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Paper Information

Journal:   JOURNAL OF WATER AND SOIL CONSERVATION (JOURNAL OF AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES AND NATURAL RESOURCES)   2011 , Volume 18 , Number 1; Page(s) 181 To 197.
 
Paper: 

MICROMORPHOLOGICAL INVESTIGATION OF MOLLIC EPIPEDON POROSITY IN MOLLISOLS OF THE SOUTHERN GORGAN RIVER UNDER DIFFERENT LAND USES

 
 
Author(s):  MIRKARIMI M.*, KHORMALI F., KIANI F., AKEF M.
 
* DEPT. OF SOIL SCIENCE, GORGAN UNIVERSITY OF AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES AND NATURAL RESOURCES
 
Abstract: 

Soil degradation that sometimes occurs as the result of land use change and its vegetation cover is a widespread environmental problem that may lead to the changes in soil structure and porosity. The aim of this study, was the qualitative and quantitative micromorphological evaluation of voids in Mollisols formed on the southern Gorgan River plain. The studied land uses consisted of natural forest, pasture, orchards and cultivated land. A soil profile was dug in each of land uses. Soil samples were collected for physico-chemical analyses in three replications and also undisturbed samples for impregnation with resin by Kubiena box. Following preparation of thin sections and study by polarized microscope, the photographs were prepared and the total porosity, diameter and area of voids were determined by Image Tool 3.0 software. The data were analysed with SAS software and LSD, s test. Results of image analysis indicated that original forest and pasture had the highest percentage of porosity and the cultivated soil had the lowest one. Moreover, because of agricultural machinery in cultivated land and soil compaction, aggregates were mainly broken which reduced the size of voids in terms of feret diameter and area compared with the natural land uses. The dominant size of voids was lower than 2mm in the cultivated land. While the variations of voids in terms of size and area of the voids larger than 500mm2 and also presence of channels and large vughs were higher in forest and pasture than other uses. The presence of such voids can cause better extension and distribution of roots and higher water and nutrient uptake in forest and pasture.

 
Keyword(s): IMAGE ANALYSIS, POROSITY, LAND USE, MOLLISOLS
 
References: 
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