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Revista Brasileira de Ciência do Solo

versão On-line ISSN 1806-9657


RALISCH, Ricardo et al. Morphostructural characterization of soil conventionally tilled with mechanized and animal traction with and without cover crop. Rev. Bras. Ciênc. Solo [online]. 2010, vol.34, n.6, pp.1795-1802. ISSN 1806-9657.

The structural stability and restructuring ability of a soil are related to the methods of crop management and soil preparation. A recommended strategy to reduce the effects of soil preparation is to use crop rotation and cover crops that help conserve and restore the soil structure. The aim of this study was to evaluate and quantify the homogeneous morphological units in soil under conventional mechanized tillage and animal traction, as well as to assess the effect on the soil structure of intercropping with jack bean (Canavalia ensiformis L.). Profiles were analyzed in April of 2006, in five counties in the Southern-Central region of Paraná State (Brazil), on family farms producing maize (Zea mays L.), sometimes intercropped with jack bean. The current structures in the crop profile were analyzed using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and subsequently principal component analysis (PCA) to generate statistics. Morphostructural soil analysis showed a predominance of compact units in areas of high-intensity cultivation under mechanized traction. The cover crop did not improve the structure of the soil with low porosity and compact units that hamper the root system growth. In areas exposed to animal traction, a predominance of cracked units was observed, where roots grew around the clods and along the gaps between them.

Palavras-chave : soil tillage; cultural profile; morphological homogeneous units; structural recovering.

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