Revista Brasileira de Ciência do Solo
versión impresa ISSN 0100-0683
GREGO, Célia Regina; COELHO, Ricardo Marques y VIEIRA, Sidney Rosa. Morphological and taxonomic criteria of oxic and nitic horizons validated by measurable physical properties partially analyzed by geostatistics. Rev. Bras. Ciênc. Solo [online]. 2011, vol.35, n.2, pp. 337-350. ISSN 0100-0683. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-06832011000200005.
Despite evidences that soil morphology and classification can be used to infer measurable soil properties and to correlate management results among different agricultural sites, there is still the need of data to support many of those inferences. The aim of this research was to validate the use of soil morphology and taxonomy to predict soil properties based on measurements and analyzed by geostatistics, mainly those related to Nitic and Ferralic/Oxic soil horizons. Three selected soil profiles under no-tillage and fallow after conventional tillage were described and classified with the Brazilian Soil Classification System. Soils were classified as "Latossolo Vermelho distroférrico típico" (Haplic Ferralsol, Rhodic Hapludox) under no-till (LD) and conventional till (LC), and "Nitossolo Vermelho distroférrico latossólico" (Ferralic Nitisol, Rhodic Hapludox) at the no-till site (ND), all with very clayey texture. Samples were collected for soil water retention, particle-size distribution and chemical characterization. In a grid (0.4 x 1.5 m) on one of the pit walls measurements of soil resistance to infiltration and penetration were taken at 80 points spaced 10 cm apart and spatial dependence was analyzed by geostatistics. Conventional tillage practices resulted in a less developed structure and a thinner soil surface A horizon. The "Nitossolo" (ND) differed from the other two pedons with a strong blocky structure and shiny peds down to 1.0 m, characterizing a Nitic B horizon overlying a Ferralic (or Oxic) B horizon. The structure of the Nitic horizon determined not only the soil classification, but also soil resistance to water infiltration and penetration and soil water retention. The vertical limits between surface and subsurface soil horizons defined by field morphology were closely associated to field-measured and geostatistically-analyzed soil physical properties. The Nitic and Oxic/Ferralic diagnostic horizons could be differentiated by measurements of soil physical-hydric properties, indicating these taxonomic criteria as useful for the discrimination of these horizons and confirming their use as indicators of differentiated soil physical properties.
Palabras llave : Ferralic horizon; nitic horizon; soil morphology; soil physical properties; soil spatial variability.