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Revista Brasileira de Ciência do Solo

On-line version ISSN 1806-9657


SOARES, Jorge Luís Nascimento; ESPINDOLA, Carlos Roberto  and  CASTRO, Selma Simões de. Physical and morphological alterations in cultivated soil under traditional management system. Rev. Bras. Ciênc. Solo [online]. 2005, vol.29, n.6, pp.1005-1014. ISSN 1806-9657.

Some of the pedologic alterations resulting from traditional soil management methods were studied in an area cultivated with citrus (Citrus sinensis) in a farm in Bariri County, State of São Paulo, Brazil. A toposequence was established to evaluate the effect of the position in the landscape on changes in soil physical attributes. Field and lab data were taken in vertical profiles of the upper, middle and lower slope levels of a Typic Haplorthox and some parameters were evaluated statistically through mean comparison tests. Results evidenced that the soil bulk density and macroporosity changed along the toposequence, especially at the lower levels of the slope. In such positions, where the clay level is higher, empty spaces were filled, forming blocky structures, which occurred concomitantly with micro-aggregate structure. Intensive cultivation caused the greatest soil structure alterations, even at the deeper soil layer. The study reinforces the importance of detailed morphological observations in vertical profiles due to the great variation of pedological attributes within a short distance. In a single profile, compact sectors were observed side by side with disaggregated pockets. This shows that vertical gradients (in each profile) as well as lateral ones (along a toposequence) have to be taken into account when studying temporal variations of pedological parameters.

Keywords : traditional soil management; topographic sequence; soil aggregates; soil micromorphology.

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