-degree resolution, we found that almost all of the PTOT spatial variability could be explained by BIOG, while BIOG and FARM explained 38% and 63% of PILAB spatial variability, respectively. Our work also showed that the driver contribution was sensitive to the spatial scale characterizing the variability (grid cell vs. continent) and to the region of interest (global vs. tropics for instance). In particular, the heterogeneity of farming practices between continents was large enough to make FARM contribute to the variability in PTOT at that scale. We thus demonstrated how the different drivers were combined to explain the global distribution of agricultural soil P. Our study is also a promising approach to investigate the potential effect of P as a limiting factor for agroecosystems at the global scale.

  11. Investigation of Soil Erosion and Phosphorus Transport within an Agricultural Watershed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klik, A.; Jester, W.; Muhar, A.; Peinsitt, A.; Rampazzo, N.; Mentler, A.; Staudinger, B.; Eder, M.

    2003-04-01

    In a 40 ha agricultural used watershed in Austria, surface runoff, soil erosion and nutrient losses are measured spatially distributed with 12 small erosion plots. Crops during growing season 2002 are canola, corn, sunflower, winter wheat, winter barley, rye, sugar beets, and pasture. Canopy height and canopy cover are observed in 14-day intervals. Four times per year soil water content, shear stress and random roughness of the surface are measured in a 25 x 25 m grid (140 points). The same raster is sampled for soil texture analyses and content of different phosphorus fractions in the 0-10 cm soil depth. Spatially distributed data are used for geostatistical analysis. Along three transects hydrologic conditions of the hillslope position (top, middle, foot) are investigated by measuring soil water content and soil matrix potential. After erosive events erosion features (rills, deposition, ...) are mapped using GPS. All measured data will be used as input parameters for the Limburg Soil Erosion Model (LISEM).

  12. Efficiency of repeated phytoextraction of cadmium and zinc from an agricultural soil contaminated with sewage sludge.

    PubMed

    Luo, Kai; Ma, Tingting; Liu, Hongyan; Wu, Longhua; Ren, Jing; Nai, Fengjiao; Li, Rui; Chen, Like; Luo, Yongming; Christie, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Long-term application of sewage sludge resulted in soil cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) contamination in a pot experiment conducted to phytoextract Cd/Zn repeatedly using Sedum plumbizincicola and Apium graceolens in monoculture or intercropping mode eight times. Shoot yields and soil physicochemical properties changed markedly with increasing number of remediation crops when the two plant species were intercropped compared with the unplanted control soil and the two monoculture treatments. Changes in soil microbial indices such as average well colour development, soil enzyme activity and soil microbial counts were also significantly affected by the growth of the remediation plants, especially intercropping with S. plumbizincicola and A. graveolens. The higher yields and amounts of Cd taken up indicated that intercropping of the hyperaccumulator and the vegetable species may be suitable for simultaneous agricultural production and soil remediation, with larger crop yields and higher phytoremediation efficiencies than under monoculture conditions.

  13. Agricultural land abandonment in Mediterranean environment provides ecosystem services via soil carbon sequestration.

    PubMed

    Novara, Agata; Gristina, Luciano; Sala, Giovanna; Galati, Antonino; Crescimanno, Maria; Cerdà, Artemi; Badalamenti, Emilio; La Mantia, Tommaso

    2017-01-15

    Abandonment of agricultural land leads to several consequences for ecosystem functions. Agricultural abandonment may be a significant and low cost strategy for carbon sequestration and mitigation of anthropogenic CO2 emissions due to the vegetation recovery and increase in soil organic matter. The aim of this study was to: (i) estimate the influence of different Soil Regions (areas characterized by a typical climate and parent material association) and Bioclimates (zones with homogeneous climatic regions and thermotype indices) on soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics after agricultural land abandonment; and (ii) to analyse the efficiency of the agri-environment policy (agri-environment measures) suggested by the European Commission in relation to potential SOC stock ability in the Sicilian Region (Italy). In order to quantify the effects of agricultural abandonment on SOC, a dataset with original data that was sampled in Sicily and existing data from the literature were analysed according to the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) methodology. Results showed that abandonment of cropland soils increased SOC stock by 9.03MgCha(-1) on average, ranging from 5.4MgCha(-1) to 26.7MgCha(-1) in relation to the Soil Region and Bioclimate. The estimation of SOC change after agricultural use permitted calculation of the payments for ecosystem service (PES) of C sequestration after agricultural land abandonment in relation to environmental benefits, increasing in this way the efficiency of PES. Considering the 14,337ha of abandoned lands in Sicily, the CO2 emission as a whole was reduced by 887,745Mg CO2. Therefore, it could be concluded that abandoned agricultural fields represents a valid opportunity to mitigate agriculture sector emissions in Sicily.

  14. Nutrient and toxic element soil concentrations during repeated mineral and compost fertilization treatments in a Mediterranean agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Baldantoni, Daniela; Morra, Luigi; Saviello, Giovanni; Alfani, Anna

    2016-12-01

    Agricultural soils of semi-arid Mediterranean areas are often subjected to depletion of their chemical, physical, and biological properties. In this context, organic fertilization, in addition to providing nutrients for a longer time in respect to mineral fertilization, improves many other characteristics related to soil fertility. Moreover, the combined use of organic and mineral fertilizers may promote a more sustainable crop production. However, a concern on the long-term use of organic fertilizers arises in relation to the possible accumulation of toxic elements in soil and their transfer to human beings. For this reason, a long-term study on nutrient and toxic element total concentrations and availabilities during fertilization treatments was carried out. In particular, mineral NPK fertilized soils, soils amended with biowaste compost, soils amended with biowaste compost plus mineral nitrogen, and unfertilized soils were analyzed for 11 chemical elements. The results highlighted that temporal variations in total and bioavailable concentrations of both nutrients and toxic elements, occurring also in unfertilized soils, are wider than those related to fertilization treatments. Anyway, soil amendments with biowaste compost, alone or in combination with mineral fertilizers, reduce Cu bioavailability but improve K, Fe, Mn, and Zn availabilities, excluding at the same time a long-term accumulation in soil. Total and bioavailable toxic element concentrations (apart from available Cd) do not vary in relation to fertilization treatments.

  15. Storing Carbon in Agricultural Soils to Help Head-Off Global Warming and to Combat Desertification

    SciTech Connect

    Rosenberg, Norman J.; Izaurralde, Roberto C.

    2001-12-31

    We know for sure that addition of organic matter to soil increases water-holding capacity, imparts fertility with the addition of nutrients, increases soil aggregation and improves tilth. Depeing on it's type, organic matter contains between 40 and 60% carbon. Using agricultural management practices to increase the amount of organic matter and carbon in soils can be an effective strategy to offset carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere as well as to improve the quality of the soil and slow or prevent desertification.

  16. Urban cultivation in allotments maintains soil qualities adversely affected by conventional agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Edmondson, Jill L; Davies, Zoe G; Gaston, Kevin J; Leake, Jonathan R

    2014-01-01

    Modern agriculture, in seeking to maximize yields to meet growing global food demand, has caused loss of soil organic carbon (SOC) and compaction, impairing critical regulating and supporting ecosystem services upon which humans also depend. Own-growing makes an important contribution to food security in urban areas globally, but its effects on soil qualities that underpin ecosystem service provision are currently unknown. We compared the main indicators of soil quality; SOC storage, total nitrogen (TN), C : N ratio and bulk density (BD) in urban allotments to soils from the surrounding agricultural region, and between the allotments and other urban greenspaces in a typical UK city. A questionnaire was used to investigate allotment management practices that influence soil properties. Allotment soils had 32% higher SOC concentrations and 36% higher C : N ratios than pastures and arable fields and 25% higher TN and 10% lower BD than arable soils. There was no significant difference between SOC concentration in allotments and urban non-domestic greenspaces, but it was higher in domestic gardens beneath woody vegetation. Allotment soil C : N ratio exceeded that in non-domestic greenspaces, but was lower than that in garden soil. Three-quarters of surveyed allotment plot holders added manure, 95% composted biomass on-site, and many added organic-based fertilizers and commercial composts. This may explain the maintenance of SOC, C : N ratios, TN and low BD, which are positively associated with soil functioning. Synthesis and applications. Maintenance and protection of the quality of our soil resource is essential for sustainable food production and for regulating and supporting ecosystem services upon which we depend. Our study establishes, for the first time, that small-scale urban food production can occur without the penalty of soil degradation seen in conventional agriculture, and maintains the high soil quality seen in urban greenspaces. Given the

  17. Urban cultivation in allotments maintains soil qualities adversely affected by conventional agriculture.

    PubMed

    Edmondson, Jill L; Davies, Zoe G; Gaston, Kevin J; Leake, Jonathan R

    2014-08-01

    Modern agriculture, in seeking to maximize yields to meet growing global food demand, has caused loss of soil organic carbon (SOC) and compaction, impairing critical regulating and supporting ecosystem services upon which humans also depend. Own-growing makes an important contribution to food security in urban areas globally, but its effects on soil qualities that underpin ecosystem service provision are currently unknown. We compared the main indicators of soil quality; SOC storage, total nitrogen (TN), C : N ratio and bulk density (BD) in urban allotments to soils from the surrounding agricultural region, and between the allotments and other urban greenspaces in a typical UK city. A questionnaire was used to investigate allotment management practices that influence soil properties. Allotment soils had 32% higher SOC concentrations and 36% higher C : N ratios than pastures and arable fields and 25% higher TN and 10% lower BD than arable soils. There was no significant difference between SOC concentration in allotments and urban non-domestic greenspaces, but it was higher in domestic gardens beneath woody vegetation. Allotment soil C : N ratio exceeded that in non-domestic greenspaces, but was lower than that in garden soil. Three-quarters of surveyed allotment plot holders added manure, 95% composted biomass on-site, and many added organic-based fertilizers and commercial composts. This may explain the maintenance of SOC, C : N ratios, TN and low BD, which are positively associated with soil functioning. Synthesis and applications. Maintenance and protection of the quality of our soil resource is essential for sustainable food production and for regulating and supporting ecosystem services upon which we depend. Our study establishes, for the first time, that small-scale urban food production can occur without the penalty of soil degradation seen in conventional agriculture, and maintains the high soil quality seen in urban greenspaces. Given the

  18. Soil CO2 emissions from Northern Andean páramo ecosystems: effects of fallow agriculture.

    PubMed

    Cabaneiro, Ana; Fernandez, Irene; Pérez-Ventura, Luis; Carballas, Tarsy

    2008-03-01

    The effects of fallow agriculture on soil organic matter (SOM) dynamics and CO2 emissions were assessed in the tropical Andean páramo ecosystem. Possible changes during the cultivation-fallow cycle were monitored in four areas of the Quebrada Piñuelas valley (Venezuela). Uncultivated soils and plots at different stages of a complete cultivation--fallow cycle were incubated, and SOM mineralization kinetics was determined. Soils exhibited a low SOM mineralization activity, total CO2 evolved never reaching 3% of soil carbon, pointing to a stabilized SOM. Potential soil CO2 effluxes differed significantly according to their plot aspect: northeast (NE)-aspect soils presented higher CO2 effluxes than southwest (SW)-aspect soils. Soil CO2 emissions decreased after ploughing as compared to virgin páramo; low CO2 effluxes were still observed during cropping periods, increasing progressively to reach the highest values after 4-5 y of fallow. In all cases, experimental C mineralization data was fitted to a double exponential kinetic model. High soil labile C pool variability was observed, and two different trends were identified: NE-oriented soils showed more labile C and a wider range of values than SW-facing soils. Labile C positively correlated with CO2 effluxes and negatively with its instantaneous mineralization rate. The instantaneous mineralization rate of the recalcitrant C pool positively correlated with %C evolved as CO2 and negatively with soil C and Al2O3 contents, suggesting the importance of aluminum on SOM stability. The CO2 effluxes from these ecosystems, as well as the proportion of soil C released to the atmosphere, seem to depend not only on the size of the labile C pool but also on the accessibility of the more stabilized SOM. Therefore, fallow agriculture produces moderate changes in SOM quality and temporarily alters the CO2 emission capacity of these soils.

  19. Watershed sediment losses to lakes accelerating despite agricultural soil conservation efforts.

    PubMed

    Heathcote, Adam J; Filstrup, Christopher T; Downing, John A

    2013-01-01

    Agricultural soil loss and deposition in aquatic ecosystems is a problem that impairs water quality worldwide and is costly to agriculture and food supplies. In the US, for example, billions of dollars have subsidized soil and water conservation practices in agricultural landscapes over the past decades. We used paleolimnological methods to reconstruct trends in sedimentation related to human-induced landscape change in 32 lakes in the intensively agricultural region of the Midwestern United States. Despite erosion control efforts, we found accelerating increases in sediment deposition from erosion; median erosion loss since 1800 has been 15.4 tons ha(-1). Sediment deposition from erosion increased >6-fold, from 149 g m(-2) yr(-1) in 1850 to 986 g m(-2) yr(-1) by 2010. Average time to accumulate one mm of sediment decreased from 631 days before European settlement (ca. 1850) to 59 days mm(-1) at present. Most of this sediment was deposited in the last 50 years and is related to agricultural intensification rather than land clearance or predominance of agricultural lands. In the face of these intensive agricultural practices, traditional soil conservation programs have not decelerated downstream losses. Despite large erosion control subsidies, erosion and declining water quality continue, thus new approaches are needed to mitigate erosion and water degradation.

  20. Contamination, source, and input route of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in historic wastewater-irrigated agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ning; Li, Hong-Bo; Long, Jin-Lin; Cai, Chao; Dai, Jiu-Lan; Zhang, Juan; Wang, Ren-Qing

    2012-12-01

    Contamination by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) of historic wastewater-irrigated agricultural topsoil (0-5 cm) and the contribution of groundwater irrigation and atmospheric deposition to soil PAHs were studied in a typical agricultural region, i.e. Hunpu region, Liaoning, China. Concentrations of total PAHs ranged from 0.43 to 2.64 mg kg⁻¹ in topsoil, being lower than those found in other wastewater-irrigated areas. The levels of PAHs in soil declined as the distance from a water source increased. Concentrations of individual PAHs were generally higher in upland than in paddy topsoils. The calculated nemerow composite index showed that agricultural soil in the region was "polluted" by PAHs. A human health risk assessment based on the total toxic equivalent concentration showed that the presence of elevated concentrations of PAHs in the soil might pose a great threat to the health of local residents. Ratios of pairs of PAHs and principal component analysis (PCA) showed that pyrogenesis, such as coal combustion, was the main source of PAHs, while petroleum, to some extent, also had a strong influence on PAHs contamination in upland soil. The distribution patterns of individual PAHs and composition of PAHs differed between irrigation groundwater and topsoil, but were similar between atmospheric deposition and topsoil. There were significant linear correlations (r = 0.90; p < 0.01) between atmospheric deposition rates and average concentrations of the 16 individual PAHs in soils, while no significant relationships were observed between irrigation groundwater and topsoil in levels of PAHs. These suggested that PAHs in agricultural soils were mainly introduced from atmospheric deposition, rather than from groundwater irrigation after the phasing out of wastewater irrigation in the region since 2002. This study provides a reference to ensure agricultural product safety, pollution control, and proper soil management.

  1. Comparison of organochlorine pesticides occurrence, origin, and character in agricultural and industrial soils in Beijing.

    PubMed

    Shi, Yajuan; Lu, Yonglong; Wang, Tieyu; Wang, Guang; Luo, Wei

    2009-10-01

    The origin and occurrence of organochlorine pesticides [OCPs; hexachlorocyclohexanes (HCHs) and 1,1,1-trichloro-2,2- bis(p-chlorophenyl) ethane (DDTs)] in the surface and profile of soils from former OCPs production areas were compared with those of agricultural plots in Beijing, China in order to identify their characteristics, assess the eco-toxicological risk, and provide management suggestions. The comparison indicated heavier contamination caused by the production, storage, and waste disposal than the application of OCPs. Concentrations of HCHs and DDTs in topsoils varied by several orders of magnitude among different land-use groups. The concentrations (ng/g dry soil, geometric means) of HCHs (1958.2) and DDTs (3998.2) in the topsoils of former OCPs production factories were significantly higher than those in agricultural soils. The residue of DDTs and HCHs accumulated only on the surface of agricultural soil, but at depths ranging from 0 to 400 cm for the OCPs plant and warehouse. beta-HCH and p,p'-DDE dominated in the agricultural soils, whereas beta-HCH, gamma-HCH, p,p'-DDT, and p,p'-DDE were dominant in the industrial soils. The risk of examined OCPs in soils on human health was assessed in light of the Dutch and Canadian soil quality criteria, and the results indicated a high risk in the OCPs production factory area and the agricultural lands with large application. The results point to the need for urgent actions to evaluate long-term toxicity and preassessment for OCPs-related land-use management.

  2. How agricultural management shapes soil microbial communities: patterns emerging from genetic and genomic studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daly, Amanda; Grandy, A. Stuart

    2016-04-01

    Agriculture is a predominant land use and thus a large influence on global carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) balances, climate, and human health. If we are to produce food, fiber, and fuel sustainably we must maximize agricultural yield while minimizing negative environmental consequences, goals towards which we have made great strides through agronomic advances. However, most agronomic strategies have been designed with a view of soil as a black box, largely ignoring the way management is mediated by soil biota. Because soil microbes play a central role in many of the processes that deliver nutrients to crops and support their health and productivity, agricultural management strategies targeted to exploit or support microbial activity should deliver additional benefits. To do this we must determine how microbial community structure and function are shaped by agricultural practices, but until recently our characterizations of soil microbial communities in agricultural soils have been largely limited to broad taxonomic classes due to methodological constraints. With advances in high-throughput genetic and genomic sequencing techniques, better taxonomic resolution now enables us to determine how agricultural management affects specific microbes and, in turn, nutrient cycling outcomes. Here we unite findings from published research that includes genetic or genomic data about microbial community structure (e.g. 454, Illumina, clone libraries, qPCR) in soils under agricultural management regimes that differ in type and extent of tillage, cropping selections and rotations, inclusion of cover crops, organic amendments, and/or synthetic fertilizer application. We delineate patterns linking agricultural management to microbial diversity, biomass, C- and N-content, and abundance of microbial taxa; furthermore, where available, we compare patterns in microbial communities to patterns in soil extracellular enzyme activities, catabolic profiles, inorganic nitrogen pools, and nitrogen

  3. Nematode Communities in Organically and Conventionally Managed Agricultural Soils

    PubMed Central

    Neher, Deborah A.

    1999-01-01

    Interpretation of nematode community indices requires a reference to a relatively undisturbed community. Maturity and trophic diversity index values were compared for five pairs of certified organically and conventionally managed soils in the Piedmont region of North Carolina. Available nitrogen (nitrate, ammonium) was estimated at various lag periods relative to times of sampling for nematode communities to determine the strength of correlative relationship between nematode communities and nitrogen availability. Soils were sampled six times yearly in 1993 and 1994 to determine the best time of year to sample. Maturity values for plant parasites were greater in organically than conventionally managed soils, and differences between management systems were greater in fall than spring months. However, other maturity and diversity indices did not differ between the two management practices. Differences in crop species grown in the two systems accounted for most differences observed in the community of plant-parasitic nematodes. Indices of free-living nematodes were correlated negatively with concentrations of ammonium, whereas indices of plant-parasitic nematodes were correlated positively with concentrations of nitrate. Due to the similarity of index values between the two systems, organically managed soils are not suitable reference sites for monitoring and assessing the biological aspects of soil quality for annually harvested crops. PMID:19270884

  4. Dynamics of soil organic carbon and nitrogen following agricultural abandonment in a karst region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Dejun; Wen, Li; Yang, Liqiong; Luo, Pan; Xiao, Kongcao; Chen, Hao; Zhang, Wei; He, Xunyang; Chen, Hongsong; Wang, Kelin

    2017-01-01

    Agricultural abandonment is regarded as a major driver of soil organic carbon (C) dynamics, but the mechanisms underlying the direction and magnitude of soil C dynamics following agricultural abandonment are poorly understood. Here dynamics of soil C and N contents during postagricultural succession were investigated in areas underlain by dolomite or limestone by using a space-for-time substitution approach in a karst region, southwest China. One hundred twenty-five sites from cropland, grassland, shrubland, and secondary forest were selected to represent different succession stages. Overall, soil C and N contents were greater (P < 0.05) over limestone than over dolomite mainly due to significantly greater contents of soil C and N in the cropland and grassland underlain by limestone. Both soil C and N contents were lowest in the cropland while highest in the forest. Further analysis indicated that the patterns of soil C and N dynamics differed between the two lithology types. Soil C and N contents increased significantly from cropland to forest over dolomite, while varied insignificantly among succession stages over limestone. Exchangeable calcium explained most of soil C and N variance. We proposed that higher dissolution rate of limestone could replenish the lost calcium so that the calcium levels, and in turn soil C and N contents, were stable from the cropland to the forest. Nevertheless, due to relatively low dissolution rate for dolomite, the calcium level was depleted in the cropland. Following agricultural abandonment, calcium level recovered due to decreased loss, which in turn resulted in recovery of soil C and N.

  5. Effects of copper in flooded Florida agricultural soils on Hyalella azteca.

    PubMed

    Hoang, Tham C; Schuler, Lance J; Rand, Gary M

    2009-04-01

    This study examined the uptake and effects of copper (Cu) from flooded agricultural soils to epibenthic amphipods (Hyalella azteca) using 10-day sediment toxicity tests. Soils were collected from 10 citrus agricultural sites in South Florida. One sediment toxicity test was conducted with one flooding of the 10 soils, and based on the results of this test a second sediment toxicity test was conducted with 4 of the soils, after four 14-day flooding and four 14-day drying intervals over 4 months. Sediment toxicity tests were conducted under flow-through conditions using U.S. EPA methodology. Effects on survival, dry weight, and whole-body Cu concentrations of H. azteca were determined. Cu concentrations in overlying water and sediment of both sediment toxicity tests exceeded regulatory criteria for aquatic organisms. Although survival of H. azteca was not consistently affected from the first to the second sediment toxicity tests, dry weight was consistently reduced and related to Cu concentrations in soil, overlying water, and pore water. Furthermore, whole-body tissue Cu concentrations were significantly higher in H. azteca in all 10 soil-water treatments in the first sediment toxicity test and in all 4 soil-water treatments in the second sediment toxicity test compared to controls. Whole-body tissue concentrations and effects on dry weight were related to Cu exposures in soil, overlying water, and pore water. In these managed soil-water systems, small fish consuming H. azteca with high concentrations of Cu may be at risk.

  6. Native soil fungi associated with compostable plastics in three contrasting agricultural settings.

    PubMed

    Moore-Kucera, Jennifer; Cox, Stephen B; Peyron, Mark; Bailes, Graham; Kinloch, Kevin; Karich, Kalin; Miles, Carol; Inglis, Debra Ann; Brodhagen, Marion

    2014-01-01

    Plastics are used widely as agricultural mulches to suppress weeds and retain soil moisture. Disposal of conventional plastic mulches requires physical removal for disposal in a landfill or incineration. Biodegradable plastic mulches that could be tilled into the soil at the end of a growing season represent an attractive alternative to conventional plastic mulches. In this study, three commercially available mulches labeled as "biodegradable" and one experimental, potentially biodegradable mulch were used during a tomato growing season, and then buried in field soil at three locations for approximately 6 months, as would occur typically in an agricultural setting. Degradation after 6 months in soil was minimal for all but the cellulosic mulch. After removal of mulches from soil, fungi were isolated from the mulch surfaces and tested for their ability to colonize and degrade the same mulches in pure culture. The majority of culturable soil fungi that colonized biodegradable mulches were within the family Trichocomaceae (which includes beneficial, pathogenic, and mycotoxigenic species of Aspergillus and Penicillium). These isolates were phylogenetically similar to fungi previously reported to degrade both conventional and biodegradable plastics. Under pure culture conditions, only a subset of fungal isolates achieved detectable mulch degradation. No isolate substantially degraded any mulch. Additionally, DNA was extracted from bulk soil surrounding buried mulches and ribosomal DNA was used to assess the soil microbial community. Soil microbial community structure was significantly affected by geographical location, but not by mulch treatments.

  7. Efficient mapping of agricultural soils using a novel electromagnetic measurement system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trinks, Immo; Pregesbauer, Michael

    2016-04-01

    "Despite all our accomplishments, we owe our existence to a six-inch layer of topsoil and the fact that it rains." - Paul Harvey. Despite the fact, that a farmers most precious good is the soil that he or she cultivates, in most cases actually very little is known about the soils that are being farmed. Agricultural soils are under constant threat through erosion, depletion, pollution and other degrading processes, in particular when considering intensive industrial scale farming. The capability of soils to retain water and soil moisture is of vital importance for their agricultural potential. Detailed knowledge of the physical properties of soils, their types and texture, water content and the depth of the agricultural layer would be of great importance for resource-efficient tillage with sub-area dependent variable depth, and the targeted intelligent application of fertilizers or irrigation. Precision farming, which has seen increasing popularity in the USA as well as Australia, is still in its infancy in Europe. Traditional near-surface geophysical prospection systems for agricultural soil mapping have either been based on earth resistance measurements using electrode-disks that require soil contact, with inherent issues, or electromagnetic induction (EMI) measurements conducted with EMI devices mounted in non-metallic sledges towed several metres behind survey vehicles across the fields. Every farmer passes over the fields several times during each growing season, working the soil and treating the crops. Therefore a novel user-friendly measurement system, the "Topsoil Mapper" (TSM) has been developed, which enables the farmer to simultaneously acquire soil conductivity information and derived soil parameters while anyway passing over the fields using different agricultural implements. The measurement principle of the TSM is electromagnetic induction using a multi-coil array to acquire conductivity information along a vertical profile down to approximately 1.1 m

  8. Bioaccessibility of trace elements as affected by soil parameters in smelter-contaminated agricultural soils: a statistical modeling approach.

    PubMed

    Pelfrêne, Aurélie; Waterlot, Christophe; Mazzuca, Muriel; Nisse, Catherine; Cuny, Damien; Richard, Antoine; Denys, Sébastien; Heyman, Christophe; Roussel, Hélène; Bidar, Géraldine; Douay, Francis

    2012-01-01

    An investigation was undertaken to identify the most significant soil parameters that can be used to predict Cd, Pb, and Zn bioaccessibility in smelter-contaminated agricultural soils. A robust model was established from an extended database of soils by using: (i) a training set of 280 samples to select the main soil parameters, to define the best population to be taken into account for the model elaboration, and to construct multivariate regression models, and (ii) a test set of 110 samples to validate the ability of the regression models. Total carbonate, organic matter, sand, P(2)O(5), free Fe-Mn oxide, and pseudototal Al and trace element (TE) contents appeared as the main variables governing TE bioaccessibility. The statistical modeling approach was reasonably successful, indicating that the main soil factors influencing the bioaccessibility of TEs were taken into account and the predictions could be applicable for further risk evaluation in the studied area.

  9. Fate of triclosan in agricultural soils after biosolid applications

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Triclosan (5-chloro-2-[2,4-dichloro-phenoxy]-phenol (TCS) is a bactericidal compound that is added to a wide variety of household and personal care products. The consumer use of these products releases TCS into urban wastewater and this compound ends up in the environment when agricultural land is ...

  10. Bacterial oxidation of methyl bromide in fumigated agricultural soils

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miller, L.G.; Connell, T.L.; Guidetti, J.R.; Oremland, R.S.

    1997-01-01

    The oxidation of [14C]methyl bromide ([14C]MeBr) to 14CO2 was measured in field experiments with soils collected from two strawberry plots fumigated with mixtures of MeBr and chloropicrin (CCI3NO2). Although these fumigants are considered potent biocides, we found that the highest rates of MeBr oxidation occurred 1 to 2 days after injection when the fields were tarped, rather than before or several days after injection. No oxidation of MeBr occurred in heat-killed soils, indicating that microbes were the causative agents of the oxidation. Degradation of MeBr by chemical and/or biological processes accounted for 20 to 50% of the loss of MeBr during fumigation, with evasion to the atmosphere inferred to comprise the remainder. In laboratory incubations, complete removal of [14C]MeBr occurred within a few days, with 47 to 67% of the added MeBr oxidized to 14CO2 and the remainder of counts associated with the solid phase. Chloropicrin inhibited the oxidation of MeBr, implying that use of this substance constrains the extent of microbial degradation of MeBr during fumigation. Oxidation was by direct bacterial attack of MeBr and not of methanol, a product of the chemical hydrolysis of MeBr. Neither nitrifying nor methane-oxidizing bacteria were sufficiently active in these soils to account for the observed oxidation of MeBr, nor could the microbial degradation of MeBr be linked to cooxidation with exogenously supplied electron donors. However, repeated addition of MeBr to live soils resulted in higher rates of its removal, suggesting that soil bacteria used MeBr as an electron donor for growth. To support this interpretation, we isolated a gram-negative, aerobic bacterium from these soils which grew with MeBr as a sole source of carbon and energy.

  11. Slow pyrolyzed biochars from crop residues for soil metal(loid) immobilization and microbial community abundance in contaminated agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Igalavithana, Avanthi Deshani; Park, Jinje; Ryu, Changkook; Lee, Young Han; Hashimoto, Yohey; Huang, Longbin; Kwon, Eilhann E; Ok, Yong Sik; Lee, Sang Soo

    2017-06-01

    This study evaluated the feasibility of using biochars produced from three types of crop residues for immobilizing Pb and As and their effects on the abundance of microbial community in contaminated lowland paddy (P-soil) and upland (U-soil) agricultural soils. Biochars were produced from umbrella tree [Maesopsis eminii] wood bark [WB], cocopeat [CP], and palm kernel shell [PKS] at 500 °C by slow pyrolysis at a heating rate of 10 °C min(-1). Soils were incubated with 5% (w w(-1)) biochars at 25 °C and 70% water holding capacity for 45 d. The biochar effects on metal immobilization were evaluated by sequential extraction of the treated soil, and the microbial community was determined by microbial fatty acid profiles and dehydrogenase activity. The addition of WB caused the largest decrease in Pb in the exchangeable fraction (P-soil: 77.7%, U-soil: 91.5%), followed by CP (P-soil: 67.1%, U-soil: 81.1%) and PKS (P-soil: 9.1%, U-soil: 20.0%) compared to that by the control. In contrast, the additions of WB and CP increased the exchangeable As in U-soil by 84.6% and 14.8%, respectively. Alkalinity and high phosphorous content of biochars might be attributed to the Pb immobilization and As mobilization, respectively. The silicon content in biochars is also an influencing factor in increasing the As mobility. However, no considerable effects of biochars on the microbial community abundance and dehydrogenase activity were found in both soils.

  12. Trace elements assessment in agricultural and desert soils of Aswan area, south Egypt: Geochemical characteristics and environmental impacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darwish, Mohamed Abdallah Gad; Pöllmann, Hebert

    2015-12-01

    Determination of chemical elements, Al, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Mo, Ni, P, Pb, Sc, Sr, Ti, Y, and Zn have been performed in agricultural and desert soils and alfalfa (Medicago sativa) at Aswan area. Consequently, the pollution indices, univariate and multivariate statistical methods have been applied, in order to assess the geochemical characteristics of these elements and their impact on soil environmental quality and plant, and to reach for their potential input sources. The investigation revealed that the mean and range values of all element concentrations in agricultural soil are higher than those in desert soil. Furthermore, the agricultural soil displayed various degrees of enrichment and pollution of Cd, Zn, Mo, Co, P, Ti, Pb. The geochemical pattern of integrated pollution indices gave a clear image of extreme and strong pollution in the agricultural soil stations, their poor quality with high risk to human health and considered as a tocsin for an alert. In contrast, the desert soil is the good environmental quality and safe for plant, animal and human health. Alfalfa is tolerant plant and considered as a biomarker for P and Mo in polluted agricultural soil. Four geochemical associations of analyzing elements in agricultural soil and three ones in desert soil have been generated, and their enhancements were essentially caused by various anthropogenic activities and geogenic sources. The investigation also revealed that the broad extended desert soil is fruitful and promising as cultivable lands for agricultural processes in the futures.

  13. Effects of aluminium water treatment residuals, used as a soil amendment to control phosphorus mobility in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Ulén, Barbro; Etana, Ararso; Lindström, Bodil

    2012-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) leaching from agricultural soils is a serious environmental concern. Application of aluminium water treatment residuals (Al-WTRs) at a rate of 20 Mg ha(-1) to clay soils from central Sweden significantly increased mean topsoil P sorption index (PSI) from 4.6 to 5.5 μmol kg(-1) soil. Mean degree of P saturation in ammonium lactate extract (DPS-AL) significantly decreased from 17 to 13%, as did plant-available P (P-AL). Concentrations of dissolved reactive P (DRP) decreased by 10-85% in leaching water with Al-WTR treatments after exposure of topsoil lysimeters to simulated rain. Soil aggregate stability (AgS) for 15 test soils rarely improved. Three soils (clay loam, silty loam and loam sand) were tested in greenhouse pot experiments. Aluminium-WTR application of 15 or 30 ton ha(-1) to loam sand and a clay loam with P-AL values of 80-100 mg kg(-1) soil significantly increased growth of Italian ryegrass when fertilised with P but did not significantly affect growth of spring barley on any soil. Al-WTR should only be applied to soils with high P fertility where improved crop production is not required.

  14. Agricultural use of soil, consequences in soil organic matter and hydraulic conductivity compared with natural vegetation in central Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vega, Verónica; Carral, Pilar; Alvarez, Ana Maria; Marques, Maria Jose

    2014-05-01

    When ecosystems are under pressure due to high temperatures and water scarcity, the use of land for agriculture can be a handicap for soil and water conservation. The interactions between plants and soils are site-specific. This study provides information about the influence of the preence vs. The absence of vegetation on soil in a semi-arid area of the sout-east of Madrid (Spain, in the Tagus River basin. In this area soil materials are developed over a calcareous-evaporitic lithology. Soils can be classified as Calcisols, having horizons of accumulation with powdered limestone and irregular nodules of calcium carbonate. They can be defined as Haplic Cambisols and Leptic Calcisols (WRB 2006-FAO). The area is mainly used for rainfed agriculture, olive groves, vineyards and cereals. There are some patches of bushes (Quercus sp.) and grasses (Stipa tenacissima L.) although only found on the top of the hills. This study analyses the differences found in soils having three different covers: Quercus coccifera, Stipa tenacissima and lack of vegetation. This last condition was found in the areas between cultivated olive trees. Soil organic matter, porosity and hydraulic conductivity are key properties of soil to understand its ability to adapt to climate or land use changes. In order to measure the influence of different soil covers, four replicates of soil were sampled in each condition at two soil depth, (0-10 cm and 10-20 cm). Hydraulic conductivity was measured in each soil condition and replicate using a Mini-disk® infiltrometer. There were no differences between the two depths sampled. Similarly, there were no changes in electric conductivity (average 0.1±0.03 dS m-1); pH (8.7±0.2) or calcium carbonate content (43±20 %). Nevertheless, significant differences (p>0.001) were found in soil organic matter. The maximum was found in soils under Quercus (4.7±0.5 %), followed by Stipa (2.2±1.1 %). The soil without vegetation in the areas between olive trees had only 0

  15. Influence of soil tillage and erosion on the dispersion of glyphosate and aminomethylphosphonic acid in agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Todorovic, Gorana Rampazzo; Rampazzo, Nicola; Mentler, Axel; Blum, Winfried E. H.; Eder, Alexander; Strauss, Peter

    2014-03-01

    Erosion processes can strongly influence the dissipation of glyphosate and aminomethylphosphonic acid applied with Roundup Max® in agricultural soils; in addition, the soil structure state shortly before erosive precipitations fall can be a key parameter for the distribution of glyphosate and its metabolite. Field rain simulation experiments showed that severe erosion processes immediately after application of Roundup Max® can lead to serious unexpected glyphosate loss even in soils with a high presumed adsorption like the Cambisols, if their structure is unfavourable. In one of the no-tillage-plot of the Cambisol, up to 47% of the applied glyphosate amount was dissipated with surface run-off. Moreover, at the Chernozem site with high erosion risk and lower adsorption potential, glyphosate could be found in collected percolation water transported far outside the 2x2 m experimental plots. Traces of glyphosate were found also outside the treated agricultural fields.

  16. Measurement of the open porosity of agricultural soils with acoustic waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luong, Jeanne; Mercatoris, Benoit; Destain, Marie-France

    2015-04-01

    The space between agricultural soil aggregates is defined as structural porosity. It plays important roles in soil key functions that an agricultural soil performs in the global ecosystem. Porosity is one of the soil properties that affect plant growth along with soil texture, aggregate size, aeration and water holding capacity (Alaoui et al. 2011). Water supplies regulation of agricultural soil is related to the number of very small pores present in a soil due to the effect of capillarity. Change of porosity also affect the evaporation of the water on the surface (Le Maitre et al. 2014). Furthermore, soil is a habitat for soils organisms, and most living organisms, including plant roots and microorganisms require oxygen. These organisms breathe easier in a less compacted soil with a wide range of pores sizes. Soil compaction by agricultural engine degrades soil porosity. At the same time, fragmentation with tillage tools, creation of cracks due to wetting/drying and freezing/thawing cycles and effects of soil fauna can regenerate soil porosity. Soil compaction increases bulk density since soil grains are rearranged decreasing void space and bringing them into closer contact (Hamza & Anderson 2005). Drainage is reduced, erosion is facilitated and crop production decreases in a compacted soil. Determining soil porosity, giving insight on the soil compaction, with the aim to provide advices to farmers in their soil optimization towards crop production, is thus an important challenge. Acoustic wave velocity has been correlated to the porosity and the acoustic attenuation to the water content (Oelze et al. 2002). Recent studies have shown some correlations between the velocity of acoustic waves, the porosity and the stress state of soil samples (Lu et al. 2004; Lu 2005; Lu & Sabatier 2009), concluding that the ultrasonic waves are a promising tool for the rapid characterisation of unsaturated porous soils. Propagation wave velocity tends to decrease in a high porous

  17. Fine dust emissions in sandy and silty agricultural soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Dust emissions from strong winds are common in arid and semi-arid regions and occur under both natural and managed land systems. A portable field wind tunnel has been developed to allow measurements of dust emissions from soil surfaces to test the premise that dust concentrations are highly correlat...

  18. Sorption and degradation of estrogen conjugates in agricultural soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The natural estrogenic hormone, 17'-estradiol (E2), can disrupt the endocrine system of some aquatic species at ng/L concentrations. Laboratory studies have shown low potentials for E2 persistence and mobility in the environment due to high degradation and soil retention. However, field studies have...

  19. Soil quality impacts of current South American agricultural practices

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increasing global demand for oil seeds and cereals during the past 50 years has caused an expansion in the cultivated areas and resulted in major soil management and crop production changes throughout Bolivia, Paraguay, Uruguay, Argentina and southern Brazil. Unprecedented adoption of no-tillage as ...

  20. Monitoring changes in soil carbon resulting from intensive production, a non-traditional agricultural methodology.

    SciTech Connect

    Dwyer, Brian P.

    2013-03-01

    New Mexico State University and a group of New Mexico farmers are evaluating an innovative agricultural technique they call Intensive Production (IP). In contrast to conventional agricultural practice, IP uses intercropping, green fallowing, application of soil amendments and soil microbial inocula to sequester carbon as plant biomass, resulting in improved soil quality. Sandia National Laboratories role was to identify a non-invasive, cost effective technology to monitor soil carbon changes. A technological review indicated that Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) best met the farmers objectives. Sandia partnered with Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) to analyze farmers test plots using a portable LIBS developed at LANL. Real-time LIBS field sample analysis was conducted and grab samples were collected for laboratory comparison. The field and laboratory results correlated well implying the strong potential for LIBS as an economical field scale analytical tool for analysis of elements such as carbon, nitrogen, and phosphate.

  1. Does agricultural crop diversity enhance soil microbial biomass and organic matter dynamics? A meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    McDaniel, M D; Tiemann, L K; Grandy, A S

    2014-04-01

    Our increasing dependence on a small number of agricultural crops, such as corn, is leading to reductions in agricultural biodiversity. Reductions in the number of crops in rotation or the replacement of rotations by monocultures are responsible for this loss of biodiversity. The belowground implications of simplifying agricultural plant communities remain unresolved; however, agroecosystem sustainability will be severely compromised if reductions in biodiversity reduce soil C and N concentrations, alter microbial communities, and degrade soil ecosystem functions as reported in natural communities. We conducted a meta-analysis of 122 studies to examine crop rotation effects on total soil C and N concentrations, and the faster cycling microbial biomass C and N pools that play key roles in soil nutrient cycling and physical processes such as aggregate formation. We specifically examined how rotation crop type and management practices influence C and N dynamics in different climates and soil types. We found that adding one or more crops in rotation to a monoculture increased total soil C by 3.6% and total N by 5.3%, but when rotations included a cover crop (i.e., crops that are not harvested but produced to enrich the soil and capture inorganic N), total C increased by 8.5% and total N 12.8%. Rotations substantially increased the soil microbial biomass C (20.7%) and N (26.1%) pools, and these overwhelming effects on microbial biomass were not moderated by crop type or management practices. Crop rotations, especially those that include cover crops, sustain soil quality and productivity by enhancing soil C, N, and microbial biomass, making them a cornerstone for sustainable agroecosystems.

  2. Occurrence of veterinary antibiotics and progesterone in broiler manure and agricultural soil in Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Ho, Yu Bin; Zakaria, Mohamad Pauzi; Latif, Puziah Abdul; Saari, Nazamid

    2014-08-01

    Repeated applications of animal manure as fertilizer are normal agricultural practices that may release veterinary antibiotics and hormones into the environment from treated animals. Broiler manure samples and their respective manure-amended agricultural soil samples were collected in selected locations in the states of Selangor, Negeri Sembilan and Melaka in Malaysia to identify and quantify veterinary antibiotic and hormone residues in the environment. The samples were analyzed using ultrasonic extraction followed by solid phase extraction (SPE) and liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The broiler manure samples were found to be contaminated with at least six target analytes, namely, doxycycline, enrofloxacin, flumequine, norfloxacin, trimethoprim and tylosin. These analytes were detected in broiler manure samples with maximum concentrations reaching up to 78,516 μg kg(-1) dry weight (DW) (doxycycline). For manure-amended agricultural soil samples, doxycycline and enrofloxacin residues were detected in every soil sample. The maximum concentration of antibiotic detected in soil was 1331 μg kg(-1) DW (flumequine). The occurrence of antibiotics and hormones in animal manure at high concentration poses a risk of contaminating agricultural soil via fertilization with animal manure. Some physico-chemical parameters such as pH, total organic carbon (TOC) and metal content played a considerable role in the fate of the target veterinary antibiotics and progesterone in the environment. It was suggested that these parameters can affect the adsorption of pharmaceuticals to solid environmental matrices.

  3. Modeling the impact of conservation agriculture on crop production and soil properties in Mediterranean climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moussadek, Rachid; Mrabet, Rachid; Dahan, Rachid; Laghrour, Malika; Lembiad, Ibtissam; ElMourid, Mohamed

    2015-04-01

    In Morocco, rainfed agriculture is practiced in the majority of agricultural land. However, the intensive land use coupled to the irregular rainfall constitutes a serious threat that affect country's food security. Conservation agriculture (CA) represents a promising alternative to produce more and sustainably. In fact, the direct seeding showed high yield in arid regions of Morocco but its extending to other more humid agro-ecological zones (rainfall > 350mm) remains scarce. In order to promote CA in Morocco, differents trials have been installed in central plateau of Morocco, to compare CA to conventional tillage (CT). The yields of the main practiced crops (wheat, lentil and checkpea) under CA and CT were analyzed and compared in the 3 soils types (Vertisol, Cambisol and Calcisol). Also, we studied the effect of CA on soil organic matter (SOM) and soil losses (SL) in the 3 different sites. The APSIM model was used to model the long term impact of CA compared to CT. The results obtained in this research have shown favorable effects of CA on crop production, SOM and soil erosion. Key words: Conservation agriculture, yield, soil properties, modeling, APSIM, Morocco.

  4. Applying nitrogen site-specifically using soil electrical conductivity maps and precision agriculture technology.

    PubMed

    Lund, E D; Wolcott, M C; Hanson, G P

    2001-10-16

    Soil texture varies significantly within many agricultural fields. The physical properties of soil, such as soil texture, have a direct effect on water holding capacity, cation exchange capacity, crop yield, production capability, and nitrogen (N) loss variations within a field. In short, mobile nutrients are used, lost, and stored differently as soil textures vary. A uniform application of N to varying soils results in a wide range of N availability to the crop. N applied in excess of crop usage results in a waste of the grower"s input expense, a potential negative effect on the environment, and in some crops a reduction of crop quality, yield, and harvestability. Inadequate N levels represent a lost opportunity for crop yield and profit. The global positioning system (GPS)-referenced mapping of bulk soil electrical conductivity (EC) has been shown to serve as an effective proxy for soil texture and other soil properties. Soils with a high clay content conduct more electricity than coarser textured soils, which results in higher EC values. This paper will describe the EC mapping process and provide case studies of site-specific N applications based on EC maps. Results of these case studies suggest that N can be managed site-specifically using a variety of management practices, including soil sampling, variable yield goals, and cropping history.

  5. Influence of management practices on microbial nitrogen cyclers in agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García-Orenes, Fuensanta; Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; McMillan, Mary; Pereg, Lily

    2016-04-01

    Agricultural land management has great influences on soil properties, in particular on microbial communities, due to their sensitivity to the perturbations of the soils. This is even more relevant in Mediterranean agricultural areas under semi-arid conditions. The Mediterranean belt is suffering from an intense degradation of its soils due to the millennia of intense land use and due to unsustainable management practices. As a consequence this area is suffering from a depletion of N content. In this work we investigated the effect of several traditional agricultural management practices on specific functional groups related to the nitrogen cycle in the soil. A field experiment was performed with orchard orange trees (citrus sinesis) in Eastern Spain to assess the long-term effects of ploughing with inorganic fertilization (PI) and ecological practices (EP) (chipped pruned branches and weeds as well as manure from sheep and goats) on microbes that can undertake nitrogen fixation and denitrification. Nine samples of soil were taken from every treatment, near the drip irrigation point and in a zone without the influence of drip irrigation (between trees row), and total DNA extracted. DNA samples were stored at minus-20°C to be analysed by qPCR. Microbial populations involved in the N biochemical cycle were analysed by targeted amplification of key functional biomarker genes: the abundance of nifH (nitrogen fixation), nirS, nirK and nosZ (denitrification) detected by quantitative PCR (qPCR) has shown significant differences between treatments with higher abundance of all four genes in soils from ecological agricultural treatments. This may indicate that the ecological treatment created conditions that are more suitable for N cyclers in the soil and a better fertility and quality status of these soils.

  6. How can soil organic carbon stocks in agriculture be maintained or increased?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Don, Axel; Leifeld, Jens

    2015-04-01

    CO2 emissions from soils are 10 times higher than anthropogenic CO2 emissions from fossil burning with around 60 Pg C a-1. At the same time around 60 Pg of carbon is added to the soils as litter from roots and leaves. Thus, the balance between both fluxes is supposed to be zero for the global earth system in steady state without human perturbations. However, the global carbon flux has been altered by humans since thousands of years by extracting biomass carbon as food, feed and fiber with global estimate of 40% of net primary productivity (NPP). This fraction is low in forests but agricultural systems, in particular croplands, are systems with a high net exported carbon fraction. Soils are mainly input driven systems. Agricultural soils depend on input to compensate directly for i) respiration losses, ii) extraction of carbon (and nitrogen) and depletion (e.g. via manure) or indirectly via enhances NPP (e.g. via fertilization management). In a literature review we examined the role of biomass extraction and carbon input via roots, crop residues and amendments (manure, slurry etc.) to agricultural soil's carbon stocks. Recalcitrance of biomass carbon was found to be of minor importance for long-term carbon storage. Thus, also the impact of crop type on soil carbon dynamics seems mainly driven by the amount of crop residuals of different crop types. However, we found distinct differences in the efficiency of C input to refill depleted soil C stocks between above ground C input or below ground root litter C input, with root-C being more efficient due to slower turnover rates. We discuss the role of different measures to decrease soil carbon turnover (e.g. decreased tillage intensity) as compared to measures that increase C input (e.g. cover crops) in the light of global developments in agricultural management with ongoing specialization and segregation between catch crop production and dairy farms.

  7. Soil chemical sensor and precision agricultural chemical delivery system and method

    DOEpatents

    Colburn, Jr., John W.

    1991-01-01

    A real time soil chemical sensor and precision agricultural chemical delivery system includes a plurality of ground-engaging tools in association with individual soil sensors which measure soil chemical levels. The system includes the addition of a solvent which rapidly saturates the soil/tool interface to form a conductive solution of chemicals leached from the soil. A multivalent electrode, positioned within a multivalent frame of the ground-engaging tool, applies a voltage or impresses a current between the electrode and the tool frame. A real-time soil chemical sensor and controller senses the electrochemical reaction resulting from the application of the voltage or current to the leachate, measures it by resistivity methods, and compares it against pre-set resistivity levels for substances leached by the solvent. Still greater precision is obtained by calibrating for the secondary current impressed through solvent-less soil. The appropriate concentration is then found and the servo-controlled delivery system applies the appropriate amount of fertilizer or agricultural chemicals substantially in the location from which the soil measurement was taken.

  8. Soil chemical sensor and precision agricultural chemical delivery system and method

    DOEpatents

    Colburn, J.W. Jr.

    1991-07-23

    A real time soil chemical sensor and precision agricultural chemical delivery system includes a plurality of ground-engaging tools in association with individual soil sensors which measure soil chemical levels. The system includes the addition of a solvent which rapidly saturates the soil/tool interface to form a conductive solution of chemicals leached from the soil. A multivalent electrode, positioned within a multivalent frame of the ground-engaging tool, applies a voltage or impresses a current between the electrode and the tool frame. A real-time soil chemical sensor and controller senses the electrochemical reaction resulting from the application of the voltage or current to the leachate, measures it by resistivity methods, and compares it against pre-set resistivity levels for substances leached by the solvent. Still greater precision is obtained by calibrating for the secondary current impressed through solvent-less soil. The appropriate concentration is then found and the servo-controlled delivery system applies the appropriate amount of fertilizer or agricultural chemicals substantially in the location from which the soil measurement was taken. 5 figures.

  9. Urban soils: properties for utilitzation for green infrastructure and urban agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shanskiy, Merrit; Krebstein, Kadri

    2015-04-01

    The human influenced soils in urban areas are of prime importance to human populations. Also, it is becoming a trend that there is large increase in reclaimed lands and new users for old industrial areas. Very often the urban soils are heavily modified by different anthropogenic factors. Therefore, it makes it essential to collect the data and knowledge of urban soils in order to understand better how such soils can be managed, rehabilitated or reconditioned to support green infrastructure or urban agriculture. Although the soil organic carbon (SOC) is the largest carbon stock in terrestrial ecosystems and the carbon sequestration is a widely accepted soil function there is still few studies mapping the carbon stocks in urban areas using digital soil mapping techniques. For urban land-use planning and decision making in a process of green infrastructure sustainable development it is in major importance. The urban soils are often lacking sufficient amount of organic matter but they are degraded (compacted, builded, contaminated by construction debris, graded) making them unsuitable as a growing medium. Therefore, the use of certain green infrastructure practices and the development of urban agriculture can be challenging in an urban environment. The issue of assessing soil quality becomes two-fold: the health of the soil as a growing medium needs to be addressed as well as the possible contamination that may be present. Knowing the development history of a parcel is key to determining what type of soil testing should be done, if any, prior to redevelopment or reuse. For current, pilot scale study the soil sampling was carried out in Tartu, Estonia. The different microenvironments were determined inside of urban areas. Soils were collected from such a microenvironments as urban garden areas, parks, other green infrastructure elements. The soils were analyzed for main agrochemical and physical properties at the Estonian University of Life Sciences, laboratory of the

  10. Distribution of arsenic and trace metals in the floodplain agricultural soil of Bangladesh.

    PubMed

    Ahsan, Dewan Ali; DelValls, Tomas Angel; Blasco, Julian

    2009-01-01

    Arsenic contaminated groundwater of Bangladesh is one of the largest natural calamities of the world. Soil samples were collected from floodplain agricultural land of Faridpur and Dhamrai regions to estimate the concentration of arsenic and other trace metals (copper, nickel, zinc, chromium, cadmium, lead, selenium, cobalt, mercury, and manganese). Average arsenic in Faridpur soil was recorded more than three times higher than the world limit and nearly five times higher than that of Dhamrai. The average copper, chromium and cobalt both in Faridpur and Dhamrai agricultural soil were also higher than the Dutch and the world standards. Both Fardipur and Dhamrai soil contain low amount of selenium in comparison to world limit (0.7 mg kg(-1)). A poor correlation between manganese and arsenic was noticed in Faridpur. This may be played a subordinate role in the fixation of arsenic in soil. This study also reveals that the area which has arsenic and trace metal contaminated groundwater may also contain high level of arsenic and trace metals in the agricultural soil due to irrigation with contaminated groundwater.

  11. Lead Isotopic Tracing of Coal-Based Anthropogenic Pollution in Agricultural Soils in Jianghan Plain, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daniel, J. N.; Ying, S.; Zhao, R.; Bu, J.; Gan, Y.; Wang, Y.; Weiss, D. J.; Fendorf, S. E.

    2014-12-01

    The Chinese demand for energy is one of the greatest in the world, and the vast majority of it is generated through coal combustion - a process by which diverse pollutants are released into the atmosphere. Due to the relative proximity of croplands to power plants in much of China, these pollutants can be deposited onto agricultural soils via atmospheric transport. Relative amounts of lead (Pb) isotopes in airborne anthropogenic coal-based contaminants (fly ash) are currently understood. However, contaminants' effects on agricultural soil composition are less clear. We investigate the prevalence of anthropogenic contaminants in cropland soils using lead (Pb) isotope ratios as a tracer. Surface soil samples and deep core samples, taken from Chinese field sites in proximity to a coal combustion plant, undergo an acid extraction process and lead (Pb) isotope concentrations are measured. The results of this study illustrate the extent to which airborne contaminants have entered cropland soils and integrated themselves into the chemical processes at work. They further expand our understanding of the impacts of human coal combustion activities on the biogeochemistry of agricultural soils.

  12. Effect of organic amendments on quality indexes in an italian agricultural soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scotti, R.; Rao, M. A.; D'Ascoli, R.; Scelza, R.; Marzaioli, R.; Rutigliano, F. A.; Gianfreda, L.

    2009-04-01

    Intensive agricultural practices can determine a decline in soil fertility which represents the main constraint to agricultural productivity. In particular, the progressive reduction in soil organic matter, without an adequate restoration, may threaten soil fertility and agriculture sustainability. Some soil management practices can improve soil quality by adding organic amendments as alternative to the sole use of mineral fertilizers for increasing plant quality and growth. A large number of soil properties can be used to define changes in soil quality. In particular, although more emphasis has been given in literature to physical and chemical properties, biological properties, strictly linked to soil fertility, can be valid even more sensitive indicators. Among these, soil enzyme activities and microbial biomass may provide an "early warning" of soil quality and health changes. The aim of this work was to study the effect of preventive sterilization treatment and organic fertilization on enzymatic activities (dehydrogenase, arylsulphatase, beta-glucosidase, phosphatase, urease) and microbial biomass C in an agricultural soil under crop rotation. The study was carried out on an agricultural soil sited in Campania region (South Italy). At the beginning of experiment sterilizing treatments to control soilborne pathogens and weeds were performed by solarization and calcium cyanamide addition to soil. Organic fertilization was carried out by adding compost from vegetable residues, ricin seed exhaust (Rigen) and straw, singly or in association. Three samplings were performed at three different stages of crop rotation: I) September 2005, immediately after the treatments; II) December 2005, after a lettuce cycle; III) January 2007, after peppers and lettuce cycles. The soil sampling followed a W scheme, with five sub-samples for each plot. Soils were sieved at 2 mm mesh and air dried to determine physical and chemical properties; in addition a suitable amount of soils

  13. Molecular microbial diversity of an agricultural soil in Wisconsin.

    PubMed Central

    Borneman, J; Skroch, P W; O'Sullivan, K M; Palus, J A; Rumjanek, N G; Jansen, J L; Nienhuis, J; Triplett, E W

    1996-01-01

    A culture-independent survey of the soil microbial diversity in a clover-grass pasture in southern Wisconsin was conducted by sequence analysis of a universal clone library of genes coding for small-subunit rRNA (rDNA). A rapid and efficient method for extraction of DNA from soils which resulted in highly purified DNA with minimal shearing was developed. Universal small-subunit-rRNA primers were used to amplify DNA extracted from the pasture soil. The PCR products were cloned into pGEM-T, and either hypervariable or conserved regions were sequenced. The relationships of 124 sequences to those of cultured organisms of known phylogeny were determined. Of the 124 clones sequenced, 98.4% were from the domain Bacteria. Two of the rDNA sequences were derived from eukaryotic organelles. Two of the 124 sequences were of nuclear origin, one being fungal and the other a plant sequence. No sequences of the domain Archaea were found. Within the domain, Bacteria, three kingdoms were highly represented: the Proteobacteria (16.1%), the Cytophaga-Flexibacter-Bacteroides group (21.8%), and the low G+C-content gram-positive group (21.8%). Some kingdoms, such as the Thermotogales, the green nonsulfur group, Fusobacteria, and the Spirochaetes, were absent. A large number of the sequences (39.4%) were distributed among several clades that are not among the major taxa described by Olsen et al. (G.J. Olsen, C.R. Woese, and R. Overbeek, J. Bacteriol., 176:1-6, 1994). From the alignments of the sequence data, distance matrices were calculated to display the enormous microbial diversity found in this soil in two ways, as phylogenetic trees and as multidimensional-scaling plots. PMID:8787391

  14. Plant growth-promoting bacteria as inoculants in agricultural soils

    PubMed Central

    de Souza, Rocheli; Ambrosini, Adriana; Passaglia, Luciane M.P.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Plant-microbe interactions in the rhizosphere are the determinants of plant health, productivity and soil fertility. Plant growth-promoting bacteria (PGPB) are bacteria that can enhance plant growth and protect plants from disease and abiotic stresses through a wide variety of mechanisms; those that establish close associations with plants, such as the endophytes, could be more successful in plant growth promotion. Several important bacterial characteristics, such as biological nitrogen fixation, phosphate solubilization, ACC deaminase activity, and production of siderophores and phytohormones, can be assessed as plant growth promotion (PGP) traits. Bacterial inoculants can contribute to increase agronomic efficiency by reducing production costs and environmental pollution, once the use of chemical fertilizers can be reduced or eliminated if the inoculants are efficient. For bacterial inoculants to obtain success in improving plant growth and productivity, several processes involved can influence the efficiency of inoculation, as for example the exudation by plant roots, the bacterial colonization in the roots, and soil health. This review presents an overview of the importance of soil-plant-microbe interactions to the development of efficient inoculants, once PGPB are extensively studied microorganisms, representing a very diverse group of easily accessible beneficial bacteria. PMID:26537605

  15. Active microbial soil communities in different agricultural managements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Landi, S.; Pastorelli, R.

    2009-04-01

    We studied the composition of active eubacterial microflora by RNA extraction from soil (bulk and rhizosphere) under different environmental impact managements, in a hilly basin in Gallura (Sardinia). We contrasted grassy vineyard, in which the soil had been in continuous contact with plant roots for a long period of time, with traditional tilled vineyard. Moreover, we examined permanent grassland, in which plants had been present for some years, with temporary grassland, in which varying plants had been present only during the respective growing seasons. Molecular analysis of total population was carried out by electrophoretic separation by Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (DGGE) of amplified cDNA fragments obtained from 16S rRNA. In vineyards UPGMA (Unweighted Pair Group Mathematical Average) analysis made up separate clusters depending on soil management. In spring both clusters showed similarity over 70%, while in autumn the similarity increased, 84% and 90% for grassy and conventional tilled vineyard respectively. Permanent and temporary grassland joined in a single cluster in spring, while in autumn a partial separation was evidenced. The grassy vineyard, permanent and temporary grassland showed higher richness and diversity Shannon-Weiner index values than vineyard with conventional tillage although no significant. In conclusion the expected effect of the rhizosphere was visible: the grass cover influenced positively the diversity of active microbial population.

  16. Plant growth-promoting bacteria as inoculants in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Souza, Rocheli de; Ambrosini, Adriana; Passaglia, Luciane M P

    2015-12-01

    Plant-microbe interactions in the rhizosphere are the determinants of plant health, productivity and soil fertility. Plant growth-promoting bacteria (PGPB) are bacteria that can enhance plant growth and protect plants from disease and abiotic stresses through a wide variety of mechanisms; those that establish close associations with plants, such as the endophytes, could be more successful in plant growth promotion. Several important bacterial characteristics, such as biological nitrogen fixation, phosphate solubilization, ACC deaminase activity, and production of siderophores and phytohormones, can be assessed as plant growth promotion (PGP) traits. Bacterial inoculants can contribute to increase agronomic efficiency by reducing production costs and environmental pollution, once the use of chemical fertilizers can be reduced or eliminated if the inoculants are efficient. For bacterial inoculants to obtain success in improving plant growth and productivity, several processes involved can influence the efficiency of inoculation, as for example the exudation by plant roots, the bacterial colonization in the roots, and soil health. This review presents an overview of the importance of soil-plant-microbe interactions to the development of efficient inoculants, once PGPB are extensively studied microorganisms, representing a very diverse group of easily accessible beneficial bacteria.

  17. The influence of facility agriculture production on phthalate esters distribution in black soils of northeast China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ying; Wang, Pengjie; Wang, Lei; Sun, Guoqiang; Zhao, Jiaying; Zhang, Hui; Du, Na

    2015-02-15

    The current study investigates the existence of 15 phthalate esters (PAEs) in surface soils (27 samples) collected from 9 different facility agriculture sites in the black soil region of northeast China, during the process of agricultural production (comprising only three seasons spring, summer and autumn). Concentrations of the 15 PAEs detected significantly varied from spring to autumn and their values ranged from 1.37 to 4.90 mg/kg-dw, with a median value of 2.83 mg/kg-dw. The highest concentration of the 15 PAEs (4.90 mg/kg-dw) was determined in summer when mulching film was used in the greenhouses. Probably an increase in environmental temperature was a major reason for PAE transfer from the mulching film into the soil and coupled with the increased usage of chemical fertilizers in greenhouses. Results showed that of the 15 PAEs, di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate(DEHP), di-n-butyl phthalate (DBP), diethyl phthalate (DEP) and dimethyl phthalate (DMP) were in abundance with the mean value of 1.12 ± 0.22, 0.46 ± 0.05, 0.36 ± 0.04, and 0.17 ± 0.01 mg/kg-dw, respectively; and their average contributions in spring, summer, and autumn ranged between 64.08 and 90.51% among the 15 PAEs. The results of Principal Component Analysis (PCA) indicated the concentration of these four main PAEs significantly differed among the facility agricultures investigated, during the process of agricultural production. In comparison with foreign and domestic results of previous researches, it is proved that the black soils of facility agriculture in northeast China show higher pollution situation comparing with non-facility agriculture soils.

  18. Distribution of trace element contamination in sediments and riverine agricultural soils of the Zhongxin River, South China, and evaluation of local plants for biomonitoring.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jinfeng; Yuan, Jiangang; Wu, Shanshan; Lin, Biyun; Yang, Zhongyi

    2012-10-26

    Contents of trace elements (Cd, Pb, Cu, Zn and Ni) in sediments of river bed and bankside and adjacent agricultural soils along the Zhongxin River, Guangdong, China, were determined to investigate the metal distribution and assess ecological risk of trace element contamination. The results show that Cd and Zn are the two major metal elements contaminating the sediments and riverine farmlands. Geo-accumulation index (I(geo)) also revealed that the river sediments were polluted by Cd at levels from moderate to extreme, and by Zn at levels from moderate to high in most cases. Agricultural soils were generally moderately or highly polluted by Cd, and were unpolluted by Zn in most cases. The trace element contents of the river sediments in the upper and middle reaches of the river were much higher than in the downstream reaches. Agricultural soils in site S3 at Zhongxin Town had the highest amount of all the tested trace elements. Although the contents of the trace elements generally decreased from the upper and middle reaches to the downstream river, there was no obvious trend found for agricultural soils. The trace element contents were less influenced by pH and TOC in the sediments as well as in the soils. Storage in river alluvium and dilution by downstream clean sediments were the main mechanisms responsible for the decrease of the metal contents in the river sediments. The linear fit model depicts the risk of transportation of polluted sediments to Xinfengjiang Reservoir, the largest protection zone for sources of drinking water in Guangdong Province. Torpedo grass and rice plant showed the potential to be used in biomonitoring of metal contamination, however, further investigations are needed before using them in practice.

  19. Soil compaction on an agricultural post-mining recultivation site in Eastern Germany

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krümmelbein, Julia; Raab, Thomas; Bens, Oliver; Hüttl, Reinhard F.

    2010-05-01

    Our study is concerned with the agricultural recultivation of post lignite mining areas in Lusatia, where Germany's largest lignite mining area is located. In this region mining leads to disturbances on a landscape level. Recultivation efforts attempt to regenerate post mining areas for various land use options. In this study, the agricultural recultivation is considered. The sandy to loamy substrate that is used for recultivation stems from depths of several meters and is free of soil organic matter. The substrate itself is unstructured when used to construct the sites. During site construction, the substrate is subject to strong mechanical stresses due to excavation, deposition and re-levelling. This practice leads to more or less serious soil compaction which can cause decreased yields of agricultural crops. Our experimental area has been heaped up and re-levelled in 2006/2007. On various subplots the extent of compaction, the effect of amelioration by deep loosening, differing organic soil additives and crop rotations which include deep rooting plants is studied. We compare results of the soil physical status-quo sampling (before the application of any recultivation measure, sample collection in 2007) with recent results (sample collection in 2010) to show the development of soil stability, soil structure and soil functions depending on the recultivation practice. The results of the first soil sampling (2007) revealed bulk density values between 1.3 and 1.9 g/cm³ but comparably low values of precompression stress. We found no correlation between bulk density, saturated hydraulic conductivity and air permeability and for one soil depths a negative correlation between bulk density and precompression stress. We show the degree of compaction on different subplots after site construction and the persistence of recultivation measures such as deep loosening, deep-rooting plants (e.g. alfalfa and sweet clover) by investigating their effects on bulk density

  20. An empirical standardized soil moisture index for agricultural drought assessment from remotely sensed data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrão, Hugo; Russo, Simone; Sepulcre-Canto, Guadalupe; Barbosa, Paulo

    2016-06-01

    We propose a simple, spatially invariant and probabilistic year-round Empirical Standardized Soil Moisture Index (ESSMI) that is designed to classify soil moisture anomalies from harmonized multi-satellite surface data into categories of agricultural drought intensity. The ESSMI is computed by fitting a nonparametric empirical probability density function (ePDF) to historical time-series of soil moisture observations and then transforming it into a normal distribution with a mean of zero and standard deviation of one. Negative standard normal values indicate dry soil conditions, whereas positive values indicate wet soil conditions. Drought intensity is defined as the number of negative standard deviations between the observed soil moisture value and the respective normal climatological conditions. To evaluate the performance of the ESSMI, we fitted the ePDF to the Essential Climate Variable Soil Moisture (ECV SM) v02.0 data values collected in the period between January 1981 and December 2010 at South-Central America, and compared the root-mean-square-errors (RMSE) of residuals with those of beta and normal probability density functions (bPDF and nPDF, respectively). Goodness-of-fit results attained with time-series of ECV SM values averaged at monthly, seasonal, half-yearly and yearly timescales suggest that the ePDF provides triggers of agricultural drought onset and intensity that are more accurate and precise than the bPDF and nPDF. Furthermore, by accurately mapping the occurrence of major drought events over the last three decades, the ESSMI proved to be spatio-temporal consistent and the ECV SM data to provide a well calibrated and homogenized soil moisture climatology for the region. Maize, soybean and wheat crop yields in the region are highly correlated (r > 0.82) with cumulative ESSMI values computed during the months of critical crop growing, indicating that the nonparametric index of soil moisture anomalies can be used for agricultural drought

  1. Quantifying the erosion effect on current carbon budget of European agricultural soils at high spatial resolution.

    PubMed

    Lugato, Emanuele; Paustian, Keith; Panagos, Panos; Jones, Arwyn; Borrelli, Pasquale

    2016-05-01

    The idea of offsetting anthropogenic CO2 emissions by increasing global soil organic carbon (SOC), as recently proposed by French authorities ahead of COP21 in the 'four per mil' initiative, is notable. However, a high uncertainty still exits on land C balance components. In particular, the role of erosion in the global C cycle is not totally disentangled, leading to disagreement whether this process induces lands to be a source or sink of CO2. To investigate this issue, we coupled soil erosion into a biogeochemistry model, running at 1 km(2) resolution across the agricultural soils of the European Union (EU). Based on data-driven assumptions, the simulation took into account also soil deposition within grid cells and the potential C export to riverine systems, in a way to be conservative in a mass balance. We estimated that 143 of 187 Mha have C erosion rates <0.05 Mg C ha(-1) yr(-1), although some hot-spot areas showed eroded SOC >0.45 Mg C ha(-1) yr(-1). In comparison with a baseline without erosion, the model suggested an erosion-induced sink of atmospheric C consistent with previous empirical-based studies. Integrating all C fluxes for the EU agricultural soils, we estimated a net C loss or gain of -2.28 and +0.79 Tg yr(-1) of CO2 eq, respectively, depending on the value for the short-term enhancement of soil C mineralization due to soil disruption and displacement/transport with erosion. We concluded that erosion fluxes were in the same order of current carbon gains from improved management. Even if erosion could potentially induce a sink for atmospheric CO2, strong agricultural policies are needed to prevent or reduce soil erosion, in order to maintain soil health and productivity.

  2. Mapping Spatial Moisture Content of Unsaturated Agricultural Soils with Ground-Penetrating Radar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shamir, O.; Goldshleger, N.; Basson, U.; Reshef, M.

    2016-06-01

    Soil subsurface moisture content, especially in the root zone, is important for evaluation the influence of soil moisture to agricultural crops. Conservative monitoring by point-measurement methods is time-consuming and expensive. In this paper we represent an active remote-sensing tool for subsurface spatial imaging and analysis of electromagnetic physical properties, mostly water content, by ground-penetrating radar (GPR) reflection. Combined with laboratory methods, this technique enables real-time and highly accurate evaluations of soils' physical qualities in the field. To calculate subsurface moisture content, a model based on the soil texture, porosity, saturation, organic matter and effective electrical conductivity is required. We developed an innovative method that make it possible measures spatial subsurface moisture content up to a depth of 1.5 m in agricultural soils and applied it to two different unsaturated soil types from agricultural fields in Israel: loess soil type (Calcic haploxeralf), common in rural areas of southern Israel with about 30% clay, 30% silt and 40% sand, and hamra soil type (Typic rhodoxeralf), common in rural areas of central Israel with about 10% clay, 5% silt and 85% sand. Combined field and laboratory measurements and model development gave efficient determinations of spatial moisture content in these fields. The environmentally friendly GPR system enabled non-destructive testing. The developed method for measuring moisture content in the laboratory enabled highly accurate interpretation and physical computing. Spatial soil moisture content to 1.5 m depth was determined with 1-5% accuracy, making our method useful for the design of irrigation plans for different interfaces.

  3. Tightly-Coupled Plant-Soil Nitrogen Cycling: Comparison of Organic Farms across an Agricultural Landscape.

    PubMed

    Bowles, Timothy M; Hollander, Allan D; Steenwerth, Kerri; Jackson, Louise E

    2015-01-01

    How farming systems supply sufficient nitrogen (N) for high yields but with reduced N losses is a central challenge for reducing the tradeoffs often associated with N cycling in agriculture. Variability in soil organic matter and management of organic farms across an agricultural landscape may yield insights for improving N cycling and for evaluating novel indicators of N availability. We assessed yields, plant-soil N cycling, and root expression of N metabolism genes across a representative set of organic fields growing Roma-type tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum L.) in an intensively-managed agricultural landscape in California, USA. The fields spanned a three-fold range of soil carbon (C) and N but had similar soil types, texture, and pH. Organic tomato yields ranged from 22.9 to 120.1 Mg ha-1 with a mean similar to the county average (86.1 Mg ha-1), which included mostly conventionally-grown tomatoes. Substantial variability in soil inorganic N concentrations, tomato N, and root gene expression indicated a range of possible tradeoffs between yields and potential for N losses across the fields. Fields showing evidence of tightly-coupled plant-soil N cycling, a desirable scenario in which high crop yields are supported by adequate N availability but low potential for N loss, had the highest total and labile soil C and N and received organic matter inputs with a range of N availability. In these fields, elevated expression of a key gene involved in root N assimilation, cytosolic glutamine synthetase GS1, confirmed that plant N assimilation was high even when inorganic N pools were low. Thus tightly-coupled N cycling occurred on several working organic farms. Novel combinations of N cycling indicators (i.e. inorganic N along with soil microbial activity and root gene expression for N assimilation) would support adaptive management for improved N cycling on organic as well as conventional farms, especially when plant-soil N cycling is rapid.

  4. Analysis of the sensitivity of soils to the leaching of agricultural pesticides in Ohio

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schalk, C.W.

    1998-01-01

    Pesticides have not been found frequently in the ground waters of Ohio even though large amounts of agricultural pesticides are applied to fields in Ohio every year. State regulators, including representatives from Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and Departments of Agriculture, Health, and Natural Resources, are striving to limit the presence of pesticides in ground water at a minimum. A proposed pesticide management plan for the State aims at protecting Ohio's ground water by assessing pesticide-leaching potential using geographic information system (GIS) technology and invoking a monitoring plan that targets aquifers deemed most likely to be vulnerable to pesticide leaching. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with Ohio Department of Agriculture, assessed the sensitivity of mapped soil units in Ohio to pesticide leaching. A soils data base (STATSGO) compiled by U.S. Department of Agriculture was used iteratively to estimate soil units as being of high to low sensitivity on the basis of soil permeability, clay content, and organic-matter content. Although this analysis did not target aquifers directly, the results can be used as a first estimate of areas most likely to be subject to pesticide contamination from normal agricultural practices. High-sensitivity soil units were found in lakefront areas and former lakefront beach ridges, buried valleys in several river basins, and parts of central and south- central Ohio. Medium-high-sensitivity soil units were found in other river basins, along Lake Erie in north-central Ohio, and in many of the upland areas of the Muskingum River Basin. Low-sensitivity map units dominated the northwestern quadrant of Ohio.

  5. Agricultural soil greenhouse gas emissions: a review of national inventory methods.

    PubMed

    Lokupitiya, Erandathie; Paustian, Keith

    2006-01-01

    Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) are required to submit national greenhouse gas (GHG) inventories, together with information on methods used in estimating their emissions. Currently agricultural activities contribute a significant portion (approximately 20%) of global anthropogenic GHG emissions, and agricultural soils have been identified as one of the main GHG source categories within the agricultural sector. However, compared to many other GHG sources, inventory methods for soils are relatively more complex and have been implemented only to varying degrees among member countries. This review summarizes and evaluates the methods used by Annex 1 countries in estimating CO2 and N2O emissions in agricultural soils. While most countries utilize the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) default methodology, several Annex 1 countries are developing more advanced methods that are tailored for specific country circumstances. Based on the latest national inventory reporting, about 56% of the Annex 1 countries use IPCC Tier 1 methods, about 26% use Tier 2 methods, and about 18% do not estimate or report N2O emissions from agricultural soils. More than 65% of the countries do not report CO2 emissions from the cultivation of mineral soils, organic soils, or liming, and only a handful of countries have used country-specific, Tier 3 methods. Tier 3 methods usually involve process-based models and detailed, geographically specific activity data. Such methods can provide more robust, accurate estimates of emissions and removals but require greater diligence in documentation, transparency, and uncertainty assessment to ensure comparability between countries. Availability of detailed, spatially explicit activity data is a major constraint to implementing higher tiered methods in many countries.

  6. Phytoremediation potential of some agricultural plants on heavy metal contaminated mine waste soils, salem district, tamilnadu.

    PubMed

    Padmapriya, S; Murugan, N; Ragavendran, C; Thangabalu, R; Natarajan, D

    2016-01-01

    The Pot culture experiment performed for phytoextraction potential of selected agricultural plants [millet (Eleusine coracana), mustard (Brassica juncea), jowar (Sorghum bicolor), black gram (Vigna mungo), pumpkin (Telfairia occidentalis)] grown in metal contaminated soils around the Salem region, Tamilnadu, India. Physiochemical characterization of soils, reported as low to medium level of N, P, K was found in test soils. The Cr content higher in mine soils than control and the values are 0.176 mg/L in Dalmia soil and 0.049 mg/L in Burn & Co soil. The germination rate low in mine soil than control soils (25 to 85%). The content of chlorophyll, carotenoid, carbohydrate and protein decreased in mine soils than control. The morphological parameters and biomass values decreased in experimental plants due to metal accumulation. Proline content increased in test plants and ranged from 0.113 mg g(-1) to 0.858 mg g(-1) which indicate the stress condition due to toxicity of metals. Sorghum and black gram plants reported as metal tolerant capacity. Among the plants, Sorghum produced good results (both biomass and biochemical parameters) which equal to control plant and suggests Sorghum plant is an ideal for remediation of metal contaminated soils.

  7. Establishment and effectiveness of inoculated arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Köhl, Luise; Lukasiewicz, Catherine E; van der Heijden, Marcel G A

    2016-01-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are promoted as biofertilizers for sustainable agriculture. So far, most researchers have investigated the effects of AMF on plant growth under highly controlled conditions with sterilized soil, soil substrates or soils with low available P or low inoculum potential. However, it is still poorly documented whether inoculated AMF can successfully establish in field soils with native AMF communities and enhance plant growth. We inoculated grassland microcosms planted with a grass-clover mixture (Lolium multiflorum and Trifolium pratense) with the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus Rhizoglomus irregulare. The microcosms were filled with eight different unsterilized field soils that varied greatly in soil type and chemical characteristics and indigenous AMF communities. We tested whether inoculation with AMF enhanced plant biomass and R. irregulare abundance using a species specific qPCR. Inoculation increased the abundance of R. irregulare in all soils, irrespective of soil P availability, the initial abundance of R. irregulare or the abundance of native AM fungal communities. AMF inoculation had no effect on the grass but significantly enhanced clover yield in five out of eight field soils. The results demonstrate that AMF inoculation can be successful, even when soil P availability is high and native AMF communities are abundant.

  8. Litter contribution to soil organic carbon in the agriculture abandons processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novara, Agata; Francaviglia, Dario; La Mantia, tommaso; Gristina, Luciano; La Bella, Salvatore; Tuttolomondo, Teresa

    2015-04-01

    Mechanisms of litter decomposition, translocation and stabilization into soil layers are fundamental processes in ecosystem functioning as it regulates the cycle of soil organic matter (SOM), CO2 emission into the atmosphere, carbon sequestration into the soil. In this study, it was investigated the contribution of litters of different stages of Mediterranean secondary succession on Carbon sequestration, analyzing the role of earthworms on translocation of SOM into soil profile. For this purpose δ13C difference between meadow C4-C soil and C3-C litter were used in a field experiment. Four undisturbed litters of different stages of succession were collected (45, 70, 100 and 120 since agriculture abandon) and placed on the top of isolated soil cores. The litter contribution to C stock was affected by plant species and increased with the age of the stage of secondary succession. The soil organic carbon after 1 year since litter position increased up to 40% in comparison to no litter treatment in soil with litter of 120 years since abandon. The new carbon derived from C3-litter was decomposed and transferred into soil profile thanks to earthworms and dissolved organic carbon leaching. After 1 years the carbon increase attributed to earthworm activity ranged from 6% to 13% in soil under litter in field abandoned since 120 and 45 years, respectively.

  9. Biodegradability of pharmaceutical compounds in agricultural soils irrigated with treated wastewater.

    PubMed

    Grossberger, Amnon; Hadar, Yitzhak; Borch, Thomas; Chefetz, Benny

    2014-02-01

    Pharmaceutical compounds (PCs) are introduced into agricultural soils via irrigation with treated wastewater (TWW). Our data show that carbamazepine, lamotrigine, caffeine, metoprolol, sulfamethoxazole and sildenafil are persistent in soils when introduced via TWW. However, other PCs, namely diclofenac, ibuprofen, bezafibrate, gemfibrozil and naproxen were not detected in soils when introduced via TWW. This is likely due to rapid degradation as confirmed in our microcosm studies where they exhibited half-lives (t1/2) between 0.2-9.5 days when soils were spiked at 50 ng/g soil and between 3 and 68 days when soils were spiked at 5000 ng/g soil. The degradation rate and extent of PCs observed in microcosm studies were similar in soils that had been previously irrigated with TWW or fresh water. This suggests that pre-exposure of the soils to PCs via irrigation with TWW does not enhance their biodegradation. This suggests that PCs are probably degraded in soils via co-metabolism.

  10. LandSoil model application for erosion management in sustainable agricultural landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smetanova, Anna; Follain, Stéphane; Raclot, Damien; Le Bissonnais, Yves

    2016-04-01

    Soil erosion and land degradation can lead to irreversible changes and landscape degradation. In order to achieve the sustainability of agricultural landscapes, the land use scenarios might be developed and tested for their erosion mitigation effects. Despite the importance of the long-term scenarios (which are complicated by predictability of climate change in a small scale, its effect on change in soil properties and crops, and the societal behaviour of individual players), the management decision have to be applied already now. Therefore the short-term and medium term scenarios to achieve the most effective soil management and the least soil erosion footprint are necessary to develop. With increasing importance of individual large erosion events, the event-based models, considering soil properties and landscape structures appears to be suitable. The LandSoil model (Ciampalini et al., 2012) - a landscape evolution model operating at the field/small catchment scale, have been applied in order to analyse the effect of different soil erosion mitigation and connectivity management practices in two different Mediterranean catchments. In the soil erosion scenarios the proposed measures targeted soil erosion on field or on catchment scale, and the effect of different extreme events on soil redistribution was evaluated under different spatial designs. Anna Smetanová has received the support of the AgreenSkills fellowship (under grant agreement n°267196). R. Ciampalini, S. Follain, Y. Le Bissonnais, LandSoil: A model for analysing the impact of erosion on agricultural landscape evolution, Geomorphology, 175-176, 2012, 25-37.

  11. [Temporal-spatial distribution of agricultural diffuse nitrogen pollution and relationship with soil respiration and nitrification].

    PubMed

    Wei, Ouyang; Cai, Guan-Qing; Huang, Hao-Bo; Geng, Xiao-Jun

    2014-06-01

    The soil respiration, nitrification and denitrification processes play an important role on soil nitrogen transformation and diffuse nitrogen loading. These processes are also the chains for soil circle. In this study, the Zhegao watershed located north of Chaohu Lake was selected to explore the interactions of these processes with diffuse nitrogen pollution. The BaPS (Barometric Process Separation) was applied to analyze the soil respiration, nitrification and denitrification processes in farmland and forest. The SWAT (Soil and Water Assessment Tool) simulated the temporal and spatial pattern of diffuse nitrogen loading. As the expanding of farmland and higher level of fertilization, the yearly mean loading of diffuse nitrogen increased sustainably from 1980-1995 to 1996-2012. The monthly loading in 1996-2012 was also higher than that in the period of 1980-1995, which closely related to the precipitation. The statistical analysis indicated that there was a significant difference between two periods. The yearly averaged loading of the whole watershed in 1996-2012 was 10.40 kg x hm(-2), which was 8.10 kg x hm(-2) in 1980-1995. The variance analysis demonstrated that there was also a big difference between the spatial distributions of two periods. The forest soil had much higher soil respiration than the farmland soil. But the farmland had higher nitrification and denitrification rates. The more intensive nitrogen transformation in the farmland contributed to the less diffuse nitrogen loading. As the nitrification rate of farmland was higher than denitrification rate, agricultural diffuse nitrate nitrogen loading would increase and organic nitrogen loading would reduce. The analysis of soil respiration, nitrification and denitrification is helpful for the study of soil nitrogen circle form the aspect of soil biology, which also benefits the control of agricultural diffuse nitrogen pollution.

  12. Agricultural terrain scatterometer observations with emphasis on soil moisture variations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    King, C.

    1973-01-01

    Airborne scatterometer observations were made for agricultural terrain in May and June, 1970 at a NASA test site near Garden City, Kansas. Data from 13.3 GHz and 400 MHz scatterometer were analyzed. It was observed that for incidence angle less than 40 degrees, the 13.3 GHz data showed a difference in backscatter from wet and dry fields of the order of 7 db. The averages of the various crop types were within a spread of only 5 db. Other ground parameters such as cultivation pattern and vegetation row effects showed even less distinguishing characteristics on the backscatter. The 400 MHz data also showed a slight moisture dependency.

  13. Agricultural practices that store organic carbon in soils: is it only a matter of inputs ?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chenu, Claire; Cardinael, Rémi; Autret, Bénédicte; Chevallier, Tiphaine; Girardin, Cyril; Mary, Bruno

    2016-04-01

    Increasing the world soils carbon stocks by a factor of 4 per mil annually would compensate the annual net increase of CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. This statement is the core of an initiative launched by the French government at the recent COP21, followed by many countries and international bodies, which attracts political attention to the storage potential of C in soils. Compared to forest and pasture soils, agricultural soils have a higher C storage potential, because they are often characterized by low C contents, and increasing their C content is associated with benefits in terms of soil properties and ecosystem services. Here we quantified, under temperate conditions, the additional C storage related to the implementation of two set of practices that are recognized to be in the framework of agroecology: conservation tillage on the one hand and agroforestry on the other hand. These studies were based on long-term experiments, a 16-years comparison on cropping systems on luvisols in the Paris area and a 18-year-old silvoarable agroforestry trial, on fluvisols in southern France, the main crops being cereals in both cases. C stocks were measured on an equivalent soil mass basis. Both systems allowed for a net storage of C in soils, which are, for the equivalent of the 0-30 cm tilled layer, of 0.55 ± 0.16 t ha- 1 yr- 1 for conservation agriculture (i.e. no tillage with permanent soil coverage with an associated plant, fescue or alfalfa) and of 0.25 ± 0.03 t ha-1 yr-1 for the agroforestry system. These results are in line with estimates proposed in a recent French national assessment concerning the potential of agricultural practices to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Compared to recent literature, they further show that practices that increase C inputs to soil through additional biomass production would be more effective to store C in soil (tree rows, cover crops in conservation agriculture) than practices, such as no-tillage, that are assumed to reduce

  14. A radiative transfer model for microwave emissions from bare agricultural soils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burke, W. J.; Paris, J. F.

    1975-01-01

    A radiative transfer model for microwave emissions from bare, stratified agricultural soils was developed to assist in the analysis of data gathered in the joint soil moisture experiment. The predictions of the model were compared with preliminary X band (2.8 cm) microwave and ground based observations. Measured brightness temperatures at vertical and horizontal polarizations can be used to estimate the moisture content of the top centimeter of soil with + or - 1 percent accuracy. It is also shown that the Stokes parameters can be used to distinguish between moisture and surface roughness effects.

  15. Soil erosion and conservation in the United States: An overview. Agriculture information bulletin. (Final)

    SciTech Connect

    Magleby, R.; Sandretto, C.; Crosswhite, W.; Osborn, C.T.

    1995-10-01

    Soil erosion on agricultural land in the United States does not pose an immediate threat to the Nation`s ability to produce food and fiber. However, erosion is impairing long-term soil productivity in some areas and is the largest contributor to nonpoint source pollution of the Nation`s waterways. Conservation and commodity programs are currently being coordinated to futher conservation objectives. This report provides background information on soil use, erosion, and conservation policies and programs; summarizes assessments of economic and environmental effects of erosion; and discusses policies and programs as well as options for their improvement.

  16. Spectral properties of agricultural crops and soils measured from space, aerial, field and laboratory sensors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bauer, M. E.; Vanderbilt, V. C.; Robinson, B. F.; Daughtry, C. S. T.

    1980-01-01

    It is pointed out that in order to develop the full potential of multispectral measurements acquired from satellite or aircraft sensors to monitor, map, and inventory agricultural resources, increased knowledge and understanding of the spectral properties of crops and soils are needed. The present state of knowledge is reviewed, emphasizing current investigations of the multispectral reflectance characteristics of crops and soils as measured from laboratory, field, aerial, and satellite sensor systems. The relationships of important biological and physical characteristics to their spectral properties of crops and soils are discussed. Future research needs are also indicated.

  17. Agricultural machineries wheeling and soil qualities mapping in climatic changes conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergonzoli, S.; Servadio, P.

    2012-04-01

    As argued in the Fourth Assessment Report of the UN International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published in 2007 the global climate is changing and will continue to change in the near future. Due to the changing in time distribution and intensity of rainfall, the available time to carry out soil tillage operations, seedbed preparation and fertilizers distribution is becoming shorter. These issues are worsened by soil compaction that is one of the major problems facing modern agriculture. Soil compaction impedes infiltration of rainfall, so the increasing scale of mechanization might well be responsible for greater runoff, soil loss by water erosion and water-logging. Overuse of machinery, intensive cropping, short crop rotations, intensive grazing and inappropriate soil management leads to compaction. The objective of this research was to study the compacting effect of two wheeled tractors fitted with different type of tires during fertilizing operations with soil water content over field capacity. Field tests were carried out in a farm near Rome (41°52'502'' Latitude (N); 12°12'866" Longitude (E)) in March 2010 on a clay soil (Vertic Cambisol) during wheat fertilizing. One tractor was fitted with very narrow and high aspect ratio tires with mounted broadcaster coded (WTN), the other tractor was equipped with extra large and low aspect ratio tires with trailed broadcaster for a total of four axles coded (WTEL). Immediately after fertilising operations, such effects have been quantified through spatial variation of some soil parameters: soil water content, soil penetration resistance (CI) and soil shear strength (SS). Soil samplings have been carried out on the tracks left by the tractors and on soil not interested by the passage (control). To monitor all tractors passes across the field and to compute the total area covered by tractors tires a DGPS receiver was placed into the tractors; to map soil parameters studied, both on tracks left by the tractors passes

  18. Research and application of method of oxygen isotope of inorganic phosphate in Beijing agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Tian, Liyan; Guo, Qingjun; Zhu, Yongguan; He, Huijun; Lang, Yunchao; Hu, Jian; Zhang, Han; Wei, Rongfei; Han, Xiaokun; Peters, Marc; Yang, Junxing

    2016-12-01

    Phosphorus (P) in agricultural ecosystems is an essential and limited element for plants and microorganisms. However, environmental problems caused by P accumulation as well as by P loss have become more and more serious. Oxygen isotopes of phosphate can trace the sources, migration, and transformation of P in agricultural soils. In order to use the isotopes of phosphate oxygen, appropriate extraction and purification methods for inorganic phosphate from soils are necessary. Here, we combined two different methods to analyze the oxygen isotopic composition of inorganic phosphate (δ(18)OP) from chemical fertilizers and different fractions (Milli-Q water, 0.5 mol L(-1) NaHCO3 (pH = 8.5), 0.1 mol L(-1) NaOH and 1 mol L(-1) HCl) of agricultural soils from the Beijing area. The δ(18)OP results of the water extracts and NaHCO3 extracts in most samples were close to the calculated equilibrium value. These phenomena can be explained by rapid P cycling in soils and the influence of chemical fertilizers. The δ(18)OP value of the water extracts and NaHCO3 extracts in some soil samples below the equilibrium value may be caused by the hydrolysis of organic P fractions mediated by extracellular enzymes. The δ(18)OP values of the NaOH extracts were above the calculated equilibrium value reflecting the balance state between microbial uptake of phosphate and the release of intracellular phosphate back to the soil. The HCl extracts with the lowest δ(18)OP values and highest phosphate concentrations indicated that the HCl fraction was affected by microbial activity. Hence, these δ(18)Op values likely reflected the oxygen isotopic values of the parent materials. The results suggested that phosphate oxygen isotope analyses could be an effective tool in order to trace phosphate sources, transformation processes, and its utilization by microorganisms in agricultural soils.

  19. Role of carbonates in soil organic matter stabilization in agricultural Mediterranean soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Apesteguía, Marcos; Virto, Iñigo; Plante, Alain

    2016-04-01

    Carbonated soils are present in many semiarid areas, where lithogenic and secondary carbonates are important constituents of the soil mineral matrix. The presence of CaCO3 in calcareous soils has been described as an organic matter stabilization agent mainly due to chemical stabilization mechanisms. In two recent studies in the north of Spain the importance of CaCO3 on soil physical characteristics was highlighted, as they were observed to be acting as macroaggregates stabilization agents. A third study was carried out on the same experimental site, with the hypothesis that the observed differences in aggregation may favor organic matter stabilization in carbonate-containing soils. With that aim we studied the soil physical characteristics (water retention and porosity) and the bioavailability of soil organic matter (SOM) in the two contrasting soils in that site, one Typic Calcixerept (CALC) and one Calcic Haploxerept (DECALC). Bioavailability was evaluated trough the measurement of mineralization rates in a 30 days soil incubations. Intact and disaggregated samples were incubated to evaluate the effect of physical protection on SOM bioavailability in whole soil and macroaggregates 2-5 mm samples. Therefore, four fractions of each soil were studied: intact whole soil < 5 mm (I-WS), disaggregated whole soil (D-WS), intact macroaggregates 2-5 mm (I-Magg), and disaggregated macroaggregates (D-Magg). Soil organic carbon content was greater in CALC and had smaller mineralization rates during incubation, indicating a smaller organic matter bioavailability for microbial decomposition. However, the greater increment of mineralization observed in DECALC after disaggregation, together with the scarce differences observed in physical characteristics among both soils, indicate that physical protection was not responsible of greater SOM stability in CALC soil. New hypotheses are needed to explain the observed better protection of organic matter in carbonate-rich Mediterranean

  20. Barley seedling growth in soils amended with fly ash or agricultural lime followed by acidification

    SciTech Connect

    Renken, R.R.; McCallister, D.L.; Tarkalson, D.D.; Hergert, G.W.; Marx, D.B.

    2006-05-15

    Calcium-rich coal combustion fly ash can be used as an amendment to neutralize soil acidity because of its oxides and carbonate content, but its aluminum content could inhibit plant growth if soil pH values fall below optimal agronomic levels. This study measured root and shoot growth of an acid-sensitive barley (Hordeum vulgare L. 'Kearney') grown in the greenhouse on three naturally acid soils. The soils were either untreated or amended with various liming materials (dry fly ash, wet fly ash, and agricultural lime) at application rates of 0, .5, 1, and 1.5 times the recommended lime requirement, then treated with dilute acid solutions to simulate management-induced acidification. Plant growth indexes were measured at 30 days after planting. Root mass per plant and root length per plant were greater for the limed treatments than in the acidified check. Root growth in the limed treatments did not differ from root growth in the original nonacidified soils. Top mass per plant in all limed soils was either larger than or not different from that in the original nonacidified soils. Based on top mass per plant, no liming material or application rate was clearly superior. Both fly ash and agricultural lime reduced the impact of subsequent acidification on young barley plants. Detrimental effects of aluminum release on plant growth were not observed. Calcium-rich fly ash at agronomic rates is an acceptable acid-neutralizing material with no apparent negative effects.

  1. The American Land. Its History, Soil, Water, Wildlife, Agricultural Land Planning, and Land Problems of Today and Tomorrow.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soil Conservation Service (USDA), Washington, DC.

    Presented in this booklet is the commentary for "The American Land," a television series prepared by the Soil Conservation Service and the Graduate School, United States Department of Agriculture, in cooperation with WETA - TV, Washington, D.C. It explores the resource of land in America, its history, soil, water, wildlife, agricultural land…

  2. Distribution of tetraether lipids in agricultural soils - differentiation between paddy and upland management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mueller-Niggemann, Cornelia; Rahayu Utami, Sri; Marxen, Anika; Mangelsdorf, Kai; Bauersachs, Thorsten; Schwark, Lorenz

    2016-03-01

    Rice paddies constitute almost a fifth of global cropland and provide more than half of the world's population with staple food. At the same time, they are a major source of methane and therewith significantly contribute to the current warming of Earth's atmosphere. Despite their apparent importance in the cycling of carbon and other elements, however, the microorganisms thriving in rice paddies are insufficiently characterized with respect to their biomolecules. Hardly any information exists on human-induced alteration of biomolecules from natural microbial communities in paddy soils through varying management types (affecting, e.g., soil or water redox conditions, cultivated plants). Here, we determined the influence of different land use types on the distribution of glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (GDGTs), which serve as molecular indicators for microbial community structures, in rice paddy (periodically flooded) and adjacent upland (non-flooded) soils and, for further comparison, forest, bushland and marsh soils. To differentiate local effects on GDGT distribution patterns, we collected soil samples in locations from tropical (Indonesia, Vietnam and Philippines) and subtropical (China and Italy) sites. We found that differences in the distribution of isoprenoid GDGTs (iGDGTs) as well as of branched GDGTs (brGDGTs) are predominantly controlled by management type and only secondarily by climatic exposition. In general, upland soil had higher crenarchaeol contents than paddy soil, which by contrast was more enriched in GDGT-0. The GDGT-0 / crenarchaeol ratio, indicating the enhanced presence of methanogenic archaea, was 3-27 times higher in paddy soils compared to other soils and increased with the number of rice cultivation cycles per year. The index of tetraethers consisting of 86 carbons (TEX86) values were 1.3 times higher in upland, bushland and forest soils than in paddy soils, potentially due to differences in soil temperature. In all soils br

  3. The Impact of Agricultural Soil Erosion on the Global Carbon Cycle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural soil erosion is thought to perturb the global carbon cycle, but estimates of its effect range from a source of 1 Pg/year to a sink of the same magnitude. By using Caesium-137 and carbon inventory measurements from a large-scale survey, we found consistent evidence for an erosion-induced...

  4. Current developments in soil water sensing for climate, environment, hydrology and agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Knowledge of the four dimensional spatio-temporal status and dynamics of soil water content is becoming indispensable to solutions of agricultural, environmental, climatological and engineering problems at all scales. In agronomy alone, science is severely limited by scant or inaccurate knowledge of...

  5. Benchmarking a soil moisture data assimilation system for agricultural drought monitoring

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural drought is defined as a shortage of moisture in the root zone of plants. Recently available satellite-based remote sensing data have accelerated development of drought early warning system by providing spatially continuous soil moisture information repeatedly at short-term interval. Non...

  6. Soil physical properties of agricultural systems in a large-scale study

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A large-scale field study was performed to determine the effects of agricultural management systems on soil physical properties, including their spatial and temporal variations. Replicates were established in 1998 at the Center for Environmental Farming Systems, Goldsboro, North Carolina; replicates...

  7. Anthropogenic effects on soil quality in ancient terraced agricultural fields of Chihuahua, Mexico

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural soil quality was investigated in ancient field systems near Casas Grandes (also known as Paquimé), one of the largest and most complex prehistoric settlements in the North American Southwest. This research was completed as part of an interdisciplinary study of the anthropogenic ecology...

  8. MEASUREMENT OF NITROGEN OXIDE EMISSIONS FROM AN AGRICULTURAL SOIL WITH A DYNAMIC CHAMBER SYSTEM

    EPA Science Inventory

    Biogenic soil emissions of nitric oxide (NO) were measured from an intensively managed agricultural row crop (corn, Zea mays) during a 4 week period May 15 through June 9, 1995). The site was located in Washington County, near the town of Plymouth, which is in the Lower Coastal P...

  9. ENVIRONMENTAL VARIABLES CONTROLLING NITRIC OXIDE EMISSIONS FROM AGRICULTURAL SOILS IN THE SOUTHEAST UNITED STATES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Fluxes of nitric oxide (NO) were measured during the summer of 1994 (12 July to 11 August) in the Upper Coastal Plain of North Carolina in a continuing effort to characterize NO emissions from intensively managed agricultural soils in the southeastern United States. Previous work...

  10. THE USE OF CHEMICALS AS SOIL ADDITIVES. AGRICULTURAL CHEMICALS TECHNOLOGY, NUMBER 3.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ohio State Univ., Columbus. Center for Vocational and Technical Education.

    THE PURPOSE OF THIS GUIDE IS TO ASSIST TEACHERS IN PREPARING POST-SECONDARY STUDENTS FOR AGRICULTURAL CHEMICAL OCCUPATIONS. IT IS ONE OF A SERIES OF MODULES DEVELOPED BY A NATIONAL TASK FORCE ON THE BASIS OF STATE STUDY DATA. SECTIONS ARE (1) PHYSICAL AND CHEMICAL ALTERATION OF SOIL WITH CHEMICAL ADDITIVES, (2) TERMINOLOGY AND COMPUTATIONS, (3)…

  11. SEASONAL VARIATIONS OF NITRIC OXIDE FLUX FROM AGRICULTURAL SOILS IN THE SOUTHEAST UNITED STATES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Fluxes of nitric oxide (NO) were measured from the summer of 1994 to the spring of 1995 from an intensively managed agricultural soil using a dynamic flow through chamber technique in order to study the seasonal variability in the emissions of NO. The measurements were made on a ...

  12. Soil organic carbon accumulation during post-agricultural succession in a karst area, southwest China

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Liqiong; Luo, Pan; Wen, Li; Li, Dejun

    2016-01-01

    This study was aimed to investigate the direction and magnitude of soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics and the underlying mechanisms following agricultural abandonment in a subtropical karst area, southwest China. Two post-agriculture succession sequences including grassland (~10 years), shrubland (~29 years), secondary forest (~59 years) and primary forest with cropland as reference were selected. SOC and other soil physicochemical variables in the soil depth of 0–15 cm (representing the average soil depth of the slope in the studied area) were measured. SOC content in the grassland was not significantly elevated relative to the cropland (42.0 ± 7.3 Mg C ha−1). SOC content in the shrubland reached the level of the primary forest. On average, SOC content for the forest was 92.6 ± 4.2 Mg C ha−1, representing an increase of 120.4 ± 10.0% or 50.6 ± 4.2 Mg ha−1 relative to the cropland. Following agricultural abandonment, SOC recovered to the primary forest level in about 40 years with a rate of 1.38 Mg C ha−1 yr−1. Exchangeable Ca and Mg were found to be the strongest predictors of SOC dynamics. Our results suggest that SOC content may recover rapidly following agricultural abandonment in the karst region of southwest China. PMID:27876827

  13. Soil organic carbon accumulation during post-agricultural succession in a karst area, southwest China.

    PubMed

    Yang, Liqiong; Luo, Pan; Wen, Li; Li, Dejun

    2016-11-23

    This study was aimed to investigate the direction and magnitude of soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics and the underlying mechanisms following agricultural abandonment in a subtropical karst area, southwest China. Two post-agriculture succession sequences including grassland (~10 years), shrubland (~29 years), secondary forest (~59 years) and primary forest with cropland as reference were selected. SOC and other soil physicochemical variables in the soil depth of 0-15 cm (representing the average soil depth of the slope in the studied area) were measured. SOC content in the grassland was not significantly elevated relative to the cropland (42.0 ± 7.3 Mg C ha(-1)). SOC content in the shrubland reached the level of the primary forest. On average, SOC content for the forest was 92.6 ± 4.2 Mg C ha(-1), representing an increase of 120.4 ± 10.0% or 50.6 ± 4.2 Mg ha(-1) relative to the cropland. Following agricultural abandonment, SOC recovered to the primary forest level in about 40 years with a rate of 1.38 Mg C ha(-1) yr(-1). Exchangeable Ca and Mg were found to be the strongest predictors of SOC dynamics. Our results suggest that SOC content may recover rapidly following agricultural abandonment in the karst region of southwest China.

  14. Soil organic carbon accumulation during post-agricultural succession in a karst area, southwest China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Liqiong; Luo, Pan; Wen, Li; Li, Dejun

    2016-11-01

    This study was aimed to investigate the direction and magnitude of soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics and the underlying mechanisms following agricultural abandonment in a subtropical karst area, southwest China. Two post-agriculture succession sequences including grassland (~10 years), shrubland (~29 years), secondary forest (~59 years) and primary forest with cropland as reference were selected. SOC and other soil physicochemical variables in the soil depth of 0–15 cm (representing the average soil depth of the slope in the studied area) were measured. SOC content in the grassland was not significantly elevated relative to the cropland (42.0 ± 7.3 Mg C ha‑1). SOC content in the shrubland reached the level of the primary forest. On average, SOC content for the forest was 92.6 ± 4.2 Mg C ha‑1, representing an increase of 120.4 ± 10.0% or 50.6 ± 4.2 Mg ha‑1 relative to the cropland. Following agricultural abandonment, SOC recovered to the primary forest level in about 40 years with a rate of 1.38 Mg C ha‑1 yr‑1. Exchangeable Ca and Mg were found to be the strongest predictors of SOC dynamics. Our results suggest that SOC content may recover rapidly following agricultural abandonment in the karst region of southwest China.

  15. Research progress on real-time measurement of soil attributes for precision agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rapid and accurate measurement of soil organic matter content and nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and other nutrients is the basis for variable rate fertilizer application in precision agriculture, and it is also a difficult problem that scientists have been committed to resolving. On the basis of ...

  16. Fertilizer impact on biogenic nitric oxide emissions from agricultural soils of the Taklimakan desert (Xinjiang, China)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fechner, A. D.; Behrendt, T.; Bruse, M.; Mamtimin, B.; Andreae, M. O.; Meixner, F. X.

    2012-04-01

    It is known that soil microbial processes play a crucial role in the production and consumption of atmospheric trace gases worldwide. Soils are mostly a major source of biogenic nitric oxide (NO). The main influencing factors controlling soil NO emissions are soil moisture, soil temperature, as well as nutrient availability. Adding fertilizer to agricultural soils changes the pool of nutrients and impacts the net NO emission from these soils. Irrigated and fertilized oases around the great Central Asian Taklamakan desert form the backbone of the agricultural output (80% of the Chinese cotton production) of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region (NW-China). While nowadays 90% of the agricultural output is produced on just 4.3% of Xinjiang's total area, recent and future enlargement of farmland and intensification of agriculture will definitely impact the regional soil NO emission and consequently the budget of nitrogen oxides and ozone. We present a systematic laboratory study of the influence of urea (CH4N2O) and diammonium hydrogen phosphate ((NH4)2HPO4, DAP) fertilizer on NO emissions from Xinjiang soil samples. Urea is the most widely and excessively applied fertilizer in Xinjiang. Typically, about 600 kg ha-1 yr-1(in terms of mass of nitrogen) were applied to a cotton field in four separate events. In the laboratory, the fertilizer was applied accordingly, ranging from one quarter of the field amount within one of the four events (i.e. 37.5 kg ha-1 yr-1) to quadruple of that (150 kg ha-1 yr-1). Two different measurement series have been performed on six sub- samples (each out of a total of three soil samples taken in Xinjiang): the first series was conducted solely with urea fertilizer, the second one with a mixture of urea and DAP (2:1). All sub-samples were prepared in a standardized way: a fixed mass of soil (~0.06 kg, dried in field) was sieved (2 mm) and stored at 4° C. Then it was wetted up to a soil moisture tension of 1.8 pF. Subsequently, fertilizer was

  17. Using 137Cs to study spatial patterns of soil erosion and soil organic carbon (SOC) in an agricultural catchment of the typical black soil region, Northeast China.

    PubMed

    Fang, Haiyan; Li, Qiuyan; Sun, Liying; Cai, Qiangguo

    2012-10-01

    Understanding the spatial pattern of soil organic carbon (SOC) is of great importance because of global environmental concerns. Soil erosion and its subsequent redistribution contribute significantly to the redistribution of SOC in agricultural ecosystems. This study investigated the relationships between (137)Cs and SOC over an agricultural landscape, and SOC redistribution was conducted for an agricultural catchment of the black soil region in Northeast China. The spatial patterns of (137)Cs and SOC were greatly affected by the established shelterbelts and the developed ephemeral gullies. (137)Cs were significantly correlated with SOC when (137)Cs were >2000 Bq m(-2), while no relation was observed between them when (137)Cs were <2000 Bq m(-2). Factors other than soil erosion such as vegetative productivity, mineralization of SOC, landscape position and management induced their spatial difference of (137)Cs and SOC. Using (137)Cs technique to directly study SOC dynamics must be cautious in the black soils. The net SOC loss rate across the entire catchment during 1954-2010 was 92.8 kg ha(-1) yr(-1), with around 42% of the eroded SOC being redeposited within the catchment. Such information can help guide shelterbelt establishment or other land management to reduce SOC loss in the agricultural ecosystems.

  18. Effects of Conservation Agriculture on Soil Physical Properties and Yield of Lentil in Northern Syria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wahbi, Ammar; Miwak, Hisham; Singh, Raphy

    2014-05-01

    Conservation agriculture (CA) aims to achieve sustainable and profitable agriculture and subsequently improve livelihoods of farmers based on three main components, i.e. minimum or no tillage, retention of crop residues and use of crop rotation. However, to promote CA in semi-arid areas where precipitation is erratic, low, and falls over short periods in winter, its effects on soil and crop yield have to be investigated. The present study was conducted at the main research station of the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), Syria, during the agricultural season of 2010-2011, in the frame of a long term trial (2003-2011), where two treatments; i.e. conservation versus conventional agriculture (replicated twice), and six varieties of lentil (early, medium and late maturity genotypes; 2 each), selected from 100 varieties, were used. Soil samples were taken (before planting and after harvesting), to determine soil bulk density, particle density and total porosity. Aggregate stability was also determined using dry and wet sieving methods for the 0-15 cm soil depth, and the effective diameter of the aggregate was calculated for both treatments of conservation agriculture (CA) and conventional tillage (CT). Soil moisture was monitored in the top soil layer (0-15 cm) using Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) on a weekly or two weekly-intervals. Soil moisture release curve was done for disturbed, 2 mm dry sieved soil at 0-15, 15-30, 30-45 and 45-60 cm depth using pressure plate chamber. Dry plant production (oven dry at 70°C) was estimated at the harvesting stage, and then threshed to estimate grain yield. CA showed higher (p = 0.001) soil moisture values than CT. The difference in volumetric soil moisture content between CA and CT during the studied period ranged from 20 to 30 %. Volumetric water content was higher for, CA compared with CT, at a given soil water potential especially at the lower pressure; this observation was consistent

  19. An assessment of alternative agricultural management practice impacts on soil carbon in the corn belt

    SciTech Connect

    Barnwell, T.O. Jr.; Jackson, R.B.; Mulkey, L.A.

    1993-12-31

    This impact of alternative management practices on agricultural soil C is estimated by a soil C mass balance modeling study that incorporates policy considerations in the analysis. A literature review of soil C modeling and impacts of management practices has been completed. The models selected for use and/or modification to meet the needs of representing soil C cycles in agroecosystems and impacts of management practices are CENTURY and DNDC. These models share a common ability to examine the impacts of alternative management practices on soil organic C, and are readily accessible. An important aspect of this effort is the development of the modeling framework and methodology that define the agricultural production systems and scenarios (i.e., crop-soil-climate combinations) to be assessed in terms of national policy, the integration of the model needs with available databases, and the operational mechanics of evaluating C sequestration potential with the integrated model/database system. We are working closely with EPA`s Office of Policy and Program Evaluation to define a reasonable set of policy alternatives for this assessment focusing on policy that might be affected through a revised Farm Bill, such as incentives to selectively promote conservation tillage, crop rotations, and/or good stewardship of the conservation reserve. Policy alternatives are translated into basic data for use in soil C models through economic models. These data, including such elements as agricultural practices, fertilization rates, and production levels are used in the soil C models to produce net carbon changes on a per unit area basis. The unit-area emissions are combined with areal-extent data in a GIS to produce an estimate of total carbon and nitrogen changes and thus estimate greenhouse benefits.

  20. [Improving Agricultural Safety of Soils Contaminated with Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons by In Situ Bioremediation].

    PubMed

    Jiao, Hai-huan; Pan, Jian-gang; Xu, Shena-jun; Bai, Zhi-hui; Wang, Dong; Huang, Zhan-bin

    2015-08-01

    In order to reduce the risk of enrichment of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in crops, reduce the potential hazards of food-sourced PAHs to human and increase the agricultural safety of PAHs contaminated soils, the bio-augmented removal of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) was investigated through in situ remediation by introducing Rhodobacter sphaeroides (RS) into the agricultural soil contaminated by PAHs. The 50-times diluted RS was sprayed on leaf surface (in area B) or irrigated to roots (in area D). The treatment of spraying water of the equal amount was taken as the control (A) and the wheat field without any treatment as the blank (CK). Treatments were conducted since wheat seeding. Soil and wheat samples were collected in the mature period to analyze the changes of community structure of the soil microorganisms and the concentration of PAHs in soils and investigate the strengthening and restoration effects of RS on PAHs contaminated soils. Compared to the CK Area, the areas B and D revealed that the variation ratio of phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) that were the biomarker of soil microorganisms was 29.6%, and the ratio of total PAHs removed was increased 1.59 times and 1.68 times, respectively. The dry weight of wheat grain of 50 spikes was increased by 8.95% and 12.5%, respectively, and the enrichment factor of total PAHs was decreased by 58.9% and 62.2% respectively in the wheat grains. All the results suggested that RS reduced enrichment of PAHs in wheat grains and increased wheat yield, which had great exploitation and utilization potentiality in repairing and improving the agricultural safety of the soils contaminated with PHAs.

  1. Soil ecology and agricultural technology; An integrated approach towards improved soil management for sustainable farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pulleman, Mirjam; Pérès, Guénola; Crittenden, Stephen; Heddadj, Djilali; Sukkel, Wijnand

    2014-05-01

    Intensive arable food production systems are in need of smart solutions that combine ecological knowledge and farm technology to maximize yields while protecting natural resources. The huge diversity of soil organisms and their interactions is of crucial importance for soil functions and ecosystem services, such as organic matter incorporation and break down, nutrient mineralization, soil structure formation, water regulation and disease and pest control. Soil management decisions that take into account the soil biodiversity and associated functions are thus essential to (i) maintain soil productivity in the long term, (ii) reduce the dependency on external inputs and non-renewables such as fossil fuels, and (iii) make agroecosystems more resilient against biotic and abiotic stresses. Organic farming systems and reduced tillage systems are two approaches that aim to increase soil biodiversity and general soil quality, through improved management of organic matter but differ in their emphasis on the use of chemical inputs for crop protection or soil disturbance, respectively. In North-western Europe experience with and knowledge of reduced tillage systems is still scarce, both in conventional and organic farming. Our study targeted both conventional and organic farming and aimed at 1) documenting reduced tillage practices within different agroecological contexts in NW Europe; 2) evaluating the effects of reduced tillage systems on soil biodiversity and soil ecosystem services; 3) increase understanding of agroecological factors that determine trade-offs between different ecosystem services. Earthworm species and nematode taxa were selected as indicator organisms to be studied for their known response to soil management and effects on soil functions. Additionally, soil organic matter, physical soil parameters and processes, and crop yields have been measured across multiple sites. Data have been collected over several cropping seasons in long term field experiments

  2. Biochar application to sandy and loamy soils for agricultural nutrient management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gronwald, Marco; Don, Axel; Tiemeyer, Baerbel; Helfrich, Mirjam

    2014-05-01

    Soil fertility of agricultural soils is challenged by nutrients losses and increasing soil acidification. Furthermore, leached nutrients negatively affect the quality of ground and surface water 1]. In addition to the possible soil carbon sequestration by applying biochars, many positive soil-improving properties are attributed to biochars. The application of biochars to agricultural - especially sandy - soils could reduce leaching of nutrients and may improve their availability 1,2]. Thus, biochar application to agricultural fields could be an ecologically and economically viable option to improve soils' fertility. However, biochar properties strongly depend on their feedstock and production process 3]. Various types of biochars (pyrolysis char, hydrochar (produced at 200 and 250° C); feedstocks: digestate, Miscanthus and wood chips) were used to determine sorption kinetics and sorption isotherms for the major nutrients Ca, Mg, K, NH4 and NO3 as a function of biochar types in different soil substrates (sand, loess). In addition, the biochars were washed to create free binding sites on the chars' surface that simulate aged char. We compared the simulated aged char with biochars that was aged in-situ at a field experiment for seven months. The first results showed that pyrochars have the largest retention potential for NO3 and hydrochars have retention potential for NH4. Washing of biochars turned them from a PO4 and NH4 source into an adsorber, especially for hydrochars. Highest leaching was observed for biochars from digestates likely due to the high nutrient content of digestates. But the different ions may lead to pH-dependent interactions between each other and the chars' surface that override the adsoption effects. In this context, cation-bridge and ligand bindings 4,5] need to be further investigated. Most of the fresh, unwashed biochars were a source of nutrients with hardly any detectable nutrient retention. Pyrochars showed the highest potential for anion

  3. Conversion from agriculture to grassland builds soil organic matter on decadal timescales

    SciTech Connect

    McLaughlan, Dr. Kendra; Hobbie, Dr. Sarah; Post, Wilfred M

    2006-01-01

    Soil organic matter (SOM) often increases when agricultural fields are converted to perennial vegetation, yet decadal scale rates and the mechanisms that underlie SOM accumulation are not clear. We measured SOM accumulation and changes in soil properties on a replicated chronosequence of former agricultural fields in the midwestern United States that spanned 40 years after perennial-grassland establishment. Over this time period, soil organic carbon (SOC) in the top 10 cm of soil accumulated at a constant rate of 62.0 g x m(-2) x yr(-1), regardless of whether the vegetation type was dominated by C3 or C4 grasses. At this rate, SOC contents will be equivalent to unplowed native prairie sites within 55-75 years after cultivation ceased. Both labile (short turnover time) and recalcitrant (long turnover time) carbon pools increased linearly for 40 years, with recalcitrant pools increasing more rapidly than expected. This result was consistent across several different methods of measuring labile SOC. A model that investigates the mechanisms of SOM formation suggests that rapid formation of stable carbon resulted from biochemically resistant microbial products and plant material. Former agricultural soils of the Great Plains may function as carbon sinks for less than a century, although much of the carbon stored is stable.

  4. Short-term effects on soil properties and wheat production from secondary paper sludge application on two Mediterranean agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Rato Nunes, J; Cabral, F; López-Piñeiro, A

    2008-07-01

    This study was conducted under greenhouse conditions to evaluate the potential use of SPS as a fertilizer, amendment and/or liming agent for wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). Two representative Mediterranean agricultural soils, a Cambic Arenosol (cmAR) and a Cromic Cambisol (crCM) were used. Treatments included four sludge rates ranging from 0 to 40 g kg(-1) (equivalent of 0, 38, 88 and 120 Mg ha(-1)). A significant increment in soil pH, organic carbon, N total, available P and exchangeable K were observed in both soils. Sludge application significantly increased N and decreased Zn, Mn and Cu concentrations in wheat. Wheat grain yields were reduced by 33% and 37% when 120 Mg SPS ha(-1) was applied to cmAR and crCM soils, respectively, due apparently to unavailability of Mg. However, straw yields, with much lower Mg requirements, increased significantly with SPS rates. Secondary pulp mill sludge seems to be a potential source of organic matter, N, P, K and a potential soil amendment liming agent for acid soils, when appropriate supplemental fertilizer was provided. For grain crops grown in these soils, addition of Mg is required for proper nutrient balance.

  5. Effect of iron oxide on nitrification in two agricultural soils with different pH

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Xueru; Zhu-Barker, Xia; Horwath, William R.; Faeflen, Sarwee J.; Luo, Hongyan; Xin, Xiaoping; Jiang, Xianjun

    2016-10-01

    Iron (Fe) affects soil nitrogen (N) cycling processes both in anoxic and oxic environments. The role of Fe in soil N transformations including nitrification, mineralization, and immobilization, is influenced by redox activity, which is regulated by soil pH. The effect of Fe minerals, particularly oxides, on soil N transformation processes depends on soil pH, with Fe oxide often stimulating nitrification activity in the soil with low pH. We conducted lab incubations to investigate the effect of Fe oxide on N transformation rates in two subtropical agricultural soils with low pH (pH 5.1) and high pH (pH 7.8). 15N-labeled ammonium and nitrate were used separately to determine N transformation rates combined with Fe oxide (ferrihydrite) addition. Iron oxide stimulated net nitrification in low-pH soil (pH 5.1), while the opposite occurred in high-pH soil (pH 7.8). Compared to the control, Fe oxide decreased microbial immobilization of inorganic N by 50 % in low-pH soil but increased it by 45 % in high-pH soil. A likely explanation for the effects at low pH is that Fe oxide increased NH3-N availability by stimulating N mineralization and inhibiting N immobilization. These results indicate that Fe oxide plays an important role in soil N transformation processes and the magnitude of the effect of Fe oxide is dependent significantly on soil pH.

  6. Sustainable agriculture, soil management and erosion from prehistoric times to 2100

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vanwalleghem, Tom; Gómez, Jose Alfonso; Infante Amate, Juan; González Molina, Manuel; Fernández, David Soto; Guzmán, Gema; Vanderlinden, Karl; Laguna, Ana; Giráldez, Juan Vicente

    2015-04-01

    The rational use of soil requires the selection of management practices to take profit of the beneficial functions of plant growth, water and nutrient storage, and pollutants removal by filtering and decomposition without altering its properties. However, the first evidence of important and widespread erosion peaks can generally be found with the arrival of the first farmers all over the world. In areas with a long land-use history such as the Mediterranean, clear signs indicating the advanced degradation status of the landscape, such as heavily truncated soils, are visible throughout. Soil conservation practices are then aimed at reducing erosion to geological rates, in equilibrium with long-term soil formation rates, while maximizing agricultural production. The adoption of such practices in most areas of the world are as old as the earliest soil erosion episodes themselves. This work firstly reviews historical evidence linking soil management and soil erosion intensity, with examples from N Europe and the Mediterranean. In particular, work by the authors in olive orchards will be presented that shows how significant variations in soil erosion rates between could be linked to the historical soil management. The potential of historical documents for calibrating a soil erosion model is shown as the model, in this case RUSLE-based and combining tillage and water erosion, adequately represents the measured erosion rate dynamics. Secondly, results from present-day, long-term farm experiments in the EU are reviewed to evaluate the effect of different soil management practices on physical soil properties, such as bulk density, penetration resistance, aggregate stability, runoff coefficient or sediment yield. Finally, we reflect upon model and field data that indicate how future global climate change is expected to affect soil management and erosion and how the examples used above hold clues about sustainable historical management practices that can be used successfully

  7. Scaling preferential flow processes in agricultural soils affected by tillage and trafficking at the field scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Filipović, Vilim; Coquet, Yves

    2016-04-01

    There is an accumulation of experimental evidences that agricultural soils, at least the top horizons affected by tillage practices, are not homogeneous and present a structure that is strongly dependent on farming practices like tillage and trafficking. Soil tillage and trafficking can create compacted zones in the soil with hydraulic properties and porosity which are different from those of the non-compacted zones. This spatial variability can strongly influence transport processes and initiate preferential flow. Two or three dimensional models can be used to account for spatial variability created by agricultural practices, but such models need a detailed assessment of spatial heterogeneity which can be rather impractical to provide. This logically raises the question whether and how one dimensional model may be designed and used to account for the within-field spatial variability in soil structure created by agricultural practices. Preferential flow (dual-permeability) modelling performed with HYDRUS-1D will be confronted to classical modelling based on the Richards and convection-dispersion equations using HYDRUS-2D taking into account the various soil heterogeneities created by agricultural practices. Our goal is to derive one set of equivalent 1D soil hydraulic parameters from 2D simulations which accounts for soil heterogeneities created by agricultural operations. A field experiment was carried out in two phases: infiltration and redistribution on a plot by uniform sprinkle irrigation with water or bromide solution. Prior to the field experiment the soil structure of the tilled layer was determined along the face of a large trench perpendicular to the tillage direction (0.7 m depth and 3.1 m wide). Thirty TDR probes and tensiometers were installed in different soil structural zones (Δ compacted soil and Γ macroporous soil) which ensured soil water monitoring throughout the experiment. A map of bromide was constructed from small core samples (4 cm diam

  8. Litter contribution to soil organic carbon in the agriculture abandons processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novara, A.; Rühl, J.; La Mantia, T.; Gristina, L.; La Bella, S.; Tuttolomondo, T.

    2015-02-01

    Mechanisms of litter decomposition, translocation and stabilization into soil layers are fundamental processes in ecosystem functioning as it regulates the cycle of soil organic matter (SOM), CO2 emission into the atmosphere, carbon sequestration into the soil. In this study, it was investigated the contribution of litters of different stages of Mediterranean secondary succession on Carbon sequestration, analyzing the role of earthworms on translocation of SOM into soil profile. For this purpose δ13C difference between meadow C4-Csoil and C3-Clitter were used in a field experiment. Four undisturbed litters of different stages of succession were collected (45, 70, 100 and 120 since agriculture abandon) and placed on the top of isolated soil cores. The litter contribution to C stock was affected by plant species and increased with the age of the stage of secondary succession. The soil organic carbon after 1 year since litter position increased up to 40% in comparison to no litter treatment in soil with litter of 120 years since abandon. The new carbon derived from C3-litter was decomposed and transferred into soil profile thanks to earthworms and dissolved organic carbon leaching. After 1 years the carbon increase attributed to earthworm activity ranged from 6 to 13% in soil under litter in field abandoned since 120 and 45 years, respectively.

  9. Litter contribution to soil organic carbon in the processes of agriculture abandon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novara, A.; Rühl, J.; La Mantia, T.; Gristina, L.; La Bella, S.; Tuttolomondo, T.

    2015-04-01

    The mechanisms of litter decomposition, translocation and stabilization into soil layers are fundamental processes in the functioning of the ecosystem, as they regulate the cycle of soil organic matter (SOM) and CO2 emission into the atmosphere. In this study the contribution of litters of different stages of Mediterranean secondary succession on carbon sequestration was investigated, analyzing the role of earthworms in the translocation of SOM into the soil profile. For this purpose the δ13C difference between meadow C4-C soil and C3-C litter was used in a field experiment. Four undisturbed litters of different stages of succession (45, 70, 100 and 120 since agriculture abandon) were collected and placed on the top of isolated C4 soil cores. The litter contribution to C stock was affected by plant species and it increased with the age of the stage of secondary succession. One year after the litter position, the soil organic carbon increased up to 40% in comparison to soils not treated with litter after 120 years of abandon. The new carbon derived from C3 litter was decomposed and transferred into soil profile thanks to earthworms and the leaching of dissolved organic carbon. After 1 year the carbon increase attributed to earthworm activity was 6 and 13% in the soils under litter of fields abandoned for 120 and 45 years, respectively.

  10. Interactions of earthworms with Atrazine-degrading bacteria in an agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Kersanté, Anne; Martin-Laurent, Fabrice; Soulas, Guy; Binet, Françoise

    2006-08-01

    In the last 10 years, accelerated mineralization of Atrazine (2-chloro-ethylamino-6-isopropylamino-s-triazine) has been evidenced in agricultural soils repeatedly treated with this herbicide. Here, we report on the interaction between earthworms, considered as soil engineers, and the Atrazine-degrading community. The impact of earthworm macrofauna on Atrazine mineralization was assessed in representative soil microsites of earthworm activities (gut contents, casts, burrow linings). Soil with or without earthworms, namely the anecic species Lumbricus terrestris and the endogenic species Aporrectodea caliginosa, was either inoculated or not inoculated with Pseudomonas sp. ADP, an Atrazine-degrading strain, and was either treated or not treated with Atrazine. The structure of the bacterial community, the Atrazine-degrading activity and the abundance of atzA, B and C sequences in soil microsites were investigated. Atrazine mineralization was found to be reduced in representative soil microsites of earthworm activities. Earthworms significantly affected the structure of soil bacterial communities. They also reduced the size of the inoculated population of Pseudomonas sp. ADP, thereby contributing to the diminution of the Atrazine-degrading genetic potential in representative soil microsites of earthworm activities. This study illustrates the regulation produced by the earthworms on functional bacterial communities involved in the fate of organic pollutants in soils.

  11. Comparative Analysis for Polluted Agricultural Soils with Arsenic, Lead, and Mercury in Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    Yarto-Ramirez, Mario; Santos-Santos, Elvira; Gavilan-Garcia, Arturo; Castro-Diaz, Jose; Gavilan-Garcia, Irma Cruz; Rosiles, Rene; Suarez, Sara

    2004-03-31

    The use of mercury in Mexico has been associated with the mining industry of Zacatecas. This activity has polluted several areas currently used for agriculture. The main objective of this study was to investigate the heavy metal concentration (Hg, As and Pb) in soil of Guadalupe Zacatecas in order to justify a further environmental risk assessment in the site. A 2X3 km grid was used for the sampling process and 20 soil samples were taken. The analysis was developed using EPA SW 846: 3050B/6010B method for arsenic and metals and EPA SW 846: 7471A for total mercury. It was concluded that there are heavy metals in agricultural soils used for corn and bean farming. For this it is required to make an environmental risk assessment and a bioavailability study in order to determine if there's a risk for heavy metals bioaccumulation in animals or human beings or metal lixiviation to aquifers.

  12. Analytical Results for Agricultural Soils Samples from a Monitoring Program Near Deer Trail, Colorado (USA)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crock, J.G.; Smith, D.B.; Yager, T.J.B.

    2009-01-01

    Since late 1993, Metro Wastewater Reclamation District of Denver (Metro District, MWRD), a large wastewater treatment plant in Denver, Colorado, has applied Grade I, Class B biosolids to about 52,000 acres of nonirrigated farmland and rangeland near Deer Trail, Colorado, USA. In cooperation with the Metro District in 1993, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) began monitoring groundwater at part of this site. In 1999, the USGS began a more comprehensive monitoring study of the entire site to address stakeholder concerns about the potential chemical effects of biosolids applications to water, soil, and vegetation. This more comprehensive monitoring program has recently been extended through 2010. Monitoring components of the more comprehensive study include biosolids collected at the wastewater treatment plant, soil, crops, dust, alluvial and bedrock groundwater, and stream bed sediment. Soils for this study were defined as the plow zone of the dry land agricultural fields - the top twelve inches of the soil column. This report presents analytical results for the soil samples collected at the Metro District farm land near Deer Trail, Colorado, during three separate sampling events during 1999, 2000, and 2002. Soil samples taken in 1999 were to be a representation of the original baseline of the agricultural soils prior to any biosolids application. The soil samples taken in 2000 represent the soils after one application of biosolids to the middle field at each site and those taken in 2002 represent the soils after two applications. There have been no biosolids applied to any of the four control fields. The next soil sampling is scheduled for the spring of 2010. Priority parameters for biosolids identified by the stakeholders and also regulated by Colorado when used as an agricultural soil amendment include the total concentrations of nine trace elements (arsenic, cadmium, copper, lead, mercury, molybdenum, nickel, selenium, and zinc), plutonium isotopes, and gross

  13. Agriculture

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The EPA Agriculture Resource Directory offers comprehensive, easy-to-understand information about environmental stewardship on farms and ranches; commonsense, flexible approaches that are both environmentally protective and agriculturally sound.

  14. Impact of agricultural management practices on soil organic carbon: simulation of Australian wheat systems.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Gang; Bryan, Brett A; King, Darran; Luo, Zhongkui; Wang, Enli; Song, Xiaodong; Yu, Qiang

    2013-05-01

    Quantifying soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics at a high spatial and temporal resolution in response to different agricultural management practices and environmental conditions can help identify practices that both sequester carbon in the soil and sustain agricultural productivity. Using an agricultural systems model (the Agricultural Production Systems sIMulator), we conducted a high spatial resolution and long-term (122 years) simulation study to identify the key management practices and environmental variables influencing SOC dynamics in a continuous wheat cropping system in Australia's 96 million ha cereal-growing regions. Agricultural practices included five nitrogen application rates (0-200 kg N ha(-1) in 50 kg N ha(-1) increments), five residue removal rates (0-100% in 25% increments), and five residue incorporation rates (0-100% in 25% increments). We found that the change in SOC during the 122-year simulation was influenced by the management practices of residue removal (linearly negative) and fertilization (nonlinearly positive) - and the environmental variables of initial SOC content (linearly negative) and temperature (nonlinearly negative). The effects of fertilization were strongest at rates up to 50 kg N ha(-1) , and the effects of temperature were strongest where mean annual temperatures exceeded 19 °C. Reducing residue removal and increasing fertilization increased SOC in most areas except Queensland where high rates of SOC decomposition caused by high temperature and soil moisture negated these benefits. Management practices were particularly effective in increasing SOC in south-west Western Australia - an area with low initial SOC. The results can help target agricultural management practices for increasing SOC in the context of local environmental conditions, enabling farmers to contribute to climate change mitigation and sustaining agricultural production.

  15. Measurement of DDT fluxes from a historically treated agricultural soil in Canada.

    PubMed

    Kurt-Karakus, Perihan Binnur; Bidleman, Terry F; Staebler, Ralf M; Jones, Kevin C

    2006-08-01

    Organocohlorine pesticide (OCP) residues in agricultural soils are of concern due to the uptake of these compounds by crops, accumulation in the foodchain, and reemission from soils to the atmosphere. Although it has been about three decades since DDT was banned for agricultural uses in Canada, residues persist in soils of some agricultural areas. Emission of DDT compounds to the atmosphere from a historically treated field in southern Ontario was determined in fall 2004 and spring 2005. The sigmaDDTs concentration in the high organic matter (71%) soil was 19 +/- 4 microg g(-1) dry weight. Concentration gradients in the air were measured at 5, 20, 72, and 200 cm above soil using glass fiber filter-polyurethane foam cartridges. Air concentrations of sigmaDDTs averaged 5.7 +/- 5.1 ng m(-3) at 5 cm and decreased to 1.3 +/- 0.8 ng m(-3) at 200 cm and were 60-300 times higher than levels measured at a background site 30 km away. Soil-air fugacity fractions, fs/(fs + fa), of p,p'-DDE, p,p'-DDD, and p,p'-DDT ranged from 0.42 to 0.91 using air concentrations measured above the soil and > or = 0.99 using background air concentrations, indicating that the soil was a net source to the background air. Fractionation of DDT compounds during volatilization was predicted using either liquid-phase vapor pressures (PL) or octanol-air partition coefficients (KOA). Relative emissions of p,p'-DDE and p,p'-DDT were better described by PL than KOA, whereas either PL or KOA successfully accounted for the fractionation of p,p'-DDT and o,p'-DDT. Soil-to-air fluxes were calculated from air concentration gradients and turbulent exchange coefficients determined from micrometeorological measurements. Average fluxes of sigmaDDTs were 90 +/- 24 ng m(-2) h(-1) in fall and 660 +/- 370 ng m(-2) h(-1) in spring. Higher soil temperatures in spring accounted for the higher fluxes. A volatilization half-life of approximately 200 y was estimated for sigmaDDT in the upper 5 cm of the soil column, assuming

  16. Effects of biochar and elevated soil temperature on soil microbial activity and abundance in an agricultural system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bamminger, Chris; Poll, Christian; Marhan, Sven

    2014-05-01

    As a consequence of Global Warming, rising surface temperatures will likely cause increased soil temperatures. Soil warming has already been shown to, at least temporarily, increase microbial activity and, therefore, the emissions of greenhouse gases like CO2 and N2O. This underlines the need for methods to stabilize soil organic matter and to prevent further boost of the greenhouse gas effect. Plant-derived biochar as a soil amendment could be a valuable tool to capture CO2 from the atmosphere and sequestrate it in soil on the long-term. During the process of pyrolysis, plant biomass is heated in an oxygen-low atmosphere producing the highly stable solid matter biochar. Biochar is generally stable against microbial degradation due to its chemical structure and it, therefore, persists in soil for long periods. Previous experiments indicated that biochar improves or changes several physical or chemical soil traits such as water holding capacity, cation exchange capacity or soil structure, but also biotic properties like microbial activity/abundance, greenhouse gas emissions and plant growth. Changes in the soil microbial abundance and community composition alter their metabolism, but likely also affect plant productivity. The interaction of biochar addition and soil temperature increase on soil microbial properties and plant growth was yet not investigated on the field scale. To investigate whether warming could change biochar effects in soil, we conducted a field experiment attached to a soil warming experiment on an agricultural experimental site near the University of Hohenheim, already running since July 2008. The biochar field experiment was set up as two-factorial randomized block design (n=4) with the factors biochar amendment (0, 30 t ha-1) and soil temperature (ambient, elevated=ambient +2.5° C) starting from August 2013. Each plot has a dimension of 1x1m and is equipped with combined soil temperature and moisture sensors. Slow pyrolysis biochar from the C

  17. Ammonia-oxidising bacteria not archaea dominate nitrification activity in semi-arid agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Banning, Natasha C; Maccarone, Linda D; Fisk, Louise M; Murphy, Daniel V

    2015-06-08

    Ammonia-oxidising archaea (AOA) and bacteria (AOB) are responsible for the rate limiting step in nitrification; a key nitrogen (N) loss pathway in agricultural systems. Dominance of AOA relative to AOB in the amoA gene pool has been reported in many ecosystems, although their relative contributions to nitrification activity are less clear. Here we examined the distribution of AOA and AOB with depth in semi-arid agricultural soils in which soil organic matter content or pH had been altered, and related their distribution to gross nitrification rates. Soil depth had a significant effect on gene abundances, irrespective of management history. Contrary to reports of AOA dominance in soils elsewhere, AOA gene copy numbers were four-fold lower than AOB in the surface (0-10 cm). AOA gene abundance increased with depth while AOB decreased, and sub-soil abundances were approximately equal (10-90 cm). The depth profile of total archaea did not mirror that of AOA, indicating the likely presence of archaea without nitrification capacity in the surface. Gross nitrification rates declined significantly with depth and were positively correlated to AOB but negatively correlated to AOA gene abundances. We conclude that AOB are most likely responsible for regulating nitrification in these semi-arid soils.

  18. Influence of agricultural antibiotics and 17beta-estradiol on the microbial community of soil.

    PubMed

    Chun, Soul; Lee, Jaehoon; Radosevich, Mark; White, David C; Geyer, Roland

    2006-01-01

    Agricultural pharmaceuticals are a major environmental concern because of their hazardous effects on human and wildlife. This study analyzed phospholipid ester-linked fatty acids (PLFAs) and quinones to investigate the effects of a steroid (17beta-estradiol) and agricultural antibiotics (chlortetracycline and tylosin) on soil microbes in the laboratory. Two different types of soil were used: Sequatchie loam (0.8% organic matter) and LaDelle silt loam (9.2% organic matter). The soils were spiked with 17beta-estradiol and antibiotics, alone or in combination. In Sequatchie loam, 17beta-estradiol significantly increased the microbial biomass, especially the biomarkers for beta proteobacteria (16:1omega7c, 18:1omega7c, Cy17:0, and UQ-8). The coexistence of antibiotics decreased the stimulatory effect of 17beta-estradiol on the microbial community. In LaDelle silt loam, there were no significant differences in total microbial biomass and their microbial community structure among the treatments. Overall, 17beta-estradiol changed the microbial community of soil and the presence of antibiotics nullified the effect of 17beta-estradiol. However, the effects of 17beta-estradiol and antibiotics on soil microbes were sensitive to the soil properties, as seen in the LaDelle silt loam.

  19. Contamination of Phthalate Esters (PAEs) in Typical Wastewater-Irrigated Agricultural Soils in Hebei, North China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yuan; Liang, Qiong; Gao, Rutai; Hou, Haobo; Tan, Wenbing; He, Xiaosong; Zhang, Hui; Yu, Minda; Ma, Lina; Xi, Beidou; Wang, Xiaowei

    2015-01-01

    The Wangyang River (WYR) basin is a typical wastewater irrigation area in Hebei Province, North China. This study investigated the concentration and distribution of six priority phthalate esters (PAEs) in the agricultural soils in this area. Thirty-nine soil samples (0-20 cm) were collected along the WYR to assess the PAE residues in soils. Results showed that PAEs are ubiquitous environmental contaminants in the topsoil obtained from the irrigation area. The concentrations of Σ6PAEs range from 0.191 μg g-1 dw to 0.457 μg g-1 dw with an average value of 0.294 μg g-1 dw. Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) and di-n-butyl phthalate (DnBP) are the dominant PAE species in the agricultural soils. Among the DEHP concentrations, the highest DEHP concentration was found at the sites close to the villages; this result suggested that dense anthropogenic activities and random garbage disposal in the rural area are possible sources of PAEs. The PAE concentrations were weakly and positively correlated with soil organic carbon and soil enzyme activities; thus, these factors can affect the distribution of PAEs. This study further showed that only dimethyl phthalate (DMP) concentrations exceeded the recommended allowable concentrations; no remediation measures are necessary to control the PAEs in the WYR area. However, the PAEs in the topsoil may pose a potential risk to the ecosystem and human health in this area. Therefore, the exacerbating PAE pollution should be addressed.

  20. Ammonia-oxidising bacteria not archaea dominate nitrification activity in semi-arid agricultural soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banning, Natasha C.; Maccarone, Linda D.; Fisk, Louise M.; Murphy, Daniel V.

    2015-06-01

    Ammonia-oxidising archaea (AOA) and bacteria (AOB) are responsible for the rate limiting step in nitrification; a key nitrogen (N) loss pathway in agricultural systems. Dominance of AOA relative to AOB in the amoA gene pool has been reported in many ecosystems, although their relative contributions to nitrification activity are less clear. Here we examined the distribution of AOA and AOB with depth in semi-arid agricultural soils in which soil organic matter content or pH had been altered, and related their distribution to gross nitrification rates. Soil depth had a significant effect on gene abundances, irrespective of management history. Contrary to reports of AOA dominance in soils elsewhere, AOA gene copy numbers were four-fold lower than AOB in the surface (0-10 cm). AOA gene abundance increased with depth while AOB decreased, and sub-soil abundances were approximately equal (10-90 cm). The depth profile of total archaea did not mirror that of AOA, indicating the likely presence of archaea without nitrification capacity in the surface. Gross nitrification rates declined significantly with depth and were positively correlated to AOB but negatively correlated to AOA gene abundances. We conclude that AOB are most likely responsible for regulating nitrification in these semi-arid soils.

  1. Ice nucleation activity of agricultural soil dust aerosols from Mongolia, Argentina, and Germany

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinke, I.; Funk, R.; Busse, J.; Iturri, A.; Kirchen, S.; Leue, M.; Möhler, O.; Schwartz, T.; Schnaiter, M.; Sierau, B.; Toprak, E.; Ullrich, R.; Ulrich, A.; Hoose, C.; Leisner, T.

    2016-11-01

    Soil dust particles emitted from agricultural areas contain considerable mass fractions of organic material. Also, soil dust particles may act as carriers for potentially ice-active biological particles. In this work, we present ice nucleation experiments conducted in the Aerosol Interaction and Dynamics in the Atmosphere (AIDA) cloud chamber. We investigated the ice nucleation efficiency of four types of soil dust from different regions of the world. The results are expressed as ice nucleation active surface site (INAS) densities and presented for the immersion freezing and the deposition nucleation mode. For immersion freezing occurring at 254 K, samples from Argentina, China, and Germany show ice nucleation efficiencies which are by a factor of 10 higher than desert dusts. On average, the difference in ice nucleation efficiencies between agricultural and desert dusts becomes significantly smaller at temperatures below 247 K. In the deposition mode the soil dusts showed higher ice nucleation activity than Arizona Test Dust over a temperature range between 232 and 248 K and humidities RHice up to 125%. INAS densities varied between 109 and 1011 m-2 for these thermodynamic conditions. For one soil dust sample (Argentinian Soil), the effect of treatments with heat was investigated. Heat treatments (383 K) did not affect the ice nucleation efficiency observed at 249 K. This finding presumably excludes proteinaceous ice-nucleating entities as the only source of the increased ice nucleation efficiency.

  2. Benchmarking a Soil Moisture Data Assimilation System for Agricultural Drought Monitoring

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hun, Eunjin; Crow, Wade T.; Holmes, Thomas; Bolten, John

    2014-01-01

    Despite considerable interest in the application of land surface data assimilation systems (LDAS) for agricultural drought applications, relatively little is known about the large-scale performance of such systems and, thus, the optimal methodological approach for implementing them. To address this need, this paper evaluates an LDAS for agricultural drought monitoring by benchmarking individual components of the system (i.e., a satellite soil moisture retrieval algorithm, a soil water balance model and a sequential data assimilation filter) against a series of linear models which perform the same function (i.e., have the same basic inputoutput structure) as the full system component. Benchmarking is based on the calculation of the lagged rank cross-correlation between the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and soil moisture estimates acquired for various components of the system. Lagged soil moistureNDVI correlations obtained using individual LDAS components versus their linear analogs reveal the degree to which non-linearities andor complexities contained within each component actually contribute to the performance of the LDAS system as a whole. Here, a particular system based on surface soil moisture retrievals from the Land Parameter Retrieval Model (LPRM), a two-layer Palmer soil water balance model and an Ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) is benchmarked. Results suggest significant room for improvement in each component of the system.

  3. Ammonia-oxidising bacteria not archaea dominate nitrification activity in semi-arid agricultural soil

    PubMed Central

    Banning, Natasha C.; Maccarone, Linda D.; Fisk, Louise M.; Murphy, Daniel V.

    2015-01-01

    Ammonia-oxidising archaea (AOA) and bacteria (AOB) are responsible for the rate limiting step in nitrification; a key nitrogen (N) loss pathway in agricultural systems. Dominance of AOA relative to AOB in the amoA gene pool has been reported in many ecosystems, although their relative contributions to nitrification activity are less clear. Here we examined the distribution of AOA and AOB with depth in semi-arid agricultural soils in which soil organic matter content or pH had been altered, and related their distribution to gross nitrification rates. Soil depth had a significant effect on gene abundances, irrespective of management history. Contrary to reports of AOA dominance in soils elsewhere, AOA gene copy numbers were four-fold lower than AOB in the surface (0–10 cm). AOA gene abundance increased with depth while AOB decreased, and sub-soil abundances were approximately equal (10–90 cm). The depth profile of total archaea did not mirror that of AOA, indicating the likely presence of archaea without nitrification capacity in the surface. Gross nitrification rates declined significantly with depth and were positively correlated to AOB but negatively correlated to AOA gene abundances. We conclude that AOB are most likely responsible for regulating nitrification in these semi-arid soils. PMID:26053257

  4. Latitudinal Distribution of Ammonia-Oxidizing Bacteria and Archaea in the Agricultural Soils of Eastern China

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Liuqin; Deng, Ye; Wang, Shang; Zhou, Yu; Liu, Li

    2014-01-01

    The response of soil ammonia-oxidizing bacterial (AOB) and archaeal (AOA) communities to individual environmental variables (e.g., pH, temperature, and carbon- and nitrogen-related soil nutrients) has been extensively studied, but how these environmental conditions collectively shape AOB and AOA distributions in unmanaged agricultural soils across a large latitudinal gradient remains poorly known. In this study, the AOB and AOA community structure and diversity in 26 agricultural soils collected from eastern China were investigated by using quantitative PCR and bar-coded 454 pyrosequencing of the amoA gene that encodes the alpha subunit of ammonia monooxygenase. The sampling locations span over a 17° latitude gradient and cover a range of climatic conditions. The Nitrosospira and Nitrososphaera were the dominant clusters of AOB and AOA, respectively; but the subcluster-level composition of Nitrosospira-related AOB and Nitrososphaera-related AOA varied across the latitudinal gradient. Variance partitioning analysis showed that geography and climatic conditions (e.g., mean annual temperature and precipitation), as well as carbon-/nitrogen-related soil nutrients, contributed more to the AOB and AOA community variations (∼50% in total) than soil pH (∼10% in total). These results are important in furthering our understanding of environmental conditions influencing AOB and AOA community structure across a range of environmental gradients. PMID:25002421

  5. Topsoil and subsoil properties influence phosphorus leaching from four agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Andersson, Helena; Bergström, Lars; Djodjic, Faruk; Ulén, Barbro; Kirchmann, Holger

    2013-01-01

    Eutrophication, a major problem in many fresh and brackish waters, is largely caused by nonpoint-source pollution by P from agricultural soils. This lysimeter study examined the influence of P content, physical properties, and sorption characteristics in topsoil and subsoil on P leaching measured during 21 mo in 1-m-long, undisturbed soil columns of two clay and two sandy soils. Total P losses during the period varied between 0.65 and 7.40 kg ha. Dissolved reactive P was the dominant form in leachate from the sandy soils and one clay soil, varying from 48 to 76%. Particulate P dominated in leachate from the other clay soil, where low pH (5.2) in the subsoil decreased aggregate stability and thereby probably increased the dispersion of clay particles. Phosphorus leaching was small from soils with high P sorption index (PSI) and low P saturation (<10% of PSI) in the subsoil, even though extractable P (Olsen P) in the topsoil was high, and large from a soil with low sorption capacity and high P saturation (>35% of PSI) in the profile. High sorption capacity in the subsoil was more important for P leaching in sandy soils than in clay soils with macropore flow, where the effect of high sorption capacity was reduced due to less interaction between percolating water and the soil matrix. The results suggest that P leaching is greatly affected by subsoil properties and that topsoil studies, which dominate current research, are insufficient for assessing P leaching in many soils.

  6. Agricultural management practices to sustain crop yields and improve soil and environmental qualities.

    PubMed

    Sainju, Upendra M; Whitehead, Wayne F; Singh, Bharat P

    2003-08-20

    In the past several decades, agricultural management practices consisting of intensive tillage and high rate of fertilization to improve crop yields have resulted in the degradation of soil and environmental qualities by increasing erosion and nutrient leaching in the groundwater and releasing greenhouses gases, such as carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrous oxide (N2O), that cause global warming in the atmosphere by oxidation of soil organic matter. Consequently, management practices that sustain crop yields and improve soil and environmental qualities are needed. This paper reviews the findings of the effects of tillage practices, cover crops, and nitrogen (N) fertilization rates on crop yields, soil organic carbon (C) and N concentrations, and nitrate (NO3)-N leaching from the soil. Studies indicate that conservation tillage, such as no-till or reduced till, can increase soil organic C and N concentrations at 0- to 20-cm depth by as much as 7-17% in 8 years compared with conventional tillage without significantly altering crop yields. Similarly, cover cropping and 80-180 kg N ha(-1) year(-1) fertilization can increase soil organic C and N concentrations by as much as 4-12% compared with no cover cropping or N fertilization by increasing plant biomass and amount of C and N inputs to the soil. Reduced till, cover cropping, and decreased rate of N fertilization can reduce soil N leaching compared with conventional till, no cover cropping, and full rate of N fertilization. Management practices consisting of combinations of conservation tillage, mixture of legume and nonlegume cover crops, and reduced rate of N fertilization have the potentials for sustaining crop yields, increasing soil C and N storage, and reducing soil N leaching, thereby helping to improve soil and water qualities. Economical and social analyses of such practices are needed to find whether they are cost effective and acceptable to the farmers.

  7. Soil-Atmosphere CO Exchanges and Microbial Biogeochemistry of CO Transformations in a Brazilian Agricultural Ecosystem†

    PubMed Central

    King, Gary M.; Hungria, M.

    2002-01-01

    Although anthropogenic land use has major impacts on the exchange of soil and atmosphere gas in general, relatively little is known about its impacts on carbon monoxide. We compared soil-atmosphere CO exchanges as a function of land use, crop type, and tillage treatment on an experimental farm in Parãna, Brazil, that is representative of regionally important agricultural ecosystems. Our results showed that cultivated soils consumed CO at rates between 3 and 6 mg of CO m−2 day−1, with no statistically significant effect of tillage method or crop. However, CO exchange for a pasture soil was near zero, and an unmanaged woodlot emitted CO at a rate of 9 mg of CO m−2 day−1. Neither nitrite, aluminum sulfate, nor methyl fluoride additions affected CO consumption by tilled or untilled soils from soybean plots, indicating that CO oxidation did not depend on ammonia oxidizers and that CO oxidation patterns differed in part from patterns reported for forest soils. The apparent Km for CO uptake, 5 to 11 ppm, was similar to values reported for temperate forest soils; Vmax values, approximately 1 μg of CO g (dry weight)−1 h−1, were comparable for woodlot and cultivated soils in spite of the fact that the latter consumed CO under ambient conditions. Short-term (24-h) exposure to elevated levels of CO (10% CO) partially inhibited uptake at lower concentrations (i.e., 100 ppm), suggesting that the sensitivity to CO of microbial populations that are active in situ differs from that of known carboxydotrophs. Soil-free soybean and corn roots consumed CO when they were incubated with 100-ppm concentrations and produced CO when they were incubated with ambient concentrations. These results document for the first time a role for cultivated plant roots in the dynamics of CO in an agricultural ecosystem. PMID:12200303

  8. Gamma-spectrometric measurement of radioactivity in agricultural soils of the Lombardia region, northern Italy.

    PubMed

    Guidotti, Laura; Carini, Franca; Rossi, Riccardo; Gatti, Marina; Cenci, Roberto M; Beone, Gian Maria

    2015-04-01

    This work is part of a wider monitoring project of the agricultural soils in Lombardia, which aims to build a database of topsoil properties and the potentially toxic elements, organic pollutants and gamma emitting radionuclides that the topsoils contain. A total of 156 agricultural soils were sampled according to the LUCAS (Land Use/Cover Area frame statistical Survey) standard procedure. The aim was to provide a baseline to document the conditions present at the time of sampling. The results of the project concerning soil radioactivity are presented here. The aim was to assess the content of (238)U, (232)Th, (137)Cs and (40)K by measuring soil samples by gamma spectrometry. (238)U, (232)Th and (40)K activities range 24-231, 20-70, and 242-1434 Bq kg(-1) respectively. The geographic distribution of (238)U reflects the geophysical framework of the Lombardia region: the soils with high content of uranium are distributed for the most part in the South Alpine belt, where the presence of magmatic rocks is widespread. These soils show an higher activity of (238)U than of (232)Th. The (238)U activities become lower than (232)Th when soils are located in the plain, originating from basic sedimentary rocks. (137)Cs activity ranges 0.4-86.8 kBq m(-2). The lowest activity of (137)Cs is in the plain, whereas the highest is in the North on soils kept as lawn or pasture. The (137)Cs activity of some samples suggests the presence of accumulation processes that lead to (137)Cs enriched soils. This is the first survey of gamma emitting radionuclides in Lombardia that is based on the LUCAS standard sampling. The results from this monitoring campaign are important for the human radiation exposure and provide the zero point, which will be useful for assessing future effects due to external factors such as human activities.

  9. Evaluation of Soil Moisture Derived from Passive Microwave Remote Sensing Over Agricultural Sites in Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Champagne, C.; McNairn, H.; Berg, A.

    2008-12-01

    Spatial information on soil moisture conditions is a critical agri-environmental variable and can be used alone as a decision support tool for a number of land management decisions, including soil trafficability, seeding options and pesticide applications. Large-area estimations of soil moisture derived from passive microwave sensors are available over Canada from AMSR-E and SSM/I sensors, and in some instances are being used as decision-support tools (AAFC, 2008). These coarse spatial estimates can be used to assess overall conditions on a daily or weekly basis, and potentially be used as a monitoring tool to trigger assessment using higher spatial resolution active microwave sensors. Retrieval algorithms to derive soil moisture from passive microwave brightness temperature produce variable results depending on input frequency and the reliance on ancillary data to estimate vegetation water content and land surface temperature. There is a need to characterize regional errors in these data sets to contextualize their operational use and facilitate integration of these data sets into land surface models. Several soil moisture information products derived from passive microwave remote sensing were evaluated for their potential use in assessing moisture conditions over agricultural regions in Canada. Soil wetness maps derived from SSM/I (Basist et al., 2001), AMSR-E NASA soil moisture products (Njoku, 2008) and two AMSR-E soil moisture products derived using C and X band frequencies using an alternative retrieval algorithm (Owe et al., 2008) were evaluated over agricultural regions in Canada. Evaluations were based on in-situ measurements from sites in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario for spring and fall periods in 2007 and 2008. Differences in the satellite climatology relative to surface soil moisture observations in Canada will be discussed.

  10. Comparison of soil bacterial communities under diverse agricultural land management and crop production practices.

    PubMed

    Wu, Tiehang; Chellemi, Dan O; Graham, Jim H; Martin, Kendall J; Rosskopf, Erin N

    2008-02-01

    The composition and structure of bacterial communities were examined in soil subjected to a range of diverse agricultural land management and crop production practices. Length heterogeneity polymerase chain reaction (LH-PCR) of bacterial DNA extracted from soil was used to generate amplicon profiles that were analyzed with univariate and multivariate statistical methods. Five land management programs were initiated in July 2000: conventional, organic, continuous removal of vegetation (disk fallow), undisturbed (weed fallow), and bahiagrass pasture (Paspalum notatum var Argentine). Similar levels in the diversity of bacterial 16S rDNA amplicons were detected in soil samples collected from organically and conventionally managed plots 3 and 4 years after initiation of land management programs, whereas significantly lower levels of diversity were observed in samples collected from bahiagrass pasture. Differences in diversity were attributed to effects on how the relative abundance of individual amplicons were distributed (evenness) and not on the total numbers of bacterial 16S rDNA amplicons detected (richness). Similar levels of diversity were detected among all land management programs in soil samples collected after successive years of tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) cultivation. A different trend was observed after a multivariate examination of the similarities in genetic composition among soil bacterial communities. After 3 years of land management, similarities in genetic composition of soil bacterial communities were observed in plots where disturbance was minimized (bahiagrass and weed fallow). The genetic compositions in plots managed organically were similar to each other and distinct from bacterial communities in other land management programs. After successive years of tomato cultivation and damage from two major hurricanes, only the composition of soil bacterial communities within organically managed plots continued to maintain a high degree of similarity

  11. Atrazine contamination in agricultural soils from the Yangtze River Delta of China and associated health risks.

    PubMed

    Sun, J T; Pan, L L; Zhan, Yu; Tsang, Daniel C W; Zhu, L Z; Li, X D

    2017-04-01

    Atrazine is one of the most widely applied and persistent herbicides in the world. In view of limited information on the regional contamination of atrazine in soils in China, this study investigated the spatial distribution and environmental impacts of atrazine in agricultural soils collected from the Yangtze River Delta (YRD) as an illustrative analysis of rapidly developing regions in the country. The results showed that the concentrations of atrazine in the YRD agricultural soils ranged from <1.0 to 113 ng/g dry weight, with a mean of 5.7 ng/g, and a detection rate of 57.7 % in soils. Pesticide factory might be a major source for the elevated levels of atrazine in Zhejiang Province. The contamination of atrazine was closely associated with land use types. The concentrations and detection rates of atrazine were higher in corn fields and mulberry fields than in rice paddy fields. There was no significant difference in compositions of soil microbial phospholipids fatty acids among the areas with different atrazine levels. Positive relationship (R = 0.417, p < 0.05, n = 30) was observed between atrazine and total microbial biomass. However, other factors, such as soil type and land management practice, might have stronger influences on soil microbial communities. Human health risks via exposure to atrazine in soils were estimated according to the methods recommended by the US EPA. Atrazine by itself in all the soil samples imposed very low carcinogenic risks (<10(-6)) and minimal non-cancer risks (hazard index <1) to adults and children.

  12. Evaluating the Utility of Remotely-Sensed Soil Moisture Retrievals for Operational Agricultural Drought Monitoring

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bolten, John D.; Crow, Wade T.; Zhan, Xiwu; Jackson, Thomas J.; Reynolds,Curt

    2010-01-01

    Soil moisture is a fundamental data source used by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) International Production Assessment Division (IPAD) to monitor crop growth stage and condition and subsequently, globally forecast agricultural yields. Currently, the USDA IPAD estimates surface and root-zone soil moisture using a two-layer modified Palmer soil moisture model forced by global precipitation and temperature measurements. However, this approach suffers from well-known errors arising from uncertainty in model forcing data and highly simplified model physics. Here we attempt to correct for these errors by designing and applying an Ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) data assimilation system to integrate surface soil moisture retrievals from the NASA Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) into the USDA modified Palmer soil moisture model. An assessment of soil moisture analysis products produced from this assimilation has been completed for a five-year (2002 to 2007) period over the North American continent between 23degN - 50degN and 128degW - 65degW. In particular, a data denial experimental approach is utilized to isolate the added utility of integrating remotely-sensed soil moisture by comparing EnKF soil moisture results obtained using (relatively) low-quality precipitation products obtained from real-time satellite imagery to baseline Palmer model runs forced with higher quality rainfall. An analysis of root-zone anomalies for each model simulation suggests that the assimilation of AMSR-E surface soil moisture retrievals can add significant value to USDA root-zone predictions derived from real-time satellite precipitation products.

  13. Fly ash application in nutrient poor agriculture soils: impact on methanotrophs population dynamics and paddy yields.

    PubMed

    Singh, Jay Shankar; Pandey, Vimal Chandra

    2013-03-01

    There are reports that the application of fly ash, compost and press mud or a combination thereof, improves plant growth, soil microbial communities etc. Also, fly ash in combination with farmyard manure or other organic amendments improves soil physico-chemical characteristics, rice yield and microbial processes in paddy fields. However, the knowledge about the impact of fly ash inputs alone or in combination with other organic amendments on soil methanotrophs number in paddy soils is almost lacking. We hypothesized that fly ash application at lower doses in paddy agriculture soil could be a potential amendment to elevate the paddy yields and methanotrophs number. Here we demonstrate the impact of fly ash and press mud inputs on number of methanotrophs, antioxidants, antioxidative enzymatic activities and paddy yields at agriculture farm. The impact of amendments was significant for methanotrophs number, heavy metal concentration, antioxidant contents, antioxidant enzymatic activities and paddy yields. A negative correlation was existed between higher doses of fly ash-treatments and methanotrophs number (R(2)=0.833). The content of antioxidants and enzymatic activities in leaves of higher doses fly ash-treated rice plants increased in response to stresses due to heavy metal toxicity, which was negatively correlated with rice grain yield (R(2)=0.944) and paddy straw yield (R(2)=0.934). A positive correlation was noted between heavy metals concentrations and different antioxidant and enzymatic activities across different fly ash treated plots.The data of this study indicate that heavy metal toxicity of fly ash may cause oxidative stress in the paddy crop and the antioxidants and related enzymes could play a defensive role against phytotoxic damages. We concluded that fly ash at lower doses with press mud seems to offer the potential amendments to improving soil methanotrophs population and paddy crop yields for the nutrient poor agriculture soils.

  14. Responses of soil fungi to logging and oil palm agriculture in Southeast Asian tropical forests.

    PubMed

    McGuire, K L; D'Angelo, H; Brearley, F Q; Gedallovich, S M; Babar, N; Yang, N; Gillikin, C M; Gradoville, R; Bateman, C; Turner, B L; Mansor, P; Leff, J W; Fierer, N

    2015-05-01

    Human land use alters soil microbial composition and function in a variety of systems, although few comparable studies have been done in tropical forests and tropical agricultural production areas. Logging and the expansion of oil palm agriculture are two of the most significant drivers of tropical deforestation, and the latter is most prevalent in Southeast Asia. The aim of this study was to compare soil fungal communities from three sites in Malaysia that represent three of the most dominant land-use types in the Southeast Asia tropics: a primary forest, a regenerating forest that had been selectively logged 50 years previously, and a 25-year-old oil palm plantation. Soil cores were collected from three replicate plots at each site, and fungal communities were sequenced using the Illumina platform. Extracellular enzyme assays were assessed as a proxy for soil microbial function. We found that fungal communities were distinct across all sites, although fungal composition in the regenerating forest was more similar to the primary forest than either forest community was to the oil palm site. Ectomycorrhizal fungi, which are important associates of the dominant Dipterocarpaceae tree family in this region, were compositionally distinct across forests, but were nearly absent from oil palm soils. Extracellular enzyme assays indicated that the soil ecosystem in oil palm plantations experienced altered nutrient cycling dynamics, but there were few differences between regenerating and primary forest soils. Together, these results show that logging and the replacement of primary forest with oil palm plantations alter fungal community and function, although forests regenerating from logging had more similarities with primary forests in terms of fungal composition and nutrient cycling potential. Since oil palm agriculture is currently the mostly rapidly expanding equatorial crop and logging is pervasive across tropical ecosystems, these findings may have broad applicability.

  15. Determine metrics and set targets for soil quality on agriculture residue and energy crop pathways

    SciTech Connect

    Ian Bonner; David Muth

    2013-09-01

    There are three objectives for this project: 1) support OBP in meeting MYPP stated performance goals for the Sustainability Platform, 2) develop integrated feedstock production system designs that increase total productivity of the land, decrease delivered feedstock cost to the conversion facilities, and increase environmental performance of the production system, and 3) deliver to the bioenergy community robust datasets and flexible analysis tools for establishing sustainable and viable use of agricultural residues and dedicated energy crops. The key project outcome to date has been the development and deployment of a sustainable agricultural residue removal decision support framework. The modeling framework has been used to produce a revised national assessment of sustainable residue removal potential. The national assessment datasets are being used to update national resource assessment supply curves using POLYSIS. The residue removal modeling framework has also been enhanced to support high fidelity sub-field scale sustainable removal analyses. The framework has been deployed through a web application and a mobile application. The mobile application is being used extensively in the field with industry, research, and USDA NRCS partners to support and validate sustainable residue removal decisions. The results detailed in this report have set targets for increasing soil sustainability by focusing on primary soil quality indicators (total organic carbon and erosion) in two agricultural residue management pathways and a dedicated energy crop pathway. The two residue pathway targets were set to, 1) increase residue removal by 50% while maintaining soil quality, and 2) increase soil quality by 5% as measured by Soil Management Assessment Framework indicators. The energy crop pathway was set to increase soil quality by 10% using these same indicators. To demonstrate the feasibility and impact of each of these targets, seven case studies spanning the US are presented

  16. Potential effect of No-till management on carbon in the agricultural soils of the former Soviet Union

    SciTech Connect

    Gaston, G.G.; Kolchugina, T.; Vinson, T.S.

    1993-01-01

    Agricultural soils act as both a source and a sink for atmospheric carbon. Since the onset of cultivation, the 211.5 million ha of agricultural soils in the former Soviet Union (FSU) have lost 10.2 Gt of carbon. No-till management represents a promising option to increase the amount of carbon sequestered in the agricultural soil of the FSU. No-till management reduces erosion and sequesters additional carbon in the soil by lowering the soil temperature and raising soil moisture. To determine the carbon sequestered under no-till management, a data base containing precultivation