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Sample records for agricultural soil management

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. Effect of land management on soil microbial properties in agricultural terraces of Eastern Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; Cerdà, Artemi; Garcia-Orenes, Fuensanta

    2014-05-01

    Soil quality is important for the sustainable development of terrestrial ecosystems. Agricultural land management is one of most important anthropogenic activities that greatly alters soil characteristics, including physical, chemical, and microbiological properties. The unsuitable land management can lead to a soil fertility loss and to a reduction in the abundance and diversity of soil microorganisms. However, ecological practices and some organic amendments can promote the activities of soil microbial communities, and increase its biodiversity. The microbial soil communities are the most sensitive and rapid indicators of perturbations in land use and soil enzyme activities are sensitive biological indicators of the effects of soil management practices. In this study, a field experiment was performed at clay-loam agricultural soil with an orchard of orange trees in Alcoleja (eastern Spain) to assess the long-term effects of inorganic fertilizers (F), intensive ploughing (P) and sustainable agriculture (S) on the soil microbial biomass carbon (Cmic), enzyme activities (Urease, ß-glucosidase and phosphatase), basal soil repiration (BSR) and the relationship between them, and soil fertility in agro-ecosystems of Spain. Nine soil samples were taken from each agricultural management plot. In all the samples were determined the basal soil respiration, soil microbial biomass carbon, water holding capacity, electrical conductivity, soil organic carbon, nitrogen, available phosphorus, aggregate stability, cation exchange capacity, phosphorous, pH, texture, carbonates, active limestone and as enzimatic activities: Urease, ß-glucosidase and phosphatase. The results showed a substantial level of differentiation in the microbial properties, in terms of management practices, which was highly associated with soil organic matter content. The most marked variation in the different parameters studied appears to be related to sustainable agriculture terrace. The management

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Biological and biochemical soil indicators: monitoring tools of different agricultural managements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scotti, Riccardo; Sultana, Salma; Scelza, Rosalia; Marzaioli, Rossana; D'Ascoli, Rosaria; Rao, Maria A.

    2010-05-01

    The intensive agricultural managements, increased in the last twenty years, have resulted in a decrease in fertility of soils, representing a serious threat to agricultural productivity due to both the increase in production cost, mainly for intensive use of mineral fertilizers, and the loss of the quality of crops themselves. Organic matter content is closely related to the soil fertility and its progressive reduction in cultivates soils, without a satisfactory recovery, could make agriculture untenable, resulting in a high detrimental effect on environment. But an appropriate soil management practices can improve soil quality by utilizing organic amendments as alternative to mineral fertilizers to increase soil quality and plant growth. In this context, demand of suitable indicators, whose are able to assess the impact of different agricultural managements on soil quality, has increased. It has shown that soil biological and biochemical properties are able to respond to small changes in soil conditions, thus providing information on subtle alterations in soil quality. Aim of this study was to evaluate the use of soil biological and biochemical properties as fertility indicators in agricultural soils under different agricultural managements, sited in Campania Region (Southern Italy). After a preliminary monitoring phase of soil fertility on different farms sited in five agricultural areas of Campania Region, we have selected two farms in two different study areas to assess the effect on soil quality of different organic amendments. In particular, a compost from municipal solid waste and wood from scraps of poplars pruning were supplied in different doses and ratios. Soil samplings after one month from the amendment addition and then every 4 months until a year were carried out. All collected soil samples were characterized by main physical, chemical, biochemical and biological properties. In general, the use of different organic amendments showed a positive effect

  10. 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...

  11. 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

  12. Comparison of soil bacterial communities under diverse agricultural land management and crop production practices

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The composition and structure of bacterial communities was 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 profile...

  13. 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,...

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. Discriminating the effects of agricultural land management practices on soil fungal communities

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The structure of fungal communities was examined in soil subjected to five years of different agricultural land management and tomato production practices. Length heterogeneity polymerase chain reaction (LH-PCR) of fungal rDNA internal transcribed spacer-1 (ITS-1) regions was used to create genomic...

  20. No-Till Soil Management and the New Vision for Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    What can producers do to adapt their production practices to the changing vision of agriculture as well as the changing local climate? One such change that farmers could consider is no-till soil management. No-till improves water infiltration, decreases runoff, and may even increase the amount of ...

  1. Interactive effects of agricultural management and topography on soil carbon sequestration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ladoni, M.; Kravchenko, S.; Munoz, J.; Erickson, M.

    2012-12-01

    Proper agricultural management scenarios such as no-tillage, cover cropping, agroforestry, have demonstrated potential to increase the amount of carbon sequestered in soil and to mitigate atmospheric carbon levels. The knowledge about positive effects of cover cropping comes mostly from small uniform experimental plots, but whether these positive effects will exists in large scale fields with diverse topography and what would be the magnitude of these effects on a field scale remains to be seen. Our objective is to compare performance of different agricultural managements including those with cover crops in their influences on SOC across diverse topographical landscape in large agricultural fields. The three studied agricultural practices are Conventionally tilled and fertilized management without cover crops (T1), Low-input management with reduced chemical inputs (T3) and Organic (T4) management, the latter two have rye and red clover cover crops as part of their rotations. Within each field 1- 4 transects with three topographical positions of "depression", "slope" and "summit" were identified. The first soil sampling was done in spring 2010 and the second set of soil samples were collected from topographical positions during growing season of 2011. Samples were analyzed for total SOC and also particulate organic carbon (POC) content to show the changes in active pools of SOC. The results showed that topography has a significant influence in performance of cover crops. Agricultural managements with cover crops increased the POC in soil and the magnitude of this increase was different across space. Cover crops built the highest POC in depressions followed by summit and then slope. The conventional agricultural management increased POC in depression but decreased it on slopes. Low-input agricultural management when coupled with cover cropping has a potential to produce the highest increase in active pools of SOC across topographically diverse fields. The ratio of

  2. A review on soil carbon accumulation due to the management change of major Brazilian agricultural activities.

    PubMed

    La Scala jr, N; De Figueiredo, E B; Panosso, A R

    2012-08-01

    Agricultural areas deal with enormous CO2 intake fluxes offering an opportunity for greenhouse effect mitigation. In this work we studied the potential of soil carbon sequestration due to the management conversion in major agricultural activities in Brazil. Data from several studies indicate that in soybean/maize, and related rotation systems, a significant soil carbon sequestration was observed over the year of conversion from conventional to no-till practices, with a mean rate of 0.41 Mg C ha(-1) year(-1). The same effect was observed in sugarcane fields, but with a much higher accumulation of carbon in soil stocks, when sugarcane fields are converted from burned to mechanised based harvest, where large amounts of sugarcane residues remain on the soil surface (1.8 Mg C ha(-1) year(-1)). The higher sequestration potential of sugarcane crops, when compared to the others, has a direct relation to the primary production of this crop. Nevertheless, much of this mitigation potential of soil carbon accumulation in sugarcane fields is lost once areas are reformed, or intensive tillage is applied. Pasture lands have shown soil carbon depletion once natural areas are converted to livestock use, while integration of those areas with agriculture use has shown an improvement in soil carbon stocks. Those works have shown that the main crop systems of Brazil have a huge mitigation potential, especially in soil carbon form, being an opportunity for future mitigation strategies. PMID:23011303

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. Managing for soil protection and bioenergy production on agricultural lands

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bioenergy systems are needed that can aid in meeting the growing energy demands of the expanding human population without sacrificing the long-term sustainability, productivity and quality of the underlying natural resources. Agriculture, like the forestry sector, will produce the feedstocks. While ...

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. The impact of agriculture management on soil quality in citrus orchards in Eastern Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hondebrink, Merel; Cerdà, Artemi; Cammeraat, Erik

    2015-04-01

    Currently, the agricultural management of citrus orchard in the Valencia region in E Spain, is changing from traditionally irrigated and managed orchards to drip irrigated organic managed orchards. It is not known what is the effect of such changes on soil quality and hope to shed some light with this study on this transition. It is known that the drip-irrigated orchards built in sloping terrain increase soil erosion (Cerdà et al., 2009; Li et al., 2014) and that agricultural management such as catch crops and mulches reduce sediment yield and surface runoff (Xu et al., 2012; ), as in other orchards around the world (Wang et al., 2010; Wanshnong et al., 2013; Li et al., 2014; Hazarika et al., 2014): We hypothesize that these changes have an important impact on the soil chemical and physical properties. Therefor we studied the soil quality of 12 citrus orchards, which had different land and irrigation management techniques. We compared organic (OR) and conventional (CO) land management with either drip irrigation (DRP) or flood irrigation (FLD). Soil samples at two depths, 0-1 cm and 5-10 cm, were taken for studying soil quality parameters under the different treatments. These parameters included soil chemical parameters, bulk density, texture, soil surface shear strength and soil aggregation. Half of the studied orchards were organically managed and the other 6 were conventionally managed, and for each of these 6 study sites three fields were flood irrigated plots (FLD) and the other three drip irrigated systems (DRP) In total 108 soil samples were taken as well additional irrigation water samples. We will present the results of this study with regard to the impact of the studied irrigation systems and land management systems with regard to soil quality. This knowledge might help in improving citrus orchard management with respect to maintaining or improving soil quality to ensure sustainable agricultural practices. References Cerdà, A., Giménez-Morera, A. and

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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

    2016-01-01

    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

  13. Management of agricultural soils for greenhouse gas mitigation: Learning from a case study in NE Spain.

    PubMed

    Sánchez, B; Iglesias, A; McVittie, A; Álvaro-Fuentes, J; Ingram, J; Mills, J; Lesschen, J P; Kuikman, P J

    2016-04-01

    A portfolio of agricultural practices is now available that can contribute to reaching European mitigation targets. Among them, the management of agricultural soils has a large potential for reducing GHG emissions or sequestering carbon. Many of the practices are based on well tested agronomic and technical know-how, with proven benefits for farmers and the environment. A suite of practices has to be used since none of the practices can provide a unique solution. However, there are limitations in the process of policy development: (a) agricultural activities are based on biological processes and thus, these practices are location specific and climate, soils and crops determine their agronomic potential; (b) since agriculture sustains rural communities, the costs and potential for implementation have also to be regionally evaluated and (c) the aggregated regional potential of the combination of practices has to be defined in order to inform abatement targets. We believe that, when implementing mitigation practices, three questions are important: Are they cost-effective for farmers? Do they reduce GHG emissions? What policies favour their implementation? This study addressed these questions in three sequential steps. First, mapping the use of representative soil management practices in the European regions to provide a spatial context to upscale the local results. Second, using a Marginal Abatement Cost Curve (MACC) in a Mediterranean case study (NE Spain) for ranking soil management practices in terms of their cost-effectiveness. Finally, using a wedge approach of the practices as a complementary tool to link science to mitigation policy. A set of soil management practices was found to be financially attractive for Mediterranean farmers, which in turn could achieve significant abatements (e.g., 1.34 MtCO2e in the case study region). The quantitative analysis was completed by a discussion of potential farming and policy choices to shape realistic mitigation policy at

  14. 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

    -retention and hydrochar was effective in cation-retention. The experiments provide first information on the uses of biochar for soil nutrient management in agriculture but observed effects were mostly minor under realistic char application rates. [1] LIANG ET AL. 2006: Black Carbon increases cation exchange capacity in soils. SSAJ 70, 1719-1730. [2] LEHMANN ET AL. 2009: Biochar for Environmental Management - Science and Technology. 1 An Introduction, 1. [3] YAO ET AL. 2012: Effect of biochar amendment on sorption and leaching of nitrate, ammonium, and phosphate in a sandy soil. Chemosphere 89, 1467-1471. [4] MUKHERJEE & ZIMMERMANN, 2011: Surface chemistry variations among a series of laboratory-produced biochars. Geoderma 163, 247-255. [5] QIAN ET AL. 2013: Effects of environmental conditions on the release of phosphorus from biochar. Chemosphere 93, 2069-2075.

  15. Non-target impact of fungicide tetraconazole on microbial communities in soils with different agricultural management.

    PubMed

    Sułowicz, Sławomir; Cycoń, Mariusz; Piotrowska-Seget, Zofia

    2016-08-01

    Effect of the fungicide tetraconazole on microbial community in silt loam soils from orchard with long history of triazole application and from grassland with no known history of fungicide usage was investigated. Triazole tetraconazole that had never been used on these soils before was applied at the field rate and at tenfold the FR. Response of microbial communities to tetraconazole was investigated during 28-day laboratory experiment by determination of changes in their biomass and structure (phospholipid fatty acids method-PLFA), activity (fluorescein diacetate hydrolysis-FDA) as well as changes in genetic (DGGE) and functional (Biolog) diversity. Obtained results indicated that the response of soil microorganisms to tetraconazole depended on the management of the soils. DGGE patterns revealed that both dosages of fungicide affected the structure of bacterial community and the impact on genetic diversity and richness was more prominent in orchard soil. Values of stress indices-the saturated/monounsaturated PLFAs ratio and the cyclo/monounsaturated precursors ratio, were almost twice as high and the Gram-negative/Gram-positive ratio was significantly lower in the orchard soil compared with the grassland soil. Results of principal component analysis of PLFA and Biolog profiles revealed significant impact of tetraconazole in orchard soil on day 28, whereas changes in these profiles obtained for grassland soil were insignificant or transient. Obtained results indicated that orchards soil seems to be more vulnerable to tetraconazole application compared to grassland soil. History of pesticide application and agricultural management should be taken into account in assessing of environmental impact of studied pesticides. PMID:27106012

  16. Effects of different management practices on fungal biodiversity in agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borriello, R.; Lumini, E.; Bonfante, P.; Bianciotto, V.

    2009-04-01

    Symbiotic associations between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and plant roots are widespread in natural environments and provide a range of benefits to the host plant. These include improved nutrition, enhanced resistance to soil-borne pests, diseases, and drought, as well as tolerance to heavy metals. In addition, the presence of a well developed AMF hyphal network improve the soil structure. As obligate mutualistic symbionts these fungi colonize the roots of many agricultural crops and it is often claimed that agricultural practices (use of fertilizers and biocides, tillage, dominance of monocultures and the growing of non-mycorrhizal crops) are detrimental to AMF. As a result, agro ecosystems impoverished in AMF may not get the fully expected range of benefits from these fungi. Using molecular markers on DNA extracted directly from soil and roots we studied the effects of different management practices (tillage and nitrogen fertilization) on the AMF populations colonizing an experimental agro ecosystem in Central Italy. Fungi in roots and soil were identified by cloning and sequencing a region of ~550bp of the 18S rDNA and ~600bp of the 28S rDNA. In symbiosis with the maize roots we detected only members of Glomeraceae group A that showed decrement in number under nitrogen fertilization. Instead in soil were mainly present members of two AMF groups, respectively Gigasporaceae and Glomeraceae group A. In addition only the low input management practices preserve also members of Diversisporaceae and Glomeraceae group B. From our study we can conclude that agricultural practices can directly or indirectly influence AMF biodiversity. The result of this study highlight the importance and significant effects of the long term nitrogen fertilization and tillage practices on specific groups of fungi playing a key role in arable soils. The research was founded by Biodiversity Project (IPP-CNR) and by SOILSINK (FISR-MIUR)

  17. Agricultural management and environment controls long-term soil nitrous oxide fluxes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gelfand, I.; Shcherbak, I.; Robertson, G. P.

    2013-12-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) is an important greenhouse gas with a long atmospheric half-life. Understanding the controls on soil nitrous oxide fluxes is vital for the development of mitigation opportunities and for understanding their climatic impact. The spatial and temporal variability of soil nitrous oxide fluxes, however, makes it difficult to predict such fluxes. We examined the longest available dataset, 22 years of continues measurements, which contains biweekly measurements of soil nitrous oxide emissions together with measurements of an array of environmental and management parameters from eleven ecosystems, including four corn-soybean-wheat rotations under different management (conventional, no-till, biological, and reduced input), one perennial alfalfa system, two tree plantations, three successional systems, and one deciduous forest. This dataset was used to assess the effect of different agricultural and land management practices on soil N2O emissions. Using statistical and correlation analyses, we found that, in general, annual crops emitted 2-3 times more N2O annually than did perennial crops. Among the annual crops, there were no differences in the annual emissions among the cropping systems; the conventional, no-till, reduced input, and biologically managed systems emitted similar amounts of N2O with very different emission patterns. Among the perennial crops, alfalfa emitted 2 times more N2O than did poplar, approximately 1.6 times more than did the coniferous plantation, and ~3 times more than did the unmanaged successional communities and the deciduous forest, which emitted similar amounts. Within the annual crop rotation phases, the wheat phase of the conventionally and no-till-managed rotations emitted approximately twice as much N2O than did the reduced input- and biologically managed systems, largely due to the length of the bare soil fallow. The corn and soybean phases of the conventionally managed rotation emitted between 70 and 100% less N2O than

  18. Use of aerial photographs for assessment of soil organic carbon and delineation of agricultural management zones.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartholomeus, H.; Kooistra, L.

    2012-04-01

    For quantitative estimation of soil properties by means of remote sensing, often hyperspectral data are used. But these data are scarce and expensive, which prohibits wider implementation of the developed techniques in agricultural management. For precision agriculture, observations at a high spatial resolution are required. Colour aerial photographs at this scale are widely available, and can be acquired at no of very low costs. Therefore, we investigated whether publically available aerial photographs can be used to a) automatically delineate management zones and b) estimate levels of organic carbon spatially. We selected three study areas within the Netherlands that cover a large variance in soil type (peat, sand, and clay). For the fields of interest, RGB aerial photographs with a spatial resolution of 50 cm were extracted from a publically available data provider. Further pre-processing exists of geo-referencing only. Since the images originate from different sources and are potentially acquired under unknown illumination conditions, the exact radiometric properties of the data are unknown. Therefore, we used spectral indices to emphasize the differences in reflectance and normalize for differences in radiometry. To delineate management zones we used image segmentation techniques, using the derived indices as input. Comparison with management zone maps as used by the farmers shows that there is good correspondence. Regression analysis between a number of soil properties and the derived indices shows that organic carbon is the major explanatory variable for differences in index values within the fields. However, relations do not hold for large regions, indicating that local models will have to be used, which is a problem that is also still relevant for hyperspectral remote sensing data. With this research, we show that low-cost aerial photographs can be a valuable tool for quantitative analysis of organic carbon and automatic delineation of management zones

  19. APPLICATIONS OF AGRICULTURAL SYSTEM MODELS IN ASSESSING AND MANAGING CONTAMINATION OF THE SOIL-WATER-ATMOSPHERE CONTINUUM IN AGRICULTURE

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In the last three decades, there has been a growing public concern about the adverse effects of modern agriculture on environmental quality and soil-water resources. In the mid-1980's, the USDA, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) identified the need for models of whole agricultural systems that wi...

  20. Application of Agricultural System Models in Assessing and Managing Contamination of Soil-Water-Atmosphere Continuum in Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In the last three decades, there has been a growing public concern about the adverse effects of modern agriculture on environmental quality and soil-water resources. In the mid-1980s, the USDA, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) identified the need for models of whole agricultural systems th...

  1. Evaluating abiotic influences on soil salinity of inland managed wetlands and agricultural croplands in a semi-arid environment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fowler, D.; King, Sammy L.; Weindorf, David C.

    2014-01-01

    Agriculture and moist-soil management are important management techniques used on wildlife refuges to provide adequate energy for migrant waterbirds. In semi-arid systems, the accumulation of soluble salts throughout the soil profile can limit total production of wetland plants and agronomic crops and thus jeopardize meeting waterbird energy needs. This study evaluates the effect of distinct hydrologic regimes associated with moist-soil management and agricultural production on salt accumulation in a semi-arid floodplain. We hypothesized that the frequency of flooding and quantity of floodwater in a moist-soil management hydroperiod results in a less saline soil profile compared to profiles under traditional agricultural management. Findings showed that agricultural croplands differed (p-value < 0.001, df = 9) in quantities of total soluble salts (TSS) compared to moist-soil impoundments and contained greater concentrations (TSS range = 1,160-1,750 (mg kg-1)) at depth greater than 55 cm below the surface of the profile, while moist-soil impoundments contained lower concentrations (TSS range = 307-531 (mg kg-1)) at the same depths. Increased salts in agricultural may be attributed to the lack of leaching afforded by smaller summer irrigations while larger periodic flooding events in winter and summer flood irrigations in moist-soil impoundments may serve as leaching events.

  2. Assessing agricultural management effects on structure related soil hydraulic properties by tension infiltrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bodner, G.; Loiskandl, W.; Kaul, H.-P.

    2009-04-01

    Soil structure is a dynamic property subject to numerous natural and human influences. It is recognized as fundamental for sustainable functioning of soil. Therefore knowledge of management impacts on the sensitive structural states of soil is decisive in order to avoid soil degradation. The stabilization of the soil's (macro)pore system and eventually the improvement of its infiltrability are essential to avoid runoff and soil erosion, particularly in view of an increasing probability of intense rainfall events. However structure-related soil properties generally have a high natural spatiotemporal variability that interacts with the potential influence of agricultural land use. This complicates a clear determination of management vs. environmental effects and requires adequate measurement methods, allowing a sufficient spatiotemporal resolution to estimate the impact of the targeted management factors within the natural dynamics of soil structure. A common method to assess structure-related soil hydraulic properties is tension infiltrometry. A major advantage of tension infiltrometer measurements is that no or only minimum soil disturbance is necessary and several structure-controlled water transmission properties can readily be derived. The method is more time- and cost-efficient compared to laboratory measurements of soil hydraulic properties, thus enabling more replications. Furthermore in situ measurements of hydraulic properties generally allow a more accurate reproduction of field soil water dynamics. The present study analyses the impact of two common agricultural management options on structure related hydraulic properties based on tension infiltrometer measurements. Its focus is the identification of the role of management within the natural spatiotemporal variability, particularly in respect to seasonal temporal dynamics. Two management approaches are analysed, (i) cover cropping as a "plant-based" agro-environmental measure, and (ii) tillage with

  3. 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

  4. Modeling Soil Organic Carbon for Agricultural Land Use Under Various Management Practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kotamarthi, V. R.; Drewniak, B.; Song, J.; Prell, J.; Jacob, R. L.

    2009-12-01

    Bioenergy is generating tremendous interest as an alternative energy source that is both environmentally friendly and economically competitive. The amount of land designated for agriculture is expected to expand, including changes in the current distribution of crops, as demand for biofuels increases as a carbon neutral alternative fuel source. However, the influence of agriculture on the carbon cycle is complex, and varies depending on land use change and management practices. The purpose of this research is to integrate agriculture in the carbon-nitrogen based Community Land Model (CLM) to evaluate the above and below ground carbon storage for corn, soybean, and wheat crop lands. The new model, CLM-Crop simulates carbon allocation during four growth stages, a soybean nitrogen fixation scheme, fertilizer, and harvest practices. We present results from this model simulation, which includes the impact of a new dynamic roots module to simulate the changing root structure and depth with growing season based on the availability of water and nitrogen in the root zone and a retranslocation scheme to simulate redistribution of nitrogen from leaves, roots, and stems to grain during organ development for crop yields, leaf area index (LAI), carbon allocation, and changes in soil carbon budgets under various practices such as fertilizer and residue management. Simulated crop yields for corn, soybean and wheat are in general agreement with measurements. Initial model results indicate a loss of soil organic carbon over cultivated lands after removal of natural vegetation which continues in the following years. Soil carbon in crop lands is a strong function of the residue management and has the potential to impact crop yields significantly.

  5. 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).

  6. 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

  7. Key to GHG fluxes from organic soils: site characteristics, agricultural practices or water table management?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tiemeyer, Bärbel

    2015-04-01

    Drained peatlands are hotspots of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Agriculture is the major land use type for peatlands in Germany and other European countries, but strongly varies in its intensity regarding the groundwater level and the agricultural management. Although the mean annual water table depth is sometimes proposed as an overall predictor for GHG emissions, there is a strong variability of its effects on different peatlands. Furthermore, re-wetting measures generally decrease carbon dioxide emissions, but may strongly increase methane emissions. We synthesized 250 annual GHG budgets for 120 different sites in 13 German peatlands. Carbon dioxide (net ecosystem exchange and ecosystem respiration), nitrous oxide and methane fluxes were measured with transparent and opaque manual chambers. Land management ranged from very intensive use with arable land or grassland with up to five cuts per year to partially or completely re-wetted peatlands. Besides the GHG fluxes, biomass yield, fertilisation, groundwater level, climatic data, vegetation composition and soil properties were measured. Overall, we found a large variability of the total GHG budget ranging from small uptakes to extremely high emissions (> 70 t CO2-equivalents/(ha yr)). At nearly all sites, carbon dioxide was the major component of the GHG budget. Site conditions, especially the nitrogen content of the unsaturated zone and the intra-annual water level distribution, controlled the GHG emissions of the agricultural sites. Although these factors are influenced by natural conditions (peat type, regional hydrology), they could be modified by an improved water management. Agricultural management such as the number of cuts had only a minor influence on the GHG budgets. At the level of individual peatlands, higher water levels always decreased carbon dioxide emissions. In nearly all cases, the trade-off between reduced carbon dioxide and increased methane emissions turned out in favour of the re

  8. Local soil fertility management on small-scale farming systems for sustainable agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Namriah, Kilowasid, Laode Muhammad Harjoni

    2015-09-01

    The sustainability of small-scale farming systems on marginal lands is still being a topic of debate in scientific and institutional communities. To address this, a study was conducted to find a method of sustaining the productivity of marginal lands for food crop production. Agricultural practices (fallow and traditional cultivation) used by the local small-scale farmers in managing soil fertility to meet the natural biological processes above and below the ground were studied in Muna Island Southeast Sulawesi, Indonesia. Participatory approach was used to gather data and information on soil and land as well as to collect soil macrofauna. The results showed that the practices of local small-scale farmers are based on local soil and land suitability. Organic materials are the source of nutrient inputs to sustain the productivity of their lands by fallowing, burning natural vegetation, putting back the crop residues, doing minimum tillage and mix- and inter-crops. In conclusion, the sustainability of local small-scale farming systems will be established by knowing and understanding local soil and land classification systems and preferred crops being planted. Following the nature of fallow and monitoring soil macrofauna diversity and abundance, all preferred crops should be planted during rainy season with different time of harvest until the next rainy season. Therefore, soils are still covered with crops during dry season. It was suggested that planting time should be done in the rainy season. Doing more researches in other locations with different socio-cultural, economical, and ecological conditions is suggested to validate and refine the method.

  9. Influence of management practices on C stabilization pathways in agricultural volcanic ash soils (Canary Islands, Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernandez, Zulimar; María Álvarez, Ana; Carral, Pilar; de Figueiredo, Tomas; Almendros, Gonzalo

    2014-05-01

    Although C stabilization mechanisms in agricultural soils are still controversial [1], a series of overlapped pathways has been suggested [2] such as: i) insolubilization of low molecular weight precursors of soil organic matter (SOM) with reactive minerals through physical and chemical bonding, ii) selective accumulation of biosynthetic substances which are recalcitrant because of its inherent chemical composition, and iii) preservation and furter diagenetic transformation of particulate SOM entrapped within resistant microaggregates, where diffusion of soil enzymes is largely hampered. In some environments where carbohydrate and N compounds are not readily biodegraded, e.g., with water saturated micropores, an ill-known C stabilization pathway may involve the formation of Maillard's reaction products [3]. In all cases, these pathways converge in the formation of recalcitrant macromolecular substances, sharing several properties with the humic acid (HA) fraction [4]. In template forests, the selective preservation and further microbial reworking of plant biomass has been identified as a prevailing mechanism in the accumulation of recalcitrant SOM forms [5]. However, in volcanic ash soils with intense organomineral interactions, condensation reactions of low molecular weight precursors with short-range minerals may be the main mechanism [6]. In order to shed some light about the effect of agricultural management on soil C stabilization processes on volcanic ash soils, the chemical composition of HA and some structural proxies of SOM informing on its origin and potential resistance to biodegradation, were examined in 30 soils from Canary Islands (Spain) by visible, infrared (IR) and 13C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopies, elementary analysis and pyrolytic techniques. The results of multivariate treatments, suggested at least three simultaneous C stabilization biogeochemical trends: i) diagenetic alteration of plant biomacromolecules in soils receiving

  10. 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

  11. Predicting Agricultural Management Influence on Long-Term Soil Organic Carbon Dynamics: Implications for Biofuel Production

    SciTech Connect

    Gollany, H. T.; Rickman, R. W.; Albrecht, S. L.; Liang, Y.; Kang, Shujiang; Machado, S.

    2011-01-01

    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, fertilizer or organic amendments, and crop residue managements using the CQESTR model and (ii) to predict the potential of no-tillage (NT) management to maintain SOC stocks while removing crop residue. Classical LTEs at Champaign, IL (1876), Columbia, MO (1888), Lethbridge, AB (1911), Breton, AB (1930), and Pendleton, OR (1931) were selected for their documented history of management practice and periodic soil organic matter (SOM) measurements. Management practices ranged from monoculture to 2- or 3-yr crop rotations, manure, no fertilizer or fertilizer additions, and crop residue returned, burned, or harvested. Measured and CQESTR predicted SOC stocks under diverse agronomic practices, mean annual temperature (2.1 19 C), precipitation (402 973 mm), and SOC (5.89 33.58 g SOC kg 1) at the LTE sites were significantly related (r 2 = 0.94, n = 186, P < 0.0001) with a slope not significantly different than 1. The simulation results indicated that the quantities of crop residue that can be sustainably harvested without jeopardizing SOC stocks were influenced by initial SOC stocks, crop rotation intensity, tillage practices, crop yield, and climate. Manure or a cover crop/intensified crop rotation under NT are options to mitigate loss of crop residue C, as using fertilizer alone is insufficient to overcome residue removal impact on SOC stocks

  12. CONSERVATION AGRICULTURE: ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS OF REDUCED TILLAGE AND SOIL CARBON MANAGEMENT IN WATER LIMITED AREAS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural carbon (C) sequestration may be one of the most cost effective ways to slow processes of global warming and enhance plant available water. Numerous environmental benefits and enhanced water use efficiency result from agricultural activities that sequester soil C and contribute to crop p...

  13. 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.

  14. Modelling the impact of agricultural management on soil carbon stocks at the regional scale: the role of lateral fluxes.

    PubMed

    Nadeu, Elisabet; Gobin, Anne; Fiener, Peter; van Wesemael, Bas; van Oost, Kristof

    2015-08-01

    Agricultural management has received increased attention over the last decades due to its central role in carbon (C) sequestration and greenhouse gas mitigation. Yet, regardless of the large body of literature on the effects of soil erosion by tillage and water on soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks in agricultural landscapes, the significance of soil redistribution for the overall C budget and the C sequestration potential of land management options remains poorly quantified. In this study, we explore the role of lateral SOC fluxes in regional scale modelling of SOC stocks under three different agricultural management practices in central Belgium: conventional tillage (CT), reduced tillage (RT) and reduced tillage with additional carbon input (RT+i). We assessed each management scenario twice: using a conventional approach that did not account for lateral fluxes and an alternative approach that included soil erosion-induced lateral SOC fluxes. The results show that accounting for lateral fluxes increased C sequestration rates by 2.7, 2.5 and 1.5 g C m(-2)  yr(-1) for CT, RT and RT+i, respectively, relative to the conventional approach. Soil redistribution also led to a reduction of SOC concentration in the plough layer and increased the spatial variability of SOC stocks, suggesting that C sequestration studies relying on changes in the plough layer may underestimate the soil's C sequestration potential due to the effects of soil erosion. Additionally, lateral C export from cropland was in the same of order of magnitude as C sequestration; hence, the fate of C exported from cropland into other land uses is crucial to determine the ultimate impact of management and erosion on the landscape C balance. Consequently, soil management strategies targeting C sequestration will be most effective when accompanied by measures that reduce soil erosion given that erosion loss can balance potential C uptake, particularly in sloping areas. PMID:25663657

  15. Farm management, not soil microbial diversity, controls nutrient loss from smallholder tropical agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Wood, Stephen A.; Almaraz, Maya; Bradford, Mark A.; McGuire, Krista L.; Naeem, Shahid; Neill, Christopher; Palm, Cheryl A.; Tully, Katherine L.; Zhou, Jizhong

    2015-01-01

    Tropical smallholder agriculture is undergoing rapid transformation in nutrient cycling pathways as international development efforts strongly promote greater use of mineral fertilizers to increase crop yields. These changes in nutrient availability may alter the composition of microbial communities with consequences for rates of biogeochemical processes that control nutrient losses to the environment. Ecological theory suggests that altered microbial diversity will strongly influence processes performed by relatively few microbial taxa, such as denitrification and hence nitrogen losses as nitrous oxide, a powerful greenhouse gas. Whether this theory helps predict nutrient losses from agriculture depends on the relative effects of microbial community change and increased nutrient availability on ecosystem processes. We find that mineral and organic nutrient addition to smallholder farms in Kenya alters the taxonomic and functional diversity of soil microbes. However, we find that the direct effects of farm management on both denitrification and carbon mineralization are greater than indirect effects through changes in the taxonomic and functional diversity of microbial communities. Changes in functional diversity are strongly coupled to changes in specific functional genes involved in denitrification, suggesting that it is the expression, rather than abundance, of key functional genes that can serve as an indicator of ecosystem process rates. Our results thus suggest that widely used broad summary statistics of microbial diversity based on DNA may be inappropriate for linking microbial communities to ecosystem processes in certain applied settings. Our results also raise doubts about the relative control of microbial composition compared to direct effects of management on nutrient losses in applied settings such as tropical agriculture. PMID:25926815

  16. Farm management, not soil microbial diversity, controls nutrient loss from smallholder tropical agriculture.

    PubMed

    Wood, Stephen A; Almaraz, Maya; Bradford, Mark A; McGuire, Krista L; Naeem, Shahid; Neill, Christopher; Palm, Cheryl A; Tully, Katherine L; Zhou, Jizhong

    2015-01-01

    Tropical smallholder agriculture is undergoing rapid transformation in nutrient cycling pathways as international development efforts strongly promote greater use of mineral fertilizers to increase crop yields. These changes in nutrient availability may alter the composition of microbial communities with consequences for rates of biogeochemical processes that control nutrient losses to the environment. Ecological theory suggests that altered microbial diversity will strongly influence processes performed by relatively few microbial taxa, such as denitrification and hence nitrogen losses as nitrous oxide, a powerful greenhouse gas. Whether this theory helps predict nutrient losses from agriculture depends on the relative effects of microbial community change and increased nutrient availability on ecosystem processes. We find that mineral and organic nutrient addition to smallholder farms in Kenya alters the taxonomic and functional diversity of soil microbes. However, we find that the direct effects of farm management on both denitrification and carbon mineralization are greater than indirect effects through changes in the taxonomic and functional diversity of microbial communities. Changes in functional diversity are strongly coupled to changes in specific functional genes involved in denitrification, suggesting that it is the expression, rather than abundance, of key functional genes that can serve as an indicator of ecosystem process rates. Our results thus suggest that widely used broad summary statistics of microbial diversity based on DNA may be inappropriate for linking microbial communities to ecosystem processes in certain applied settings. Our results also raise doubts about the relative control of microbial composition compared to direct effects of management on nutrient losses in applied settings such as tropical agriculture. PMID:25926815

  17. A meta-analysis of the effects of agricultural management on soil physical quality for different farm typologies across Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guzmán, Gema; Sáenz de Rodrigáñez, Marta; Laguna, Ana; Giráldez, Juan Vicente; Vanderlinden, Karl; Ten Berge, Hein

    2014-05-01

    Despite important research efforts directed towards increasing our understanding of the links between agricultural management practices and environmental degradation and crop yield decline, current knowledge is still insufficient to provide an integrated approach for untangling relationships with soil quality from a chemical, biological and physical perspective. (Davis et al. 2012). Within the European project CATCH-C (ten Berge 2011) a practical tool is being developed for analyzing the sustainability of soil management practices for a wide range of farm typologies across European. As a partner of CATCH-C, the Spanish team aims at assessing physical soil quality by using meta-analysis techniques, previously used to assess other aspects of agricultural management (van den Putte et al. 2010; González et al. 2012; Quemada et al. 2013). As a first step, key indicators for characterizing soil physical quality such as bulk density, resistance to penetration, hydraulic conductivity, runoff and sediment yield have been identified. A literature review of the performance of these indicators was carried out. Data extracted from literature, was integrated in an online database developed by Plant Research International (Wageningen, UR). After an exploratory data analysis, a meta-analysis of the indicators with baseline treatments allowed a proper interpretation of the indicators to elucidate relationships between agricultural management and soil physical quality. References: Davis A.S. et al. 2012. Plos ONE 7(10): e4719. doi:10.1371/journalpone.0047149. González-Sánchez E.J.et al. 2012. Soil Till. Res. 122: 52-60. Quemada M. et al. 2013. Agric. Ecosyst. Environm. 174: 1-10. ten Berge, H.F.T.M. coord. 2011. Compatibility of Agricultural Management Practices and Types of Farming in the EU to enhance Climate Change Mitigation and Soil Health. KBBE.2011.1.2-01, GA 289782. van den Putte A.et al. 2010. Eur. J. Agron. 33: 231-41.

  18. Sensor-based soil water monitoring to more effectively manage agricultural water resources in coastal plain soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bellamy, Christopher A.

    Cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) is widely grown in the United States with 5.7 million ha grown nationally and 1.2 million ha grown in the humid southeastern states in 2005. From 1969 to 2003, agricultural irrigated farmland acreage and total water applied increased by over 40% and 11% respectively to include a total of 55.3 million acres in 2002. Combined with recent and more frequent drought periods and legal water conflicts between states, there has been an increased interest in more effective southeastern water management, thus making the need to develop improved irrigation scheduling methods and enhanced water use efficiency of cotton cultivars. Several irrigation scheduling methods (soil moisture monitoring, pan evaporation, and climate based) tested at Clemson and elsewhere have shown that sensor-based irrigation significantly increased cotton yields and provided a monetary savings compared to other methods. There is however limited information on capacitance based soil moisture analysis techniques in the southeastern coastal plain soils and also limited locally developed crop coefficients used in scheduling the ET based treatments. The first objective of this study was to determine and improve the feasibility of utilizing sensor-based soil water monitoring techniques in Southeastern Coastal Plain soils to more effectively manage irrigation and increase water use efficiency of several cotton cultivars. The second objective was to develop two weighing lysimeters equipped with wireless data acquisition system to determine a crop coefficient for cotton under southeastern humid conditions. Two multi-sensor capacitance probes, AquaSpy(TM) and Sentek EnviroSCAN RTM, were calibrated in this study. It was found that positive linear calibrations can be used to describe the relationship between the soil volumetric moisture content (VMC) and sensor readings found for both probes and that multi-sensor capacitance probes can be used to accurately measure volumetric soil

  19. Effects of elevated CO2 and agricultural management on flux of greenhouse gases from soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    To evaluate the contribution of agriculture to climate change, flux of greenhouse gases from different cropping systems must be assessed. Measurement of soil efflux of greenhouse gases (CO2, N2O, and CH4) from conservation and conventional tillage systems that have been under the influence of eleva...

  20. Crop and irrigation management strategies for saline-sodic soils and waters aimed at environmentally sustainable agriculture.

    PubMed

    Qadir, M; Oster, J D

    2004-05-01

    Irrigation has long played a key role in feeding the expanding world population and is expected to play a still greater role in the future. As supplies of good-quality irrigation water are expected to decrease in several regions due to increased municipal-industrial-agricultural competition, available freshwater supplies need to be used more efficiently. In addition, reliance on the use and reuse of saline and/or sodic drainage waters, generated by irrigated agriculture, seems inevitable for irrigation. The same applies to salt-affected soils, which occupy more than 20% of the irrigated lands, and warrant attention for efficient, inexpensive and environmentally acceptable management. Technologically and from a management perspective, a couple of strategies have shown the potential to improve crop production under irrigated agriculture while minimizing the adverse environmental impacts. The first strategy, vegetative bioremediation--a plant-assisted reclamation approach--relies on growing appropriate plant species that can tolerate ambient soil salinity and sodicity levels during reclamation of salt-affected soils. A variety of plant species of agricultural significance have been found to be effective in sustainable reclamation of calcareous and moderately sodic and saline-sodic soils. The second strategy fosters dedicating soils to crop production systems where saline and/or sodic waters predominate and their disposal options are limited. Production systems based on salt-tolerant plant species using drainage waters may be sustainable with the potential of transforming such waters from an environmental burden into an economic asset. Such a strategy would encourage the disposal of drainage waters within the irrigated regions where they are generated rather than exporting these waters to other regions via discharge into main irrigation canals, local streams, or rivers. Being economically and environmentally sustainable, these strategies could be the key to future

  1. 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

  2. Soil Bacterial Community Response to Differences in Agricultural Management along with Seasonal Changes in a Mediterranean Region

    PubMed Central

    Bevivino, Annamaria; Paganin, Patrizia; Bacci, Giovanni; Florio, Alessandro; Pellicer, Maite Sampedro; Papaleo, Maria Cristiana; Mengoni, Alessio; Ledda, Luigi; Fani, Renato; Benedetti, Anna; Dalmastri, Claudia

    2014-01-01

    Land-use change is considered likely to be one of main drivers of biodiversity changes in grassland ecosystems. To gain insight into the impact of land use on the underlying soil bacterial communities, we aimed at determining the effects of agricultural management, along with seasonal variations, on soil bacterial community in a Mediterranean ecosystem where different land-use and plant cover types led to the creation of a soil and vegetation gradient. A set of soils subjected to different anthropogenic impact in a typical Mediterranean landscape, dominated by Quercus suber L., was examined in spring and autumn: a natural cork-oak forest, a pasture, a managed meadow, and two vineyards (ploughed and grass covered). Land uses affected the chemical and structural composition of the most stabilised fractions of soil organic matter and reduced soil C stocks and labile organic matter at both sampling season. A significant effect of land uses on bacterial community structure as well as an interaction effect between land uses and season was revealed by the EP index. Cluster analysis of culture-dependent DGGE patterns showed a different seasonal distribution of soil bacterial populations with subgroups associated to different land uses, in agreement with culture-independent T-RFLP results. Soils subjected to low human inputs (cork-oak forest and pasture) showed a more stable bacterial community than those with high human input (vineyards and managed meadow). Phylogenetic analysis revealed the predominance of Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and Firmicutes phyla with differences in class composition across the site, suggesting that the microbial composition changes in response to land uses. Taken altogether, our data suggest that soil bacterial communities were seasonally distinct and exhibited compositional shifts that tracked with changes in land use and soil management. These findings may contribute to future searches for bacterial bio-indicators of soil

  3. Quantifying the Impact of Agricultural Land Management Practices on Soil Carbon Dynamics at Different Temporal and Spatial Scales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, C. G.; Papanicolaou, T.; Wacha, K.

    2012-12-01

    Vast amounts of rich, organic topsoil are lost from agricultural landscapes each year through the combination of both tillage- and rainfall-induced erosion. The implications of these losses lead to soil and water quality degradation, as well as decreased biomass production and grain yields within a watershed. Further, the effects of land management practices on soil carbon can be felt at a much larger scale in terms of the global carbon cycle, where the interactions of carbon between the atmosphere, vegetation, and soil are highly dynamic. During tillage- and rainfall-induced erosion, organic material encapsulated within soil aggregates are dislodged and redistributed along the hillslope. Additionally, this redistribution increases decomposition rates and the release of carbon dioxide fluxes to the atmosphere by changing soil texture, bulk density, and water holding capacities, which are key parameters that affect microbial activity. In this ongoing study, the combination of extensive field data, geo-spatial tools, and a coupled erosion (Water Erosion Prediction Project) - biogeochemical (CENTURY) model were used to assess the soil carbon sequestration potential for representative crop rotations in a highly productive agricultural watershed, at various spatial and temporal scales. Total Belowground Carbon Allocation was selected as a metric to assess carbon sequestration because it implements a mass balance approach of the various carbon fluxes stemming from soil detachment (erosion/deposition), heterotrophic respiration from microbial decomposition, and plant production. The results from this study show that the use of conservation practices can sequester 35 g C/m2 within the soils of the studied watershed over a 2-year crop rotation. Extrapolating to the watershed scale shows that the system is a net sink of carbon. Providing accurate assessment of the carbon fluxes associated with agricultural land management practices can provide much insight to global climate

  4. Impact of agricultural land management systems on soil microbial diversity and plant disease

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increased diversity of fungal rDNA ITS-1 amplicons, as measured by the Shannon-Weiner index, was associated with land management practices that minimise soil disturbance (bahiagrass pasture and undisturbed weed fallow) when compared with organic or conventional land management systems. Diversity de...

  5. Alterations of hydraulic soil properties influenced by land-use changes and agricultural management systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weninger, Thomas; Kreiselmeier, Janis; Chandrasekhar, Parvathy; Jülich, Stefan; Schwärzel, Kai; Schwen, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    Estimation and modeling of soil water movement and the hydrologic balance of soils requires sound knowledge about hydraulic soil properties (HSP). The soil water characteristics, the hydraulic conductivity function and the pore size distribution (PSD) are commonly used instruments for the mathematical representation of HSP. Recent research highlighted the temporal variability of these functions caused by meteorological or land-use influences. State of the art modeling software for the continuous simulation of soil water movement uses a stationary approach for the HSP which means that their time dependent alterations and the subsequent effects on soil water balance is not considered. Mathematical approaches to describe the evolution of PSD are nevertheless known, but there is a lack of sound data basis for parameter estimation. Based on extensive field and laboratory measurements at 5 locations along a climatic gradient across Austria and Germany, this study will quantify short-term changes in HSP, detect driving forces and introduce a method to predict the effects of soil and land management actions on the soil water balance. Amongst several soil properties, field-saturated and unsaturated hydraulic conductivities will be determined using a hood infiltration experiments in the field as well as by evaporation and dewpoint potentiometer method in the lab. All measurements will be carried out multiple times over a span of 2 years which will allow a detailed monitoring of changes in HSP. Experimental sites where we expect significant inter-seasonal changes will be equipped with sensors for soil moisture and matric potential. The choice of experimental field sites follows the intention to involve especially the effects of tillage operations, different cultivation strategies, microclimatically effective structures and land-use changes. The international project enables the coverage of a broad range of soil types as well as climate conditions and hence will have broad

  6. Soil management shapes ecosystem service provision and trade-offs in agricultural landscapes.

    PubMed

    Tamburini, Giovanni; De Simone, Serena; Sigura, Maurizia; Boscutti, Francesco; Marini, Lorenzo

    2016-08-31

    Agroecosystems are principally managed to maximize food provisioning even if they receive a large array of supporting and regulating ecosystem services (ESs). Hence, comprehensive studies investigating the effects of local management and landscape composition on the provision of and trade-offs between multiple ESs are urgently needed. We explored the effects of conservation tillage, nitrogen fertilization and landscape composition on six ESs (crop production, disease control, soil fertility, water quality regulation, weed and pest control) in winter cereals. Conservation tillage enhanced soil fertility and pest control, decreased water quality regulation and weed control, without affecting crop production and disease control. Fertilization only influenced crop production by increasing grain yield. Landscape intensification reduced the provision of disease and pest control. We also found tillage and landscape composition to interactively affect water quality regulation and weed control. Under N fertilization, conventional tillage resulted in more trade-offs between ESs than conservation tillage. Our results demonstrate that soil management and landscape composition affect the provision of several ESs and that soil management potentially shapes the trade-offs between them. PMID:27559064

  7. DEVELOPING WEED SUPPRESSIVE SOILS THROUGH IMPROVED SOIL QUALITY MANAGEMENT

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sustainable agriculture is based in part on efficient management of soil microorganisms for improving soil quality. However, identification of biological indicators of soil quality for predicting weed suppression in soils has received little attention. We investigated differences in soil microbial ...

  8. Bacterial β-glucosidase function and metabolic activity depend on soil management in semiarid rainfed agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Cañizares, Rosa; Moreno, Beatriz; Benitez, Emilio

    2012-01-01

    Genomic and transcriptomic approaches were used to gain insights into the relationship between soil management and bacterial-mediated functions in an olive orchard agroecosystem. Four management practices were assessed in a 30-year trial in a semiarid Mediterranean region. Transcriptional activity of bacterial 16S rRNA genes increased in noncovered soils, indicating higher microbial maintenance requirements to thrive in less favorable environmental conditions. The 16S rRNA transcript:gene copy ratio confirmed this assumption and pointed toward a much higher constitutive expression from rRNA operons in noncovered soils and to even higher expression levels when spontaneous vegetation was removed chemically. As described for 16S rRNA, potential transcription did not reveal the real transcription of bacterial β-glucosidase genes, and higher gene expression in noncovered soils plus herbicides was evidenced. Since no relationship between total or soluble organic carbon and bacterial β-glucosidase transcription was found, the above hypothesis could indicate either that soluble organic carbon is not the main pool of enzyme-inducing substrates or that constitutive production of bacterial β-glucosidase enzymes increases as soil conditions worsen. PMID:22837821

  9. Agriculture Business and Management.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seperich, George; And Others

    This curriculum guide is intended for vocational agriculture teachers who deliver agricultural business and management programs at the secondary or postsecondary level. It is based on the Arizona validated occupational competencies and tasks for management and supervisory positions in agricultural business. The competency/skill and task list…

  10. Improving soil moisture simulation to support Agricultural Water Resource Management using Satellite-based water cycle observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gupta, Manika; Bolten, John; Lakshmi, Venkat

    2016-04-01

    Efficient and sustainable irrigation systems require optimization of operational parameters such as irrigation amount which are dependent on the soil hydraulic parameters that affect the model's accuracy in simulating soil water content. However, it is a scientific challenge to provide reliable estimates of soil hydraulic parameters and irrigation estimates, given the absence of continuously operating soil moisture and rain gauge network. For agricultural water resource management, the in-situ measurements of soil moisture are currently limited to discrete measurements at specific locations, and such point-based measurements do not represent the spatial distribution at a larger scale accurately, as soil moisture is highly variable both spatially and temporally (Wang and Qu 2009). In the current study, flood irrigation scheme within the land surface model is triggered when the root-zone soil moisture deficit reaches below a threshold of 25%, 50% and 75% with respect to the maximum available water capacity (difference between field capacity and wilting point) and applied until the top layer is saturated. An additional important criterion needed to activate the irrigation scheme is to ensure that it is irrigation season by assuming that the greenness vegetation fraction (GVF) of the pixel exceed 0.40 of the climatological annual range of GVF (Ozdogan et al. 2010). The main hypothesis used in this study is that near-surface remote sensing soil moisture data contain useful information that can describe the effective hydrological conditions of the basin such that when appropriately inverted, it would provide field capacity and wilting point soil moisture, which may be representative of that basin. Thus, genetic algorithm inverse method is employed to derive the effective parameters and derive the soil moisture deficit for the root zone by coupling of AMSR-E soil moisture with the physically based hydrological model. Model performance is evaluated using MODIS

  11. Spatially governed climate factors dominate management in determining the quantity and distribution of soil organic carbon in dryland agricultural systems

    PubMed Central

    Hoyle, Frances C.; O’Leary, Rebecca A.; Murphy, Daniel V.

    2016-01-01

    Few studies describe the primary drivers influencing soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks and the distribution of carbon (C) fractions in agricultural systems from semi-arid regions; yet these soils comprise one fifth of the global land area. Here we identified the primary drivers for changes in total SOC and associated particulate (POC), humus (HOC) and resistant (ROC) organic C fractions for 1347 sample points in the semi-arid agricultural region of Western Australia. Total SOC stock (0–0.3 m) varied from 4 to 209 t C ha−1 with 79% of variation explained by measured variables. The proportion of C in POC, HOC and ROC fractions averaged 28%, 45% and 27% respectively. Climate (43%) and land management practices (32%) had the largest relative influence on variation in total SOC. Carbon accumulation was constrained where average daily temperature was above 17.2 °C and annual rainfall below 450 mm, representing approximately 42% of the 197,300 km2 agricultural region. As such large proportions of this region are not suited to C sequestration strategies. For the remainder of the region a strong influence of management practices on SOC indicate opportunities for C sequestration strategies associated with incorporation of longer pasture phases and adequate fertilisation. PMID:27530805

  12. Spatially governed climate factors dominate management in determining the quantity and distribution of soil organic carbon in dryland agricultural systems.

    PubMed

    Hoyle, Frances C; O'Leary, Rebecca A; Murphy, Daniel V

    2016-01-01

    Few studies describe the primary drivers influencing soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks and the distribution of carbon (C) fractions in agricultural systems from semi-arid regions; yet these soils comprise one fifth of the global land area. Here we identified the primary drivers for changes in total SOC and associated particulate (POC), humus (HOC) and resistant (ROC) organic C fractions for 1347 sample points in the semi-arid agricultural region of Western Australia. Total SOC stock (0-0.3 m) varied from 4 to 209 t C ha(-1) with 79% of variation explained by measured variables. The proportion of C in POC, HOC and ROC fractions averaged 28%, 45% and 27% respectively. Climate (43%) and land management practices (32%) had the largest relative influence on variation in total SOC. Carbon accumulation was constrained where average daily temperature was above 17.2 °C and annual rainfall below 450 mm, representing approximately 42% of the 197,300 km(2) agricultural region. As such large proportions of this region are not suited to C sequestration strategies. For the remainder of the region a strong influence of management practices on SOC indicate opportunities for C sequestration strategies associated with incorporation of longer pasture phases and adequate fertilisation. PMID:27530805

  13. Land use and land management effects on soil organic carbon stock in Mediterranean agricultural areas (Southern Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parras-Alcántara, Luis; Lozano-García, Beatriz

    2014-05-01

    INTRODUCTION Soils play a key role in the carbon geochemical cycle. Agriculture contributes to carbon sequestration through photosynthesis and the incorporation of carbon into carbohydrates. Soil management is one of the best tools for climate change mitigation. Small increases or decreases in soil carbon content due to changes in land use or management practices, may result in a significant net exchange of carbon between the soil carbon pool and the atmosphere. In the last decades arable crops (AC) have been transformed into olive grove cultivations (OG) or vineyards (V) in Mediterranean areas. A field study was conducted to determine long-term effects of land use change (LUC) (AC by OG and V) on soil organic carbon (SOC), total nitrogen (TN), C:N ratio and their stratification in Calcic-Chromic Luvisols (LVcc/cr) in Mediterranean conditions. MATERIAL AND METHODS An unirrigated farm in Montilla-Moriles (Córdoba, Spain) cultivated under conventional tillage (animal power with lightweight reversible plows and non-mineral fertilization or pesticides) was selected for study in 1965. In 1966, the farm was divided into three plots with three different uses (AC, OG and V). The preliminary analyses were realized in 1965 for AC (AC1), and the second analyses were realized in 2011 for AC (AC2 - winter crop rotation with annual wheat and barley, receiving mineral fertilization or pesticides), OG (annual passes with disk harrow and cultivator in the spring, followed by a tine harrow in the summer receiving mineral fertilization and weed control with residual herbicides), and V (with three or five chisel passes a year from early spring to early autumn with mineral fertilization or pesticides.). In all cases (AC1, AC2, OG and V) were collected soil entire profiles. Soil properties determined were: soil particle size, bulk density, SOC, TN, C:N ratio, stocks and SRs. The statistical significance of the differences in the variables between land use practices was tested using the

  14. Soil Erosion and Agricultural Sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montgomery, D. R.

    2009-04-01

    Data drawn from a global compilation of studies support the long articulated contention that erosion rates from conventionally plowed agricultural fields greatly exceed rates of soil production, erosion under native vegetation, and long-term geological erosion. Whereas data compiled from around the world show that soil erosion under conventional agriculture exceeds both rates of soil production and geological erosion rates by up to several orders of magnitude, similar global distributions of soil production and geological erosion rates suggest an approximate balance. Net soil erosion rates in conventionally plowed fields on the order of 1 mm/yr can erode typical hillslope soil profiles over centuries to millennia, time-scales comparable to the longevity of major civilizations. Well-documented episodes of soil loss associated with agricultural activities date back to the introduction of erosive agricultural methods in regions around the world, and stratigraphic records of accelerated anthropogenic soil erosion have been recovered from lake, fluvial, and colluvial stratigraphy, as well as truncation of soil stratigraphy (such as truncated A horizons). A broad convergence in the results from studies based on various approaches employed to study ancient soil loss and rates of downstream sedimentation implies that widespread soil loss has accompanied human agricultural intensification in examples drawn from around the world. While a broad range of factors, including climate variability and society-specific social and economic contexts — such as wars or colonial relationships — all naturally influence the longevity of human societies, the ongoing loss of topsoil inferred from studies of soil erosion rates in conventional agricultural systems has obvious long-term implications for agricultural sustainability. Consequently, modern agriculture — and therefore global society — faces a fundamental question over the upcoming centuries. Can an agricultural system

  15. Soil and substrate morphology as witnesses of present and former agricultural landscape management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chartin, C.; Salvador-Blanes, S.; Hinschberger, F.; Bourennane, H.; Macaire, J.-J.

    2009-04-01

    thickness observed in the lynchet. This implies that the substrate, which is mostly homogeneous, has been largely excavated below these limits certainly due to repeated tillage operations. Concerning the secondary structures, soil thickness increases slightly from 35 cm at 16 m up- and downslope the former field limit to 70 cm at the maximum of the bulges convexity. However, the slope morphology seems to show larger soil accumulation considering a regular substrate morphology along the hillslope profile. Here too, by combining soil thickness and surface topography, we show that the substrate has certainly been strongly remodelled at these former field limits by tillage erosion. The spatial variability of the various soils types is closely linked to the sequence of structures oriented perpendicularly to the direction of the main slope. Although the current topography is clearly marked by various structures linked to former and present field limits, it appears that soil thickness is not the only factor explaining these large variations in the slope morphology: long-term agricultural practices, certainly tillage, "shape" the substrate as well. It is thus important to take into account these substrate excavations for sediment budget studies. The use of tracers such as 137Cs will allow to understand the intensity of these morphological changes at the slope scale within the last decades.

  16. 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.

  17. Impacts of Agricultural Management and Climate Change on Future Soil Organic Carbon Dynamics in North China Plain

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guocheng; Li, Tingting; Zhang, Wen; Yu, Yongqiang

    2014-01-01

    Dynamics of cropland soil organic carbon (SOC) in response to different management practices and environmental conditions across North China Plain (NCP) were studied using a modeling approach. We identified the key variables driving SOC changes at a high spatial resolution (10 km×10 km) and long time scale (90 years). The model used future climatic data from the FGOALS model based on four future greenhouse gas (GHG) concentration scenarios. Agricultural practices included different rates of nitrogen (N) fertilization, manure application, and stubble retention. We found that SOC change was significantly influenced by the management practices of stubble retention (linearly positive), manure application (linearly positive) and nitrogen fertilization (nonlinearly positive) – and the edaphic variable of initial SOC content (linearly negative). Temperature had weakly positive effects, while precipitation had negligible impacts on SOC dynamics under current irrigation management. The effects of increased N fertilization on SOC changes were most significant between the rates of 0 and 300 kg ha−1 yr−1. With a moderate rate of manure application (i.e., 2000 kg ha−1 yr−1), stubble retention (i.e., 50%), and an optimal rate of nitrogen fertilization (i.e., 300 kg ha−1 yr−1), more than 60% of the study area showed an increase in SOC, and the average SOC density across NCP was relatively steady during the study period. If the rates of manure application and stubble retention doubled (i.e., manure application rate of 4000 kg ha−1 yr−1 and stubble retention rate of 100%), soils across more than 90% of the study area would act as a net C sink, and the average SOC density kept increasing from 40 Mg ha−1 during 2010s to the current worldwide average of ∼55 Mg ha−1 during 2060s. The results can help target agricultural management practices for effectively mitigating climate change through soil C sequestration. PMID:24722689

  18. Phosphate solubilizing microbes: sustainable approach for managing phosphorus deficiency in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Seema B; Sayyed, Riyaz Z; Trivedi, Mrugesh H; Gobi, Thivakaran A

    2013-01-01

    Phosphorus is the second important key element after nitrogen as a mineral nutrient in terms of quantitative plant requirement. Although abundant in soils, in both organic and inorganic forms, its availability is restricted as it occurs mostly in insoluble forms. The P content in average soil is about 0.05% (w/w) but only 0.1% of the total P is available to plant because of poor solubility and its fixation in soil (Illmer and Schinner, Soil Biol Biochem 27:257-263, 1995). An adequate supply of phosphorus during early phases of plant development is important for laying down the primordia of plant reproductive parts. It plays significant role in increasing root ramification and strength thereby imparting vitality and disease resistance capacity to plant. It also helps in seed formation and in early maturation of crops like cereals and legumes. Poor availability or deficiency of phosphorus (P) markedly reduces plant size and growth. Phosphorus accounts about 0.2 - 0.8% of the plant dry weight. To satisfy crop nutritional requirements, P is usually added to soil as chemical P fertilizer, however synthesis of chemical P fertilizer is highly energy intensive processes, and has long term impacts on the environment in terms of eutrophication, soil fertilility depletion, carbon footprint. Moreover, plants can use only a small amount of this P since 75-90% of added P is precipitated by metal-cation complexes, and rapidly becomes fixed in soils. Such environmental concerns have led to the search for sustainable way of P nutrition of crops. In this regards phosphate-solubilizing microorganisms (PSM) have been seen as best eco-friendly means for P nutrition of crop. Although, several bacterial (pseudomonads and bacilli) and fungal strains (Aspergilli and Penicillium) have been identified as PSM their performance under in situ conditions is not reliable and therefore needs to be improved by using either genetically modified strains or co-inoculation techniques. This review

  19. Soil biology and carbon in dryland agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The goal of this paper is to explore potential management strategies in dryland agriculture that can promote soil health and crop productivity. Traditional crop production in the semiarid Great Plains consists of conventional tillage management of winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) - summer fallow....

  20. Predicting Long-term Soil Organic Matter Dynamics as affected by Agricultural Management Practice Using the CQESTR Model

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Management of soil organic matter (SOM) is important for soil productivity and responsible utilization of crop residues. Carbon (C) models are needed to predict long-term effects of management practices on C storage in soils and to estimate the benefits when considering alternative management practi...

  1. Soil water and carbon management for agricultural resilience in a key node in the global virtual water trade network: Mato Grosso, Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, M. S.; Speratti, A. B.; Lathuilliere, M. J.; Dalmagro, H. J.; Couto, E. G.

    2015-12-01

    The Amazon region is globally connected through agricultural exports, with the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso in particular emerging as a key node in the global virtual water trade network in recent years, based largely on rainfed agriculture. The anticipated growth in the world's population suggests that virtual water trade will only become more important to global food security. In this presentation we will evaluate strategies for improving the resilience of rainfed agriculture in the region, particularly for the nearly 12 million hectares of sandy soil with low water holding capacity within Mato Grosso that has largely been converted to agricultural use. We will review land use change trajectories and present results from soil water balance modeling and carbon fluxes for a range of future scenarios, including continued agricultural extensification, potential strategies for agricultural intensification, and novel water and carbon management strategies including biochar use in sandy soils to improve soil water holding capacities and soil carbon sequestration. We will also consider the role that irrigation might play in the future in the Amazon for improving agricultural resilience to climate change and feedbacks between irrigation and land use change pressures, noting that groundwater resources in the region are presently among the least exploited on the planet.

  2. Soil Enzyme Activities, Microbial Communities and Carbon and Nitrogen Availability in Organic Agroecosystems Across an Intensively-Managed Agricultural Landscape

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Variability in the activity and composition of soil microbial communities may have important implications for the suite of microbially-derived ecosystem functions upon which agricultural systems rely, particularly organic agriculture. An on-farm approach was used to investigate microbial communitie...

  3. 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...

  4. Leaching of Escherichia coli O157:H7 in Diverse Soils under Various Agricultural Management Practices

    PubMed Central

    Gagliardi, Joel V.; Karns, Jeffrey S.

    2000-01-01

    Application of animal manures to soil as crop fertilizers is an important means for recycling the nitrogen and phosphorus which the manures contain. Animal manures also contain bacteria, including many types of pathogens. Manure pathogen levels depend on the source animal, the animal's state of health, and how the manure was stored or treated before use. Rainfall may result in pathogen spread into soil by runoff from stored or unincorporated manure or by leaching through the soil profile. Steady rainfall consisting of 16.5 mm h−1 was applied to 100-mm disturbed soil cores that were treated with manure and inoculated with Escherichia coli O157:H7 strain B6914. The level of B6914 in leachate was near the inoculum level each hour for 8 h, as was the level of B6914 at several soil depths after 24 h, indicating that there was a high rate of growth. Bacterial movement through three different types of soil was then compared by using disturbed (tilled) and intact (no-till) soil cores and less intense rainfall consisting of 25.4 mm on 4 consecutive days and then four more times over a 17-day period. Total B6914 levels exceeded the inoculum levels for all treatments except intact clay loam cores. B6914 levels in daily leachate samples decreased sharply with time, although the levels were more constant when intact sandy loam cores were used. The presence of manure often increased total B6914 leachate and soil levels in intact cores but had the opposite effect on disturbed soil cores. Ammonia and nitrate levels correlated with B6914 and total coliform levels in leachate. We concluded that tillage practice, soil type, and method of pathogen delivery affect but do not prevent vertical E. coli O157:H7 and coliform transport in soil and that soluble nitrogen may enhance transport. PMID:10698745

  5. EFFECT OF MANAGEMENT PRACTICES ON THE SOIL MICROBIAL COMMUNITY IN AGRICULTURAL AND NATIVE SYSTEMS IN BRAZIL

    EPA Science Inventory

    Increase in agricultural practices in the Cerrado (tropical savannah) and Amazon regions in Brazil is causing drastic changes in the nutrient and carbon cycling of native areas. Because microorganisms play a key role in biogeochemical cycling, monitoring the shifts in the microb...

  6. Impact of conservation land management practices on soil microbial function in an agricultural watershed

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The USDA Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) involves removing agricultural land from production and replanting with native vegetation for the purpose of reducing agriculture’s impact on the environment. In 2002, part of the Beasley Lake watershed in the Mississippi Delta was enrolled in CRP. In ad...

  7. Lesson Plans for Teaching Basic Vocational Agriculture. Section III. Introduction to Soil Management and Classification.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCully, James S., Jr., Comp.

    This publication, one of five sections, was developed for use in first and second year basic agriculture courses in secondary schools in Mississippi. The five lessons focus on the measurement and description of property and the classification of land. The purposes of the lessons are to (1) introduce the units and methods used to measure distance…

  8. Nitrate Distribution in Soil Moisture and Groundwater with Intensive Plantation Management on Abandoned Agricultural Land

    SciTech Connect

    Williams, T.M.

    1998-01-01

    Paper outlines nitrate leaching results of loblolly pine and sweet gum that were grown with irrigation, continuous fertilization and insect pest control on a year old abandoned peanut field. Wells and tension lysimeters were used to measure nitrate in soil moisture and groundwater on three replicate transects for two years. Groundwater nitrate concentration beneath the minimum treatment was much higher than the maximum treatment and old field. All three treatments often exceeded the drinking water standard. Forest and lake edge had low levels while the soil moisture nitrate concentrations in the two plantations treatments were much higher than the old field.

  9. Estimation of NH3 Bi-Directional Flux from Managed Agricultural Soils

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Community Multi-Scale Air Quality model (CMAQ v4.7) contains a bi-directional ammonia (NH3) flux option that computes emission and deposition of ammonia derived from commercial fertilizer via a temperature dependent parameterization of canopy and soil compensation ...

  10. Does North Appalachian Agriculture Contribute to Soil Carbon Sequestration

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural systems are important for world ecosystems. They can be managed to moderate CO2 emissions. World soils can be both a sink and source of atmospheric CO2, but it is a slow process. Data from long-term soil management experiments are needed to assess soil carbon (C) sink capacity through a...

  11. Abundance and Diversity of CO2-Assimilating Bacteria and Algae Within Red Agricultural Soils Are Modulated by Changing Management Practice.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Hongzhao; Ge, Tida; Chen, Xiangbi; Liu, Shoulong; Zhu, Zhenke; Wu, Xiaohong; Wei, Wenxue; Whiteley, Andrew Steven; Wu, Jinshui

    2015-11-01

    Elucidating the biodiversity of CO(2)-assimilating bacterial and algal communities in soils is important for obtaining a mechanistic view of terrestrial carbon sinks operating at global scales. "Red" acidic soils (Orthic Acrisols) cover large geographic areas and are subject to a range of management practices, which may alter the balance between carbon dioxide production and assimilation through changes in microbial CO(2)-assimilating populations. Here, we determined the abundance and diversity of CO(2)-assimilating bacteria and algae in acidic soils using quantitative PCR and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) of the cbbL gene, which encodes the key CO(2) assimilation enzyme (ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase) in the Calvin cycle. Within the framework of a long-term experiment (Taoyuan Agro-ecosystem, subtropical China), paddy rice fields were converted in 1995 to four alternative land management regimes: natural forest (NF), paddy rice (PR), maize crops (CL), and tea plantations (TP). In 2012 (17 years after land use transformation), we collected and analyzed the soils from fields under the original and converted land management regimes. Our results indicated that fields under the PR soil management system harbored the greatest abundance of cbbL copies (4.33 × 10(8) copies g(-1) soil). More than a decade after converting PR soils to natural, rotation, and perennial management systems, a decline in both the diversity and abundance of cbbL-harboring bacteria and algae was recorded. The lowest abundance of bacteria (0.98 × 10(8) copies g(-1) soil) and algae (0.23 × 10(6) copies g(-1) soil) was observed for TP soils. When converting PR soil management to alternative management systems (i.e., NF, CL, and TP), soil edaphic factors (soil organic carbon and total nitrogen content) were the major determinants of bacterial autotrophic cbbL gene diversity. In contrast, soil phosphorus concentration was the major regulator

  12. Salinity Management in Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Existing guidelines and standards for reclamation of saline soils and management to control salinity exist but have not been updated for over 25 years. In the past few years a looming water scarcity has resulted in questioning of the long term future of irrigation projects in arid and semi arid regi...

  13. Effects of agricultural management on productivity, soil quality and climate change mitigation - evaluations within the EU Project (FP 7) CATCH-C

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiegel, Heide; Schlatter, Norman; Haslmayr, Hans-Peter; Baumgarten, Andreas; ten Berge, Hein

    2014-05-01

    Soils are the main basis for the production of food and feed. Furthermore, the production of biomass for energy and material use is becoming increasingly important. Goals for an optimal management of agricultural soils are, on the one hand, the maintenance or improvement of soil quality and, on the other hand, high productivity and climate change mitigation (reduction of GHG emissions and C sequestration). Thus, the EU project CATCH-C aims to evaluate current management practices concerning these three goals based on indicators derived from long-term field experiments of the project partners and from literature data. A maximum of 72 indicators for productivity, soil quality and the potential for carbon storage in the soil and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions were selected by the project partners. As indicators for productivity, crop yields are determined in almost all field trials. The content of soil organic carbon (SOC) is an indicator for chemical, physical and biological soil quality and was analysed in the topsoil in all field trials. Less data exist for SOC contents in the subsoil. An important physical soil quality indicator is the bulk density, however, it is not determined in all field trials of the project partners. Therefore, information on SOC stocks, with relevance to carbon storage and climate change mitigation, is not available in all field experiments. Other physical indicators, such as penetration resistance, runoff coefficient and soil losses are evaluated. Essential biological indicators are microbial biomass and the number and weight of earthworms, which have been tested in several field trials. The evaluation of all these indicators will help to select "best management practices" and to address trade-offs and synergies for all indicators under consideration of major European farm type zones. CATCH-C is funded within the 7th Framework Programme for Research, Technological Development and Demonstration, Theme 2 - Biotechnologies

  14. GRACEnet (Greenhouse Gas Reduction through Agricultural Carbon Enhancement network): An assessment of soil carbon sequestration and greenhouse gas mitigation by agricultural management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural activities account for about 20% of the total human-induced warming effect due to emission of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O). Changes in management, including minimizing or eliminating tillage, adding organic matter (e.g. cover crops, manure), and improving...

  15. Effects of crop rotation and management system on water-extractable organic matter concentration, structure, and bioavailability in a chernozemic agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Xu, Na; Wilson, Henry F; Saiers, James E; Entz, Martin

    2013-01-01

    Water-extractable organic matter (WEOM) in soil affects contaminant mobility and toxicity, heterotrophic production, and nutrient cycling in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. This study focuses on the influences of land use history and agricultural management practices on the water extractability of organic matter and nutrients from soils. Water-extractable organic matter was extracted from soils under different crop rotations (an annual rotation of wheat-pea/bean-wheat-flax or a perennial-based rotation of wheat-alfalfa-alfalfa-flax) and management systems (organic or conventional) and examined for its concentration, composition, and biodegradability. The results show that crop rotations including perennial legumes increased the concentration of water-extractable organic carbon (WEOC) and water-extractable organic nitrogen (WEON) and the biodegradability of WEOC in soil but depleted the quantity of water-extractable organic phosphorus (WEOP) and water-extractable reactive phosphorus. The 30-d incubation experiments showed that bioavailable WEOC varied from 12.5% in annual systems to 22% for perennial systems. The value of bioavailable WEOC was found to positively correlate with WEON concentrations and to negatively correlate with C:N ratio and the specific ultraviolet absorbance of WEOM. No significant treatment effect was present with the conventional and organic management practices, which suggested that WEOM, as the relatively labile pool in soil organic matter, is more responsive to the change in crop rotation than to mineral fertilizer application. Our results indicated that agricultural landscapes with contrasting crop rotations are likely to differentially affect rates of microbial cycling of organic matter leached to soil waters. PMID:23673753

  16. Soil organic carbon dynamics and non-CO2 gas fluxes from agricultural soils under organic and non-organic management - results of two meta-studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gattinger, Andreas; Skinner, Colin; Müller, Adrian; Mäder, Paul; Niggli, Urs

    2015-04-01

    It is anticipated that organic farming systems provide benefits concerning soil conservation and climate protection. Therefore, meta-studies on soil organic carbon (SOC) and soil-derived greenhouse (GHG) fluxes, respectively, were conducted to proof this assumption. Datasets from 74 studies from pair wise comparisons of organic versus non-organic farming systems were subjected to meta-analysis to identify differences in soil organic carbon (SOC). We found significant differences and higher values for organically farmed soils of 0.18±0.06 % points (mean±95% confidence interval) for SOC concentrations, 3.50±1.08 Mg C ha-1 for stocks, and 0.45±0.21 Mg C ha-1 a-1 for sequestration rates compared to non-organic management. Meta-regression did not deliver clear results on drivers, but differences in external C inputs and crop rotations seemed important. Restricting the analysis to zero net input organic systems, i.e. without nutrient inputs from outside the system, and retaining only the datasets with highest data quality (measured soil bulk densities and external C and N inputs), the mean difference in SOC stocks between the farming systems was still significant (1.98±1.50 Mg C ha-1), while the difference in sequestration rates became insignificant (0.07±0.08 Mg C ha-1 a-1). The SOC dataset mainly covers top soil and temperate zones, while only few data from tropical regions and sub soil horizons exist. For the second meta-study measured soil-derived nitrous oxide and methane flux data from soils under organic and non-organic management from 19 farming system comparisons were analysed. Based on 12 studies that cover annual measurements, it appeared with a high significance that area-scaled nitrous oxide emissions from organically managed soils are 492±160 kg CO2 eq. ha-1 a-1 lower than from non-organically managed soils. For arable soils the difference amounts to 497±162 kg CO2 eq. ha-1 a-1. However, yield-scaled nitrous oxide emissions are higher by 41±34 kg

  17. 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

  18. Impact of agricultural management on bacterial laccase-encoding genes with possible implications for soil carbon storage in semi-arid Mediterranean olive farming

    PubMed Central

    Moreno, Beatriz

    2016-01-01

    Background: In this work, we aimed to gain insights into the contribution of soil bacteria to carbon sequestration in Mediterranean habitats. In particular, we aimed to use bacterial laccase-encoding genes as molecular markers for soil organic C cycling. Using rainfed olive farming as an experimental model, we determined the stability and accumulation levels of humic substances and applied these data to bacterial laccase-encoding gene expression and diversity in soils under four different agricultural management systems (bare soils under tillage/no tillage and vegetation cover under chemical/mechanical management). Materials and Methods: Humic C (> 104 Da) was subjected to isoelectric focusing. The GC-MS method was used to analyze aromatic hydrocarbons. Real-Time PCR quantification and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) for functional bacterial laccase-like multicopper oxidase (LMCO)-encoding genes and transcripts were also carried out. Results: Soils under spontaneous vegetation, eliminated in springtime using mechanical methods for more than 30 years, showed the highest humic acid levels as well as the largest bacterial population rich in laccase genes and transcripts. The structure of the bacterial community based on LMCO genes also pointed to phylogenetic differences between these soils due to the impact of different management systems. Soils where herbicides were used to eliminate spontaneous vegetation once a year and those where pre-emergence herbicides resulted in bare soils clustered together for DNA-based DGGE analysis, which indicated a certain amount of microbial selection due to the application of herbicides. When LMCO-encoding gene expression was studied, soils where cover vegetation was managed either with herbicides or with mechanical methods showed less than 10% similarity, suggesting that the type of weed management strategy used can impact weed community composition and consequently laccase substrates derived from vegetation decay

  19. Soil Organic Matter in Agricultural Systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In agricultural systems, soil organic matter (SOM) has been recognized as an important source of nutrients and maintains favorable soil structure. Organic matter is considered a major binding agent that stabilizes soil aggregates. Soil aggregates especially, water stable aggregates, are important i...

  20. Agricultural Mechanics Laboratory Management Competencies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Donald M.; Schumacher, Leon G.

    A study was conducted to determine the laboratory management competencies needed by secondary agriculture instructors. Information was gathered through an initial mailing to all postsecondary, college, and university agricultural mechanics specialists serving on the National Future Farmers of America Agricultural Mechanics Contest Committee,…

  1. LANDSCAPE MANAGEMENT FOR RESTORATION OF AGRICULTURAL WATERSHEDS

    EPA Science Inventory

    As part of CEAP, we conducted a review of the available literature on landscape management to achieve improvement of water quality, water quantity, soil quality, and air quality in agricultural systems. At least 15 general principles emerged from this review. These principles wil...

  2. Annual emissions of CH4 and N2O, and ecosystem respiration, from eight organic soils in Western Denmark managed by agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petersen, S. O.; Hoffmann, C. C.; Schäfer, C.-M.; Blicher-Mathiesen, G.; Elsgaard, L.; Kristensen, K.; Larsen, S. E.; Torp, S. B.; Greve, M. H.

    2012-01-01

    The use of organic soils by agriculture involves drainage and tillage, and the resulting increase in C and N turnover can significantly affect their greenhouse gas balance. This study estimated annual fluxes of CH4 and N2O, and ecosystem respiration (Reco), from eight organic soils managed by agriculture. The sites were located in three regions representing different landscape types and climatic conditions, and three land use categories were covered (arable crops, AR, grass in rotation, RG, and permanent grass, PG). The normal management at each site was followed, except that no N inputs occurred during the monitoring period from August 2008 to October 2009. The stratified sampling strategy further included six sampling points in three blocks at each site. Environmental variables (precipitation, PAR, air and soil temperature, soil moisture, groundwater level) were monitored continuously and during sampling campaigns, where also groundwater samples were taken for analysis. Gaseous fluxes were monitored on a three-weekly basis, giving 51, 49 and 38 field campaigns for land use categories AR, PG and RG, respectively. Climatic conditions in each region during monitoring were representative as compared to 20-yr averages. Peat layers were shallow, typically 0.5 to 1 m, and with a pH of 4 to 5. At six sites annual emissions of N2O were in the range 3 to 24 kg N2O-N ha-1, but at two arable sites (spring barley, potato) net emissions of 38 and 61 kg N2O-N ha-1 were recorded. The two high-emitting sites were characterized by fluctuating groundwater, low soil pH and elevated groundwater SO42- concentrations. Annual fluxes of CH4 were generally small, as expected, ranging from 2 to 4 kg CH4 ha-1. However, two permanent grasslands had tussocks of Juncus effusus L. (soft rush) in sampling points that were consistent sources of CH4 throughout the year. Emission factors for organic soils in rotation and with permanent grass, respectively, were estimated to be 0.011 and 0.47 g m-2

  3. SOIL QUALITY IN ORGANIC AGRICULTURAL SYSTEMS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Building and maintaining soil quality is the basis for successful organic farming. However, before developing a soil management plan focused on soil quality in organic systems, farmers should become knowledgeable regarding the overall philosophies, legalities, and marketing opportunities in organic ...

  4. The influence of agricultural management on soil's CO2 regime in semi-arid and arid regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eshel, G.; Lifshithz, D.; Sternberg, M.; Ben-Dor, E.; Bonfile, D. J.; Arad, B.; Mingelgrin, U.; Fine, P.; Levy, G. J.

    2008-12-01

    Two of the more important parameters which may help us better evaluate the impact of agricultural practices on the global carbon cycle are the in-situ soil pCO2 profile and the corresponding CO2 fluxes to the atmosphere. In an ongoing study, we monitored the pCO2 to a depth of 5 m in two adjacent irrigated Avocado orchards in the coastal plain of Israel (semi-arid region), and to a depth of 2 m in a semi- arid rain-fed and a arid rain-fed wheat fields in southern Israel. The soil pCO2 profiles and CO2 fluxes measurements were supplemented by measurements of soil moisture and temperature. The results showed differences in the CO2 profiles (both in the depth of the highest concentration and its absolute values) and the CO2 fluxes between the orchards and the wheat fields as well as along the year. In the irrigated Avocado orchards pCO2 values were in the range of 1.5 kPa at a depth of 0.5 m up to 8 kPa at depths of 3-5 m (even though Avocado trees are characterized by shallow roots). Such levels could affect reactions (e.g., enhancement of inorganic carbon dissolution) that may take place in the soil and some of its chemical properties (e.g., pH). As expected, soil pCO2 was affected by soil moisture and temperature, and the distance from the trees. Maximum soil respiration was observed during the summer when the orchards are under irrigation. In the wheat fields pCO2 level ranged from 0.2- 0.6 kPa at a depth of 0.2 m to 0.2-1 kPa at depths of 1-1.5 m (in arid and semiarid respectively). These pCO2 levels were much lower than those obtained in the irrigated orchards and seemed to depend on the wheat growing cycle (high concentration were noted at depth of 1-1.5 m close to the end of grain filling) and precipitation gradient (arid vs. semiarid). Since CO2 fluxes are directly affected by the pCO2 profile and soil moister and temperature the CO2 fluxes from the wheat fields were much lower (0.02- 0.2 ml min-1 m-2) compared to those obtained from the Avocado orchards (2

  5. 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.

  6. Redistribution of soil and soil organic carbon on agricultural landscapes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Patterns of soil organic carbon (SOC) vary widely across the landscape leading to large uncertainties in the SOC budgets for agricultural systems especially for landscapes where water, tillage, and wind erosion redistributes soil and SOC across the landscape. It is often assumed that soil erosion r...

  7. 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

  8. 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. PMID:24984834

  9. Denitrification in frozen agricultural soil. A review

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Nitrogen (N) in agricultural fertilizers is denitrified by soil bacteria when oxygen is limited, which effectively removes plant-available N from the soil to the atmosphere. Reported denitrification rates range from 0 to 239 kg N ha-1 yr-1 and may reduce the amount of N available for crop growth by...

  10. Soil-moisture sensors and irrigation management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This agricultural irrigation seminar will cover the major classes of soil-moisture sensors; their advantages and disadvantages; installing and reading soil-moisture sensors; and using their data for irrigation management. The soil water sensor classes include the resistance sensors (gypsum blocks, g...

  11. Historic Assessment of Agricultural Impacts on Soil and Soil Organic Carbon Erosion in an Ohio Watershed

    SciTech Connect

    Hao, Yueli; Lal, Rattan; Izaurralde, R Cesar C. ); Ritchie, Jerry; Owens, Lloyd; Hothem, Daniel

    2002-02-01

    Agricultural management affects soil and soil organic carbon (SOC) erosion. The effect was assessed for a watershed (o.79 ha, 10% slope steepness, 132 m slope length) at the North Appalachian Experimental Watershed research station near Coshocton, Ohio, from 1951 to 1998

  12. Stronger management needed to protect agricultural environment

    SciTech Connect

    Cai Shikui

    1983-01-01

    This article examines environmental issues and management in developed agricultural areas of China. Agricultural environmental management is defined as the adoption of countermeasures by applying the theories and methods of environmental science and management science and abiding by economic laws and ecological laws to prevent pollution of the agricultural environment and destruction of the agro-ecology by man; to coordinate the relationship between the development of agricultural production and the protection of the agricultural environment and to satisfy increasing demands for agricultural by-products. Topics considered include the basis for developing agricultural environmental management, the present condition of the agricultural environment in China, and several management proposals.

  13. 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.

  14. Relative impacts of land-use, management intensity and fertilization on microbial community structure in agricultural systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Effects of agricultural land management practices on soil prokaryotic diversity have not been well described. Soil microbial communities under three agricultural management systems (conventionally tilled cropland, hayed pasture, and grazed pasture) and two fertilizer systems [inorganic fertilizer (I...

  15. Increasing the sink: agricultural management and soil carbon dynamics: western U.S. croplands. In: Liebig, M., Franzluebbers, A., and Follet, R., editors. Managing agricultural greenhouse gasses. 1st edition. Waltham, MA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The purpose of this chapter is to provide a short review and update of potential crop management practices that have had beneficial or detrimental effects on soil C storage in Western U.S. croplands, with emphasize on studies reported since 2005. This review of published literature indicates that C ...

  16. The magnetic susceptibility of European agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fabian, K.; Reimann, C.

    2012-04-01

    The GEMAS (Geochemical mapping of agricultural soils) project, a cooperation project between EuroGeoSurveys and Eurometaux, aims at providing soil quality data for Europe. Samples of arable soil were taken during 2008 at an average density of 1 site/2500 km2 covering the member states of the European Union (except Malta and Romania) and several neighbouring countries (e.g., Norway, Serbia, Ukraine). While the primary aim of the GEMAS project is to produce REACH (Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of CHemicals - EC, 2006) consistent soil geochemistry data at the continental scale, the data set is also optimally apt to provide the first continental scale overview of magnetic properties in European soils. Soil samples from the upper 20 cm were taken as composites from 5 sites spread over a ca. 100 m2 area in a large agricultural field (Ap-sample). The samples were air dried and sieved to pass a 2 mm nylon screen. Weight normalized magnetic susceptibility of these dried samples was measured using a Sapphire Instruments SI2B susceptibility meter with dynamic background removal. The here presented maps of magnetic susceptibility in relation to geochemical composition and geological structures for the first time allow to outline the large scale influence of tectonics and climate on magnetic mineral concentration in European soils. The data set also provides the background variability for regional studies aiming to relate magnetic susceptibility of soils to local contamination sources.

  17. A short-term assessment of carbon dioxide fluxes under contrasting agricultural and soil management practices in Zimbabwe

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Two of the biggest problems facing humankind are feeding an exponentially growing human population and preventing the negative effects of climate change from record concentrations of atmospheric greenhouse gases (GHGs). Agriculture could address both of these problems. For example, tillage and cover...

  18. Agricultural drainage water management: Potential impact and implementation strategies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The unique soil and climate of the Upper Mississippi River Basin (and the Lake Erie Basin) area provide the resources for bountiful agricultural production. Agricultural drainage (both surface and subsurface drainage) is essential for achieving economically viable crop production and management. Dra...

  19. AGRICULTURAL RUNOFF MANAGEMENT (ARM) MODEL VERSION II: REFINEMENT AND TESTING

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Agricultural Runoff Management (ARM) Model has been refined and tested on small agricultural watersheds in Georgia and Michigan. The ARM Model simulates the hydrologic, sediment production, pesticide, and nutrient processes on the land surface and in the soil profile that det...

  20. 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.

  1. Forms of mercury in Everglades agricultural soils

    SciTech Connect

    Patrick, W.H.; Parkpian, P.; Gambrell, R.P.

    1995-12-31

    Seventeen surface soils from the Florida Everglades Agricultural Area were subjected to selective extraction for water soluble, amorphous iron oxide bound, organic, and residual mercury. Organic bound mercury was the major fraction and represented 51% of the total mercury for the 17 soils studied. Iron oxide bound mercury and water soluble mercury accounted for only 5 percent each of the total mercury. Eight weeks incubation of the soils under aerobic and anaerobic conditions showed little effect of aeration status on the transformations among the various chemical forms.

  2. 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...

  3. 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...

  4. 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

  5. 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).

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. Substantial dust loss of bioavailable phosphorus from agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    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

  9. Precision control of soil N cycling via soil functional zone management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Managing the soil nitrogen (N) cycle is a major component of agricultural sustainability. Soil functional zone management (SFZM), a novel framework of agroecosystem management, may improve soil N management compared with conventional and no-tillage approaches by focusing on the timing and location (...

  10. The biogeochemical footprint of agricultural soil erosion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Govers, Gerard; Van Oost, Kristof; Wang, Zhengang

    2015-04-01

    Global biogeochemical cycles are a key component of the functioning of the Earth System: these cycles are all, to a varying extent, disturbed by human activities which not only has dramatic consequences for the global climate but also for the acidity of the world's oceans. It is only relatively recently that the role of lateral fluxes related to surface water movement and soil erosion and deposition (and the way those fluxes are modified by human action) is explicitly considered by the scientific community. In this paper we present an overview of our present-day understanding of the role of agricultural soil erosion in the global cycles of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorous and silica. We discuss the major processes through which erosion affects these global cycles and pay particular attention to the knowledge gaps that prevent us from accurately assessing the impact of soil erosion on global biogeochemical cycling at different temporal scales. Furthering our understanding (and better constraining our estimates) will require progress both in terms of model development and process understanding. Research needs can be most clearly identified with respect to soil organic carbon: (i) at present, large-scale soil erosion (and deposition) models are poorly constrained so that the amount of carbon mobilised by erosion (and its fate) cannot be accurately estimated and (ii) the fate of soil organic carbon buried by deposition or delivered to river network is poorly understood. Uncertainties for N, P and Si are larger than those for C as we have less information on the amount of these elements stored in agricultural soils and/or do not fully understand how these elements cycle through the soil/plant system. Agricultural soil erosion does not affect soil functioning through its effect on biogeochemical cycling. Erosion directly affects soil hydrological functioning and is likely to affect weathering processes and soil production. Addressing all these issues requires the

  11. AGRICULTURAL BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICE EFFECTIVENESS DATABASE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Resource Purpose:The Agricultural Best Management Practice Effectiveness Database contains the results of research projects which have collected water quality data for the purpose of determining the effectiveness of agricultural management practices in reducing pollutants ...

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Mycorrhizal fungal establishment in agricultural soils: factors determining inoculation success.

    PubMed

    Verbruggen, Erik; van der Heijden, Marcel G A; Rillig, Matthias C; Kiers, E Toby

    2013-03-01

    Soil biota provide a number of key ecological services to natural and agricultural ecosystems. Increasingly, inoculation of soils with beneficial soil biota is being considered as a tool to enhance plant productivity and sustainability of agricultural ecosystems. However, one important bottleneck is the establishment of viable microbial populations that can persist over multiple seasons. Here, we explore the factors responsible for establishment of the beneficial soil fungi, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), which can enhance the yield of a wide range of agricultural crops. We evaluate field application potential and discuss ecological and evolutionary factors responsible for application success. We identify three factors that determine inoculation success and AM fungal persistence in soils: species compatibility (can the introduced species thrive under the imposed circumstances?); field carrying capacity (the habitat niche available to AMF); and priority effects (the influence of timing and competition on the establishment of alternative stable communities). We explore how these factors can be employed for establishment and persistence of AMF. We address the importance of inoculum choice, plant choice, management practices and timing of inoculation for the successful manipulation of the resulting AMF community. PMID:23495389

  15. Investigation of Anaerobic Herbicide Degradation in Agricultural Soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Anaerobic microbial pesticide degradation has received little attention, particularly in agricultural soils that receive routine inputs of halogenated herbicides. Seasonal rainfall in many regions can produce zones of periodic anaerobiosis in soil. Redox gradients within soil aggregates can also for...

  16. Agricultural Drainage Water Management in the Upper Mississippi River Basin: Potential Impact and Implementation Strategies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The unique soil and climate of the Upper Mississippi River Basin area provide the resources for bountiful agricultural production. Agricultural drainage (both surface and subsurface drainage) is essential for achieving economically viable crop production and management. Drainage practices alter the ...

  17. Digital spatial soil and land information for agriculture development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, R. K.; Laghathe, Pankaj; Meena, Ranglal; Barman, Alok Kumar; Das, Satyendra Nath

    2006-12-01

    Natural resource management calls for study of natural system prevailing in the country. In India floods and droughts visit regularly, causing extensive damages of natural wealth including agriculture that are crucial for sustenance of economic growth. The Indian Sub-continent drained by many major rivers and their tributaries where watershed, the hydrological unit forms a natural system that allows management and development of land resources following natural harmony. Acquisition of various kinds and levels of soil and land characteristics using both conventional and remote sensing techniques and subsequent development of digital spatial data base are essential to evolve strategy for planning watershed development programmes, their monitoring and impact evaluation. The multi-temporal capability of remote sensing sensors helps to update the existing data base which are of dynamic in nature. The paper outlines the concept of spatial data base development, generation using remote sensing techniques, designing of data structure, standardization and integration with watershed layers and various non spatial attribute data for various applications covering watershed development planning, alternate land use planning, soil and water conservation, diversified agriculture practices, generation of soil health card, soil and land reclamation, etc. The soil and land characteristics are vital to derive various interpretative groupings or master table that helps to generate the desired level of information of various clients using the GIS platform. The digital spatial data base on soils and watersheds generated by All India Soil and Land Use Survey will act as a sub-server of the main GIS based Web Server being hoisted by the planning commission for application of spatial data for planning purposes under G2G domain. It will facilitate e-governance for natural resource management using modern technology.

  18. 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...

  19. 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.

  20. 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...

  1. Sensor needs for agricultural and carbon management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    There is a wide variety of sensors and platforms available for agricultural and carbon management. Two areas of concern are monitoring plant nutrients and crop residue over agricultural watersheds. Excess plant nutrients and agricultural chemicals may runoff into the water supply, degrading water ...

  2. 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. PMID:26993667

  3. Agricultural land management options following large-scale environmental contamination.

    PubMed

    Vandenhove, Hildegarde; Turcanu, Catrinel

    2011-07-01

    The recent events at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, in Japan, have raised questions about the accumulation of radionuclides in soils, the transfer in the food chain, and the possibility for restricted land use in the foreseeable future. This article summarizes what is generally understood about the application of agricultural countermeasures as a land management option to reduce the transfer of radionuclides in the food chain and to facilitate the return of potentially affected soils to agricultural practices in the vicinity of the Fukushima plant. PMID:21608113

  4. Can agricultural soils effectively remove legacy carbon from the atmosphere? Lessons from Australian long-term soil experiments. (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanderman, J.; Baldock, J.; Farquharson, R.

    2009-12-01

    One of the greatest changes that has occurred in soils during the Anthropocene is loss of organic matter due to agriculture. This loss has resulted in both large declines in soil fertility and large emissions of CO2 to the atmosphere. On the billions of hectares in production, humans are likely the only agent that will significantly change this situation. From a theoretical standpoint, any management practice which results in greater carbon return to the soil, increased stabilisation of soil carbon, or a reduction in losses should lead to positive carbon sequestration rates. Indeed, Australian field trial evidence indicates that there was a relative gain in soil carbon between most conventional and improved-management treatments. However, when soil carbon stocks were followed through time, the majority of these same studies indicated that there was an actual decrease in the quantity of carbon stored in the soil even in the improved-management treatments. These seemingly contradictory results suggest that many agricultural soils may still be responding to initial land clearing and that many management improvements are just slowing the loss soil carbon. This reduction in rate of loss of soil carbon represents a real greenhouse gas abatement in the form of avoided emissions. However, the predictive power of results from most agronomic field trials to alternative situations where these management practices have been implemented is questionable without detailed knowledge of the state of the soil carbon in the systems being considered.

  5. Agricultural Management and Economics. Instructor's Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bacon, Kevin J.; And Others

    This curriculum guide contains four units and incorporates the needed component parts to aid agriculture teachers in the implementation of the Vocational Instructional Management System. The guide consists of these four units: economic principles in agriculture (6 lessons), business management (17 lessons), planning the farm business (9 lessons),…

  6. Agricultural Drainage Management Systems Task Force (ADMSTF)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Agricultural Drainage Management Systems (ADMS) Task Force was initiated during a Charter meeting in the fall of 2002 by dedicated professional employees of Federal, State, and Local Government Agencies and Universities. The Agricultural Drainage Management (ADM) Coalition was established in 200...

  7. 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

  8. Agriculture, summary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baldwin, R.

    1975-01-01

    Applications of remotely sensed data in agriculture are enumerated. These include: predictions of forage for range animal consumption, forest management, soil mapping, and crop inventory and management.

  9. 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. PMID:25177207

  10. 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

  11. Soil management practices under organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aly, Adel; Chami Ziad, Al; Hamdy, Atef

    2015-04-01

    Organic farming methods combine scientific knowledge of ecology and modern technology with traditional farming practices based on naturally occurring biological processes. Soil building practices such as crop rotations, intercropping, symbiotic associations, cover crops, organic fertilizers and minimum tillage are central to organic practices. Those practices encourage soil formation and structure and creating more stable systems. In farm nutrient and energy cycling is increased and the retentive abilities of the soil for nutrients and water are enhanced. Such management techniques also play an important role in soil erosion control. The length of time that the soil is exposed to erosive forces is decreased, soil biodiversity is increased, and nutrient losses are reduced, helping to maintain and enhance soil productivity. Organic farming as systematized and certifiable approach for agriculture, there is no surprise that it faces some challenges among both farmers and public sector. This can be clearly demonstrated particularly in the absence of the essential conditions needed to implement successfully the soil management practices like green manure and composting to improve soil fertility including crop rotation, cover cropping and reduced tillage. Those issues beside others will be fully discussed highlighting their beneficial impact on the environmental soil characteristics. Keywords: soil fertility, organic matter, plant nutrition

  12. 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

    communities. Significant differences of soil communities from potato and onion crops with the one from control site were observed at the beginning and during the crop cycle, but similarities were observed at the last sampling date after harvesting. The same was observed for the maize crop, indicating that soil communities recovered from the agricultural disturbances associated with crops management. An integrated approach such as the one adopted in present study, taking into consideration soil community's abundances, feeding activity and time variations along entire crop cycles of several crops under Mediterranean conditions, as well as soil exposure to pesticides residues, may contribute to decision making towards a sustainability of crop areas, including pesticide use and management practices.

  13. 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

  14. Modelling agricultural suitability along soil transects under current conditions and improved scenario of soil factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abd-Elmabod, Sameh K.; Jordán, Antonio; Fleskens, Luuk; van der Ploeg, Martine; Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Anaya-Romero, María; van der Salm, Renée J.; De la Rosa, Diego

    2015-04-01

    Agricultural land suitability analysis and improvement of soils by addressing major limitations may be a strategy for climate change adaptation. This study aims to investigate the influence of topography and variability of soil factors on the suitability of 12 annual, semiannual and perennial Mediterranean crops in the province of Seville (southern Spain). In order to represent the variability in elevation, lithology and soil, two latitudinal and longitudinal (S-N and W-E) soil transects (TA and TB) were considered including 63 representative points at regular 4 km intervals. These points were represented by 41 soil profiles from the SDBm soil database -Seville. Almagra model, a component of the agro-ecological decision support system MicroLEIS, was used to assess soil suitability. Results were grouped into five soil suitability classes: S1-optimum, S2-high, S3-moderate, S4-marginal and S5-not suitable. Each class was divided in subclasses according to the main soil limiting factors: depth (p), texture (t), drainage (d), carbonate content (c), salinity (s), sodium saturation (a), and the degree of development of the soil profile (g). This research also aimed to maximize soil potential by improving limiting factors d, c, s and a after soil restoration. Therefore, management techniques were also considered as possible scenarios in this study. The results of the evaluation showed that soil suitability ranged between S1 and S5p - S5s along of the transects. In the northern extreme of transect TA, high content of gravels and coarse texture are limiting factors (soils are classified as S4t) In contrast, the limiting factor in the eastern extreme of transect TB is the shallow useful depth (S5p subclass). The absence of calcium carbonate becomes a limiting factor in some parts of TA. In contrast, the excessive content of calcium carbonate appeared to be a limiting factor for crops in some intermediate points of TB transect. For both transects, soil salinity is the main

  15. Soil management challenges in response to climatic change

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agriculture has tremendous potential to help solve global food, feed, fiber, and bioenergy challenges and respond to changing climatic conditions provided we do not compromise our soil, water and air resources. This presentation will examine soil management, defined by the Soil Science Society of Am...

  16. 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

  17. Complexities of nitrogen isotope biogeochemistry in plant-soil systems: implications for the study of ancient agricultural and animal management practices

    PubMed Central

    Szpak, Paul

    2014-01-01

    Nitrogen isotopic studies have the potential to shed light on the structure of ancient ecosystems, agropastoral regimes, and human-environment interactions. Until relatively recently, however, little attention was paid to the complexities of nitrogen transformations in ancient plant-soil systems and their potential impact on plant and animal tissue nitrogen isotopic compositions. This paper discusses the importance of understanding nitrogen dynamics in ancient contexts, and highlights several key areas of archaeology where a more detailed understanding of these processes may enable us to answer some fundamental questions. This paper explores two larger themes that are prominent in archaeological studies using stable nitrogen isotope analysis: (1) agricultural practices (use of animal fertilizers, burning of vegetation or shifting cultivation, and tillage) and (2) animal domestication and husbandry (grazing intensity/stocking rate and the foddering of domestic animals with cultigens). The paucity of plant material in ancient deposits necessitates that these issues are addressed primarily through the isotopic analysis of skeletal material rather than the plants themselves, but the interpretation of these data hinges on a thorough understanding of the underlying biogeochemical processes in plant-soil systems. Building on studies conducted in modern ecosystems and under controlled conditions, these processes are reviewed, and their relevance discussed for ancient contexts. PMID:25002865

  18. Making it real: operationalizing soil C sequestration and GHG mitigation on agricultural lands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paustian, Keith; Chambers, Adam; Easter, Mark; Lugato, Emanuele

    2015-04-01

    Land use and management account for roughly one-third of total anthropogenic greenhouse gases (GHGs) with about 10-12% coming from active management, primarily on agricultural lands and ca. 15-20% from land clearing and deforestation, which in many instances is tied to expansion of agricultural land use. Within this larger GHG source category of land use, soils play a significant role not only as a GHG source but also as a potential sink, through storing C in soil organic matter. However, despite 'being in the conversation' for many years, there has been relatively little engagement of agriculture, particularly with regards to soil management, in policies and programs for GHG mitigation. Now, that appears to be changing and there is increasing interest in 'bottom-up' strategies to incentivize agricultural management practices that sequester C in soils and reduce non-CO2 soil emissions, ranging from GHG offset projects within cap-and-trade systems, to inclusion of GHG emission reductions in 'green labeling' of agricultural products for consumers. In this paper, we review current knowledge of how soil management practices impact emissions and removals of GHGs and the current status of agricultural soil mitigation activities, in the US and globally. Critical areas for science support to further operationalize soil GHG mitigation strategies at local to national scales are discussed, including providing rigorous quantification technologies into the hands of management practitioners, providing estimates of impacts on productivity and costs associated with implementing mitigation practices, and gathering data on baseline practices and monitoring changes in practices over time.

  19. Mobility and half-life of bensulide in agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Antonious, George F

    2010-01-01

    Environmentally and economically viable agriculture requires the use of cultivation practices that maximize agrochemical efficacy while minimizing their off-site movement. Bensulide [O, O-diisopropyl S-2-phenylsulfonylaminoethyl phosphorodithioate] is one of the few herbicides from the organophosphate group used for control of weeds that threaten numerous crops. A field study was conducted on a silty-loam soil of 10% slope at Kentucky State University Research Farm to monitor off-site movement and persistence of bensulide in soil. Eighteen plots of 22 x 3.7 m each were separated using metal borders and the soil in six plots was mixed with sewage sludge and yard waste compost (SS-YW) at 15 t acre(- 1) on dry weight basis, six plots were mixed with sewage sludge (SS) at 15 t acre(- 1), and six unamended plots (NM) were used for comparison purposes. Plots were planted with summer squash, Cucurbita pepo as the test plant. The objectives of this investigation were to: 1) determine the dissipation and half-life (T(1/2)) of bensulide in soil under three management practices; 2) monitor the concentration of bensulide residues in runoff and infiltration water following natural rainfall; and 3) determine the effect of soil amendments on the transport of NO(3), NH(4), and P into surface and subsurface water. Half-life (T(1/2)) values of bensulide in soil were 44.3, 37.6, and 27.1 d in SS-YW, SS, and NM treatments, respectively. Addition of SS-YW and SS to native soil increased water infiltration, lowering runoff water volume and bensulide residues in runoff following natural rainfall events. PMID:20390925

  20. 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. PMID:25822494

  1. 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

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

    PubMed

    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 soil

  3. 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...

  4. 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. PMID:26828157

  5. 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.

  6. Managing soils for long-term productivity

    PubMed Central

    Syers, J. K.

    1997-01-01

    Meeting the goal of long-term agricultural productivity requires that soil degradation be halted and reversed. Soil fertility decline is a key factor in soil degradation and is probably the major cause of declining crop yields. There is evidence that the contribution of declining soil fertility to soil degradation has been underestimated.
    Sensitivity to soil degradation is implicit in the assessment of the sustainability of land management practices, with wide recognition of the fact that soils vary in their ability to resist change and recover subsequent to stress. The concept of resilience in relation to sustainability requires further elaboration and evaluation.
    In the context of soil degradation, a decline in soil fertility is primarily interpreted as the depletion of organic matter and plant nutrients. Despite a higher turnover rate of organic matter in the tropics there is no intrinsic difference between the organic matter content of soils from tropical and temperate regions. The level of organic matter in a soil is closely related to the above and below ground inputs. In the absence of adequate organic material inputs and where cultivation is continuous, soil organic matter declines progressively. Maintaining the quantity and quality of soil organic matter should be a guiding principle in developing management practices.
    Soil microbial biomass serves as an important reservoir of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and sulphur (S), and regulates the cycling of organic matter and nutrients. Because of its high turnover rate, microbial biomass reacts quickly to changes in management and is a sensitive indicator for monitoring and predicting changes in soil organic matter. Modelling techniques have been reasonably successful in predicting changes in soil organic matter with different organic material inputs, but there is little information from the tropics.
    Nutrient depletion through harvested crop components and residue removal, and by leaching and soil

  7. Information Management in Agricultural Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Samaha, E. K.

    1985-01-01

    Main problems in dissemination of agricultural research results, provision of library and documentation services, development of person-to-person communication and communication of information to decision-makers, farmers, and other end-users are outlined and suggestions for improvements are offered. International information systems are described…

  8. 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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-11-01

    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.

  10. 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

    2015-01-01

    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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. Assessing soil quality in organic agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil quality is directly linked to food production, food security, and environmental quality (i.e. water quality, global warming, and energy use in food production). Unfortunately, moderate to severe degeneration of soils (i.e., loss of soil biodiversity, poor soil tilth, and unbalanced elemental c...

  14. True Value of Carbon in Agricultural Soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Carbon (CO2) in the soil plays a critical role in the development of a stable soil aggregate and contributes to the formation of soil particles that are resistant to the destructive forces from wind and water. The dynamics of carbon in the soil are complex because the amount of carbon is affected b...

  15. 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

  16. Crop rotations with annual and perennial forages under no-till soil management: soil attributes, soybean mineral nutrition, and yield

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Extensive use of sustainable and intensive agricultural systems would result in profitable farms producing greater yields while maintaining or enhancing natural resources. Development of sustainable crop and soil management systems depends on understanding complex relationships between soil managem...

  17. 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.

  18. Soil health paradigms and implications for disease management.

    PubMed

    Larkin, Robert P

    2015-01-01

    Soil health has been defined as the capacity of soil to function as a vital living system to sustain biological productivity, maintain environmental quality, and promote plant, animal, and human health. Building and maintaining soil health are essential to agricultural sustainability and ecosystem function. Management practices that promote soil health, including the use of crop rotations, cover crops and green manures, organic amendments, and conservation tillage, also have generally positive effects on the management of soilborne diseases through a number of potential mechanisms, including increasing soil microbial biomass, activity, and diversity, resulting in greater biological suppression of pathogens and diseases. However, there also may be particular disease issues associated with some soil health management practices. In this review, research and progress made over the past twenty years regarding soil health, sustainability, and soil health management practices, with an emphasis on their implications for and effects on plant disease and disease management strategies, are summarized. PMID:26002292

  19. Agricultural Business and Management Materials for Agricultural Education Programs. Core Agricultural Education Curriculum, Central Cluster.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Illinois Univ., Urbana. Office of Agricultural Communications and Education.

    This curriculum guide contains 5 teaching units for 44 agricultural business and management cluster problem areas. These problem areas have been selected as suggested areas of study to be included in a core curriculum for secondary students enrolled in an agricultural education program. The five units are as follows: (1) agribusiness operation and…

  20. Soybean fungal soil-borne diseases: a parameter for measuring the effect of agricultural intensification on soil health.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Brandán, C; Huidobro, J; Grümberg, B; Scandiani, M M; Luque, A G; Meriles, J M; Vargas-Gil, S

    2014-02-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of agricultural intensification on soil microbial diversity, chemical and physical parameters, and the decrease of the incidence of sudden death syndrome (Fusarium crassistipitatum) and charcoal rot (Macrophomina phaseolina) in soybean. Soils under different management systems were evaluated during 2 crop cycles: soybean monoculture for 24 and 11 years, soybean-maize rotation for 15 and 4 years, 1 year of soybean, and native vegetation. The incidence of both soil-borne diseases was higher under monoculture than under rotation. Increased populations of potential biocontrol agents (Trichoderma spp., Gliocladium spp., fluorescent pseudomonads) were associated with rotation treatments, especially in 2010-2011. The comparison of agricultural vs. native vegetation soil and the average of agricultural cycles showed that microbial biomass carbon and glomalin-related soil protein were higher in the rotation system than in monoculture (50% and 77%, respectively). Furthermore, from the community-level functional diversity (Biolog Eco plates), McIntosh index showed lower functional diversity in monoculture than in rotation and native vegetation plots. Agricultural intensification reduced microbial biomass carbon, glomalin-related soil protein, organic matter, total nitrogen, aggregate stability, and yield, and increased bulk density. Soil quality degradation was associated with the establishment of soil-borne pathogens and increased soybean plant susceptibility to disease. PMID:24498984

  1. Soil Organic Carbon Dynamics under Conservation Agricultural Systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) is a key element in the valuation of natural resources and the evaluation of how management affects soil quality and ecosystem services derived from soil. This paper describes a summary of some recent research aimed at understanding how SOC contributes to (a) various soil ...

  2. 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. PMID:26235605

  3. SUPERFUND SOILS DATA MANAGEMENT SYSTEM

    EPA Science Inventory

    This paper describes the Superfund Soil Data Management System (DMS), a PC-based data system being developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in its effort to manage and evaluate treatment and performance data for contaminated soil, sludge, and debris. his system...

  4. Temporal stability of soil water content and soil water flux patterns across agricultural fields

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    When an agricultural field is repeatedly surveyed for soil water content, sites often can be spotted where soil is consistently wetter or consistently dryer than average across the study area. Temporal stability presents significant interest for upscaling observed soil water content, improving soil ...

  5. Organic matter matters for ice nuclei of agricultural soil origin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tobo, Y.; DeMott, P. J.; Hill, T. C. J.; Prenni, A. J.; Swoboda-Colberg, N. G.; Franc, G. D.; Kreidenweis, S. M.

    2014-04-01

    Heterogeneous ice nucleation is a~crucial process for forming ice-containing clouds and subsequent ice-induced precipitation. The importance for ice nucleation of airborne desert soil dusts composed predominantly of minerals is relatively well understood. On the other hand, the potential influence of agricultural soil dusts on ice nucleation has been poorly recognized, despite recent estimates that they may account for up to ∼25% of the global atmospheric dust load. We have conducted freezing experiments with various dusts, including agricultural soil dusts derived from the largest dust source region in North America. Here we show evidence for the significant role of soil organic matter (SOM) in particles acting as ice nuclei (IN) under mixed-phase cloud conditions. We find that the ice nucleating ability of the agricultural soil dusts is similar to that of desert soil dusts, but is reduced to almost the same level as that of clay minerals (e.g., kaolinite) after either H2O2 digestion or dry heating to 300 °C. In addition, based on chemical composition analysis, we show that organic-rich particles are more important than mineral particles for the ice nucleating ability of the agricultural soil dusts at temperatures warmer than about -36 °C. Finally, we suggest that such organic-rich particles of agricultural origin (namely, SOM particles) may contribute significantly to the ubiquity of organic-rich IN in the global atmosphere.

  6. Organic matter matters for ice nuclei of agricultural soil origin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tobo, Y.; DeMott, P. J.; Hill, T. C. J.; Prenni, A. J.; Swoboda-Colberg, N. G.; Franc, G. D.; Kreidenweis, S. M.

    2014-08-01

    Heterogeneous ice nucleation is a crucial process for forming ice-containing clouds and subsequent ice-induced precipitation. The importance for ice nucleation by airborne desert soil dusts composed predominantly of minerals is widely acknowledged. However, the potential influence of agricultural soil dusts on ice nucleation has been poorly recognized, despite recent estimates that they may account for up to 20-25% of the global atmospheric dust load. We have conducted freezing experiments with various dusts, including agricultural soil dusts derived from the largest dust-source region in North America. Here we show evidence for the significant role of soil organic matter (SOM) in particles acting as ice nuclei (IN) under mixed-phase cloud conditions. We find that the ice-nucleating ability of the agricultural soil dusts is similar to that of desert soil dusts, but is clearly reduced after either H2O2 digestion or dry heating to 300 °C. In addition, based on chemical composition analysis, we demonstrate that organic-rich particles are more important than mineral particles for the ice-nucleating ability of the agricultural soil dusts at temperatures warmer than about -36 °C. Finally, we suggest that such organic-rich particles of agricultural origin (namely, SOM particles) may contribute significantly to the ubiquity of organic-rich IN in the global atmosphere.

  7. Incorporating Agricultural Management Practices into the Assessment of Soil Carbon Change and Life-Cycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions of Corn Stover Ethanol Production

    SciTech Connect

    Qin, Zhangcai; Canter, Christina E.; Dunn, Jennifer B.; Mueller, Steffen; Kwon, Ho-young; Han, Jeongwoo; Wander, Michelle M.; Wang, Michael

    2015-09-01

    Land management practices such as cover crop adoption or manure application that can increase soil organic carbon (SOC) may provide a way to counter SOC loss upon removal of stover from corn fields for use as a biofuel feedstock. This report documents the data, methodology, and assumptions behind the incorporation of land management practices into corn-soybean systems that dominate U.S. grain production using varying levels of stover removal in the GREETTM (Greenhouse gases, Regulated Emissions, and Energy use in Transportation) model and its CCLUB (Carbon Calculator for Land Use change from Biofuels production) module. Tillage (i.e., conventional, reduced and no tillage), corn stover removal (i.e., at 0, 30% and 60% removal rate), and organic matter input techniques (i.e., cover crop and manure application) are included in the analysis as major land management practices. Soil carbon changes associated with land management changes were modeled with a surrogate CENTURY model. The resulting SOC changes were incorporated into CCLUB while GREET was expanded to include energy and material consumption associated with cover crop adoption and manure application. Life-cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of stover ethanol were estimated using a marginal approach (all burdens and benefits assigned to corn stover ethanol) and an energy allocation approach (burdens and benefits divided between grain and stover ethanol). In the latter case, we considered corn grain and corn stover ethanol to be produced at an integrated facility. Life-cycle GHG emissions of corn stover ethanol are dependent upon the analysis approach selected (marginal versus allocation) and the land management techniques applied. The expansion of CCLUB and GREET to accommodate land management techniques can produce a wide range of results because users can select from multiple scenario options such as choosing tillage levels, stover removal rates, and whether crop yields increase annually or remain constant

  8. Effects of soil management techniques on soil water erosion in apricot orchards.

    PubMed

    Keesstra, Saskia; Pereira, Paulo; Novara, Agata; Brevik, Eric C; Azorin-Molina, Cesar; Parras-Alcántara, Luis; Jordán, Antonio; Cerdà, Artemi

    2016-05-01

    Soil erosion is extreme in Mediterranean orchards due to management impact, high rainfall intensities, steep slopes and erodible parent material. Vall d'Albaida is a traditional fruit production area which, due to the Mediterranean climate and marly soils, produces sweet fruits. However, these highly productive soils are left bare under the prevailing land management and marly soils are vulnerable to soil water erosion when left bare. In this paper we study the impact of different agricultural land management strategies on soil properties (bulk density, soil organic matter, soil moisture), soil water erosion and runoff, by means of simulated rainfall experiments and soil analyses. Three representative land managements (tillage/herbicide/covered with vegetation) were selected, where 20 paired plots (60 plots) were established to determine soil losses and runoff. The simulated rainfall was carried out at 55mmh(-1) in the summer of 2013 (<8% soil moisture) for one hour on 0.25m(2) circular plots. The results showed that vegetation cover, soil moisture and organic matter were significantly higher in covered plots than in tilled and herbicide treated plots. However, runoff coefficient, total runoff, sediment yield and soil erosion were significantly higher in herbicide treated plots compared to the others. Runoff sediment concentration was significantly higher in tilled plots. The lowest values were identified in covered plots. Overall, tillage, but especially herbicide treatment, decreased vegetation cover, soil moisture, soil organic matter, and increased bulk density, runoff coefficient, total runoff, sediment yield and soil erosion. Soil erosion was extremely high in herbicide plots with 0.91Mgha(-1)h(-1) of soil lost; in the tilled fields erosion rates were lower with 0.51Mgha(-1)h(-1). Covered soil showed an erosion rate of 0.02Mgha(-1)h(-1). These results showed that agricultural management influenced water and sediment dynamics and that tillage and herbicide

  9. Vertical distribution of phosphorus in agricultural drainage ditch soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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 Mary...

  10. 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...

  11. Inherent agricultural constraints in Allegheny Plateau soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The worldwide need for increased production of food requires a combination of converting marginal land to agriculture and increased productivity and sustainability of crops on existing agricultural land. Grasses make up an important part of the food directly consumed by both humans and animals. If...

  12. Distribution coefficient of selenium in Japanese agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Nakamaru, Yasuo; Tagami, Keiko; Uchida, Shigeo

    2005-03-01

    In order to evaluate the selenium (Se) sorption level in Japanese soils, soil/soil solution distribution coefficients (K(d)s) were obtained for 58 agricultural soil samples (seven soil classification groups) using 75Se as a tracer. Although several chemical forms of Se are present in agricultural fields, selenite was used, because it is the major inorganic Se form in acid soils such as found in Japan. The Kd values obtained covered a wide range, from 12 to 1060l/kg, and their arithmetic mean was 315l/kg. Among the soil groups, Andosols had higher Kd values. The Kd values for all samples were highly correlated with soil active-aluminum (Al) and active-iron (Fe) contents. Thus, active-Al and active-Fe were considered to be the major adsorbents of Se. Then, a new sequential extraction procedure was applied to 12 soil samples in order to quantify the effect of soil components on Se adsorption. The sequential extraction results showed that 80-100% of the adsorbed Se was recovered as Al-bound Se and Fe-bound Se. The amount of Al-bound Se was the highest in the soils that showed high Kd values, though the relative contribution of Fe-bound Se tended to increase with decreasing Kd values. The high values of Kd seemed to be caused mainly by the adsorption of Se onto active-Al in Japanese soils. PMID:15686752

  13. 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

  14. 25 CFR 162.201 - Must agricultural land be managed in accordance with a tribe's agricultural resource management...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... tribe's agricultural resource management plan? 162.201 Section 162.201 Indians BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS... Must agricultural land be managed in accordance with a tribe's agricultural resource management plan... and objectives in any agricultural resource management plan developed by the tribe, or by us in...

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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...

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Ancient Agricultural Terraces and the Soil Erosion Paradox

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Tony

    2015-04-01

    Geoarchaeology lies at the heart of debates about societal stability and change. Geomorphological research has been used as a foundation for simplistic models of resource depletion based almost entirely on the comparison of soil erosion rates with long-term so- called 'geological' rates. However, the neo-catastrophic collapse of complex agricultural societies is rare, and where it is convincing demonstrated it is even more rarely monocausal. Indeed many societies appear to have continued agricultural exploitation of climatically marginal lands for far longer than soil depletion estimates would forecast. One reason may be that this soil depletion approach has grossly simplified soil creation through weathering, and neglected how past agriculture also affected the soil creation rate (especially on some lithologies) and how soil was conserved (terraces) and utilised even after transport. However, we now have we know have some potentially valuable new tools, including mineral magnetics and cosmogenic nuclides, which can be used to estimate changing soil weathering rates. This approach will be discussed with examples from both the temperate and Mediterranean climatic zones and in relation to causative models of change in complex agricultural societies.

  2. GIS in precision agriculture and watershed management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The technologies used to support the agricultural industry have changed significantly in the last 20 years. While genetic plant and animal research have improved varieties and yields, the introduction of information systems and precision management techniques have allowed reduced inputs (nutrients, ...

  3. 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. PMID:25217740

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Transformation of diphenylarsinic acid in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Maejima, Yuji; Arao, Tomohito; Baba, Koji

    2011-01-01

    We investigated the transformation and fate of diphenylarsinic acid (DPAA) during incubation in two types of soils (Entisol and Andisol) under aerobic and anaerobic conditions. Under anaerobic conditions only, DPAA was transformed into methyldiphenylarsine oxide by methylation. Under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions, DPAA was degraded to phenylarsonic acid by dephenylation, and phenylarsonic acid was subsequently methylated to form methylphenylarsinic acid and dimethylphenylarsine oxide. The degradation of DPAA in the Andisol was less extensive than in the Entisol. In autoclaved soil under anaerobic conditions, DPAA underwent little degradation during the 24-wk incubation. In unautoclaved soils, the concentration of DPAA in soil clearly decreased after 24 wk of incubation, indicating that DPAA degradation was driven by microbial activity. PMID:21488495

  7. 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

  8. Agricultural Education Curriculum Guide. Agricultural Production and Management I. Course No. 6811. Agricultural Production and Management II. Course No. 6812.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    North Carolina State Dept. of Public Instruction, Raleigh.

    This document is designed for use by teachers of Agricultural Production and Management courses in North Carolina. It updates the competencies and content outlines from the previous guide. It lists core and optional competencies for two courses in seven areas as follows: leadership; supervised agricultural experience programs; animal science;…

  9. Are Mexican agricultural farmlands PCDD/F soil reservoirs?

    PubMed

    Haro-García, Luis; Villa-Ibarra, Martín; Chaín-Castro, Teresita de Jesús; Lastra-Rodríguez, Angel; Juárez-Pérez, Cuauhtémoc Arturo; Aguilar-Madrid, Guadalupe; Sánchez-Escalante, Vanessa Crystal; Brito-Zurita, Olga Rosa

    2012-06-01

    Our aim was to identify polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs) and polychlorinated dibenzo-p-furans (PCDFs) in agricultural farmland soils in the Northwest of Mexico. We obtained ≈50 g of soil in five Yaqui Valley (VY) agricultural fields in the north-western Mexican State of Sonora and in five Culiacán Valley (VC) agricultural fields in the north-western Mexican State of Sinaloa. Fields with minimal tillage, with ferti-irrigation, and those with intensive aerial and manual tillage were included. All soil samples were subjected to the chemical activated luciferase gene expression (CALUX(®)) test to determine PCDD/F. On average, samples contained 4.2 ± 1.2 PCDD/F ppt TEQ; VY soil samples contained 4.72 ± 1.23 PCDD/F ppt TEQ, while VC soil samples showed 3.6 ± 1.1 PCDD/F ppt TEQ (p = 0.47). On considering tillage-type, in agricultural fields catalogued as intensive tillage, PCDD/F concentrations were 4.40 ± 0.43 in agricultural fields catalogued as intensive tillage, while in farmlands of another tillage-type these concentrations were slightly higher (5.53 ± 0.8). PMID:22437565

  10. 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...

  11. 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...

  12. INVESTIGATING ANAEROBIC MICROBIAL PROCESSES IN AGRICULTURAL SOILS USING ANAEROMYXOBACTER DEHALOGENANS AS A COSMOPOLITAN MODEL [ABSTRACT

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Anaerobic microbial processes have not been thoroughly studied in agricultural soils. Yet, anaerobic conditions may significantly impact agrochemical fate, nutrient cycling, and plant/seed-microbe interactions. As part of a broader weed ecology/weed management experimental program we have selected...

  13. Inorganic fertilizer and poultry-litter manure amendments alter the soil microbial communities in agricultural systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of agricultural land management practices on soil prokaryotic diversity are not well described. We investigated three land usage systems (row cropped, ungrazed pasture, and cattle-grazed pasture) and two fertilizer systems (inorganic fertilizer or IF and poultry-litter or PL) and compare...

  14. 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 ...

  15. 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...

  16. Determination of Yield and Soil Variability in Louisiana Sugarcane Using Selected Tools of Precision Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Precision agriculture is a production strategy that may help sugarcane producers decrease input costs, maximize profits, and minimize any negative environmental impact through better management of soil and crop variability. To determine the extent of variability present in commercial sugarcane fiel...

  17. SOIL LOSS FROM LONG-TERM WINTER-WHEAT/SUMMER FALLOW RESIDUE AND NUTRIENT MANAGEMENT EXPERIMENT AT COLUMBIA BASIN AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH CENTER, PENDLETON, OREGON

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Changes in soil property resulting from crop production practices are not often readily apparent after a few years or decades. The objective of the research reported here was to evaluate soil erodibility in treatments representing past and current cultural practices in a winter wheat–fallow field ex...

  18. Agricultural Drainage Water Management: Potential Impact and Implementation Strategies for Ohio

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The unique soil and climate of the Upper Mississippi River Basin (and the Lake Erie Basin) area provide the resources for bountiful agricultural production. Agricultural drainage (both surface and subsurface drainage) is essential for achieving economically viable crop production and management. Dra...

  19. Soil type-depending effect of paddy management: composition and distribution of soil organic matter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urbanski, Livia; Kölbl, Angelika; Lehndorff, Eva; Houtermans, Miriam; Schad, Peter; Zhang, Gang-Lin; Rahayu Utami, Sri; Kögel-Knabner, Ingrid

    2016-04-01

    Paddy soil management is assumed to promote soil organic matter accumulation and specifically lignin caused by the resistance of the aromatic lignin structure against biodegradation under anaerobic conditions during inundation of paddy fields. The present study investigates the effect of paddy soil management on soil organic matter composition compared to agricultural soils which are not used for rice production (non-paddy soils). A variety of major soil types, were chosen in Indonesia (Java), including Alisol, Andosol and Vertisol sites (humid tropical climate of Java, Indonesia) and in China Alisol sites (humid subtropical climate, Nanjing). This soils are typically used for rice cultivation and represent a large range of soil properties to be expected in Asian paddy fields. All topsoils were analysed for their soil organic matter composition by solid-state 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and lignin-derived phenols by CuO oxidation method. The soil organic matter composition, revealed by solid-state 13C nuclear magnetic resonance, was similar for the above named different parent soil types (non-paddy soils) and was also not affected by the specific paddy soil management. The contribution of lignin-related carbon groups to total SOM was similar in the investigated paddy and non-paddy soils. A significant proportion of the total aromatic carbon in some paddy and non-paddy soils was attributed to the application of charcoal as a common management practise. The extraction of lignin-derived phenols revealed low VSC (vanillyl, syringyl, cinnamyl) values for all investigated soils, being typical for agricultural soils. An inherent accumulation of lignin-derived phenols due to paddy management was not found. Lignin-derived phenols seem to be soil type-dependent, shown by different VSC concentrations between the parent soil types. The specific paddy management only affects the lignin-derived phenols in Andosol-derived paddy soils which are characterized by

  20. Soil property estimation and design for agroecosystem management using hierarchical geospatial functional data models

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sustainable agriculture requires a site-specific approach to address crop management problems and environmental degradation processes that are spatially and temporally variable. These issues lead to production losses (water stress, low fertility, pest problems), soil degradation (erosion, soil organ...

  1. Agricultural Mechanics Laboratory Management Professional Development Needs of Wyoming Secondary Agriculture Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McKim, Billy R.; Saucier, P. Ryan

    2011-01-01

    Accidents happen; however, the likelihood of accidents occurring in the agricultural mechanics laboratory is greatly reduced when agricultural mechanics laboratory facilities are managed by secondary agriculture teachers who are competent and knowledgeable. This study investigated the agricultural mechanics laboratory management in-service needs…

  2. 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. PMID:19198752

  3. 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)…

  4. 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.

  5. Comparative analysis of different measurement techniques for characterizing soil surface roughness in agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez-Agirre, Alex; Álvarez-Mozos, Jesús; Valle, José Manuel; Rodríguez, Álvaro; Giménez, Rafael

    2016-04-01

    Soil surface roughness can be defined as the variation in soil surface elevations, and as such, it is a key element in hydrology and soil erosion processes. In agricultural soils, roughness is mainly an anthropic factor determined by the type of tillage and management. Roughness is also a property with a high spatial variability, since the same type of tillage can result in surfaces with different roughness depending on the physical characteristics of the soil and atmospheric conditions. In order to quantify roughness and to parameterize its role in different processes, different measurement techniques have been used and several parameters have been proposed in the literature. The objective of this work is to evaluate different measurement techniques and assess their accuracy and suitability for quantifying surface roughness in agricultural soils. With this aim, a comparative analysis of three roughness measurement techniques has been carried out; (1) laser profilometer, (2) convergent photogrammetry and (3) terrestrial laser scanner. Roughness measurements were done in 3 experimental plots (5x5 meters) with different tillage treatments (representing different roughness conditions) obtained with typical agricultural tools. The laser profilometer registered vertically the distance from a reference bar down to the surface. It had a vertical accuracy of 1.25 mm, a sampling interval of 5 mm and a total length profile of 5 m. Eight profiles were taken per plot, four in parallel to tillage direction and four in perpendicular. Convergent photogrammetry consisted of 20-30 images taken per plot from a height of 5-10 m above ground (using an elevation platform), leading to point clouds of ~25 million points per plot. Terrestrial laser scanner measurements were taken from the four sides of each plot at a measurement height of ~1.75 m above ground. After orientating and corregistering the four scans, point clouds of ~60 million points were obtained per plot. The comparative

  6. Agricultural Adaptation and Water Management in Sri Lanka

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stone, E.; Hornberger, G. M.

    2014-12-01

    Efficient management of freshwater resources is critical as concerns with water security increase due to changes in climate, population, and land use. Effective water management in agricultural systems is especially important for irrigation and water quality. This research explores the implications of tradeoffs between maximization of crop yield and minimization of nitrogen loss to the environment, primarily to surface water and groundwater, in rice production in Sri Lanka. We run the DeNitrification-DeComposition (DNDC) model under Sri Lankan climate and soil conditions. The model serves as a tool to simulate crop management scenarios with different irrigation and fertilizer practices in two climate regions of the country. Our investigation uses DNDC to compare rice yields, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and nitrogen leaching under different cultivation scenarios. The results will inform best practices for farmers and decision makers in Sri Lanka on the management of water resources and crops.

  7. Modeling soil processes for adapting agricultural systems to climate variability and change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basso, B.

    2014-12-01

    Climate change, drought, and agricultural intensification are increasing the demand for enhanced resource use efficiency (water, nitrogen and radiation). There is a global consensus between climate and agricultural scientists about the need to quantify the likely impacts of climate change on crop yields due to their significant consequences on food prices as well as the global economy. Crop models have been extensively tested for yields, but their validation for soil water balance, and carbon and nitrogen cycling in agricultural systems has been limited. The objective of this research is to illustrate the importance of modeling soil processes correctly to identify management strategy that allow cropping systems to adapt to climate variability and change. Results from the first phase of the AgMIP soil and crop rotation initiative will also be discussed.

  8. 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.

  9. An integrated Modelling framework to monitor and predict trends of agricultural management (iMSoil)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keller, Armin; Della Peruta, Raneiro; Schaepman, Michael; Gomez, Marta; Mann, Stefan; Schulin, Rainer

    2014-05-01

    Agricultural systems lay at the interface between natural ecosystems and the anthroposphere. Various drivers induce pressures on the agricultural systems, leading to changes in farming practice. The limitation of available land and the socio-economic drivers are likely to result in further intensification of agricultural land management, with implications on fertilization practices, soil and pest management, as well as crop and livestock production. In order to steer the development into desired directions, tools are required by which the effects of these pressures on agricultural management and resulting impacts on soil functioning can be detected as early as possible, future scenarios predicted and suitable management options and policies defined. In this context, the use of integrated models can play a major role in providing long-term predictions of soil quality and assessing the sustainability of agricultural soil management. Significant progress has been made in this field over the last decades. Some of these integrated modelling frameworks include biophysical parameters, but often the inherent characteristics and detailed processes of the soil system have been very simplified. The development of such tools has been hampered in the past by a lack of spatially explicit soil and land management information at regional scale. The iMSoil project, funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation in the national research programme NRP68 "soil as a resource" (www.nrp68.ch) aims at developing and implementing an integrated modeling framework (IMF) which can overcome the limitations mentioned above, by combining socio-economic, agricultural land management, and biophysical models, in order to predict the long-term impacts of different socio-economic scenarios on the soil quality. In our presentation we briefly outline the approach that is based on an interdisciplinary modular framework that builds on already existing monitoring tools and model components that are

  10. 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.

  11. Comparison of soil CO2 emission in poorly and well-drained mineral soil at a small agricultural hillside scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    TETE, Emmanuel; Viaud, Valerie; Flechard, Chris; Walter, Christian

    2014-05-01

    empirical functions showed that the combined effect of soil temperature and soil moisture explained 77% (61% by T° and 39% by SWC) of soil CO2 emission variability in PDM soil, against 63% (53% by T° and 47% by SWC) in WDM soil. Others factors such as C input, and oxygen availability due to soil management may also controlled soil CO2 emission and mostly in WDM soil. The integration of these factors in model could help to well understand the difference in soil CO2 emission in Poorly-drained mineral soil compared with well-drained soil at agricultural hillside scale.

  12. 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.

  13. Economic and Societal Benefits of Soil Carbon Management (Chapter 1).

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Many papers and books on soil carbon management have addressed specific ecosystems such as agricultural lands, rangelands, forestlands, etc. This paper introduces a book within which each chapter begins by addressing a particular concern and potential options to manage it, along with their real and...

  14. Tightly-coupled plant-soil nitrogen cycling: Implications for multiple ecosystem services on organic farms across an intensively managed agricultural landscape

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Variability among farms across an agricultural landscape may reveal diverse biophysical contexts and experiences that show innovations and insights to improve nitrogen (N) cycling and yields, and thus the potential for multiple ecosystem services. In order to assess potential tradeoffs between yield...

  15. Crop residue stabilization and application to agricultural and degraded soils: A review.

    PubMed

    Medina, Jorge; Monreal, Carlos; Barea, José Miguel; Arriagada, César; Borie, Fernando; Cornejo, Pablo

    2015-08-01

    Agricultural activities produce vast amounts of organic residues including straw, unmarketable or culled fruit and vegetables, post-harvest or post-processing wastes, clippings and residuals from forestry or pruning operations, and animal manure. Improper disposal of these materials may produce undesirable environmental (e.g. odors or insect refuges) and health impacts. On the other hand, agricultural residues are of interest to various industries and sectors of the economy due to their energy content (i.e., for combustion), their potential use as feedstock to produce biofuels and/or fine chemicals, or as a soil amendments for polluted or degraded soils when composted. Our objective is review new biotechnologies that could be used to manage these residues for land application and remediation of contaminated and eroded soils. Bibliographic information is complemented through a comprehensive review of the physico-chemical fundamental mechanisms involved in the transformation and stabilization of organic matter by biotic and abiotic soil components. PMID:25936555

  16. 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

  17. Precision agriculture suitability to improve the terroir management in vineyard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    María Terrón López, Jose; Blanco gallego, Jorge; Jesús Moral García, Francisco; Mancha Ramírez, Luis Alberto; Uriarte Hernández, David; Rafael Marques da Silva, Jose

    2014-05-01

    Precision agriculture is a useful tool to assess plant growth and development in vineyards. Traditional technics of crop management may be not enough to keep a certain level of crop yield or quality in grapes. Vegetation indices and soil based measurements, such as apparent electrical conductivity (ECa), can estimate the variability of the terroir within a specific water treatment toward the control of grapevine canopy properties. The current study focused on establishing the variability, spatial and temporal, in the vegetative development of a traditional management vineyard through to technics related to the precision agriculture. The study was carry out in a vineyard in the southwest of Spain during 2012 and 2013 growing seasons with two irrigations treatments, with four plots of each one, by one hand vines irrigated at 100% of crop evapotranspiration (ETc) and by other hand a dry farmed wines. Variations of soil properties across the assay were measured in each year at flowering stage by means of ECa, up to 80 cm. of soil depth, using mobile electrical contact sensors. Normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) was determined in a concept of proximal sensing. In fact, the measures were made by multispectral sensors mounted in a terrestrial vehicle, in vertical positioning, at different stages during the ripening in both growing seasons. All measured data were statistically transformed to a behavior modeling pattern using principal component analisys (PCA) and compared by ordinary least square (OLS). NDVI showed a well-established pattern of vegetative development in both growing season for all the treatments at any irrigation treatment, let us appreciate the differences among the vegetative development of each plot within a specific irrigation treatment derived from the high soil variation that the ECa measures reflected. In this way, the local terroir of each plot and irrigation treatment influenced the vegetative growth showing that soil variations had a

  18. 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.

  19. Monitoring soil moisture dynamics via ground-penetrating radar survey of agriculture fields after irrigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muro, G.

    2015-12-01

    It is possible to examine the quality of ground-penetrating radar (GPR) as a measure of soil moisture content in the shallow vadose zone, where roots are most abundant and water conservation best management practices are critical in active agricultural fields. By analyzing temporal samplings of 100 Mhz reflection profiles and common-midpoint (CMP) soundings over a full growing season, the variability of vertical soil moisture distribution directly after irrigation events are characterized throughout the lifecycle of a production crop. Reflection profiles produce high-resolution travel time data and summed results of CMP sounding data provide sampling depth estimates for the weak, but coherent reflections amid strong point scatterers. The high ratio of clay in the soil limits the resolution of downward propagation of infiltrating moisture after irrigation; synthetic data analysis compared against soil moisture lysimeter logs throughout the profile allow identification of the discrete soil moisture content variation in the measured GPR data. The nature of short duration irrigation events, evapotranspiration, and drainage behavior in relation to root depths observed in the GPR temporal data allow further examination and comparison with the variable saturation model HYDRUS-1D. After retrieving soil hydraulic properties derived from laboratory measured soil samples and simplified assumptions about boundary conditions, the project aims to achieve good agreement between simulated and measured soil moisture profiles without the need for excessive model calibration for GPR-derived soil moisture estimates in an agricultural setting.

  20. 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???.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. Soil Emissions of N2O and NO in Agricultural Production Systems in the Upper Midwest U.S.: Management Controls and Measurement Issues

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cropped fields in the upper Midwest have the potential to emit relatively large quantities of N2O and NO resulting from soil transformation of N fertilizers applied to crops such as corn and potatoes. The mitigation of N2O emissions may be an effective strategy for offsetting greenhouse gas emission...

  4. 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

  5. Root zone sensors for irrigation management in intensive agriculture.

    PubMed

    Pardossi, Alberto; Incrocci, Luca; Incrocci, Giorgio; Malorgio, Fernando; Battista, Piero; Bacci, Laura; Rapi, Bernardo; Marzialetti, Paolo; Hemming, Jochen; Balendonck, Jos

    2009-01-01

    Crop irrigation uses more than 70% of the world's water, and thus, improving irrigation efficiency is decisive to sustain the food demand from a fast-growing world population. This objective may be accomplished by cultivating more water-efficient crop species and/or through the application of efficient irrigation systems, which includes the implementation of a suitable method for precise scheduling. At the farm level, irrigation is generally scheduled based on the grower's experience or on the determination of soil water balance (weather-based method). An alternative approach entails the measurement of soil water status. Expensive and sophisticated root zone sensors (RZS), such as neutron probes, are available for the use of soil and plant scientists, while cheap and practical devices are needed for irrigation management in commercial crops. The paper illustrates the main features of RZS' (for both soil moisture and salinity) marketed for the irrigation industry and discusses how such sensors may be integrated in a wireless network for computer-controlled irrigation and used for innovative irrigation strategies, such as deficit or dual-water irrigation. The paper also consider the main results of recent or current research works conducted by the authors in Tuscany (Italy) on the irrigation management of container-grown ornamental plants, which is an important agricultural sector in Italy. PMID:22574047

  6. Root Zone Sensors for Irrigation Management in Intensive Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Pardossi, Alberto; Incrocci, Luca; Incrocci, Giorgio; Malorgio, Fernando; Battista, Piero; Bacci, Laura; Rapi, Bernardo; Marzialetti, Paolo; Hemming, Jochen; Balendonck, Jos

    2009-01-01

    Crop irrigation uses more than 70% of the world’s water, and thus, improving irrigation efficiency is decisive to sustain the food demand from a fast-growing world population. This objective may be accomplished by cultivating more water-efficient crop species and/or through the application of efficient irrigation systems, which includes the implementation of a suitable method for precise scheduling. At the farm level, irrigation is generally scheduled based on the grower’s experience or on the determination of soil water balance (weather-based method). An alternative approach entails the measurement of soil water status. Expensive and sophisticated root zone sensors (RZS), such as neutron probes, are available for the use of soil and plant scientists, while cheap and practical devices are needed for irrigation management in commercial crops. The paper illustrates the main features of RZS’ (for both soil moisture and salinity) marketed for the irrigation industry and discusses how such sensors may be integrated in a wireless network for computer-controlled irrigation and used for innovative irrigation strategies, such as deficit or dual-water irrigation. The paper also consider the main results of recent or current research works conducted by the authors in Tuscany (Italy) on the irrigation management of container-grown ornamental plants, which is an important agricultural sector in Italy. PMID:22574047

  7. 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

  8. 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. PMID:27127923

  9. 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

  10. European GEMAS mapping of agricultural soils: Arsenic results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tarvainen, Timo; Reimann, Clemens; Albanese, Stefano; Birke, Manfred; Poňavič, Michal; Ladenberger, Anna

    2014-05-01

    The GEMAS data set provides a homogenised overview of arsenic distribution in agricultural (Ap horizon, 0-20 cm) and grazing land soil (Gr, 0-10 cm) of Europe. The GEMAS mapping project covers western Europe at a sample density of 1 site/2500 km2. Arsenic concentrations are reported for the

  11. Plumbum contamination detecting model for agricultural soil using hyperspectral data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Xiangnan; Huang, Fang; Wang, Ping

    2008-10-01

    The issue of environmental pollution due to toxic heavy metals in agricultural land has caused worldwide growing concern in recent years. Being one of toxic heavy metals, the accumulation of Plumbum (Pb) may have negative effects on natural and agricultural vegetation growth, yield and quality. It can also constitute short-term and long-term health risks by entering the food chain. In this study, we analyze the relationships between physical and chemical characteristics, biological parameters of soil-vegetation system and hyperspectral spectrum responses systematically. The relation between hyperspectral data and the biological parameters of Pb polluted wheat canopy such as leaf pigments, leaf moisture, cell structure and leaf area index (LAI) are discussed. We detect the changes in the wheat biological parameters and spectral response associated with Pb concentration in soil. To reveal the impact mechanisms of Pb concentration on agricultural soil, six models including chlorophyll-leaf moisture model, chlorophyll-cell structure model, chlorophyll-LAI model, leaf moisture-cell structure model, leaf moisture-LAI model, cell structure- LAI model are explored. We find that changes in Pb concentration present various features in different models. Pb contamination in agricultural soil can be identified and assessed effectively while integrating the characteristics of those developed models.

  12. 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...

  13. Remote sensing of soil properties in precision agriculture: a review

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The success of precision agriculture depends strongly upon an efficient and accurate method for in-field soil property determination. This information is critical for farmers to calculate the proper amount of inputs for best crop performance and least environment contamination. Grid sampling, as a t...

  14. 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, ...

  15. A soil water based index as a suitable agricultural drought indicator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martínez-Fernández, J.; González-Zamora, A.; Sánchez, N.; Gumuzzio, A.

    2015-03-01

    Currently, the availability of soil water databases is increasing worldwide. The presence of a growing number of long-term soil moisture networks around the world and the impressive progress of remote sensing in recent years has allowed the scientific community and, in the very next future, a diverse group of users to obtain precise and frequent soil water measurements. Therefore, it is reasonable to consider soil water observations as a potential approach for monitoring agricultural drought. In the present work, a new approach to define the soil water deficit index (SWDI) is analyzed to use a soil water series for drought monitoring. In addition, simple and accurate methods using a soil moisture series solely to obtain soil water parameters (field capacity and wilting point) needed for calculating the index are evaluated. The application of the SWDI in an agricultural area of Spain presented good results at both daily and weekly time scales when compared to two climatic water deficit indicators (average correlation coefficient, R, 0.6) and to agricultural production. The long-term minimum, the growing season minimum and the 5th percentile of the soil moisture series are good estimators (coefficient of determination, R2, 0.81) for the wilting point. The minimum of the maximum value of the growing season is the best estimator (R2, 0.91) for field capacity. The use of these types of tools for drought monitoring can aid the better management of agricultural lands and water resources, mainly under the current scenario of climate uncertainty.

  16. Spatio-temporal patterns of soil water storage under dryland agriculture at the watershed scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ibrahim, Hesham M.; Huggins, David R.

    2011-07-01

    SummarySpatio-temporal patterns of soil water are major determinants of crop yield potential in dryland agriculture and can serve as the basis for delineating precision management zones. Soil water patterns can vary significantly due to differences in seasonal precipitation, soil properties and topographic features. In this study we used empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis to characterize the spatial variability of soil water at the Washington State University Cook Agronomy Farm (CAF) near Pullman, WA. During the period 1999-2006, the CAF was divided into three roughly equal blocks (A, B, and C), and soil water at 0.3 m intervals to a depth of 1.5 m measured gravimetrically at approximately one third of the 369 geo-referenced points on the 37-ha watershed. These data were combined with terrain attributes, soil bulk density and apparent soil conductivity (EC a). The first EOF generated from the three blocks explained 73-76% of the soil water variability. Field patterns of soil water based on EOF interpolation varied between wet and dry conditions during spring and fall seasons. Under wet conditions, elevation and wetness index were the dominant factors regulating the spatial patterns of soil water. As soil dries out during summer and fall, soil properties (EC a and bulk density) become more important in explaining the spatial patterns of soil water. The EOFs generated from block B, which represents average topographic and soil properties, provided better estimates of soil water over the entire watershed with larger Nash-Sutcliffe Coefficient of Efficiency (NSCE) values, especially when the first two EOFs were retained. Including more than the first two EOFs did not significantly increase the NSCE of soil water estimate. The EOF interpolation method to estimate soil water variability worked slightly better during spring than during fall, with average NSCE values of 0.23 and 0.20, respectively. The predictable patterns of stored soil water in the spring could

  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. 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

  19. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-11-01

    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 (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. PMID:24145428

  1. Sustainable land use and agricultural soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sustainable land use is the management of the natural environment and the built environment to conserve the resources that help to sustain the current human population of the area and that of future generations. This concept of sustainable land use requires an analysis of the existing resources, the...

  2. MICROBIAL COMMUNITY STRUCTURE AND ENZYME ACTIVITIES IN SEMIARID AGRICULTURAL SOILS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effect of management on the microbial community structure and enzyme activities of three semiarid soils from 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 cotton -peanut (Arachis h...

  3. Mapping soil fractal dimension in agricultural fields with GPR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oleschko, K.; Korvin, G.; Muñoz, A.; Velazquez, J.; Miranda, M. E.; Carreon, D.; Flores, L.; Martínez, M.; Velásquez-Valle, M.; Brambila, F.; Parrot, J.-F.; Ronquillo, G.

    2008-09-01

    We documented that the mapping of the fractal dimension of the backscattered Ground Penetrating Radar traces (Fractal Dimension Mapping, FDM) accomplished over heterogeneous agricultural fields gives statistically sound combined information about the spatial distribution of Andosol' dielectric permittivity, volumetric and gravimetric water content, bulk density, and mechanical resistance under seven different management systems. The roughness of the recorded traces was measured in terms of a single number H, the Hurst exponent, which integrates the competitive effects of volumetric water content, pore topology and mechanical resistance in space and time. We showed the suitability to combine the GPR traces fractal analysis with routine geostatistics (kriging) in order to map the spatial variation of soil properties by nondestructive techniques and to quantify precisely the differences under contrasting tillage systems. Three experimental plots with zero tillage and 33, 66 and 100% of crop residues imprinted the highest roughness to GPR wiggle traces (mean HR/S=0.15), significantly different to Andosol under conventional tillage (HR/S=0.47).

  4. Soil management for food security

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Food security is determined by human and non-human factors (physical, biological, and chemical components of the environment). Management of agricultural lands often seeks to modify or control non-human environmental factors so as to support diverse (and often conflicting) objectives, such as extrac...

  5. 7 CFR 205.203 - Soil fertility and crop nutrient management practice standard.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ..., and biological condition of soil and minimize soil erosion. (b) The producer must manage crop... sludge (biosolids) as defined in 40 CFR part 503; and (3) Burning as a means of disposal for crop... 7 Agriculture 3 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Soil fertility and crop nutrient management...

  6. 7 CFR 205.203 - Soil fertility and crop nutrient management practice standard.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ..., and biological condition of soil and minimize soil erosion. (b) The producer must manage crop... sludge (biosolids) as defined in 40 CFR part 503; and (3) Burning as a means of disposal for crop... 7 Agriculture 3 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Soil fertility and crop nutrient management...

  7. Distribution and persistence of tricyaclazole in agricultural field soils.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Seul Ah; Thapa, Shree Prasad; Park, Hong Ryeol; Choi, Nam Geon; Hur, Jang Hyun

    2012-12-01

    Soil is the major sink for majority of pesticides applied on agricultural crops and its fate depends on variety of factors. There is little research on fate of pesticide in field soil under different climatic conditions and there is a need of study on the influence of climate on pesticide degradation and persistence in soil. In the present study, the persistence and distribution of tricyclazole was investigated in rice field soil under the influence of cold winter condition. Field experiment was carried at 35 different field sites from 6 provinces in Republic of Korea. Limit of detection and limit of quantification of tricyclazole were found to be 0.005 and 0.0165 mg/kg, respectively. The concentrations of tricyclazole in soil samples ranged from 0.387 mg/kg in sites in Gyeongsangbuk-do areas and lowest 0.021 mg/kg in sites from Chuncheongnam-do areas. In natural environmental conditions, tricyclazole persisted longer than 11 months post application in agricultural field soils. Our result indicates the influence of cold climatic condition on the persistence of tricyclazole. PMID:23014634

  8. The effects of different soil cover management practices on plant biodiversity and soil properties in Mediterranean ancient olive orchards

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madzaric, Suzana; Aly, Adel; Ladisa, Gaetano; Calabrese, Generosa

    2014-05-01

    The effects of different soil cover management practices on plant biodiversity and soil properties in Mediterranean ancient olive orchards Madzaric S., Aly A., Ladisa G. and Calabrese G. The loss of natural plant cover due to the inappropriate soil cover management is often a decisive factor for soil degradation in Mediterranean area. This accompanied with typical climate, characterized by cool, wet winters and hot and dry summers leads to soil erosion and loss of productivity. Due to simplification of agricultural practice and to the attempt to decrease cost of production, keeping soil bare is a widespread agricultural practice in Mediterranean ancient olive orchards (AOOs). The consequences of this are degradation of soil quality and reduction of plant biodiversity. In last year's some alternative practices are proposed in order to protect soil and biodiversity. One of these practices is the "grassing" i.e. covering the soil by selected autochthonous plant species. Objectives of our study are: (1) to evaluate impact of different soil cover management practices on soil properties and plant biodiversity in AOOs and (2) to define a minimum indicators' set (Minimum Data Set - MDS) to evaluate the effectiveness of different agricultural practices in environmental performance of AOOs. A comparison was carried on considering two management systems (conventional vs. organic) and three agricultural practices: conventional with bare soil (CON), organic with soil covered by selected autochthonous species (MIX) and organic left to the native vegetation (NAT). In general a clear positive influence of organic management system was recognized. Some soil quality indicators (physical, chemical and biological) showed responsiveness in describing the effects of management system and agricultural practices on soil properties. The both approaches with vegetation cover on the soil surface (either sowing of mixture or soil left to the natural plant cover) performed better than

  9. 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. PMID:26745292

  10. Distribution of heavy metals in agricultural soils near a petrochemical complex in Guangzhou, China.

    PubMed

    Li, Junhui; Lu, Ying; Yin, Wei; Gan, Haihua; Zhang, Chao; Deng, Xianglian; Lian, Jin

    2009-06-01

    The aim of the study was to investigate influence of an industrialized environment on the accumulation of heavy metals in agricultural soils. Seventy soil samples collected from surface layers (0-20 cm) and horizons of five selected pedons in the vicinity area of petrochemical complex in Guangzhou, China were analyzed for Zn, Cu, Pb, Cd, Hg and As concentrations, the horizontal and vertical variation of these metals were studied and geographic information system (GIS)-based mapping techniques were applied to generate spatial distribution maps. The mean concentrations of these heavy metals in the topsoils did not exceed the maximum allowable concentrations in agricultural soil of China with the exception of Hg. Significant differences between land-use types showed that Cu, Pb, Cd, Hg and As concentrations in topsoils were strongly influenced by agricultural practices and soil management. Within a radius of 1,300 m there were no marked decreasing trends for these element concentrations (except for Zn) with the increase of distance from the complex boundary, which reflected little influence of petroleum air emission on soil heavy metal accumulation. Concentrations of Zn, Cu, Pb, Cd, Hg and As in the five pedons, particularly in cultivated vegetable field and orchard, decreased with soil depth, indicating these elements mainly originated from anthropogenic sources. GIS mapping was a useful tool for evaluating spatial variability of heavy metals in the affected soil. The spatial distribution maps allowed the identification of hot-spot areas with high metal concentration. Effective measures should be taken to avoid or minimize heavy metal further contamination of soils and to remediate the contaminated areas in order to prevent pollutants affecting human health through agricultural products. PMID:18600466

  11. Relating results from earthworm toxicity tests to agricultural soil

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beyer, W.N.

    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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

    2015-01-01

    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 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. PMID:26158774

  14. 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.

  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

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Liu, Yaling; Pan, Zhihua; Zhuang, Qianlai; Miralles, Diego; Teuling, Adriann; Zhang, Tonglin; An, Pingli; Dong, Zhiqiang; Zhang, Jingting; He, Di; et al

    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

  17. 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

  18. 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. PMID:16678407

  19. 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.

    2013-03-01

    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 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. These indices represent the balance reached among properties in "steady state" soils. This study was carried out in four study sites from 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Aerosol emissions from biochar-amended agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ravi, S.; Sharratt, B. S.; Li, J. J.; Olshvevski, S.; Meng, Z.; Zhang, J.

    2015-12-01

    Agricultural production is a major contributor to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and associated global warming. In this regard, novel carbon sequestration strategies such as large-scale biochar application may provide sustainable pathways to increase the terrestrial storage of carbon in agricultural areas. Biochar has a long residence time in the soil and hence understanding the soil properties affected by biochar addition needs to be investigated to identify the tradeoffs and synergies of large-scale biochar application. Even though several studies have investigated the impacts of biochar application on a variety of soil properties, very few studies have investigated the impacts on soil erosion, in particular wind (aeolian) erosion and subsequent particulate emissions. Using a combination of wind tunnel studies and laboratory experiments, we investigated the dust emission potential of biochar-amended agricultural soils. We amended biochar (unsieved or sieved to appropriate particle size; application rates ranging from 1 - 5 % of the soil by weight) to three soil types (sand, sandy loam, and silt loam) and estimated the changes in threshold shear velocity for wind erosion and dust emission potential in comparison to control soils. Our experiments demonstrate that emissions of fine biochar particles may result from two mechanisms (a) very fine biochar particles (suspension size) that are entrained into the air stream when the wind velocity exceeds the threshold, and (b) production of fine biochar particles originating from the abrasion by quartz grains. The results indicate that biochar application significantly increased particulate emissions and more interestingly, the rate of increase was found to be higher in the intermediate range of biochar application. As fine biochar particles effectively adsorb/trap contaminants and pathogens from the soil, the preferential erosion of fine biochar particles by wind may lead to concentration of contaminants in the

  2. 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

  3. Agricultural plants and soil as a reservoir for Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

    PubMed

    Green, S K; Schroth, M N; Cho, J J; Kominos, S K; Vitanza-jack, V B

    1974-12-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa was detected in 24% of the soil samples but in only 0.13% of the vegetable samples from various agricultural areas of California. The distribution of pyocin types of soil and vegetable isolates was similar to that of clinical strains, and three of the soil isolates were resistant to carbenicillin. Pseudomonas aeruginosa multiplied in lettuce and bean under conditions of high temperature and high relative humidity (27 C and 80-95% relative humidity) but declined when the temperature and humidity were lowered (16 C, 55-75% relative humidity). The results suggest that soil is a reservior for P. aeruginosa and that the bacterium has the capacity to colonize plants during favorable conditions of temperature and moisture. PMID:4217591

  4. Agricultural Plants and Soil as a Reservoir for Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    PubMed Central

    Green, Sylvia K.; Schroth, Milton N.; Cho, John J.; Kominos, Spyros D.; Vitanza-Jack, Vilma B.

    1974-01-01

    Pseudomonas aeruginosa was detected in 24% of the soil samples but in only 0.13% of the vegetable samples from various agricultural areas of California. The distribution of pyocin types of soil and vegetable isolates was similar to that of clinical strains, and three of the soil isolates were resistant to carbenicillin. Pseudomonas aeruginosa multiplied in lettuce and bean under conditions of high temperature and high relative humidity (27 C and 80-95% relative humidity) but declined when the temperature and humidity were lowered (16 C, 55-75% relative humidity). The results suggest that soil is a reservior for P. aeruginosa and that the bacterium has the capacity to colonize plants during favorable conditions of temperature and moisture. PMID:4217591

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. Effect of land management on soil properties in flood irrigated citrus orchards in Eastern Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morugán-Coronado, A.; García-Orenes, F.; Cerdà, A.

    2015-01-01

    Agricultural land management greatly affects soil properties. Microbial soil communities are the most sensitive and rapid indicators of perturbations in land use and soil enzyme activities are sensitive biological indicators of the effects of soil management practices. Citrus orchards frequently have degraded soils and this paper evaluates how land management in citrus orchards can improve soil quality. A field experiment was performed in an orchard of orange trees (Citrus Sinensis) in the Alcoleja Experimental Station (Eastern Spain) with clay-loam agricultural soils to assess the long-term effects of herbicides with inorganic fertilizers (H), intensive ploughing and inorganic fertilizers (P) and organic farming (O) on the soil microbial properties, and to study the relationship between them. Nine soil samples were taken from each agricultural management plot. In all the samples the basal soil respiration, soil microbial biomass carbon, water holding capacity, electrical conductivity, soil organic matter, total nitrogen, available phosphorus, available potassium, aggregate stability, cation exchange capacity, pH, texture, macronutrients (Na, Ca and Mg), micronutrients (Fe, Mn, Zn and Cu), calcium carbonate equivalent, calcium carbonate content of limestone and enzimatic activities (urease, dehydrogenase, β-glucosidase and acid phosphatase) were determined. The results showed a substantial level of differentiation in the microbial properties, which were highly associated with soil organic matter content. The management practices including herbicides and intensive ploughing had similar results on microbial soil properties. O management contributed to an increase in the soil biology quality, aggregate stability and organic matter content.

  8. Spatial Scaling Assessment of Surface Soil Moisture Estimations Using Remotely Sensed Data for Precision Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hassan Esfahani, L.; Torres-Rua, A. F.; Jensen, A.; McKee, M.

    2014-12-01

    Airborne and Landsat remote sensing are promising technologies for measuring the response of agricultural crops to variations in several agricultural inputs and environmental conditions. Of particular significance to precision agriculture is surface soil moisture, a key component of the soil water balance, which addresses water and energy exchanges at the surface/atmosphere interface and affects vegetation health. Its estimation using the spectral reflectance of agricultural fields could be of value to agricultural management decisions. While top soil moisture can be estimated using radiometric information from aircraft or satellites and data mining techniques, comparison of results from two different aerial platforms might be complicated because of the differences in spatial scales (high resolution of approximately 0.15m versus coarser resolutions of 30m). This paper presents a combined modeling and scale-based approach to evaluate the impact of spatial scaling in the estimation of surface soil moisture content derived from remote sensing data. Data from Landsat 7 ETM+, Landsat 8 OLI and AggieAirTM aerial imagery are utilized. AggieAirTM is an airborne remote sensing platform developed by Utah State University that includes an autonomous Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) which captures radiometric information at visual, near-infrared, and thermal wavebands at spatial resolutions of 0.15 m or smaller for the optical cameras and about 0.6 m or smaller for the thermal infrared camera. Top soil moisture maps for AggieAir and Landsat are developed and statistically compared at different scales to determine the impact in terms of quantitative predictive capability and feasibility of applicability of results in improving in field management.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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. PMID:26886429

  12. 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. PMID:26679897

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Implementation monitoring temperature, humidity and mositure soil based on wireless sensor network for e-agriculture technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sumarudin, A.; Ghozali, A. L.; Hasyim, A.; Effendi, A.

    2016-04-01

    Indonesian agriculture has great potensial for development. Agriculture a lot yet based on data collection for soil or plant, data soil can use for analys soil fertility. We propose e-agriculture system for monitoring soil. This system can monitoring soil status. Monitoring system based on wireless sensor mote that sensing soil status. Sensor monitoring utilize soil moisture, humidity and temperature. System monitoring design with mote based on microcontroler and xbee connection. Data sensing send to gateway with star topology with one gateway. Gateway utilize with mini personal computer and connect to xbee cordinator mode. On gateway, gateway include apache server for store data based on My-SQL. System web base with YII framework. System done implementation and can show soil status real time. Result the system can connection other mote 40 meters and mote lifetime 7 hours and minimum voltage 7 volt. The system can help famer for monitoring soil and farmer can making decision for treatment soil based on data. It can improve the quality in agricultural production and would decrease the management and farming costs.

  16. 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

  17. Leaching effect on arsenic mobility in agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Dousova, Barbora; Buzek, Frantisek; Lhotka, Miloslav; Krejcova, Stanislava; Boubinova, Radka

    2016-04-15

    The stability of soil arsenic during long-term leaching was studied in four soils from an agricultural area. Two identical columns simulating soil profiles of three layers were leached with As-free natural rainwater (<3.10(-3)mgL(-1) As) to test As mobility and the same rainwater enriched with As(V) (2.5mgL(-1) As) for the study of As accumulation. The relative As flow (μgg(-1)day(-1)) showed a comparable run for all soils, with the peak corresponding to maximum As release in the first leaching stage, and then with a tendency to equilibrate. The amount of released As was controlled by the saturated hydraulic conductivity Ksat and free Fe oxides, and the kinetics of the leaching process correlated with the content of organic matter (OM). An overall stability and accumulation of soil arsenic were mostly affected by soil properties (Ksat, particle size, clay fraction), while the chemical composition (Fe, OM content) and surface properties (specific surface area SBET, theoretical adsorption capacity Qt) were of marginal significance. The distribution of As forms was performed by sequential extraction (SEP), which indicated negligible transformation (<12%) of As species in upper soil layers. PMID:26785213

  18. 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.

  19. Anaerobic Soil Disinfestation and Soil Borne Pest Management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Anaerobic soil disinfestation (ASD; also referred to as Biological Soil Disinfestation (BSD)) is a pre-plant soil treatment method developed to control plant disease and manage yield decline in many crop production systems. The practice involves induction of anaerobic soil conditions by increasing m...

  20. SOCIOLOGICAL FACTORS IN THE ADOPTION OF AGRICULTURAL BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The primary goal of this research was to determine the relevant socioeconomic, demographic and agricultural factors that influence the adoption and maintenance of agricultural best management practices. A general theoretic model describing the adoption of technology was modified ...

  1. Environmental Fate of Double-Stranded RNA in Agricultural Soils

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:24676387

  2. 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

  3. Abatement costs of soil conservation in China's Loess Plateau: balancing income with conservation in an agricultural system.

    PubMed

    Hou, Lingling; Hoag, Dana L K; Keske, Catherine M H

    2015-02-01

    This study proposes the use of marginal abatement cost curves to calculate environmental damages of agricultural systems in China's Loess Plateau. Total system costs and revenues, management characteristics and pollution attributes are imputed into a directional output distance function, which is then used to determine shadow prices and abatement cost curves for soil and nitrogen loss. Marginal abatement costs curves are an effective way to compare economic and conservation tradeoffs when field-specific data are scarce. The results show that sustainable agricultural practices can balance soil conservation and agricultural production; land need not be retired, as is current policy. PMID:25463565

  4. 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.

  5. Impact of soil movement on carbon sequestration in agricultural ecosystems.

    PubMed

    McCarty, G W; Ritchie, J C

    2002-01-01

    Recent modeling studies indicate that soil erosion and terrestrial sedimentation may establish ecosystem disequilibria that promote carbon (C) sequestration within the biosphere. Movement of upland eroded soil into wetland systems with high net primary productivity may represent the greatest increase in storage capacity potential for C sequestration. The capacity of wetland systems to capture sediments and build up areas of deposition has been documented as well as the ability of these ecosystems to store substantial amounts of C. The purpose of our work was to assess rates of sediment deposition and C storage in a wetland site adjacent to a small first-order stream that drains an agricultural area. The soils of the wetland site consist of a histosol buried by sediments from the agricultural area. Samples of deposited sediments in the riparian zone were collected in 5 cm increments and the concentration of 137Cs was used to determine the 1964 and 1954 deposition layers. Agricultural activity in the watershed has caused increased sediment deposition to the wetland. The recent upland sediment is highly enriched in organic matter indicating that large amounts of organic C have been sequestered within this zone of sediment deposition. Rates of sequestration are much higher than rates that have occurred over the pre-modern history of the wetland. These data indicate the increased sedimentation rates in the wetland ecosystem are associated with increased C sequestration rates. PMID:11822721

  6. Climate change effects on soil organic carbon changes in agricultural lands of Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Álvaro-Fuentes, J.; Easter, M.; Arrúe, J. L.; Cantero-Martínez, C.; Paustian, K.

    2012-04-01

    Climate is a key factor to explain changes in soil organic carbon (SOC) at regional scales. Experimental data have showed that spatial and temporal changes in soil temperature and moisture modify microbial activity and thus SOC decomposition. Furthermore, precipitation amount and distribution have a main impact on crop growth and residue production. According to predictions based on atmosphere-ocean general circulation models (AOGCM) for the next decades in the Mediterranean region, air temperature will significantly increase and precipitation decrease with a significant impact on SOC turnover. However, in agricultural systems, the study of the impacts of climate on SOC dynamics is a complex task since climate effects will be determined by both soil characteristics and management practices. The establishment of soil monitoring networks within a specific region is a recommended approach to study the interactive effects of climate, management and soil on SOC changes. However, in large areas, the establishment and maintenance of these networks can imply significant cost and time. A lower cost and time consuming approach can be the use of soil organic matter (SOM) models. The use of process based SOM models linked to spatial data through geographical information systems (GIS) permits to integrate the spatial variability of the parameters that control SOM dynamics. This approach can be appropriate for Spanish conditions where the complex orography results in a large range of local climates. Moreover, the large agricultural heterogeneity in terms of management systems could have a noteworthy impact on the effects of climate on SOC turnover in Spanish agroecosystems. Thus, in this study we used the Century model to analyse the impact of climate on SOC changes in a representative area of 40498 km2 located in northeast Spain. The spatial distribution of the different land use categories and their change over time was obtained from the European Corine database. Soil

  7. 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.

  8. Sorption of dodecyltrimethylammonium chloride (DTAC) to agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Xiang, Lei; Sun, Teng-Fei; Zheng, Mei-Jie; Li, Yan-Wen; Li, Hui; Wong, Ming-Hung; Cai, Quan-Ying; Mo, Ce-Hui

    2016-08-01

    Quaternary ammonium compounds (QACs) used as cationic surfactants are intensively released into environment to be pollutants receiving more and more concerns. Sorption of dodecyltrimethylammonium chloride (DTAC), one of commonly used alkyl QACs, to five types of agricultural soils at low concentrations (1-50mg/L) was investigated using batch experiments. DTAC sorption followed pseudo-second-order kinetics and reached reaction equilibrium within 120min. Both Freundlich model and Langmuir model fitted well with DTAC isotherm data with the latter better. DTAC sorption was spontaneous and favorable, presenting a physical sorption dominated by ion exchanges. Sorption distribution coefficient and sorption affinity demonstrated that soil clay contents acted as a predominant phase of DTAC sorption. DTAC could display a higher mobility and potential accumulation in crops in the soils with lower clay contents and lower pH values. Sorption of DTAC was heavily affected by ions in solution with anion promotion and cation inhibition. PMID:27101455

  9. 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

  10. Topography Mediates the Influence of Cover Crops on Soil Nitrate Levels in Row Crop Agricultural Systems.

    PubMed

    Ladoni, Moslem; Kravchenko, Alexandra N; Robertson, G Phillip

    2015-01-01

    Supplying adequate amounts of soil N for plant growth during the growing season and across large agricultural fields is a challenge for conservational agricultural systems with cover crops. Knowledge about cover crop effects on N comes mostly from small, flat research plots and performance of cover crops across topographically diverse agricultural land is poorly understood. Our objective was to assess effects of both leguminous (red clover) and non-leguminous (winter rye) cover crops on potentially mineralizable N (PMN) and [Formula: see text] levels across a topographically diverse landscape. We studied conventional, low-input, and organic managements in corn-soybean-wheat rotation. The rotations of low-input and organic managements included rye and red clover cover crops. The managements were implemented in twenty large undulating fields in Southwest Michigan starting from 2006. The data collection and analysis were conducted during three growing seasons of 2011, 2012 and 2013. Observational micro-plots with and without cover crops were laid within each field on three contrasting topographical positions of depression, slope and summit. Soil samples were collected 4-5 times during each growing season and analyzed for [Formula: see text] and PMN. The results showed that all three managements were similar in their temporal and spatial distributions of NO3-N. Red clover cover crop increased [Formula: see text] by 35% on depression, 20% on slope and 32% on summit positions. Rye cover crop had a significant 15% negative effect on [Formula: see text] in topographical depressions but not in slope and summit positions. The magnitude of the cover crop effects on soil mineral nitrogen across topographically diverse fields was associated with the amount of cover crop growth and residue production. The results emphasize the potential environmental and economic benefits that can be generated by implementing site-specific topography-driven cover crop management in row

  11. Topography Mediates the Influence of Cover Crops on Soil Nitrate Levels in Row Crop Agricultural Systems

    PubMed Central

    Ladoni, Moslem; Kravchenko, Alexandra N.; Robertson, G. Phillip

    2015-01-01

    Supplying adequate amounts of soil N for plant growth during the growing season and across large agricultural fields is a challenge for conservational agricultural systems with cover crops. Knowledge about cover crop effects on N comes mostly from small, flat research plots and performance of cover crops across topographically diverse agricultural land is poorly understood. Our objective was to assess effects of both leguminous (red clover) and non-leguminous (winter rye) cover crops on potentially mineralizable N (PMN) and NO3--N levels across a topographically diverse landscape. We studied conventional, low-input, and organic managements in corn-soybean-wheat rotation. The rotations of low-input and organic managements included rye and red clover cover crops. The managements were implemented in twenty large undulating fields in Southwest Michigan starting from 2006. The data collection and analysis were conducted during three growing seasons of 2011, 2012 and 2013. Observational micro-plots with and without cover crops were laid within each field on three contrasting topographical positions of depression, slope and summit. Soil samples were collected 4–5 times during each growing season and analyzed for NO3--N and PMN. The results showed that all three managements were similar in their temporal and spatial distributions of NO3—N. Red clover cover crop increased NO3--N by 35% on depression, 20% on slope and 32% on summit positions. Rye cover crop had a significant 15% negative effect on NO3--N in topographical depressions but not in slope and summit positions. The magnitude of the cover crop effects on soil mineral nitrogen across topographically diverse fields was associated with the amount of cover crop growth and residue production. The results emphasize the potential environmental and economic benefits that can be generated by implementing site-specific topography-driven cover crop management in row-crop agricultural systems. PMID:26600462

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. Effects of Nitrogen Fertilizer and Harvesting Frequency on Soil Organic Matter Pools Under Switchgrass Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valdez, Z. P.; Hockaday, W. C.; Gallagher, M. E.; Masiello, C. A.; Gao, X.

    2013-12-01

    Intensive agriculture has the potential to reduce soil carbon stocks in the years following initial cultivation, although the magnitude and direction of the effect can vary with ecosystem and management factors. The cropping of switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) for biomass shows potential for high yields in marginal lands with low fertilizer inputs, while the extensive root system can act to improve soil quality and sequester atmospheric carbon dioxide in the soil carbon pool. We are investigating the impact of nitrogen fertilizer inputs and harvesting frequency on soil organic matter quantity and quality in a biofuels cropping trial in Michigan. Here we test the hypothesis that harvest and fertilization rate can affect the partitioning of organic matter into different storage pools within the 0-60 cm of soil: roots, particulate organic matter (POM) (density <1.8 g/cm3), and protected organic matter (density > 1.8 g/cm3). Additionally, we use 13C Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to study the bulk chemistry (carbohydrate, lignin, lipid, and protein) of the roots and POM. The NMR data also allow us to estimate the relative decomposition of the soil organic matter using a standard decomposition index (alkyl/O-alkyl peak ratio). We use the data to infer the influence of crop management on the mechanisms of soil C storage and mechanisms of stabilization in switchgrass agriculture. Initial results have shown a significant change in carbon stocks at depths between 15-60 cm for the high and low fertilization rates, 196 kg/m3 and 0kg/m3 respectively, although the harvesting time and frequency did not create a substantial difference on carbon stocks. The root bulk chemistry has not shown consistent results among management practices

  17. Soil Water and Shallow Groundwater Relations in an Agricultural Hillslope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Logsdon, S. D.; Schilling, K. E.

    2007-12-01

    our understanding of the relations of soil water to water table fluctuations in an agricultural field.

  18. 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.

  19. [Characteristics of soil nematode community of different agricultural areas in Jiangsu Province, China].

    PubMed

    Jiao, Jia-guo; Liu, Bei-bei; Mao, Miao; Ye, Cheng-long; Yu, Li; Hu, Feng

    2015-11-01

    This paper investigated the genus diversity of soil nematodes of different agricultural areas in Jiangsu Province, analyzed the relationship between soil nematodes and soil environmental factors, and discussed the roles of soil nematodes as biological indicators of soil health. The results showed that, a total of 41 nematode genera were found in all six agricultural areas, belonging to 19 families, 7 orders, 2 classes. The numbers and community compositions of nematodes were obviously influenced by soil texture, fertilization and tillage practices. In all six agricultural areas, the numbers of nematodes in coastal agricultural area (400 individuals per 100 g dry soil) were significantly larger than that in Xuhuai, Ningzhenyang, and riverside agricultural areas. While the smallest number of nematodes was found in Yanjiang agricultural area (232 individuals per 100 g dry soil), which might be due to the differences in soil texture, annual rainfall and annual air temperature and other factors. The dominant genera of nematodes were similar in the adjacent agricultural areas. Correlation analysis showed that there was a significant positive correlation between the number of soil nematodes and levels of soil nutrients (soil organic matter, total nitrogen, available nitrogen, available potassium and available phosphorus). Redundancy analysis (RDA) indicated the total nitrogen, available potassium and pH obviously affected some soil nematode genera. The analysis of spatial distribution characteristics of soil nematode community in farmland of Jiangsu Province could provide data for health assessment of agricultural ecosystems. PMID:26915207

  20. Managing agricultural greenhouse gases: The basis of GRACEnet

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Since 2002, USDA Agricultural Research Service has been engaged in a national project called GRACEnet (Greenhouse gas Reduction through Agricultural Carbon Enhancement network). Goals of the project are to (1) evaluate soil organic carbon status and change, (2) assess net greenhouse gas emissions (...

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Measurement of nitrogen oxide emissions from an agricultural soil with a dynamic chamber system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roelle, Paul; Aneja, Viney P.; O'Connor, J.; Robarge, W.; Kim, Deug-Soo; Levine, Joel S.

    1999-01-01

    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 Plain of North Carolina. Soil NO flux was determined using a dynamic flowthrough chamber technique. The measurement period was characterized by two distinguishing features: an application of nitrogen (N) fertilizer at the midpoint of the experiment and a nontypical rainfall pattern. Average NO flux prior to the application of N fertilizer was 31.5 ± 10.1 ng N m-2 s-1, and more than doubled (77.7 ± 63.7 ng N m-2 s-1) after the application of a side-dressing of N fertilizer. Average soil extractable nitrogen values did not change significantly following application of the side-dressing of N fertilizer. We attribute this failure to detect a significant difference in soil extractable nitrogen following N fertilization to the method in which the fertilizer was applied, the subsequent rainfall pattern, and the technique of soil sampling. NO flux followed the same diurnal trend as soil temperature, with maximum NO emissions coinciding with maximum soil temperature, and minimum NO emissions coinciding with minimum soil temperature. NO flux was found to increase exponentially with soil temperature, but only after fertilization. Due to subsurface irrigation practices employed by the farmer, changes in soil water content were minimal, and no relation could be drawn between soil water content and NO flux. Simultaneous measurements of NOy, NO2, and NO emissions revealed that NO and NO2 emissions represent 86 and 8.7%, respectively, of NOy emissions leaving the soil. Simultaneous NO flux measurements made by a closed box flux technique, at the same site, revealed no statistically significant differences between the two different methodologies for measuring NO flux.

  4. Effects of long-term soil and crop management on soil hydraulic properties for claypan soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Regional and national soil maps have been developed along with associated soil property databases to assist users in making land management decisions based on soil characteristics. These soil properties include average values from soil characterization for each soil series. In reality, these propert...

  5. The residence time of intensively managed agricultural landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowling, Laura; Cherkauer, Keith; Chiu, Chun-mei; Rahman, Sanoar

    2015-04-01

    Much of the agricultural landscape across the Midwestern United States is intensively managed through numerous surface and subsurface drainage improvements, and the growing extraction of groundwater resources. The relatively recent glaciation of the North Central region means that the landscape is less dissected and hydrologically connected than older till areas. Low topographic gradients and underlying dense till which restricts vertical water movement, as well as kettle depressions, have led to poorly drained soils and extensive wetlands within the landscape. Large areas of this land could only be farmed once the excess water was removed through artificial surface and subsurface drainage. Conventional wisdom in the region maintains that subsurface tile drainage reduces the occurrence of peak flow events by increasing soil water storage capacity. At the watershed scale, this view does not take into account the coincident increase in surface drainage and reduction in residence time in surface depressions. This paper explores to what degree water management and irrigation has changed surface and subsurface water storage and residence time over the last century and how this has impacted flow duration throughout the Wabash River system in Indiana, USA. The effects of subsurface tile drains, wetlands and aquifer storage are explicitly represented within the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) macroscale hydrology model. We maintain a focus on the entire Wabash River, a river system of historic importance that is also representative of many similar areas in the till plain region of the agricultural Midwest, which contribute to water quality and flood dynamics of the Mississippi river system. By lowering the water table, surface and subsurface drainage improvements have increased the subsurface storage capacity at the beginning of rain events, but this is overwhelmed by the decrease in surface storage capacity for intermediate to large events, decreasing the current

  6. Innovations in information management to enhance agriculture: A research perspective

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Information management should be the cornerstone for innovative agricultural systems; however, the challenge remains on how to utilize all of the components to enhance agriculture. The enhancement of agriculture is often considered from only a yield perspective. This is an important factor and effo...

  7. Water Resources and Agricultural Water Use in the North China Plain: Current Status and Management Options

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Serious water deficits with deteriorating environmental quality are threatening agricultural sustainability in the North China Plain (NCP). This paper addresses spatial and temporal availability of water resources in the NCP, and identifies the effects of soil management, irrigation and crop genetic...

  8. 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.

  9. Trace metal enrichment in agricultural soils of Jianghan Plain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, R.; Ying, S.; Daniel, J. N.; Bu, J.; Gan, Y.; Wang, Y.; Schaefer, M.; Fendorf, S. E.

    2014-12-01

    Coal consumption in China is increasing annually due to constantly rising energy demand. As a result, a massive amount of coal combustion byproducts, particularly in the form of fly ash, are expelled from power plants and distributed through atmospheric transport. The fly ash is eventually deposited on to land, potentially contaminating agricultural soils. Coal fly ash contains high concentration of a suite of toxic trace metals including lead, chromium, and arsenic. In this study, we surveyed the concentration of trace metals in agricultural soils at 131 sites within a 20 km radius of Yangluo Power Plant, a 2400 MW plant within the highly populated Jianghan Plain of Central China. Using X-ray fluorecence (XRF) spectrometry, the total concentration of trace metals in homogenized surface and subsurface soil samples were measured to calculate the corresponding enrichment factor at each site. Our initial findings demonstrate that Pb is enriched in a majority of sites, independent of land use, whereas As and Cr are generally not enriched in this region. Further studies using Pb isotopes as a source-tracing tool will help determine the Pb pollution's origin. Ultimately, the results of this study may inform whether crops grown within the Jianghan Plain have the potential of being contaminated by metals emitted from coal power plants.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  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

    alpha and beta activity (Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Hazardous Materials and Waste Management Division, 1997; Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment,1998; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1993). Since these were the identified priority parameters for the biosolids, the soils have the same set of priority parameters. Although the composite soils' priority analytes have been reported earlier to Metro District, the remaining elemental datasets for both the composite soils samples and selected fields' individual subsamples' data are presented here for the first time. More information about the other monitoring components is presented elsewhere in the literature (http://co.water.usgs.gov/projects/CO406/CO406.html). In general, the objective of each component of the study was to determine whether concentrations of priority parameters (1) were higher than regulatory limits, (2) were increasing with time, and(or) (3) were significantly higher in biosolids-applied areas than in a similar farmed area where biosolids were not applied. The method chosen for sampling the soils proved to be an efficient and reliable representation of the average composition of each field. This was shown by analyzing individual subsamples, averaging the resulting values, and then comparing the values to the composited samples' values. The soil chemistry shows distinct differences between the two sites, most likely due to the different underlying parent material. Biosolids data were used to compile an inorganic-chemical biosolids signature that can be contrasted with the geochemical signature of the agricultural soils for this site. The biosolids signature and an understanding of the geology and hydrology of the site can be used to separate biosolids effects from natural geochemical effects. Elements of particular interest for a biosolids signature after application in the soils include bismuth, copper, silver, mercury, and phosphorus. This signat

  13. 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. PMID:26121264

  14. Tightly-Coupled Plant-Soil Nitrogen Cycling: Comparison of Organic Farms across an Agricultural Landscape

    PubMed Central

    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. PMID:26121264

  15. Short-term soil loss by eolian erosion in response to different rain-fed agricultural practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanner, Smadar; Katra, Itzhak; Zaady, Eli

    2016-04-01

    Eolian (wind) erosion is a widespread process and a major form of soil degradation in arid and semi-arid regions. The present study examined changes in soil properties and eolian soil loss at a field scale in response to different soil treatments in two rain-fed agricultural practices. Field experiments with a boundary-layer wind tunnel and soil analysis were used to obtain the data. Two practices with different soil treatments (after harvest), mechanical tillage and stubble grazing intensities, were applied in the fallow phase of the rotation (dry season). The mechanical tillage and the stubble grazing had an immediate and direct effects on soil aggregation but not on the soil texture, and the contents of soil water, organic matter, and CaCO3. Higher erosion rates, that was measured as fluxes of total eolian sediment and particulate matter <10 μm (PM10), were recorded under mechanical tillage and grazing intensities compared with the undisturbed topsoil of the control plots. The erosion rates were higher in grazing plots than in tillage plots. The calculated soil fluxes in this study indicate potentially rapid soil degradation due to loss of fine particles by wind. The finding may have implications for long-term management of agricultural soils in semi-arid areas.

  16. 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 ...

  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. Soil Quality Changes with No-Till Management and Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) Take-out

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural producers in eastern Washington are adopting no-till farming in an effort to reduce soil erosion. In addition, lands returning to production after enrollment in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) must be managed in order to maintain improvements in soil quality. The soil character...

  19. Effect of crop residue incorporation on soil organic carbon (SOC) and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in European agricultural soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehtinen, Taru; Schlatter, Norman; Baumgarten, Andreas; Bechini, Luca; Krüger, Janine; Grignani, Carlo; Zavattaro, Laura; Costamagna, Chiara; Spiegel, Heide

    2014-05-01

    Soil organic matter (SOM) improves soil physical (e.g. increased aggregate stability), chemical (e.g. cation exchange capacity) and biological (e.g. biodiversity, earthworms) properties. The sequestration of soil organic carbon (SOC) may mitigate climate change. However, as much as 25-75% of the initial SOC in world agricultural soils may have been lost due to intensive agriculture (Lal, 2013). The European Commission has described the decline of organic matter (OM) as one of the major threats to soils (COM(2006) 231). Incorporation of crop residues may be a sustainable and cost-efficient management practice to maintain the SOC levels and to increase soil fertility in European agricultural soils. Especially Mediterranean soils that have low initial SOC concentrations, and areas where stockless croplands predominate may be suitable for crop residue incorporation. In this study, we aim to quantify the effects of crop residue incorporation on SOC and GHG emissions (CO2 and N2O) in different environmental zones (ENZs, Metzger et al., 2005) in Europe. Response ratios for SOC and GHG emissions were calculated from pairwise comparisons between crop residue incorporation and removal. Specifically, we investigated whether ENZs, clay content and experiment duration influence the response ratios. In addition, we studied how response ratios of SOM and crop yields were correlated. A total of 718 response ratios (RR) were derived from a total of 39 publications, representing 50 experiments (46 field and 4 laboratory) and 15 countries. The SOC concentrations and stocks increased by approximately 10% following crop residue incorporation. In contrast, CO2 emissions were approximately six times and N2O emissions 12 times higher following crop residue incorporation. The effect of ENZ on the response ratios was not significant. For SOC concentration, the >35% clay content had significantly approximately 8% higher response ratios compared to 18-35% clay content. As the duration of the

  20. Glucosinolates in collard greens grown under three soil management practices.

    PubMed

    Antonious, George F

    2015-01-01

    Glucosinolates (GSLs, β-D-thioglucoside-N-hydroxysulfates) are polar compounds present in varying amounts in members of the Brassicaceae family. They suppress soil-borne pests due to the biofumigant properties of the highly toxic isothiocyanates present in Brassica vegetables. The objectives of this investigation were to: (1) assess variation in GSLs concentrations among collard plants grown under three soil management practices: sewage sludge (SS) mixed with native soil, chicken manure (CM) mixed with native soil, and no-mulch (NM) native soil, (2) quantify GSLs concentrations in collard roots, leaves, and stems at harvest for potential use of their crude extracts in plant protection, and (3) assess myrosinase activity in soil amended with CM and SS mixed with native soil. Separation of GSLs was accomplished by adsorption on a DEAE-Sephadex ion exchange resin using disposable pipette tips filled with DEAE, a weak base, with a net positive charge when ionized and exchange anions such as GSLs (hydrophilic plant secondary metabolites). Quantification of total GSLs was based on inactivation of collard endogenous myrosinase and liberation of the glucose moiety from the GSLs molecule by addition of standardized myrosinase and colorimetric determination of the liberated glucose moiety. Across all treatments, SS and CM increased soil organic matter content from 2.2% in native soil to 4.2 and 6.5%, respectively. GSLs concentrations were significantly greater in collard leaves (30.9 µmoles g(-1) fresh weight) compared to roots and stems (7.8 and 1.2 µmoles g(-1) fresh weight), respectively. Leaves of collard grown in soil amended with SS contained the greatest concentrations of GSLs compared to leaves of plants grown in CM and NM treatments. Accordingly, leaves of collard plants grown in soil amended with SS could play a significant role in sustainable agriculture as alternative tools for soil-borne disease management in conventional and organic agriculture. PMID

  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. Increasing organic carbon stocks in Swedish agricultural soils due to unexpected socio-economic drivers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poeplau, Christopher; Bolinder, Martin A.; Eriksson, Jan O.; Lundblad, Mattias; Kätterer, Thomas

    2015-04-01

    Management changes can induce significant alterations of soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks. Including trends in SOC within a certain land-use category can thus strongly influence the annual national inventory reports for greenhouse gas emissions. In 2013, the European Union has therefore decided that all member states shall report the evolvement of SOC within agricultural soils to increase the incentives to mitigate climate change by improving the management of those soils. Here, we present the country and county-wise SOC trends in Swedish agricultural mineral soils on the basis of three soil inventories conducted between 1988 and 2013. In the past two decades, the average topsoil (0-20 cm) SOC content of the whole country increased from 2.48% to 2.67% representing a relative change of 7.7% or 0.38% yr-1. This is in contrast to trends observed in neighboring countries such as Norway and Finland. We attributed this positive SOC trend to the increasing cultivation of leys throughout the country. Indeed, the below-ground carbon input of perennial grasses is up to fourfold as compared to cereals, which leads to a significant soil carbon sequestration potential under cropping systems with ley. The increase in ley proportion was significantly correlated to the increase in horse population in each county (R2=0.71), which has more than doubled in the past three decades. Due to subsidies introduced in the early 1990s, the area as long-term set-aside land (mostly old leys) also contributed to an increase in leys. This discloses the strong impact of rather local socio-economic trends on soil carbon storage, which also need to be considered in larger-scale model applications. This database is used in the continuous validation process of the Swedish national system for reporting changes in SOC stocks.

  3. Management controls on nitrous oxide emissions from row crop agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gelfand, I.; Shcherbak, I.; Millar, N.; Robertson, G. P.

    2011-12-01

    Agriculture is a significant source of the potent greenhouse gas (GHG) nitrous oxide (N2O), accounting for ~70% of total anthropic N2O emissions in the US primarily as a result of N fertilizer application. Emissions of N2O are the largest contributor to the global warming potential of row-crop agriculture. Management, including choice of crop type and rotation strongly impacts N2O emissions, but continuous emissions data from row-crops over multiple rotations are lacking. Empirical quantification of these long-term emissions and the development of crop- and rotation-specific N2O emission factors are vital for improving estimates of agricultural GHG emissions, important for informing management practices to reduce agriculture's GHG footprint, and developing mitigation protocols for environmental markets. Over 20 years we measured soil N2O emissions and calculated crop and management specific emission factors in four continuous rotations of corn (Zea mays) - soybean (Glycine max) - wheat (Triticum aestivum) under conventional tillage (CT), zero tillage (NT), low chemical input (LI), and biologically (Org) based management. Two of these systems (LI and Org) included winter cover crops, red clover (Trifolium pratense) or ray (Secale cereale). While average soil N2O fluxes in all systems where similar (2.9±0.2 to 3.8±0.5 g N2O-N ha-1 d-1), there was a significant interaction of total emissions with crop and phase. Surprisingly, the lowest total emissions from the corn period of the rotation were from CT, and the highest from LI, with 608±4 and 983±8 g N2O-N ha-1 crop year-1, respectively. Total emissions during the wheat period of the rotation showed the opposite trend, with total emissions of 942±7 and 524±38 g N2O-N ha-1 crop year-1, for CT ant LI, respectively. Total emissions from the soybean period of the rotation were highest under NT and lowest under CT management (526±5 and 296±2 g N2O-N ha-1 crop year-1, respectively). Emission efficiency, N2O emitted

  4. 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. PMID:26950640

  5. Mapping and determinism of soil microbial community distribution across an agricultural landscape

    PubMed Central

    Constancias, Florentin; Terrat, Sébastien; Saby, Nicolas P A; Horrigue, Walid; Villerd, Jean; Guillemin, Jean-Philippe; Biju-Duval, Luc; Nowak, Virginie; Dequiedt, Samuel; Ranjard, Lionel; Chemidlin Prévost-Bouré, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    Despite the relevance of landscape, regarding the spatial patterning of microbial communities and the relative influence of environmental parameters versus human activities, few investigations have been conducted at this scale. Here, we used a systematic grid to characterize the distribution of soil microbial communities at 278 sites across a monitored agricultural landscape of 13 km². Molecular microbial biomass was estimated by soil DNA recovery and bacterial diversity by 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing. Geostatistics provided the first maps of microbial community at this scale and revealed a heterogeneous but spatially structured distribution of microbial biomass and diversity with patches of several hundreds of meters. Variance partitioning revealed that both microbial abundance and bacterial diversity distribution were highly dependent of soil properties and land use (total variance explained ranged between 55% and 78%). Microbial biomass and bacterial richness distributions were mainly explained by soil pH and texture whereas bacterial evenness distribution was mainly related to land management. Bacterial diversity (richness, evenness, and Shannon index) was positively influenced by cropping intensity and especially by soil tillage, resulting in spots of low microbial diversity in soils under forest management. Spatial descriptors also explained a small but significant portion of the microbial distribution suggesting that landscape configuration also shapes microbial biomass and bacterial diversity. PMID:25833770

  6. Mapping and determinism of soil microbial community distribution across an agricultural landscape.

    PubMed

    Constancias, Florentin; Terrat, Sébastien; Saby, Nicolas P A; Horrigue, Walid; Villerd, Jean; Guillemin, Jean-Philippe; Biju-Duval, Luc; Nowak, Virginie; Dequiedt, Samuel; Ranjard, Lionel; Chemidlin Prévost-Bouré, Nicolas

    2015-06-01

    Despite the relevance of landscape, regarding the spatial patterning of microbial communities and the relative influence of environmental parameters versus human activities, few investigations have been conducted at this scale. Here, we used a systematic grid to characterize the distribution of soil microbial communities at 278 sites across a monitored agricultural landscape of 13 km². Molecular microbial biomass was estimated by soil DNA recovery and bacterial diversity by 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing. Geostatistics provided the first maps of microbial community at this scale and revealed a heterogeneous but spatially structured distribution of microbial biomass and diversity with patches of several hundreds of meters. Variance partitioning revealed that both microbial abundance and bacterial diversity distribution were highly dependent of soil properties and land use (total variance explained ranged between 55% and 78%). Microbial biomass and bacterial richness distributions were mainly explained by soil pH and texture whereas bacterial evenness distribution was mainly related to land management. Bacterial diversity (richness, evenness, and Shannon index) was positively influenced by cropping intensity and especially by soil tillage, resulting in spots of low microbial diversity in soils under forest management. Spatial descriptors also explained a small but significant portion of the microbial distribution suggesting that landscape configuration also shapes microbial biomass and bacterial diversity. PMID:25833770

  7. A Spatial Data Model Desing For The Management Of Agricultural Data (Farmer, Agricultural Land And Agricultural Production)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taşkanat, Talha; İbrahim İnan, Halil

    2016-04-01

    Since the beginning of the 2000s, it has been conducted many projects such as Agricultural Sector Integrated Management Information System, Agriculture Information System, Agricultural Production Registry System and Farmer Registry System by the Turkish Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock and the Turkish Statistical Institute in order to establish and manage better agricultural policy and produce better agricultural statistics in Turkey. Yet, it has not been carried out any study for the structuring of a system which can meet the requirements of different institutions and organizations that need similar agricultural data. It has been tried to meet required data only within the frame of the legal regulations from present systems. Whereas the developments in GIS (Geographical Information Systems) and standardization, and Turkey National GIS enterprise in this context necessitate to meet the demands of organizations that use the similar data commonly and to act in terms of a data model logic. In this study, 38 institutions or organization which produce and use agricultural data were detected, that and thanks to survey and interviews undertaken, their needs were tried to be determined. In this study which is financially supported by TUBITAK, it was worked out relationship between farmer, agricultural land and agricultural production data and all of the institutions and organizations in Turkey and in this context, it was worked upon the best detailed and effective possible data model. In the model design, UML which provides object-oriented design was used. In the data model, for the management of spatial data, sub-parcel data model was used. Thanks to this data model, declared and undeclared areas can be detected spatially, and thus declarations can be associated to sub-parcels. Within this framework, it will be able to developed agricultural policies as a result of acquiring more extensive, accurate, spatially manageable and easily updatable farmer and

  8. Energy Management Lesson Plans for Vocational Agriculture Instructors.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hedges, Lowell E., Ed.; Miller, Larry E., Ed.

    This notebook provides vocational agricultural teachers with 10 detailed lesson plans on the major topic of energy management in agriculture. The lesson plans present information about energy and the need to manage it wisely, using a problem-solving approach. Each lesson plan follows this format: lesson topic, lesson performance objectives,…

  9. Informing Lake Erie agriculture nutrient management via scenario evaluation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scavia, Donald; Kalcic, Margaret; Muenich, Rebecca Logsdon; Aloysius, Noel; Arnold, Jeffrey; Boles, Chelsie; Confesor, Remegio; DePinto, Joseph; Gildow, Marie; Martin, Jay; Read, Jennifer; Redder, Todd; Robertson, Dale; Sowa, Scott P.; Wang, Yu-Chen; White, Michael; Yen, Haw

    2016-01-01

    Therefore, the overall goal of this study was to identify potential options for agricultural management to reduce phosphorus loads and lessen future HABs in Lake Erie. We applied multiple watershed models to test the ability of a series of land management scenarios, developed in consultation with agricultural and environmental stakeholders, to reach the proposed targets. 

  10. Assessment of the soil water content temporal variations in an agricultural area of Galicia (NW Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mestas-Valero, Roger Manuel; Miras-Avalos, Jose Manuel; Paz-González, Antonio

    2010-05-01

    The direct and continuous assessment of the temporal variation on soil water content is of paramount importance for agricultural practices and, in particular, for the management of water resources. Soil water content is affected by many factors such as topography, particle size, clay and organic matter contents, and tillage systems. There are several techniques to measure or estimate soil water content. Among them, Frequency Domain Reflectometry (FDR) stands out. It is based on measuring the dielectrical constant of the soil environment. This technique allows to describe water dynamics in time and space, to determine the main patterns of soil moisture, the water uptake by roots, the evapotranspiration and the drainage. Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess the daily variation of soil water content in the root-influenced zone in plots devoted to maize and grassland as a function of the soil water volumetric content. The studied site is located in an experimental field of the Centre for Agricultural Research (CIAM) in Mabegondo located in the province of A Coruña, Spain (43°14'N, 8°15'W; 91 masl). The study was carried out from June 2008 to September 2009 in a field devoted to maize (Zea mays, L.) and another field devoted to grassland. The soil of these sites is silt-clay textured. Long-term mean annual temperature and rainfall figures are 13.3 °C and 1288 mm, respectively. During the study period, maize crop was subjected to conventional agricultural practices. A weekly evaluation of the phenological stage of the crop was performed. An EnviroSCAN FDR equipment, comprising six capacitance sensors, was installed in the studied sites following the manufacturer's recommendations, thus assuring a proper contact between the probe and the soil. Soil water content in the root-influenced zone (40 cm depth in grassland and 60 cm depth in maize were considered) was hourly monitored in 20 cm ranges (0-20 cm, 20-40 cm, and 40-60 cm) using FDR. Evaluations were

  11. Soil heterotrophic respiration responses to meteorology, soil types and cropping systems in a temperate agricultural watershed.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buysse, Pauline; Viaud, Valérie; Fléchard, Chris

    2015-04-01

    Within the context of Climate Change, a better understanding of soil organic matter dynamics is of considerable importance in agro-ecosystems, due to their large mitigation potential. This study aims at better understanding the process of soil heterotrophic respiration at the annual scale and at the watershed scale, with these temporal and spatial scales allowing an integration of the most important drivers: cropping systems and management, topography, soil types, soil organic carbon content and meteorological conditions. Twenty-four soil CO2 flux measurement sites - comprising three PVC collars each - were spread over the Naizin-Kervidy catchment (ORE AgrHys, 4.9 km², W. France) in March 2014. These sites were selected in order to represent most of the diversity in drainage classes, soil types and cropping systems. Soil CO2 flux measurements were performed about every ten to fifteen days at each site, starting from 20 March 2014, using the dynamic closed chamber system Li-COR 8100. Soil temperature and soil moisture content down to 5 cm depth were measured simultaneously. An empirical model taking the influence of meteorological drivers (soil temperature and soil water content) on soil CO2 fluxes was applied to each site and the different responses were analyzed with regard to site characteristics (topography, soil organic carbon content, soil microbial biomass, crop type, crop management,…) in order to determine the most important driving variables of soil heterotrophic respiration. The modeling objective is then to scale the fluxes measured at all sites up to the full watershed scale.

  12. 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...

  13. Surface soil changes during 12 years of pasture management in the Southern Piedmont USA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Surface soil characteristics are of key importance in assessing the sustainability of agricultural management systems. We evaluated the factorial combination of nutrient source (inorganic, mixed inorganic and organic, and organic as broiler litter) and forage utilization (unharvested, low and high ...

  14. Biochar soil amendments as a tool for climate change adaptation in PNW agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillips, C. L.; Trippe, K. M.; Murphy, B. A.; Beovich, A. V.; Griffith, S. M.

    2015-12-01

    Loss of snow pack, changing hydrographs, and increased temperatures and irrigation demands as a result of climate change all threaten to create transformational drought for growers in the Pacific Northwest. One approach for adapting to drought is to improve moisture retention through soil management practices. Recent efforts at the FSCRU to develop on-farm power have produced a biochar from gasification of seed mill waste that may prove useful as a tool for drought adaption. Testing of this biochar revealed that it contains no toxic elements, making it suitable as a soil amendment, and additions of 20 tonnes ha-1 in dryland wheat system showed improved soil moisture and yield increases of 250%. Persistent but weaker impacts were observed in growing years 2 and 3 following the biochar amendments. Here we present results from a series of laboratory and field studies characterizing how grass seed screening biochar, which is produced from a regionally abundant feedstock, impacted soil hydraulic and thermal properties, soil chemistry, and plant growth. Because of the liming qualities of gasified biochar, the greatest growth benefits are likely to be realized in acidified soils, a growing problem in the PNW. Although the persistence of biochar impacts in soil is still unknown, our results indicate that gasified biochar, particularly when utilized as part of a system of on-farm power production, waste reduction, and nutrient recycling, can improve agricultural sustainability in the context of climate change.

  15. A new baseline of organic carbon stock in European agricultural soils using a modelling approach.

    PubMed

    Lugato, Emanuele; Panagos, Panos; Bampa, Francesca; Jones, Arwyn; Montanarella, Luca

    2014-01-01

    Proposed European policy in the agricultural sector will place higher emphasis on soil organic carbon (SOC), both as an indicator of soil quality and as a means to offset CO2 emissions through soil carbon (C) sequestration. Despite detailed national SOC data sets in several European Union (EU) Member States, a consistent C stock estimation at EU scale remains problematic. Data are often not directly comparable, different methods have been used to obtain values (e.g. sampling, laboratory analysis) and access may be restricted. Therefore, any evolution of EU policies on C accounting and sequestration may be constrained by a lack of an accurate SOC estimation and the availability of tools to carry out scenario analysis, especially for agricultural soils. In this context, a comprehensive model platform was established at a pan-European scale (EU + Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Albania, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Norway) using the agro-ecosystem SOC model CENTURY. Almost 164 000 combinations of soil-climate-land use were computed, including the main arable crops, orchards and pasture. The model was implemented with the main management practices (e.g. irrigation, mineral and organic fertilization, tillage) derived from official statistics. The model results were tested against inventories from the European Environment and Observation Network (EIONET) and approximately 20 000 soil samples from the 2009 LUCAS survey, a monitoring project aiming at producing the first coherent, comprehensive and harmonized top-soil data set of the EU based on harmonized sampling and analytical methods. The CENTURY model estimation of the current 0-30 cm SOC stock of agricultural soils was 17.63 Gt; the model uncertainty estimation was below 36% in half of the NUTS2 regions considered. The model predicted an overall increase of this pool according to different climate-emission scenarios up to 2100, with C loss in the south and east of the area

  16. 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. PMID:24727598

  17. 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. PMID:24968305

  18. CQESTR Simulation of Soil Organic Matter Dynamics in Long-term Agricultural Experiments across USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gollany, H.; Liang, Y.; Albrecht, S.; Rickman, R.; Follett, R.; Wilhelm, W.; Novak, J.

    2009-04-01

    Soil organic matter (SOM) has important chemical (supplies nutrients, buffers and adsorbs harmful chemical compounds), biological (supports the growth of microorganisms and micro fauna), and physical (improves soil structure and soil tilth, stores water, and reduces surface crusting, water runoff) functions. The loss of 20 to 50% of soil organic carbon (SOC) from USA soils after converting native prairie or forest to production agriculture is well documented. Sustainable management practices for SOC is critical for maintaining soil productivity and responsible utilization of crop residues. As crop residues are targeted for additional uses (e.g., cellulosic ethanol feedstock) developing C models that predict change in SOM over time with change in management becomes increasingly important. CQESTR, pronounced "sequester," is a process-based C balance model that relates organic residue additions, crop management and soil tillage to SOM accretion or loss. The model works on daily time-steps and can perform long-term (100-year) simulations. Soil organic matter change is computed by maintaining a soil C budget for additions, such as crop residue or added amendments like manure, and organic C losses through microbial decomposition. Our objective was to simulate SOM changes in agricultural soils under a range of soil parent materials, climate and management systems using the CQESTR model. Long-term experiments (e.g. Champaign, IL, >100 yrs; Columbia, MO, >100 yrs; Lincoln, NE, 20 yrs) under various tillage practices, organic amendments, crop rotations, and crop residue removal treatments were selected for their documented history of the long-term effects of management practice on SOM dynamics. Simulated and observed values from the sites were significantly related (r2 = 94%, P < 0.001) with slope not significantly different from 1. Recent interest in crop residue removal for biofuel feedstock prompted us to address that as a management issue. CQESTR successfully simulated a

  19. Characterizing soil salinity in irrigated agriculture using a remote sensing approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abbas, Akhtar; Khan, Shahbaz; Hussain, Nisar; Hanjra, Munir A.; Akbar, Saud

    Managing salinity in irrigated agriculture is crucial for minimising its negative environmental impacts and for ensuring the long-term sustainability of irrigated agriculture. It demands establishing rapid monitoring systems that help develop sustainable management plans. Remote sensing offers several advantages over the conventional proximal methods to map and predict areas at salinity risk. This paper presents an integrated approach to characterize soil salinity using remotely-sensed data in the District Faisalabad, Punjab, Pakistan. The IRS-1B LISS-II digital data was acquired and analysed in combination with field data and topographical maps. Remotely-sensed data based salinity indices or band combinations were developed to monitor the occurrence pattern of salt-affected soils. Using supervised maximum likelihood classification, the images were classified into eight land use classes with an overall accuracy of around 90%. The classified images showed that 22.2% of the total area was under salt-affected soils in 1992. The occurrence pattern of salt-affected soils varied with positive and negative trends during 1992-1995 to a minimum of 10.6%. The delineation analysis into levels of saline soils revealed three types based on USDA classification (USDA, 1954). The slightly saline, moderately saline and strongly saline soils during 1992 were in the order of 15%, 3%, and 1% respectively. The interactive behaviour of salinity and sodicity and their combinations showed that saline-sodic soils occurred predominantly ranging from 6.9% to 17.3% of the salt-affected soils. The shallow watertable was found to be of hazardous quality in 28% of the study area. The relationship between salt-affected soils, waterlogged soils and groundwater quality revealed that 60-70% of the salt-affected soils occurred in shallow watertable areas during 1992-1995. The reuse of poor quality groundwater for irrigation and the failure of tile drainage system in the area are likely to further

  20. Biodiversity management of organic farming enhances agricultural sustainability

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Haitao; Meng, Jie; Bo, Wenjing; Cheng, Da; Li, Yong; Guo, Liyue; Li, Caihong; Zheng, Yanhai; Liu, Meizhen; Ning, Tangyuan; Wu, Guanglei; Yu, Xiaofan; Feng, Sufei; Wuyun, Tana; Li, Jing; Li, Lijun; Zeng, Yan; Liu, Shi V.; Jiang, Gaoming

    2016-01-01

    Organic farming (OF) has been believed to be capable of curtailing some hazardous effects associated with chemical farming (CF). However, debates also exist on whether OF can feed a world with increasing human population. We hypothesized that some improvements on OF may produce adequate crops and reduce environmental pollutions from CF. This paper makes comparative analysis of crop yield, soil organic matter and economic benefits within the practice on Biodiversity Management of Organic Farming (BMOF) at Hongyi Organic Farm (HOF) over eight years and between BMOF and CF. Linking crop production with livestock to maximal uses of by-products from each production and avoid xenobiotic chemicals, we have achieved beneficial improvement in soil properties, effective pest and weed control, and increased crop yields. After eight years experiment, we have obtained a gradual but stable increase in crop yields with a 9.6-fold increase of net income. The net income of HOF was 258,827 dollars and 24,423 dollars in 2014 and 2007 respectively. Thus, BMOF can not only feed more population, but also increase adaptive capacity of agriculture ecosystems and gain much higher economic benefits. PMID:27032369

  1. Biodiversity management of organic farming enhances agricultural sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Haitao; Meng, Jie; Bo, Wenjing; Cheng, Da; Li, Yong; Guo, Liyue; Li, Caihong; Zheng, Yanhai; Liu, Meizhen; Ning, Tangyuan; Wu, Guanglei; Yu, Xiaofan; Feng, Sufei; Wuyun, Tana; Li, Jing; Li, Lijun; Zeng, Yan; Liu, Shi V.; Jiang, Gaoming

    2016-04-01

    Organic farming (OF) has been believed to be capable of curtailing some hazardous effects associated with chemical farming (CF). However, debates also exist on whether OF can feed a world with increasing human population. We hypothesized that some improvements on OF may produce adequate crops and reduce environmental pollutions from CF. This paper makes comparative analysis of crop yield, soil organic matter and economic benefits within the practice on Biodiversity Management of Organic Farming (BMOF) at Hongyi Organic Farm (HOF) over eight years and between BMOF and CF. Linking crop production with livestock to maximal uses of by-products from each production and avoid xenobiotic chemicals, we have achieved beneficial improvement in soil properties, effective pest and weed control, and increased crop yields. After eight years experiment, we have obtained a gradual but stable increase in crop yields with a 9.6-fold increase of net income. The net income of HOF was 258,827 dollars and 24,423 dollars in 2014 and 2007 respectively. Thus, BMOF can not only feed more population, but also increase adaptive capacity of agriculture ecosystems and gain much higher economic benefits.

  2. Biodiversity management of organic farming enhances agricultural sustainability.

    PubMed

    Liu, Haitao; Meng, Jie; Bo, Wenjing; Cheng, Da; Li, Yong; Guo, Liyue; Li, Caihong; Zheng, Yanhai; Liu, Meizhen; Ning, Tangyuan; Wu, Guanglei; Yu, Xiaofan; Feng, Sufei; Wuyun, Tana; Li, Jing; Li, Lijun; Zeng, Yan; Liu, Shi V; Jiang, Gaoming

    2016-01-01

    Organic farming (OF) has been believed to be capable of curtailing some hazardous effects associated with chemical farming (CF). However, debates also exist on whether OF can feed a world with increasing human population. We hypothesized that some improvements on OF may produce adequate crops and reduce environmental pollutions from CF. This paper makes comparative analysis of crop yield, soil organic matter and economic benefits within the practice on Biodiversity Management of Organic Farming (BMOF) at Hongyi Organic Farm (HOF) over eight years and between BMOF and CF. Linking crop production with livestock to maximal uses of by-products from each production and avoid xenobiotic chemicals, we have achieved beneficial improvement in soil properties, effective pest and weed control, and increased crop yields. After eight years experiment, we have obtained a gradual but stable increase in crop yields with a 9.6-fold increase of net income. The net income of HOF was 258,827 dollars and 24,423 dollars in 2014 and 2007 respectively. Thus, BMOF can not only feed more population, but also increase adaptive capacity of agriculture ecosystems and gain much higher economic benefits. PMID:27032369

  3. 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

  4. United States Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service research in application technology for pest management.

    PubMed

    Smith, L A; Thomson, S J

    2003-01-01

    A research summary is presented that emphasizes ARS achievements in application technology over the past 2-3 years. Research focused on the improvement of agricultural pesticide application is important from the standpoint of crop protection as well as environmental safety. Application technology research is being actively pursued within the ARS, with a primary focus on application system development, drift management, efficacy enhancement and remote sensing. Research on application systems has included sensor-controlled hooded sprayers, new approaches to direct chemical injection, and aerial electrostatic sprayers. For aerial application, great improvements in on-board flow controllers permit accurate field application of chemicals. Aircraft parameters such as boom position and spray release height are being altered to determine their effect on drift. Other drift management research has focused on testing of low-drift nozzles, evaluation of pulsed spray technologies and evaluation of drift control adjuvants. Research on the use of air curtain sprayers in orchards, air-assist sprayers for row crops and vegetables, and air deflectors on aircraft has documented improvements in application efficacy. Research has shown that the fate of applied chemicals is influenced by soil properties, and this has implications for herbicide efficacy and dissipation in the environment. Remote sensing systems are being used to target areas in the field where pests are present so that spray can be directed to only those areas. Soil and crop conditions influence propensity for weeds and insects to proliferate in any given field area. Research has indicated distinct field patterns favorable for weed growth and insect concentration, which can provide further assistance for targeted spraying. PMID:12846320

  5. Effects of Long-term Soil and Crop Management on Soil Hydraulic Properties for Claypan Soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Regional and national soil maps and associated databases of soil properties have been developed to help land managers make decisions based on soil characteristics. Hydrologic modelers also utilize soil hydraulic properties provided in these databases, in which soil characterization is based on avera...

  6. Carbon and Phosphorus in soil particulate fraction: effect of continuous agriculture, tillage and fertilization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wyngaard, N.; Echeverrıa, H. E.; Vidaurreta, A.; Picone, L. I.; Divito, G. A.

    2012-04-01

    In Argentinean Pampas region, the practice of intensive agriculture has diminished total organic carbon (TOC) content in soil. This degradation process can impact over phosphorus (P) organic fractions associated to it, and therefore limit soil capacity to provide P through mineralization. Along this line, P content in soil particulate fraction (PF) has been proposed as an index to estimate this capacity. The aims of this work were to evaluate (1) the effect of continuous agriculture, tillage and P fertilization over TOC and P fractions content in soil and PF, and (2) the stability of P-PF as a mineralization index. To this end, a long term experiment initiated in 2001 in Balcarce, Argentina, under continuous agriculture, was analyzed. There, two tillage systems - conventional till (CT) and no till (NT) - and two fertilization treatments - nitrogen (N) and N + P (NP) - were evaluated. Phosphorus rate was 30 kg ha-1 year-1. In each plot, the following parameters were determined in 2002, 2005, 2008 and 2011: TOC, P Bray, total P (Pt), inorganic P (Pi), and organic P (Po) content in the whole soil and in the PF. Also, C supply by residues and P soil balance during the experiment were calculated, and the P sorption capacity was determined in samples from 2011. C supply was greater in CT (7% relative to NT) and in NP (14% relative to N). However, TOC in soil was not modified neither by tillage or fertilization. Even though, C in the PF decreased (3% annually) by the use of continuous agriculture. This reduction was positively associated to the one observed in other soil properties as Pt, Pi and Po in the PF. P fertilization lessened this reduction in Pt (18,9 mg kg-1 in N and 23,1 mg kg-1 in NP in 2011) and Pi (4,2 mg kg-1 in N and 6,2 mg kg-1 in NP in 2011), but not in Po. This indicates that, Po is affected by management practices and, contrary to Pt, is stable to fertilization. Therefore Po can be studied as a potential P mineralization index. The difference among P

  7. Autotrophic growth of nitrifying community in an agricultural soil

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Weiwei; Zhang, Caixia; Zeng, Xiaowei; Feng, Youzhi; Weng, Jiahua; Lin, Xiangui; Zhu, Jianguo; Xiong, Zhengqin; Xu, Jian; Cai, Zucong; Jia, Zhongjun

    2011-01-01

    The two-step nitrification process is an integral part of the global nitrogen cycle, and it is accomplished by distinctly different nitrifiers. By combining DNA-based stable isotope probing (SIP) and high-throughput pyrosequencing, we present the molecular evidence for autotrophic growth of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB), ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) and nitrite-oxidizing bacteria (NOB) in agricultural soil upon ammonium fertilization. Time-course incubation of SIP microcosms indicated that the amoA genes of AOB was increasingly labeled by 13CO2 after incubation for 3, 7 and 28 days during active nitrification, whereas labeling of the AOA amoA gene was detected to a much lesser extent only after a 28-day incubation. Phylogenetic analysis of the 13C-labeled amoA and 16S rRNA genes revealed that the Nitrosospira cluster 3-like sequences dominate the active AOB community and that active AOA is affiliated with the moderately thermophilic Nitrososphaera gargensis from a hot spring. The higher relative frequency of Nitrospira-like NOB in the 13C-labeled DNA suggests that it may be more actively involved in nitrite oxidation than Nitrobacter-like NOB. Furthermore, the acetylene inhibition technique showed that 13CO2 assimilation by AOB, AOA and NOB occurs only when ammonia oxidation is not blocked, which provides strong hints for the chemolithoautotrophy of nitrifying community in complex soil environments. These results show that the microbial community of AOB and NOB dominates the nitrification process in the agricultural soil tested. PMID:21326337

  8. Physicochemical Characterization of Potential Mobile Organic Matter In Five Typical German Agricultural Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Séquaris, J.-M.; Lewandowski, H.; Vereecken, H.

    Organic matter (OM) in soils plays an important role, i.e., in maintaining soil structure or as source of nutrients. OM is mainly adsorbed at the surface of clay minerals and oxides and remains mostly immobile. However, mobile OM in dissolved form (DOM) or associated with water dispersible colloids (WDC) in soil water may influence trans- port of pollutants. The goal of this study is to compare 5 typical German agricultural soils in terms of distribution and quality of OM in the top soil (0-15 cm). The present report focuses on the physicochemical characterization of potential mobile OM so- lutions obtained after physical fractionation of soil materials based on sedimentation after a prolonged shaking in water or electrolyte solutions. Three soil fractions dif- fering in particle size were separated in function of sedimentation time: a colloidal fraction: < 2 ţm; a microaggregate fraction: 2-20 ţm and a sediment fraction: > 20 ţm. The soil electrolyte phase containing the DOM fraction was obtained by a high-speed centrifugation of the colloidal phase. After a water or low electrolyte concentration (« 1 mM Ca2+) extraction, it can be shown that the mobile fraction of OM or OC (organic carbon) is distributed between the colloidal and the electrolyte phases in a concentration ratio range of 10-40 to 1. A less mobile OC fraction is associated with the microaggregate fraction while immobile OC remains adsorbed in the sediment fraction. An increasing OC and total-N content with diminishing particle-size of soil (colloidal and microaggregate fractions) has been confirmed. A higher OC input due to special soil management is sensitively detected in fractions with a greater particle size (sediment fraction). Increasing the Ca2+ concentration up to 10 mM during the water extraction diminishes the DOC concentration by an average factor of 3 while the OC associated with the dispersed colloids (OCWDC) vanished almost completely. Thus, a critical coagulation concentration of

  9. Relating management practices and nutrient export in agricultural watersheds of the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sprague, Lori A.; Gronberg, Jo Ann M.

    2012-01-01

    Relations between riverine export (load) of total nitrogen (N) and total phosphorus (P) from 133 large agricultural watersheds in the United States and factors affecting nutrient transport were evaluated using empirical regression models. After controlling for anthropogenic inputs and other landscape factors affecting nutrient transport-such as runoff, precipitation, slope, number of reservoirs, irrigated area, and area with subsurface tile drains-the relations between export and the area in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) (N) and conservation tillage (P) were positive. Additional interaction terms indicated that the relations between export and the area in conservation tillage (N) and the CRP (P) progressed from being clearly positive when soil erodibility was low or moderate, to being close to zero when soil erodibility was higher, to possibly being slightly negative only at the 90th to 95th percentile of soil erodibility values. Possible explanations for the increase in nutrient export with increased area in management practices include greater transport of soluble nutrients from areas in conservation tillage; lagged response of stream quality to implementation of management practices because of nitrogen transport in groundwater, time for vegetative cover to mature, and/or prior accumulation of P in soils; or limitations in the management practice and stream monitoring data sets. If lags are occurring, current nutrient export from agricultural watersheds may still be reflecting the influence of agricultural land-use practices that were in place before the implementation of these management practices.

  10. 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. PMID:16832047

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2006-01-01

    We investigated the fate of soil nutrients after centuries of indigenous dryland agriculture in Hawai‘i using a coupled geochemical and archaeological approach. Beginning ≈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. PMID:16832047

  12. Soil physical quality changes under different management systems after 10 years in Argentinian Humid Pampa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costa, J. L.; Aparicio, V. C.; Cerda, A.

    2014-08-01

    The Argentinian Humid Pampa extends over about 60 million ha, 90% of which are agricultural lands. The southeast of the Buenos Aires Province is part of the Humid Pampa (1 206 162 ha). The main crops are wheat, sunflower, corn and soybean. The management systems used in the area are: moldboard plow (MP), chisel plow (CP) and no-till (NT). Excessive soil cultivation under MP causes decreases in the soil organic carbon content (SOC). Adopting NT may reduce the effects of intensive agriculture, through the maintenance and accumulation of SOC. However, the soil compaction under NT causes degradation of the soil structure, reduces the soil water availability and reduces the soil hydraulic conductivity. We evaluated the evolution of the soil physical parameters in three management systems. After 10 years of experiments in four farmers' fields, we found that: soil bulk density was significantly higher under NT. The change in mean weight diameter (CMWD) of aggregates increased as the management system became more intensive. We did not find significant differences in time and management systems in hydraulic conductivity at tension (h)0 cm and h=20 cm. The reduction in total porosity under NT is mainly a product of a reduction in the percentage of mesopores in the soil. Time had no statistically significant effect on the SOC content. The management system did not affect the yields of crop. In this work, the results indicate a modification of some soil physical parameters (porosity, near-saturated hydraulic conductivity, soil structure) due to uninterrupted agricultural production.

  13. Nitrous oxide emissions in southern Poland from agricultural soils under various tillage conditions and from urban soils under strong anthropopression

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galkowski, M.; Bartyzel, J.; Zięba, D.; Ciaciek, K.; Nęcki, J. M.

    2015-12-01

    We present the results of field measurements performed at: (i) the agricultural sites managed by Institute of Plant Acclimatization and Husbandry (ZDHAR) in Grodkowice (Malopolska, Poland), and (ii) the urban sites located in Kraków, Poland. For agricultural measurements, several sites have been selected for measurements of N2O emissions during two campaigns - in spring and autumn 2014. The investigated crops were chosen to represent the regional agriculture and included wheat, canola and maize under various tillage conditions, as well as an uncultivated grassland as a control site. For urban environment, measurement campaigns have been performed at the university's campus lawn and at a large urban meadow, both located in the centre of Kraków agglomeration. The sites were chosen to be representative of the urban green areas typical of Central Europe. The static chamber method was chosen to quantify soil-atmosphere N2O fluxes. Chamber enclosures have been performed every 3-5 days, depending on the conditions prevailing at the sites during the intermediate periods. From each enclosure, five 50-ml air samples have been collected for subsequent analysis of nitrous oxide concentrations. Well-established gas chromatography methods, with a precision of a single N2O measurement better than 0.5 ppb were employed. The measured concentrations were then used in a linear emission model to calculate N2O fluxes. Results of agricultural campaigns show large variability of N2O emissions, with maximum fluxes in the order of 120 ng N-N2O m-2 s-1, driven mainly by availability of nitrogen in soil and water. For fertilized sites, largest emissions values were observed several days after the rainfall events. Notable differences between sites under alternative tillage techniques have been observed. Observations at the urban sites revealed significant fluxes of N2O, with average daily values in some cases exceeding those observed at agricultural fields.

  14. Use of airborne hyperspectral imagery to map soil parameters in tilled agricultural fields

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hively, W. Dean; McCarty, Gregory W.; Reeves, James B., III; Lang, Megan W.; Oesterling, Robert A.; Delwiche, Stephen R.

    2011-01-01

    Soil hyperspectral reflectance imagery was obtained for six tilled (soil) agricultural fields using an airborne imaging spectrometer (400–2450 nm, ~10 nm resolution, 2.5 m spatial resolution). Surface soil samples (n = 315) were analyzed for carbon content, particle size distribution, and 15 agronomically important elements (Mehlich-III extraction). When partial least squares (PLS) regression of imagery-derived reflectance spectra was used to predict analyte concentrations, 13 of the 19 analytes were predicted with R2 > 0.50, including carbon (0.65), aluminum (0.76), iron (0.75), and silt content (0.79). Comparison of 15 spectral math preprocessing treatments showed that a simple first derivative worked well for nearly all analytes. The resulting PLS factors were exported as a vector of coefficients and used to calculate predicted maps of soil properties for each field. Image smoothing with a 3 × 3 low-pass filter prior to spectral data extraction improved prediction accuracy. The resulting raster maps showed variation associated with topographic factors, indicating the effect of soil redistribution and moisture regime on in-field spatial variability. High-resolution maps of soil analyte concentrations can be used to improve precision environmental management of farmlands.

  15. Ecological value of soil carbon management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Management of soil carbon is critical to the climate change debate, as well as to the long-term productivity and ecosystem resilience of the biosphere. Soil organic carbon is a key ecosystem property that indicates inherent productivity of land, controls soil biological functioning and diversity, r...

  16. Case Analysis of Farm Agriculture Machinery Informatization Management Network System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Hui; Wang, Xi; Zhuang, Weidong

    In the process of China's agricultural modernization, especially agricultural machinery modernization, in terms of equipment, we've chose the way that foreign imports (and domestic research) with the combination of self-developed, in the software, it is difficult to fully apply this approach, the specific reasons are: the modernization of China's agriculture development model is diversified, it is difficult to find a unified management model, even in the scale of operations of the representative state-owned farms and the abroad farms are also very different management models. Due to various types of growth models of biological complexity, diverse climatic and geographical environment factors, coupled with the characteristics such as long cycle of agricultural production, high input, high-risk, and decentralized management, industrial management mode it is very difficult to apply. Moreover, the application of modern management tools is also difficult to quantify the benefits, leading to the current research and application are in a state of comparatively dropped behind.

  17. 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. PMID:27057992

  18. Oxidation of humic substances supports denitrification reactions in agricultural soils.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Trump, J. I.; Coates, J. D.

    2007-12-01

    Humic substances (HS) are a ubiquitous, recalcitrant, and diverse class of compounds arising from degradation and condensation of plant and microbial biopolymers. Many bacteria oxidize hydroquinones within humic substances to their quinone analogs, providing electrons for respiratory processes such as nitrate reduction. Microbial hydroquinone oxidation contributes to the redox state of HS and supports denitrification, which may be of import to agricultural soils where nitrate retention is critical and HS are prevalent. Most probable number counts were performed on soils collected from a Nebraska farm, with the model humic hydroquinone 2,6- anthrahydroquinone disulfonate (AHDS) serving as an electron donor and nitrate as the electron acceptor. Results indicated that AHDS oxidizing, nitrate reducing bacteria were present in soils from bluegrass fields (104 cells/g) and aspen groves (106 cells/g), as well as in plots of corn (106 cells/g), and soybean treated (106 cells/g) and un-treated (105 cells/g) with pig slurry. These results demonstrate that microorganisms participating in the proposed metabolism are prevalent within agricultural soils. Upflow glass columns were constructed, containing a support matrix of glass beads amended with 10% w/w soil from the corn plot previously mentioned. All columns were subjected to a continual flow of phosphate-buffered water amended with sodium nitrate. Above the point source for nitrate injection, phosphate-buffered water containing electron donor treatments were continually injected. The impacts of electron donor treatments (no donor, oxidized HS, reduced HS, and acetate) on denitrification and other geochemical parameters were observed. Column studies were able to resolve effects of electron donor treatment both spatially as a function of distance from the injection point source, and temporally, as a function of time of donor treatment. Four sample ports in each column were routinely analyzed for concentrations of nitrate

  19. Environmental variables controlling nitric oxide :emissions from agricultural soils in the southeast united states

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sullivan, Lee J.; Moore, Thomas C.; Aneja, Viney P.; Robarge, Wayne P.; Pierce, Thomas E.; Geron, Chris; Gay, Bruce

    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 during a similar time of year on the same soil type was characterized by severe moisture stress conditions. The summer of 1994 provided a more diverse weather pattern and as a result represented a set of measurements more typical of soil temperature and soil moisture relationships for the southeastern United States. In order to ascertain NO flux response to fertilization and crop type, measurements were made on fields with three distinct fertilizer practices and crop types, namely corn, cotton, and soybean. Average NO fluxes were 21.9 ± 18.6, 4.3 ± 3.7, and 2.1 ± 0.9 ng N m -2 s -1, respectively, for corn, cotton, and soybean. NO flux increased exponentially with soil temperature when soil water content was not limiting [> 30% Water Filled Pore Space (%WFPS)]. During conditions when soil water content was limiting, NO flux was inhibited and had no relationship with soil temperature. Above a value of 30% WFPS, increasing soil water content had no effect on NO emissions (the upper limit of %WFPS could not be estimated due to a lack of data in this regime). Below 30% WFPS, increasing soil moisture increased NO production and lower soil moistures led to decreased NO flux. Increased nitrogen fertilization rates led to higher NO fluxes. However, differences in physiological growth stages between crops confound extractable nitrogen values as decomposing root biomass in the mature corn crop added an undetermined amount of available nitrogen to the soil. Interactions between soil water content, fertilizer application, and soil temperature make it very difficult to predict day-to-day variations of NO flux from our data. There appears to be no simple relation between NO flux and the environmental

  20. 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. PMID:26093220

  1. Effects of straw carbon input on carbon dynamics in agricultural soils: a meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chang; Lu, Meng; Cui, Jun; Li, Bo; Fang, Changming

    2014-05-01

    Straw return has been widely recommended as an environmentally friendly practice to manage carbon (C) sequestration in agricultural ecosystems. However, the overall trend and magnitude of changes in soil C in response to straw return remain uncertain. In this meta-analysis, we calculated the response ratios of soil organic C (SOC) concentrations, greenhouse gases (GHGs) emission, nutrient contents and other important soil properties to straw addition in 176 published field studies. Our results indicated that straw return significantly increased SOC concentration by 12.8 ± 0.4% on average, with a 27.4 ± 1.4% to 56.6 ± 1.8% increase in soil active C fraction. CO2 emission increased in both upland (27.8 ± 2.0%) and paddy systems (51.0 ± 2.0%), while CH4 emission increased by 110.7 ± 1.2% only in rice paddies. N2 O emission has declined by 15.2 ± 1.1% in paddy soils but increased by 8.3 ± 2.5% in upland soils. Responses of macro-aggregates and crop yield to straw return showed positively linear with increasing SOC concentration. Straw-C input rate and clay content significantly affected the response of SOC. A significant positive relationship was found between annual SOC sequestered and duration, suggesting that soil C saturation would occur after 12 years under straw return. Overall, straw return was an effective means to improve SOC accumulation, soil quality, and crop yield. Straw return-induced improvement of soil nutrient availability may favor crop growth, which can in turn increase ecosystem C input. Meanwhile, the analysis on net global warming potential (GWP) balance suggested that straw return increased C sink in upland soils but increased C source in paddy soils due to enhanced CH4 emission. Our meta-analysis suggested that future agro-ecosystem models and cropland management should differentiate the effects of straw return on ecosystem C budget in upland and paddy soils. PMID:24395454

  2. Soil water and vegetation management for cleanup of selenium contaminated soils

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1989-05-01

    Over the past year scientists have initiatived a new effort aimed at developing a soil water and vegetation management plan for Kesterson Reservoir. The plan is intended to result in a gradual depletion of the inventory of soluble selenium at the Reservoir through a combination agriculturally oriented practices that enhance dissipation of selenium from near surface soils. Agriculturally oriented processes that will contribute to depletion include microbial volatilization from the soils, direct volatilization by living plants, decomposition and volatilization of selenium-bearing vegetation, harvest and removal of seleniferous vegetation, and leaching. The benefits of using this integrated approach are that (1) no single mechanism needs to be relied upon to detoxify the soils, (2) a stable plant community can be established during this period so that impacts to wildlife can be more easily evaluated and controlled, (3) cleanup and management of the site can be carried out in a cost-effective manner. The management plan is also intended to facilitate control over wildlife exposure to selenium contaminated biota by creating a well managed environment. The majority of research associated with this new effort is being carried out at a 200 m by 50 m test plot in Pond 7. A two-line irrigation system , providing local groundwater as an irrigation supply, has been installed. Through an intensive program of soil water sampling, soil gas sampling, vegetation sampling, groundwater monitoring, and soil moisture monitoring, the mass balance for selenium under irrigated conditions is being evaluated. These studies, in conjunction with supplementary laboratory experiments will provide the information needed to develop an optimal management plan for the site. 23 refs., 38 figs., 10 tabs.

  3. Deriving soil function maps to assess related ecosystem services using imaging spectroscopy in the Lyss agricultural area, Switzerland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diek, Sanne; de Jong, Rogier; Braun, Daniela; Böhler, Jonas; Schaepman, Michael

    2014-05-01

    Soils play an important role in the benefits offered by ecosystems services. In densely populated Switzerland soils are a scarce resource, with high pressure on services ranging from urban expansion to over-utilization. Key change drivers include erosion, soil degradation, land management change and (chemical) pollution, which should be taken into consideration. Therefore there is an emerging need for an integrated, sustainable and efficient system assessing the management of soil and land as a resource. The use of remote sensing can offer spatio-temporal and quantitative information of extended areas. In particular imaging spectroscopy has shown to perfectly complement existing sampling schemes as secondary information for digital soil mapping. Although only the upper-most layer of soil interacts with light when using reflectance spectroscopy, it still can offer valuable information that can be utilized by farmers and decision makers. Fully processed airborne imaging spectrometer data from APEX as well as land cover classification for the agricultural area in Lyss were available. Based on several spectral analysis methods we derived multiple soil properties, including soil organic matter, soil texture, and mineralogy; complemented by vegetation parameters, including leaf area index, chlorophyll content, pigment distribution, and water content. The surface variables were retrieved using a combination of index-based and physically-based retrievals. Soil properties in partly to fully vegetated areas were interpolated using regression kriging based methods. This allowed the continuous assessment of potential soil functions as well as non-contiguous maps of abundances of combined soil and vegetation parameters. Based on a simple regression model we could make a rough estimate of ecosystem services. This provided the opportunity to look at the differences between the interpolated soil function maps and the non-contiguous (but combined) vegetation and soil function maps

  4. Crop monoculture rather than agriculture reduces the spatial turnover of soil bacterial communities at a regional scale.

    PubMed

    Figuerola, Eva L M; Guerrero, Leandro D; Türkowsky, Dominique; Wall, Luis G; Erijman, Leonardo

    2015-03-01

    The goal of this study was to investigate the spatial turnover of soil bacterial communities in response to environmental changes introduced by the practices of soybean monoculture or crop rotations, relative to grassland soils. Amplicon sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene was used to analyse bacterial diversity in producer fields through three successive cropping cycles within one and a half years, across a regional scale of the Argentinean Pampas. Unlike local diversity, which was not significantly affected by land use type, agricultural management had a strong influence on β-diversity patterns. Distributions of pairwise distances between all soils samples under soybean monoculture had significantly lower β-diversity and narrower breadth compared with distributions of pairwise distances between soils managed with crop rotation. Interestingly, good agricultural practices had similar degree of β-diversity as natural grasslands. The higher phylogenetic relatedness of bacterial communities in soils under monoculture across the region was likely determined by the observed loss of endemic species, and affected mostly to phyla with low regional diversity, such as Acidobacteria, Verrucomicrobia and the candidates phyla SPAM and WS3. These results suggest that the implementation of good agricultural practices, including crop rotation, may be critical for the long-term conservation of soil biodiversity. PMID:24803003

  5. The impact of land use on biological activity of agriculture soils. An State-of-the-Art

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; Cerdà, Artemi; García-Orenes, Fuensanta

    2014-05-01

    Biological activity is a crucial soil property affecting soil sustainability and crop production. The unsuitable land management can lead to a loss in soil fertility and a reduction in the abundance and diversity of soil microorganisms. This can be as a consequence of high erosion rates due to the mismanagement of farmers (Cerdà et al., 2009a). However ecological practices and some organic amendments can promote the activities of soil microbial communities, and increase its biodiversity (García-Orenes et al., 2010; 2013). The impact of land use in microbiological properties of agriculture soil are presented and discussed in this review. Biological activity is quantified by microbial soil communities and soil enzyme activities to interpret the effects of soil management practices (Morugán-Coronado et al., 2013). The aim of biological activity tests is to give a reliable description of the state of agricultural soils under the effect of different land uses. Numerous methods have been used to determine the impact of land uses on microbiological properties. The current used methods for detecting microbial diversity are based on molecular techniques centered on the 16S and 18S rRNA encoding sequences such as CLPP: community-level physiological profiles; T-RFLP: terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism; DGGE: denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis; OFRG: oligonucleotide fingerprinting of rRNA genes, ARISA: Automated Ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis, SSCP: single-strand conformation polymorphism. And techniques based on the cellular composition of the microbes such as PLFA: phospholipid fatty acid analysis. Other methods are based on the activity of microbes, for example, Cmic: microbial biomass carbon; SIR: substrate induced respiration; BSR: Basal soil respiration; qCO2 metabolic quotient; enzymatic activities (Urease, ß-glucosidase and phosphatase) (Deng, 2012). Agricultural land management can contribute to increased rates of erosion due to

  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. Overview of engineering and agricultural design considerations of the Raft River soil-warming and heat-dissipation experiment

    SciTech Connect

    Stanley, N.E.; Engen, I.A.; Yrene, C.S.

    1982-04-01

    The engineering and agricultural considerations of the Raft River soil-warming and heat-dissipation experiment are presented. The experiment is designed to investigate the thermal characteristics of a subsurface pipe network for cooling power-plant condenser effluent, and crop responses to soil warming in an open-field plot. The subsurface soil-warming system is designed to dissipate approximately 100 kW of heat from circulating, 38/sup 0/C geothermal water. Summer operating conditions in the Raft River area, located on the Intermountain Plateau are emphasized. Design is based on the thermal characteristics of the local soil, the climate of the Raft River Valley, management practices for normal agriculture, and the need for an unheated control plot. The resultant design calls for 38-mm polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipe in a grid composed of parallel loops, for dissipating heat into a 0.8-hectare experimental plot.

  8. Continuous monitoring of surface CO2 flux and soil gas concentrations in an agricultural soil under the snow cover manipulation experiment in Hokkaido, northern Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohkubo, S.; Yanai, Y.; Nagata, O.; Iwata, Y.; Hirota, T.

    2010-12-01

    In the eastern part of Hokkaido, northern Japan, a timing of snow fall has been getting earlier and soil-frost depth has been decreasing in agricultural land year by year since late 1980. It is reported that the significant decrease in frost depths was due to the early development of snow cover that insulates ground from cold. Agricultural land is usually managed by human operations and so there is a possibility of controlling greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. It is therefore important how snow and soil frost influence the dynamics of GHGs. CO2 is one of the main GHGs. We continuously and automatically observed CO2 flux above soil or snow surface and CO2 concentration in soil at 10 cm depth, using automatically controlled chambers and CO2 sensors over agricultural land at Sapporo site (141°25’E, 43°05’N) in northern Japan. Observations were conducted from 25 September 2009 to 31 May 2010, with occasional manual observations. We prepared two experimental plots, an untreated control and a snow cover removal plot, to evaluate the influence of soil-frost and snow depth on CO2 dynamics. Acquired automatic data in CO2 flux and soil gas CO2 concentration generally have diurnal variations which had a positive peak in the daytime as affected by soil temperature, except winter period. Rainfall increased CO2 flux and soil gas CO2 concentration. During soil freezing and snow covered period, few CO2 flux was observed. Soil gas CO2 concentration had been increasing during soil freezing period. After soil thawing, CO2 flux had increased and CO2 concentration had decreased temporarily. These phenomena being seen regardless of soil temperature, supportred that snow and soil-frost layer prevent gas diffusion to the air. The gas diffusion coefficient calculated from CO2 flux and soil gas CO2 concentration during soil gas CO2 concentration had been increasing during soil freezing period, was less than about one order of magnitudes of those in other periods. Temperature response

  9. Unexpected stimulation of soil methane uptake by bio-based residue application: An emerging property of agricultural soils offsetting greenhouse gas balance.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ho, Adrian; Reim, Andreas; Ruijs, Rienke; Meima-Franke, Marion; Termorshuizen, Aad; de Boer, Wietse; Putten, Wim H. vd.; Bodelier, Paul L. E.

    2016-04-01

    some residues also increased crop (common wheat; Triticum aestivum) yield. 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 compensate for the loss of the methane sink function, while increasing crop production following land-use change.

  10. ECOLOGY AND MANAGEMENT OF AGRICULTURAL DRAINAGE DITCHES: A LITERATURE REVIEW

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural drainage ditches are headwater streams that have been modified or constructed for agricultural drainage, and are often used in conjunction with tile drains. These modified streams are a common landscape feature in Ohio, and constitute 25% of stream habitat within the state. Management o...

  11. Ecology and management of agricultural drainage ditches: a literature review

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural drainage ditches are headwater streams that have been modified or constructed for agricultural drainage, and are often used in conjunction with tile drains. These modified streams are a common landscape feature in Ohio, and constitute 25% of stream habitat within the state. Management o...

  12. Interdependence of soil and agricultural practice in a two - year phytoremediation in situ experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nwaichi, Eucharia; Onyeike, Eugene; Frac, Magdalena; Iwo, Godknows

    2016-04-01

    A two - year plant - based soil clean - up was carried out at a crude oil spill agricultural site in a Niger Delta community in Nigeria to access further clean - up potentials of Cymbopogon citratus. Applied diagnostic ratios identified mixed petrogenic and pyrogenic sources as the main contributors of PAHs. Up to 90.8% sequestration was obtained for carcinogenic PAHs especially Benz (a) pyrene in a 2 - phase manner. A community level approach for assessing patterns of sole carbon source utilization by mixed microbial samples was employed to differentiate spatial and temporal changes in the soil microbial communities. In relation to pollution, soil conditioning notably decreased the lag times and showed mixed effects for colour development rates, maximum absorbance and the overall community pattern. For rate and utilization of different carbon substrates in BIOLOG wells, after day 3, in comparison to control soil communities, contamination with hydrocarbons and associated types increased amines and amides consumption. Consumption of carbohydrates in all polluted and unamended regimes decreased markedlyin comparison to those cultivated with C. citratus. We found a direct relationship between cellulose breakdown, measurable with B-glucosidase activity, organic matter content and CO2 realease within all soils in the present study. Organic amendment rendered most studied contaminants unavailable for uptake in preference to inorganic fertilizer in both study years. Generally, phytoremediation improved significantly the microbial community activity and thus would promote ecosystem restoration in relation to most patronised techniques. Supplementation with required nutrients, in a long - term design would present many ecological benefits. Keywords: Agricultural soils; Recovery; Hydrocarbon pollution; Ecology; Management practice.

  13. Extracting DNA of nematodes communities from Argentine Pampas agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Mondino, Eduardo A; Covacevich, Fernanda; Studdert, Guillermo A; Pimentel, João P; Berbara, Ricardo L L

    2015-01-01

    We examined four strategies (Tris/EDTA, sodium dodecyl sulfate, Chelex 100 resin and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide -CTAB-) for extracting nucleic acid (DNA) from communities of nematodes. Nematodes were isolated from an agricultural area under different management of long-term crop rotation experiment from Argentina during three seasons. After DNA extraction, Polymerase Chain Reaction-amplifications were performed and considered as indicators of successful DNA extraction. The CTAB combined with proteinase K and phenol-chloroform-isoamyl alcohol was the unique successful method because positive amplifications were obtained by using both eukaryotic and nematode specific primers. This work could contribute to biodiversity studies of nematodes on agroecosystems. PMID:26131632

  14. 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

  15. 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. PMID:27293964

  16. 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

  17. 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).

  18. A Simple Runoff Model Based on Topographic Wetness Indices and Soil Moisture for Central New York Agricultural Fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hofmeister, K.; Georgakakos, C.; Walter, M. T.

    2014-12-01

    Nonpoint source (NPS) pollution continues to be a leading cause of surface water degradation, especially in agricultural areas. In humid regions where variable source area (VSA) hydrology dominates, such as the Northeastern US, topographic wetness indices (TWI) are good approximations of relative soil moisture patterns. Mapping areas of the landscape likely to generate saturation-excess runoff and carry NPS pollution to surface waters could allow for more efficient, targeted best management practices in agricultural fields. Given the relationship between saturation excess runoff and soil water storage, we used volumetric water content (VWC) measured in five agricultural fields in central New York over two years (2012-2014) to develop runoff probability maps based on a soil topographic index (STI). The relationship between VWC and STI was strongest during the fall season after leaf fall at all sites except one. We calculated the probability of runoff occurring based on soil moisture and precipitation distributions during the sampling period. The threshold for runoff occurs when the depth of soil water and rainfall reach saturation of the soil, and appears to be at the average porosity of the soil at all sites. Counter to our initial hypothesis of a higher probability of saturation excess runoff during the spring when conditions are wetter, some sites showed higher frequencies of runoff during the fall season.

  19. Soil-Soil Solution Distribution Coefficients for Se, Sr, Sn, Sb, And Cs in Japanese Agricultural Soils

    SciTech Connect

    Ishikawa, N.K.; Uchida, S.; Tagami, K.

    2008-07-01

    In this study, soil-soil solution distribution coefficients (K{sub d}s) for five radionuclides (Se-75, Sr-85, Sn-113, Sb-124, and Cs-137) were determined by batch sorption tests in 142 Japanese agricultural soil samples (63 paddy soil and 79 upland soil samples). The results showed that Se- and Sb-K{sub d} data did not have a normal or a log-normal distribution, but Sr-, Sn-, and Cs-K{sub d} data did have a log-normal distribution. Further, Se-, Sr-, and Cs-K{sub d} values differed between paddy and upland soil samples in t-test (p < 0.05). Spearman's rank correlation test was carried out to investigate correlations between K{sub d} values for each radionuclide and soil properties. The combination of the K{sub d} value and the soil property having the highest correlation coefficient (Rs) for each radionuclide was as follows: Se-K{sub d} - concentration of water soluble P (R{sub s} = -0.51); Sr-K{sub d} - concentration of water soluble Ca (R{sub s} = -0.57); Sn-K{sub d} - concentration of water soluble Sr (R{sub s} = 0.57); and Sb-K{sub d} - concentration of water soluble P (R{sub s} = -0.67). Although there were no soil properties which had a good correlation with Cs-K{sub d} values for all soil samples, the best correlated soil property with Cs-K{sub d} values was concentration of water soluble ammonium ion (R{sub s} = -0.48) for upland soil samples. (authors)

  20. Alternative Agricultural Enterprises. Production, Management & Marketing.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fox, Linda Kirk; And Others

    These nine cooperative extension bulletins provide basic information on various alternative agricultural enterprises. Discussed in the first eight bulletins are the following topics: business ownership (sole proprietorship, partnership, incorporation, cooperatives); business and the family (goals, qualifications, ways of ensuring family support,…

  1. 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. PMID:25093299

  2. CHEMICALS, RUNOFF, AND EROSION FROM AGRICULTURAL MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS - CREAMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The CREAMS model can simulate pollutant movement on and from a field site, including such constituents as fertilizers (N and P), pesticides, and sediment. The effects of various agricultural practices can be assessed by simulation of the potential water, soil, nutrient, and pesti...

  3. 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 ...

  4. The maintenance of soil fertility in Amazonian managed systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luizão, Flávio J.; Fearnside, Philip M.; Cerri, Carlos E. P.; Lehmann, Johannes

    Most of Brazilian Amazonia faces important limitations for conventional agriculture and pastures due to a generally poor chemical fertility as well as the region's environmental conditions, especially high temperature and moisture. Without proper management, degradation of the soil and resulting unsustainability of agricultural and ranching production occur within a few years, leading to land abandonment. Use of perennial crops, especially those based on native tree species, would be instrumental in order to achieve best management such as that which assure recycling processes similar to those in the primary forest. Recommended alternative land uses are those producing high soil organic matter, recycling of nutrients, substantial agricultural production, and economic viability. These include agroforestry systems, enrichment of second growth with valuable native timber or fruit species, accelerated fallow regrowth via enrichment plantings, sequential agroforestry with slash-and-mulch, and diversified forest plantations. Improvement of agricultural soils can be based on lessons learned from the study of processes involved in the formation and maintenance of the rich "dark earths" (terra preta), which owe their high carbon content and fertility in part to high content of charcoal. Adding powdered charcoal combined with selected nutrients can increase soil carbon in modern agriculture. Considering that limitations to expansion of intensified land uses in Amazonia are serious, regional development should emphasize the natural forest, which can maintain itself without external inputs of nutrients. Instead of creating conditions to further expand deforestation, these forests may be used as they stand to provide a variety of valuable environmental services that could offer a sustainable basis for development of Amazonia.

  5. Identification of vulnerable sites in salts affected agricultural soils from South-Eastern Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acosta, Jose A.; Faz, Angel; Kalbitz, Karsten; Jansen, Boris; Silvia, Martinez-Martinez

    2010-05-01

    Soil salinization is one of the main problems in many soils under intensive agricultural practices, especially in arid and semiarid zones. Two important reasons for the occurrence of salinization are i) the use of low quality irrigation water and ii) climatic conditions reducing soil quality. The results of salinization can be quite serious. It limits the growing of crops, constrains agricultural productivity, and in severe cases, leads to the abandonment of agricultural soils. There are mainly two kinds of soil salinity: naturally occurring dry-land salinity and human-induced salinity caused by the low quality of irrigation water, excessive water and fertilizer applications. In both cases the development of plants and soil organisms is limited. Natural occurrence of salts in soils is very difficult to handle and requires higher investments than the reduction of human-induced salinity. For these reasons, identification of vulnerable sites is essential for sustainable agricultural management, especially in these semiarid and arid environments. The main aim of this study was to examine spatial and vertical distribution pattern of salts in a semi-arid study site in South-Eastern Spain in order to identify vulnerable sites. In order to achieve this objective, surface soil samples were collected in January and July 2009 at 48 sites located in a representative lemon production area close to City of Murcia, covering a surface area of 44 km2. The area was divided using a square grid of 1000 m and the samples were taken from these squares. The ionic concentrations were used as the input data for distribution maps. The software used for the spatial analysis was Arcview 3.1. An interpolation method called the Inverse Distanced Weighted (IDW) method was adopted for the interpolation of the data. The results indicated that the concentrations of most anions are higher in summer. The difference was particularly large for chloride, most likely because of its high mobility and

  6. Soil fertility management on natural pastures in Eastern Georgia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghambashidze, Giorgi; Jolokhava, Tamar; Kenchiashvili, Naira; Tarkhnishvili, Maia

    2015-04-01

    The development of livestock production in Georgia is mainly based on productivity of natural common pasturelands as it is the cheapest way to keep animals. Therefore it is crucial to manage those pastures in order to supply domestic animals with adequate amount of green grass during whole grazing season. The problems associated with poor grassland management is especially evident under limited rainfall conditions. Usually farmers do not consider suitability of existing stocking rates with pasture productivity leading to overutilization of pastureland causing reduction of palatable plant species and total grass cover stimulating soil erosion processes, which deflates soil nutrients and soil organic matter. Intensification of negative processes may result in loss of soil fertility and poor grass regrowth capacities. Current study aims to evaluate existing grazing system on a selected plots from common pasturelands in Eastern Georgia and to develop a proper soil fertility management plan accepted in organic agriculture taking into account local soil-climatic conditions, pasture vegetation stand and its richness with palatable plant species.

  7. 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

  8. Spatial variation of soil salinity in the Mexicali Valley, Mexico: application of a practical method for agricultural monitoring.

    PubMed

    Judkins, Gabriel; Myint, Soe

    2012-09-01

    The degradation of irrigated lands through the process of soil salinization, or the buildup of salts in the soil, has hampered recent increases in agricultural productivity and threatens the sustainability of large-scale cultivation in critical agricultural regions of the world. Rapid detection of soil salinity on a regional basis has been identified as key for effective mitigation of such land degradation. The ability to detect regional patterns of soil salinity at an accuracy sufficient for regional-scale resource management is demonstrated using Landsat 5 Thematic Mapper (TM) imagery. A case study of the Mexicali Valley of Baja California, Mexico was selected due to the region's agricultural significance and concern for future soil salinity increases. Surface soil salinity was mapped using georeferenced field measurements of electrical conductivity (EC), collected concurrently with Landsat 5 TM imagery. Correlations between EC measurements and common indices derived from the satellite imagery were used to produce a model of soil salinity through regression analysis. Landsat band 7, TNDVI, PCA 1, Tasseled Cap 3 and Tasseled Cap 5 were found to offer the most promising correlations with surface soil salinity. Generally low levels of soil salinity were detected, however, distinct areas of elevated surface salinity were detected at levels potentially impacting sensitive crops cultivated within the region. The difficulty detecting low levels of salinity and the mid-range spatial resolution of Landsat 5 TM imagery restrict the applicability of this methodology to the study of broad regional patterns of degradation most appropriate for use by regional resource managers. PMID:22744157

  9. Effect of soil type and soil management on soil physical, chemical and biological properties in commercial organic olive orchards in Southern Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gomez, Jose Alfonso; Auxiliadora Soriano, Maria; Montes-Borrego, Miguel; Navas, Juan Antonio; Landa, Blanca B.

    2014-05-01

    One of the objectives of organic agriculture is to maintain and improve soil quality, while simultaneously producing an adequate yield. A key element in organic olive production is soil management, which properly implemented can optimize the use of rainfall water enhancing infiltration rates and controlling competition for soil water by weeds. There are different soil management strategies: eg. weed mowing (M), green manure with surface tillage in spring (T), or combination with animal grazing among the trees (G). That variability in soil management combined with the large variability in soil types on which organic olive trees are grown in Southern Spain, difficult the evaluation of the impact of different soil management on soil properties, and yield as well as its interpretation in terms of improvement of soil quality. This communications presents the results and analysis of soil physical, chemical and biological properties on 58 soils in Southern Spain during 2005 and 2006, and analyzed and evaluated in different studies since them. Those 58 soils were sampled in 46 certified commercial organic olive orchards with four soil types as well as 12 undisturbed areas with natural vegetation near the olive orchards. The four soil types considered were Eutric Regosol (RGeu, n= 16), Eutric Cambisol (CMeu, n=16), Calcaric Regosol (RGca, n=13 soils sampled) and Calcic Cambisol (CMcc), and the soil management systems (SMS) include were 10 light tillage (LT), 16 sheep grazing (G), 10 tillage (T), 10 mechanical mowing (M), and 12 undisturbed areas covered by natural vegetation (NV-C and NV-S). Our results indicate that soil management had a significant effect on olive yield as well as on key soil properties. Among these soil properties are physical ones, such as infiltration rate or bulk density, chemical ones, especially organic carbon concentration, and biological ones such as soil microbial respiration and bacterial community composition. Superimpose to that soil

  10. Landscape patterns and soil organic carbon stocks in agricultural bocage landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viaud, Valérie; Lacoste, Marine; Michot, Didier; Walter, Christian

    2014-05-01

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) has a crucial impact on global carbon storage at world scale. SOC spatial variability is controlled by the landscape patterns resulting from the continuous interactions between the physical environment and the society. Natural and anthropogenic processes occurring and interplaying at the landscape scale, such as soil redistribution in the lateral and vertical dimensions by tillage and water erosion processes or spatial differentiation of land-use and land-management practices, strongly affect SOC dynamics. Inventories of SOC stocks, reflecting their spatial distribution, are thus key elements to develop relevant management strategies to improving carbon sequestration and mitigating climate change and soil degradation. This study aims to quantify SOC stocks and their spatial distribution in a 1,000-ha agricultural bocage landscape with dairy production as dominant farming system (Zone Atelier Armorique, LTER Europe, NW France). The site is characterized by high heterogeneity on short distance due to a high diversity of soils with varying waterlogging, soil parent material, topography, land-use and hedgerow density. SOC content and stocks were measured up to 105-cm depth in 200 sampling locations selected using conditioned Latin hypercube sampling. Additive sampling was designed to specifically explore SOC distribution near to hedges: 112 points were sampled at fixed distance on 14 transects perpendicular from hedges. We illustrate the heterogeneity of spatial and vertical distribution of SOC stocks at landscape scale, and quantify SOC stocks in the various landscape components. Using multivariate statistics, we discuss the variability and co-variability of existing spatial organization of cropping systems, environmental factors, and SOM stocks, over landscape. Ultimately, our results may contribute to improving regional or national digital soil mapping approaches, by considering the distribution of SOC stocks within each modeling unit and

  11. A Web-based Simulation Model to Support US Agricultural Carbon Management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paustian, K.; Breidt, J.; Brenner, J.; Easter, M.; Killian, K.; Ogle, S.; Schuler, J.; Vining, R.; Williams, S.

    2006-12-01

    Improved agricultural practices can increase carbon (C) stocks in soils, providing a sink for CO2 from the atmosphere. To help implement policies designed to encourage soil carbon sequestration, as part of a portfolio of greenhouse gas mitigation options, decision-support tools play an important role. We developed the COMET-VR (CarbOn Management Evaluation Tool for Voluntary Reporting) to support field-level estimates of soil C stock changes due to land use and management changes, as part of the US program for voluntary reporting of greenhouse gas reductions (1605B). The system incorporates several large databases on climate, soils, and current and historical land use and management practices, accessible by a simple menu-driven web interface, which drive the Century ecosystem model, providing `real time' estimates of soil C stock changes and fossil fuel use, for user-selected management options. The tool provides an empirically-based estimate of uncertainty, along with a 10 year projection of soil C stock changes. The tool is currently being used for the 1605B voluntary reporting system and is being implemented for conservation planning and assessment by USDA's Natural Resource Conservation Service.

  12. 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.

  13. Soil Functional Zone Management: A Vehicle for Enhancing Production and Soil Ecosystem Services in Row-Crop Agroecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Alwyn; Kane, Daniel A.; Ewing, Patrick M.; Atwood, Lesley W.; Jilling, Andrea; Li, Meng; Lou, Yi; Davis, Adam S.; Grandy, A. Stuart; Huerd, Sheri C.; Hunter, Mitchell C.; Koide, Roger T.; Mortensen, David A.; Smith, Richard G.; Snapp, Sieglinde S.; Spokas, Kurt A.; Yannarell, Anthony C.; Jordan, Nicholas R.

    2016-01-01

    There is increasing global demand for food, bioenergy feedstocks and a wide variety of bio-based products. In response, agriculture has advanced production, but is increasingly depleting soil regulating and supporting ecosystem services. New production systems have emerged, such as no-tillage, that can enhance soil services but may limit yields. Moving forward, agricultural systems must reduce trade-offs between production and soil services. Soil functional zone management (SFZM) is a novel strategy for developing sustainable production systems that attempts to integrate the benefits of conventional, intensive agriculture, and no-tillage. SFZM creates distinct functional zones within crop row and inter-row spaces. By incorporating decimeter-scale spatial and temporal heterogeneity, SFZM attempts to foster greater soil biodiversity and integrate complementary soil processes at the sub-field level. Such integration maximizes soil services by creating zones of ‘active turnover’, optimized for crop growth and yield (provisioning services); and adjacent zones of ‘soil building’, that promote soil structure development, carbon storage, and moisture regulation (regulating and supporting services). These zones allow SFZM to secure existing agricultural productivity while avoiding or minimizing trade-offs with soil ecosystem services. Moreover, the specific properties of SFZM may enable sustainable increases in provisioning services via temporal intensification (expanding the portion of the year during which harvestable crops are grown). We present a conceptual model of ‘virtuous cycles’, illustrating how increases in crop yields within SFZM systems could create self-reinforcing feedback processes with desirable effects, including mitigation of trade-offs between yield maximization and soil ecosystem services. Through the creation of functionally distinct but interacting zones, SFZM may provide a vehicle for optimizing the delivery of multiple goods and services

  14. Soil Functional Zone Management: A Vehicle for Enhancing Production and Soil Ecosystem Services in Row-Crop Agroecosystems.

    PubMed

    Williams, Alwyn; Kane, Daniel A; Ewing, Patrick M; Atwood, Lesley W; Jilling, Andrea; Li, Meng; Lou, Yi; Davis, Adam S; Grandy, A Stuart; Huerd, Sheri C; Hunter, Mitchell C; Koide, Roger T; Mortensen, David A; Smith, Richard G; Snapp, Sieglinde S; Spokas, Kurt A; Yannarell, Anthony C; Jordan, Nicholas R

    2016-01-01

    There is increasing global demand for food, bioenergy feedstocks and a wide variety of bio-based products. In response, agriculture has advanced production, but is increasingly depleting soil regulating and supporting ecosystem services. New production systems have emerged, such as no-tillage, that can enhance soil services but may limit yields. Moving forward, agricultural systems must reduce trade-offs between production and soil services. Soil functional zone management (SFZM) is a novel strategy for developing sustainable production systems that attempts to integrate the benefits of conventional, intensive agriculture, and no-tillage. SFZM creates distinct functional zones within crop row and inter-row spaces. By incorporating decimeter-scale spatial and temporal heterogeneity, SFZM attempts to foster greater soil biodiversity and integrate complementary soil processes at the sub-field level. Such integration maximizes soil services by creating zones of 'active turnover', optimized for crop growth and yield (provisioning services); and adjacent zones of 'soil building', that promote soil structure development, carbon storage, and moisture regulation (regulating and supporting services). These zones allow SFZM to secure existing agricultural productivity while avoiding or minimizing trade-offs with soil ecosystem services. Moreover, the specific properties of SFZM may enable sustainable increases in provisioning services via temporal intensification (expanding the portion of the year during which harvestable crops are grown). We present a conceptual model of 'virtuous cycles', illustrating how increases in crop yields within SFZM systems could create self-reinforcing feedback processes with desirable effects, including mitigation of trade-offs between yield maximization and soil ecosystem services. Through the creation of functionally distinct but interacting zones, SFZM may provide a vehicle for optimizing the delivery of multiple goods and services in

  15. Site-specific management of soil pH and nutrients in blueberry

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Site-specific management of soil pH and fertilizers is one of the most promising strategies in precision agriculture and is potentially applicable to many horticultural crops, including blueberry. Unlike most fruit crops, blueberry is adapted to low soil pH conditions in the range of 4-5.5 and has ...

  16. Economic and Societal Benefits of Soil Carbon Management: Cropland and Grazing Land Systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This book chapter provides both a historic perspective of US land use as well as to address the role of agricultural technologies for enhanced soil carbon management and how these are economically and environmentally beneficial. Increasingly soil C sequestration is linked to its role in helping to ...

  17. 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

  18. Equine Management and Production. Vocational Agriculture Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rudolph, James A.

    This basic core of instruction for equine management and production is designed to assist instructors in preparing students for successful employment or management of a one- or two-horse operation. Contents include seven instructional areas totaling seventeen units of instruction: (1) Orientation (basic horse production; handling and grooming;…

  19. Data management system for organic soil

    SciTech Connect

    Stinnette, P.

    1999-07-01

    A Data Management System for Organic Soil (DMSOS) has been developed that enables the acquisition, management and analysis of organic soil data as well as the presentation of results to be conducted effectively through a common interface. This development was in response to the data management needs of research investigating the engineering properties of organic soil and its extension to the stabilization of organic soil through dynamic replacement (DR). It is shown how the above functions are implemented efficiently using Windows-based software to perform comprehensive data management and analysis of data gathered from both laboratory and field tests. When the engineering properties of a given organic soil deposit are needed, a build-in Computer Advisor for Organic Soil Projects (CAOSP) predicts the properties from DMSOS based correlations. A unique and useful feature of the CAOSP is its ability to estimate the anticipated ultimate settlement of an organic soil deposit given the loading conditions and the moisture or organic content. Also incorporated in the DMSOS is a quality control system that utilizes computerized data acquisition/data management techniques in order to evaluate the degree of improvement of an organic soil layer at a given stage of treatment using DR.

  20. 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...

  1. Soil Water and Shallow Groundwater Relations in an Agricultural Hillslope

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Shallow water tables contribute to soil water variations under rolling topography, and soil properties contribute to shallow water table fluctutations. Preferential flow through large soil pores can cause a rise in the water table with little increase in soil water except near the soil surface. Late...

  2. Effectiveness of conservation agriculture practices on soil erosion processes in semi-arid areas of Zimbabwe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chikwari, Emmanuel; Mhaka, Luke; Gwandu, Tariro; Chipangura, Tafadzwa; Misi Manyanga, Amos; Sabastian Matsenyengwa, Nyasha; Rabesiranana, Naivo; Mabit, Lionel

    2016-04-01

    - The application of fallout radionuclides (FRNs) in soil erosion and redistribution studies has gained popularity since the late 1980s. In Zimbabwe, soil erosion research was mostly based on conventional methods which included the use of erosion plots for quantitative measurements and erosion models for predicting soil losses. Only limited investigation to explore the possibility of using Caesium-137 (Cs-137) has been reported in the early 1990s for undisturbed and cultivated lands in Zimbabwe. In this study, the Cs-137 technique was applied to assess the impact of soil conservation practices on soil losses and to develop strategies and support effective policies that help farmers in Zimbabwe for sustainable land management. The study was carried out at the Makoholi research station 30 km north of the Masvingo region which is located 260 km south of Harare. The area is semi-arid and the study site comprises coarse loamy sands, gleyic lixisols. The conservation agriculture (CA) practices used within the area since 1988 include (i) direct seeding (DS) with mulch, (ii) CA basins with mulch, and (iii) 18 years direct seeding, left fallow for seven years and turned into conventional tillage since 2012 (DS/F/C). The Cs-137 reference inventory was established at 214 ± 16 Bq/m2. The mean inventories for DS, CA basins and DS/F/C were 195, 190 and 214 Bq/m2 respectively. Using the conversion Mass Balance Model 2 on the Cs-137 data obtained along transects for each of the practices, gross erosion rates were found to be 7.5, 7.3 and 2.6 t/ha/yr for direct seeding, CA basins and the DS/F/C while the net erosion rates were found to be 3.8, 4.6 and 0 t/ha/yr respectively. Sediment delivery ratios were 50%, 63% and 2% in the respective order. These preliminary results showed the effectiveness of DS over CA basins in erosion control. The efficiency of fallowing in controlling excessive soil loss was significant in the plot that started as DS for 18 years but left fallow for 7

  3. Downscaling Soil Moisture Product from SMOS for Monitoring Agricultural Droughts in South America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagarajan, K.; Fu, C.; Judge, J.; Fraisse, C.

    2012-12-01

    Availability of reliable near-surface soil moisture (SM) estimates at fine spatial resolutions of 1 km and at temporal resolutions of a few days is critical for accurate quantification of drought impacts on crop yields and recommending meaningful management and adaptation strategies. The recently launched European Space Agency-Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity (ESA-SMOS) and the near-future NASA-Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) missions provide unprecedented, global SM product every 2-3 days at spatial resolutions of ~50 km. In addition, the SMAP will provide a SM product at 10 km . Downscaling the above SM products to 1km is essential for any meaningful drought-related application in agricultural terrains. Optimal downscaling should retain information from higher-order moments and leverage information from auxiliary remote sensing products that are available at fine resolutions. In this study, a novel downscaling methodology based upon information theory was implemented to obtain distributed SM at 1 km every 3 days, using the SM product from SMOS. Observations of land surface temperature (LST), leaf area index (LAI) and land cover (LC) at 1 km from MODIS, and precipitation at 25 km from TRMM, were used as auxiliary information to facilitate the downscaling process. The use of information-theory in downscaling provides a hierarchical decomposition of image data that is optimal in terms of the transfer of information across scales and is therefore a better alternative to methods that use second-order statistics only. The downscaling methodology was implemented over the agricultural regions in the lower La Plata Basin (L-LPB) in South America. The L-LPB region is of great economic value in South America, where agricultural cover makes up about 25% of the continent's land area and is vulnerable to high losses in crop yields due to agricultural drought . Both remote sensing and in situ observations (precipitation, temperature, and soil moisture) obtained during the

  4. Soil organic carbon sequestration with conservation management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The southeastern USA has approximately 111 million acres (45 Mha) in agricultural production. This extensive land resource has the potential to sequester soil organic C (SOC), especially following historical conversion of land, first from native forest to intensively cultivated cropland and more re...

  5. Using 137Cs technique to quantify soil erosion and deposition rates in an agricultural catchment in the black soil region, Northeast China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, Haiyan; Sun, Liying; Qi, Deli; Cai, Qiangguo

    2012-10-01

    Soil erosion significantly affects the productive black soil region in Northeast China. Quantification of the soil erosion is necessary for designing efficient degradation control strategies. 137Cs measurements undertaken on 61 sampling points collected within a 28.5 ha agricultural catchment in the black soil region of Northeast China were used to establish the magnitude and spatial pattern of soil redistribution rates as well as sediment budget within the catchment. Estimated soil redistribution rates using the Mass Balance Model 2 (MBM2) ranged from - 56.8 to 171.4 t ha- 1 yr- 1 for the sampling points that were verified by means of both runoff plot data and pedological investigation. Erosion generally occurred behind the shelterbelts, especially in the ephemeral gully susceptible areas, while deposition mainly occurred along the shelterbelts and at the catchment outlet. In the study catchment, 69% of the eroded sediments came from the slopes and 31% the ephemeral gullies. Sediments deposited along the shelterbelts at a rate of ca. 78 t yr- 1 and ca. 33 t yr- 1 at the catchment outlet. The gross soil loss rate for the catchment was - 4.4 t ha- 1 yr- 1 with a sediment delivery ratio of 53%. The mean rate of - 14.5 t ha- 1 yr- 1 in the erosion areas was much higher than the tolerable value, suggesting that effective soil conservation measures are urgently required to reduce the severe black soil loss for sustainable management of the soil resource.

  6. Geomorphic Controls of Soil and Carbon Redistribution Across an Agricultural Landscape

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Patterns of soil organic carbon (SOC) vary widely across the landscape leading to large uncertainties in the SOC budget especially for agricultural landscapes where water, tillage, and wind erosion redistributes soil and SOC. It is often assumed that soil erosion results in a loss of SOC from the a...

  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. Use of airborne hyperspectral imagery to map soil parameters in tilled agricultural fields

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil hyperspectral reflectance imagery was obtained from an airborne imaging spectrometer (400 to 2450 nm with ~10 nm resolution, 2.5 m spatial resolution) flown over six tilled (bare soil) agricultural fields on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay (Queen Anne’s county, MD). Surface soil samples...

  9. ASSESSING SOIL DEGRADATION AFTER CONVERSION OF NATIVE ECOSYSTEMS TO AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of row crop agriculture on soil degradation through the quantification of total, light, and heavy soil carbon fractions and to study soil aggregate dynamics and carbon associated with aggregates in a long established riparian cool-season grass fil...

  10. Use of Field-based Near Infrared Sensors to Map Soil Carbon in Agricultural Ecosystems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Ability to detect changes in soil carbon storage is an important component of verifying sequestration of soil carbon within agricultural ecosystems. Rapid methods of measuring soil carbon such as near infrared spectroscopy have gained considerable interest but problems in accurate measurement still...

  11. PHOSPHORUS RUNOFF FROM WASTEWATER TREATMENT BIOSOLIDS AND POULTRY LITTER APPLIED TO AGRICULTURAL SOILS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Differences in the properties of organic phosphorus (P) sources, particularly those that undergo treatment to reduce soluble P, can affect soil P solubility and P transport in surface runoff. This two year field study investigated soil P solubility and runoff P losses from two agricultural soils in...

  12. The use of surrogates for an optimal management of coupled groundwater-agriculture hydrosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grundmann, J.; Schütze, N.; Brettschneider, M.; Schmitz, G. H.; Lennartz, F.

    2012-04-01

    For ensuring an optimal sustainable water resources management in arid coastal environments, we develop a new simulation based integrated water management system. It aims at achieving best possible solutions for groundwater withdrawals for agricultural and municipal water use including saline water management together with a substantial increase of the water use efficiency in irrigated agriculture. To achieve a robust and fast operation of the management system regarding water quality and water quantity we develop appropriate surrogate models by combining physically based process modelling with methods of artificial intelligence. Thereby we use an artificial neural network for modelling the aquifer response, inclusive the seawater interface, which was trained on a scenario database generated by a numerical density depended groundwater flow model. For simulating the behaviour of high productive agricultural farms crop water production functions are generated by means of soil-vegetation-atmosphere-transport (SVAT)-models, adapted to the regional climate conditions, and a novel evolutionary optimisation algorithm for optimal irrigation scheduling and control. We apply both surrogates exemplarily within a simulation based optimisation environment using the characteristics of the south Batinah region in the Sultanate of Oman which is affected by saltwater intrusion into the coastal aquifer due to excessive groundwater withdrawal for irrigated agriculture. We demonstrate the effectiveness of our methodology for the evaluation and optimisation of different irrigation practices, cropping pattern and resulting abstraction scenarios. Due to contradicting objectives like profit-oriented agriculture vs. aquifer sustainability a multi-criterial optimisation is performed.

  13. 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.

  14. Variability of Total Below Ground Carbon Allocation amongst Common Agricultural Land Management Practices: a Case Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wacha, K. M.; Papanicolaou, T.; Wilson, C. G.

    2010-12-01

    Field measurements and numerical models are currently being used to estimate quantities of Total Belowground Carbon Allocation (TBCA) for three representative land uses, viz. corn, soybeans, and prairie bromegrass for CRP (Conservation Reserve Program) of an agricultural Iowa sub-watershed, located within the Clear Creek Watershed (CCW). Since it is difficult to measure TBCA directly, a mass balance approach has been implemented to estimate TBCA as follows: TBCA = FS + FE+ Δ(CS + CR + CL) - FA , where the term Fs denotes soil respiration; FE is the carbon content of the eroded/deposited soil; ΔCS, ΔCR, ΔCL denote the changes in carbon content of the mineral soil, plant roots, and litter layer, respectively; and FA is the above ground litter fall of dead plant material to the soil. The terms are hypothesized to have a huge impact on TBCA within agricultural settings due to intensive tillage practices, water-driven soil erosion/deposition, and high usage of fertilizer. To test our hypothesis, field measurements are being performed at the plot scale, replicating common agricultural land management practices. Soil respiration (FS) is being measured with an EGM-4 CO2 Gas Analyzer and SRC-1 Soil Respiration Chamber (PP Systems), soil moisture and temperature are recorded in the top 20 cm for each respective soil respiration measurement, and litter fall rates (FA) are acquired by collecting the residue in a calibrated pan. The change in carbon content of the soil (ΔCS), roots (ΔCR) and litter layer (ΔCL) are being analyzed by collecting soil samples throughout the life cycle of the plant. To determine the term FE for the three representative land management practices, a funnel collection system located at the plot outlet was used for collecting the eroded material after natural rainfall events. Field measurements of TBCA at the plot scale via the mass balance approach are used to calibrate the numerical agronomic process model DAYCENT, which simulates the daily

  15. 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. PMID:26994321

  16. 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. PMID:26498099

  17. Glyphosate and AMPA contents in sediments produced by wind erosion of agricultural soils in Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aparicio, Virginia; Aimar, Silvia; De Gerónimo, Eduardo; Buschiazzo, Daniel; Mendez, Mariano; Costa, José Luis

    2014-05-01

    Wind erosion of soils is an important event in arid and semiarid regions of Argentina. The magnitude of wind erosion occurring under different management practices is relatively well known in this region but less information is available on the quality of the eroded material. Considering that the intensification of agriculture may increase the concentrations of substances in the eroded material, producing potential negative effects on the environment, we analyzed the amount of glyphosate and AMPA in sediments produced by wind erosion of agricultural soils of Argentina. Wind eroded materials were collected by means of BSNE samplers in two loess sites of the semiarid region of Argentina: Chaco and La Pampa. Samples were collected from 1 ha square fields at 13.5, 50 and 150 cm height. Results showed that at higher heights the concentrations of glyphosate and AMPA were mostly higher. The glyphosate concentration was more variable and higher in Chaco (0.66 to 313 µg kg-1) than in La Pampa (4.17 to 114 µg kg-1). These results may be due to the higher use of herbicides in Chaco, where the predominant crops are soybeans and corn, produced under no-tillage. Under these conditions the use of glyphosate for weeds control is a common practice. Conversely, AMPA concentrations were higher in La Pampa (13.1 to 101.3 µg kg-1) than in Chaco (1.3 to 83 µg kg-1). These preliminary results show high concentrations of glyphosate and AMPA in wind eroded materials of agricultural soils of Argentina. More research is needed to confirm these high concentrations in other conditions in order to detect the temporal and spatial distribution patterns of the herbicide.

  18. Fate and Transport of Agricultural Nutrients in Macro-porous Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Royem, A. A.; Walter, M. T.

    2010-12-01

    The major objective of this study is to address water quality problems associated with application of liquid manure to subsurface-drained agricultural lands. There are over 600 large and medium sized confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) in New York, most of which utilize land application to manage this waste stream. Due to the regions shallow soil and humid weather, most fields have been equipped with tile drainage. The concern is that handling the manure is a liquefied state may enhance the likelihood of contamination of the tile drainage discharge and its potential impacts on downstream water quality. Laboratory studies were used to investigate how manure liquidity (percent solids) affects the transport of manure constituents through varying macropore sizes in the soil. Soil columns of 3 different macropore sizes (0, 1, 3 millimeter) were constructed, subjected to simulated rainfall over several weeks, and effluent was collected from both the soil matrix and macropores separately. Effluent samples were analyzed for soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP). As expected, the preliminary results show enhanced SRP transport through macropores with decreasing percent solids (i.e., more liquidy manure). The implications at field and watershed scales are still being investigated.

  19. SOIL CARBON SEQUESTRATION UNDER DIFFERENT MANAGEMENT PRACTICES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Five management systems: continuous corn (CC), cropland to woodland (CW), cropland to pastures (CP), no-till (NT), and conservation reserve program (CRP), were selected to evaluate their long-term impacts (5, 10 and 15 yr) on soil C sequestration. Nine soil cores from each system were randomly colle...

  20. Paenibacillus xanthinilyticus sp. nov., isolated from agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Kim, Dong-uk; Kim, Song-Gun; Lee, Hyosun; Chun, Jongsik; Cho, Jang-Cheon; Ka, Jong-Ok

    2015-09-01

    A bacterial strain designated 11N27(T) was isolated from an agricultural soil sample. Cells of this strain were Gram-reaction-variable, facultatively anaerobic, endospore-forming, white-pigmented, peritrichously flagellated and hydrolysed xanthine. The major fatty acids of strain 11N27(T) were anteiso-C15 : 0, iso-C16 : 0 and C16 : 0. The polar lipid profile contained phosphatidylethanolamine, two unknown phospholipids, two unknown aminolipids, one unknown aminophospholipid and two unknown polar lipids. The G+C content of the genomic DNA of strain 11N27(T) was 50.3 mol%. MK-7 was the predominant respiratory quinone. meso-Diaminopimelic acid was the diagnostic diamino acid in the peptidoglycan. 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis showed that strain 11N27(T) was phylogenetically related to Paenibacillus mendelii C/2(T) (96.2% sequence similarity) and Paenibacillus sepulcri CMM 7311(T) (96.0%). The genotypic and phenotypic data showed that strain 11N27(T) could be distinguished from phylogenetically related species and that this strain represents a novel species of the genus Paenibacillus. The name Paenibacillus xanthinilyticus sp. nov. is proposed with the type strain 11N27(T)( = KACC 17935(T) = NBRC 109108(T)). PMID:26023205

  1. Carbon Management Response curves: estimates of temporal soil carbon dynamics.

    PubMed

    West, Tristram O; Marland, Gregg; King, Anthony W; Post, Wilfred M; Jain, Atul K; Andrasko, Kenneth

    2004-04-01

    Measurement of the change in soil carbon that accompanies a change in land use (e.g., forest to agriculture) or management (e.g., conventional tillage to no-till) can be complex and expensive, may require reference plots, and is subject to the variability of statistical sampling and short-term variability in weather. In this paper, we develop Carbon Management Response (CMR) curves that could be used as an alternative to in situ measurements. The CMR curves developed here are based on quantitative reviews of existing global analyses and field observations of changes in soil carbon. The curves show mean annual rates of soil carbon change, estimated time to maximum rates of change, and estimated time to a new soil carbon steady state following the initial change in management. We illustrate how CMR curves could be used in a carbon accounting framework while effectively addressing a number of potential policy issues commonly associated with carbon accounting. We find that CMR curves provide a transparent means to account for changes in soil carbon accumulation and loss rates over time, and also provide empirical relationships that might be used in the development or validation of ecological or Earth systems models. PMID:15453404

  2. 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

  3. Plant available silicon in South-east Asian rice paddy soils - relevance of agricultural practice and of abiotic factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marxen, A.; Klotzbücher, T.; Vetterlein, D.; Jahn, R.

    2012-12-01

    Background Silicon (Si) plays a crucial role in rice production. Si content of rice plants exceeds the content of other major nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorous or potassium. Recent studies showed that in some environments external supply of Si can enhance the growth of rice plants. Rice plants express specific Si transporters to absorb Si from soil solutions in form of silicic acid, which precipitates in tissue cells forming amorphous silica bodies, called phytoliths. The phytoliths are returned to soils with plant residues. They might be a main source of plant available silicic acid in soils. Aims In this study we assess the effects of rice paddy cultivation on the stocks of `reactive` Si fractions in mineral topsoils of rice paddy fields in contrasting landscapes. The `reactive` Si fractions are presumed to determine the release of plant-available silicic acid in soils. We consider the relevance of abiotic factors (mineral assemblage; soil weathering status) and agricultural practice for these fractions. Agricultural practices, which were assumed to affect the stocks of `reactive` Si were (i) the usage of different rice varieties (which might differ in Si demand), (ii) straw residue management (i.e., whether straw residues are returned to the fields or removed and used e.g. as fodder), and (iii) yield level and number of crops per year. Material and methods Soils (top horizon of about 0-20 cm depth) were sampled from rice paddy fields in 2 mountainous and 5 lowland landscapes of contrasting geologic conditions in Vietnam and the Philippines. Ten paddy fields were sampled per landscape. The rice paddy management within landscapes differed when different farmers and/or communities managed the fields. We analysed the following fractions of `reactive` Si in the soils: acetate-extractable Si (dissolved and easily exchangeable Si), phosphate-extractable Si (adsorbed Si), oxalate extractable Si (Si associated with poorly-ordered sesquioxides), NaOH extractable Si

  4. Assessment of soil redistribution rates by (137)Cs and (210)Pbex in a typical Malagasy agricultural field.

    PubMed

    Rabesiranana, N; Rasolonirina, M; Solonjara, A F; Ravoson, H N; Raoelina Andriambololona; Mabit, L

    2016-02-01

    Soil degradation processes affect more than one-third of the Malagasy territory and are considered as the major environmental threat impacting the natural resources of the island. This innovative study reports about a pioneer test and use of radio-isotopic techniques (i.e. Cs-137 and Pb-210ex) under Madagascar agroclimatic condition to evaluate soil erosion magnitude. This preliminary investigation has been conducted in a small agricultural field situated in the eastern central highland of Madagascar, 40 km East from Antananarivo. Both anthropogenic Cs-137 and geogenic Pb-210 soil tracers provided similar results highlighting soil erosion rates reaching locally 18 t ha(-1) yr(-1,) a level almost two times higher than the sustainable soil loss rate under Madagascar agroclimatic condition. The sediment delivery ratio established with both radiotracers was above 80% indicating that most of the mobilized sediment exits the field. Assessing soil erosion rate through fallout radionuclides in Madagascar is a first step towards an efficient land and water resource management policy to optimise the effectiveness of future agricultural soil conservation practices. PMID:26691498

  5. Hard-pan soils - Management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Hard pans, hard layers, or compacted horizons, either surface or subsurface, are universal problems that limit crop production. Hard layers can be caused by traffic or soil genetic properties that result in horizons with high density or cemented soil particles; these horizons have elevated penetrati...

  6. Role of nanotechnology in agriculture with special reference to management of insect pests.

    PubMed

    Rai, Mahendra; Ingle, Avinash

    2012-04-01

    Nanotechnology is a promising field of interdisciplinary research. It opens up a wide array of opportunities in various fields like medicine, pharmaceuticals, electronics and agriculture. The potential uses and benefits of nanotechnology are enormous. These include insect pests management through the formulations of nanomaterials-based pesticides and insecticides, enhancement of agricultural productivity using bio-conjugated nanoparticles (encapsulation) for slow release of nutrients and water, nanoparticle-mediated gene or DNA transfer in plants for the development of insect pest-resistant varieties and use of nanomaterials for preparation of different kind of biosensors, which would be useful in remote sensing devices required for precision farming. Traditional strategies like integrated pest management used in agriculture are insufficient, and application of chemical pesticides like DDT have adverse effects on animals and human beings apart from the decline in soil fertility. Therefore, nanotechnology would provide green and efficient alternatives for the management of insect pests in agriculture without harming the nature. This review is focused on traditional strategies used for the management of insect pests, limitations of use of chemical pesticides and potential of nanomaterials in insect pest management as modern approaches of nanotechnology. PMID:22388570

  7. Arsenic pollution of agricultural soils by concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs).

    PubMed

    Liu, Xueping; Zhang, Wenfeng; Hu, Yuanan; Hu, Erdan; Xie, Xiande; Wang, Lingling; Cheng, Hefa

    2015-01-01

    Animal wastes from concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) can cause soil arsenic pollution due to the widespread use of organoarsenic feed additives. This study investigated the arsenic pollution of surface soils in a typical CAFO zone, in comparison with that of agricultural soils in the Pearl River Delta, China. The mean soil arsenic contents in the CAFO zone were elevated compared to those in the local background and agricultural soils of the Pearl River Delta region. Chemical speciation analysis showed that the soils in the CAFO zone were clearly contaminated by the organoarsenic feed additive, p-arsanilic acid (ASA). Transformation of ASA to inorganic arsenic (arsenite and arsenate) in the surface soils was also observed. Although the potential ecological risk posed by the arsenic in the surface soils was relatively low in the CAFO zone, continuous discharge of organoarsenic feed additives could cause accumulation of arsenic and thus deserves significant attention. PMID:25036941

  8. Fate of phthalates and BPA in agricultural and non-agricultural soils of the Paris area (France).

    PubMed

    Tran, Bich Chau; Teil, Marie-Jeanne; Blanchard, Martine; Alliot, Fabrice; Chevreuil, Marc

    2015-07-01

    This study (i) investigated the concentration levels of nine phthalates and bisphenol A (BPA) in sludge samples originating from a French wastewater treatment plant (WWTP), (ii) studied the distribution of target compounds according to soil depth and calculated their half-lives, and (iii) compared the contamination level of the agricultural soil with those of soils with other land uses. The sludge contamination levels varied from a few hundred nanograms per gram dry weight (dw) for diethyl phthalate (DEP), di-iso-butyl phthalate (DiBP), di-n-butyl phthalate (DnBP), and butyl-benzyl phthalate (BBP) to a few micrograms per gram dw for diethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP), di-iso-nonyl phthalate (DiNP), and di-iso-decyl phthalate (DiDP). After sludge application, an 8-fold increase for DEHP level and a 3-fold increase for BPA level occurred in the surface horizon of the soil. The mean distribution of phthalates according to the depth showed a positive gradient for the low molecular weight compounds and inversely, a negative gradient for the highest ones. The half-lives in the 0-20-cm soil horizon were 64 days for DEHP and 36 days for BPA. A predictive environmental concentration (PEC) of 0.3 μg g(-1) dw was estimated for DEHP, while the experimental value was 0.16 μg g(-1) dw, suggesting degradation processes in soil and/or formation of non-extractable residues. Comparisons of contamination levels for soils from different origins (urban, rural, agricultural, and forest) showed that the urban soil remained the most contaminated one, prior to the agricultural soil after treatment. PMID:25794574

  9. 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

  10. Soil-profile distribution of organic C and N at the end of 6 years of tillage and grazing management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Stocks of soil organic carbon (SOC) and total soil nitrogen (TSN) are key determinants for evaluating agricultural management practices to address climate change, environmental quality, and soil productivity issues. We determined SOC, TSN, and particulate organic C and N depth distributions and cum...

  11. Positive trends in organic carbon storage in Swedish agricultural soils due to unexpected socio-economic drivers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poeplau, C.; Bolinder, M. A.; Eriksson, J.; Lundblad, M.; Kätterer, T.

    2015-03-01

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) plays a crucial role in the global carbon cycle as a potential sink or source. Land management influences SOC storage, so the European Parliament decided in 2013 that changes in carbon stocks within a certain land use type, including arable land, must be reported by all member countries in their national inventory reports for greenhouse gas emissions. Here we show the temporal dynamics of SOC during the past two decades in Swedish agricultural soils, based on soil inventories conducted in 1988-1997 (Inventory I), 2001-2007 (Inventory II) and from 2010 onwards (Inventory III), and link SOC changes with trends in agricultural management. From Inventory I to Inventory II, SOC increased in 16 out of 21 Swedish counties, while from Inventory I to Inventory III it increased in 18 out of 21 counties. Mean topsoil (0-20 cm) SOC concentration for the entire country increased from 2.48 to 2.67% C (a relative increase of 7.7%, or 0.38% yr-1) over the whole period. We attributed this to a substantial increase in ley as a proportion of total agricultural area in all counties. The horse population in Sweden has more than doubled since 1981 and was identified as the main driver for this management change (R2 = 0.72). Due to subsidies introduced in the early 1990s, the area of long-term set-aside (mostly old leys) also contributed to the increase in area of ley. The carbon sink function of Swedish agricultural soils demonstrated in this study differs from trends found in neighbouring countries. This indicates that country-specific or local socio-economic drivers for land management must be accounted for in larger-scale predictions.

  12. Positive trends in organic carbon storage in Swedish agricultural soils due to unexpected socio-economic drivers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poeplau, C.; Bolinder, M. A.; Eriksson, J.; Lundblad, M.; Kätterer, T.

    2015-06-01

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) plays a crucial role in the global carbon cycle as a potential sink or source. Land management influences SOC storage, so the European Parliament decided in 2013 that changes in carbon stocks within a certain land use type, including arable land, must be reported by all member countries in their national inventory reports for greenhouse gas emissions. Here we show the temporal dynamics of SOC during the past 2 decades in Swedish agricultural soils, based on soil inventories conducted in 1988-1997 (Inventory I), 2001-2007 (Inventory II) and from 2010 onwards (Inventory III), and link SOC changes with trends in agricultural management. From Inventory I to Inventory II, SOC increased in 16 out of 21 Swedish counties, while from Inventory I to Inventory III it increased in 18 out of 21 counties. Mean topsoil (0-20 cm) SOC concentration for the entire country increased from 2.48 to 2.67% C (a relative increase of 7.7%, or 0.38% yr-1) over the whole period. We attributed this to a substantial increase in ley as a proportion of total agricultural area in all counties. The horse population in Sweden has more than doubled since 1981 and was identified as the main driver for this management change (R2 = 0.72). Due to subsidies introduced in the early 1990s, the area of long-term set-aside (mostly old leys) also contributed to the increase in area of ley. The carbon sink function of Swedish agricultural soils demonstrated in this study differs from trends found in neighbouring countries. This indicates that country-specific or local socio-economic drivers for land management must be accounted for in larger-scale predictions.

  13. Resistance and resilience of N and P cycling microbes in differently managed agricultural systems after heat perturbation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, Priyashiela; Scow, Kate

    2013-04-01

    Agricultural management and resistance and resilience of microbial communities is key to long-term agricultural sustainability. Agricultural management practices impact soil through physical disturbance, inputs of fertilizers and pesticides, and cultivation of monoculture or low-diversity plant systems. Resistance and resilience of soil microbial communities to disturbance events is a topic of growing importance with predicted rising temperatures and large unpredictability in rainfall patterns associated with global climate change. Diverse microbial communities are essential for the sustainability of agriculture. Previous research has focused on the resistance of soil systems in relation to total microbial biomass but has ignored relationships with specific functional groups of microbes. Denitrifiers are key organisms in N cycling and these organisms control the pools of plant-available N in soil, while alkaline phosphatase is a key microbially produced enzyme involved in the regulation of pools of available phosphate. In this soil incubation experiment abundance of total bacteria and archaea were quantified along with denitrifying and alkaline phosphatase genes after subjecting differently managed agricultural soils to severe temperature perturbation (60 oC for 15 minutes). The organic treatment showed the lowest resistance and resilience in terms of total bacterial and archaeal abundance but was resilient in terms of respiration activity. The high input systems show lower resistance for key functional groups of N and P cycling organisms compared to low input systems. However, all of the differently managed soils have similar resilience and show higher levels of N cycling organisms and lower levels of P cycling organisms after 30 days compared to starting levels.

  14. High natural erosion rates are the backdrop for present-day soil erosion in the agricultural Middle Hills of Nepal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    West, A. J.; Arnold, M.; AumaItre, G.; Bourles, D. L.; Keddadouche, K.; Bickle, M.; Ojha, T.

    2015-07-01

    poorly constrained. The deficit between our best estimates for soil production rates and measurements of soil loss rates supports conclusions from previous studies that terraced agriculture in the Likhu may not be associated with a large systematic soil deficit, at least when terraces are well maintained, but that poorly managed terraces, forest, and scrubland may lead to rapid depletion of soil resources.

  15. Effects of soil tillage and management of crop residues on soil properties: abundance, biomass and diversity of earthworms, soil structure and nutrient evolutions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    lemtiri, Aboulkacem

    2013-04-01

    The living soil is represented by soil biota that interacts with aboveground biota and with the abiotic environment, soil structure, soil reaction, organic matter, nutrient contents, aso. Maintenance of soil organic matter through integrated soil fertility management is an important issue to conciliate soil quality and agricultural productivity. Earthworms are key actors in soil structure formation through the production of casts and the incorporation of soil organic matter in the soil. Research is still needed about the interactive effects of various tillage and crop residue management practices on earthworm populations and physical and chemical properties of soil. To investigate the impacts of two tillage management systems and two cropping systems on earthworm populations, soil structure evolution and nutrient dynamics, we carried out a three years study in an experimental field. The aims of this experimentation, were to assess the effects of the tillage systems (ploughing versus reduced tillage) and the availability of crop residues (export versus no export) on (i) the abundance, biomass and diversity of earthworms, on the soil structure and on the temporal variation of water extractable nutrients and organic carbon. The first results show that tillage management did significantly affect earthworm abundance and biomass. However, crop residue management did not affect abundance, biomass and diversity of earthworms. Regarding soil physical properties, the tillage affected the compaction profiles within the top 30cm. The analysis of nutrient and organic carbon dynamics show divergent trends (decrease of calcium and magnesium, increase of hot water extractable carbon and phosphorus…) but no clear effect of the studied factors could be identified. The question of the initial soil variability raised as a crucial point in the discussion.

  16. The expeditious survey of soils as a management strategy against degradation processes of agroecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machado Siqueira, Glécio; Medeiros Bezerra, Joel

    2013-04-01

    The pressure for agricultural use in hilly areas regarded as marginal to the productive process, committed to carrying capacity of natural systems and exposes the available resources, especially soil and water with higher rates of degradation. This fact, coupled with the lack of planning of production activities, knowing the limitations and capabilities of environmental elements, as well as the use of inappropriate agricultural practices and intensive, quickened the processes that generate environmental imbalance. To circumvent these problems, it is necessary to find mechanisms that mitigate the conflicts generated between productive activities and the environment. One should then respect the specificities and restrictions local soil and their interactions with other components of the environment, trying to select and adapt agricultural practices and techniques best suited to local conditions and enabling the sustainable use of land. For this detailed information and appropriate scale, consistent with the need for rural communities become indispensable instrument to support the management of natural resource use. The exp