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Revista Brasileira de Ciência do Solo

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ZHAO, Pei; SHAO, Ming An; OMRAN, Wail  and  AMER, Abdel-monem Mohamed. Effects of erosion and deposition on particle size distribution of deposited farmland soils on the chinese loess plateau. Rev. Bras. Ciênc. Solo [online]. 2011, vol.35, n.6, pp.2135-2144. ISSN 0100-0683.

Particle size distribution (PSD) in the soil profile is strongly related to erosion, deposition, and physical and chemical processes. Water cycling and plant growth are also affected by PSD. Material sedimented upstream of the dam constructions formed large areas of deposited farmland (DF) soils on the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP), which has been the site of the most severe soil erosion in the world. Two DFs without tillage on the CLP were chosen to study the combined effect of erosion and check dams on PSD. Eighty-eight layers (each 10 cm thick) of filled deposited farmland (FDF) soils and 22 layers of silting deposited farmland (SDF) soils of each studied soil profile were collected and 932 soil samples were investigated using laser granulometry. The particle sizes were stratified in both DFs based on soil properties and erosion resistance. The obtained results of clay and silt fractions showed similar horizontal distribution, indicating parallel characteristics of erosion and deposition processes. Fine sand represented the largest fraction, suggesting the preferential detachment of this fraction. The most erodible range of particle sizes was 0.25-0.5 mm, followed by 0.2-0.25 mm in the studied soil profiles. The correlation between particle size and soil water contents tended to increase with increasing water contents in FDF. Due to the abundant shallow groundwater, the relationship between particle size and soil water content in SDF was lost. Further studies on PSD in the DF area are needed to enhance the conservation management of soil and water resources in this region.

Keywords : soil texture; stratification; soil erodibility; dam construction; soil conservation.

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