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Revista Brasileira de Ciência do Solo

Print version ISSN 0100-0683On-line version ISSN 1806-9657


FIDALSKI, Jonez et al. Soil Load-Bearing Capacity in Orange Grove Conservation Systems. Rev. Bras. Ciênc. Solo [online]. 2015, vol.39, n.3, pp.880-885. ISSN 0100-0683.

Conservation tillage systems in orange groves can increase soil load-bearing capacity minimizing their risks of soil compaction. The objective of this study was to evaluate load-bearing capacity through preconsolidation pressure and its dependence on water content, bulk density, and organic carbon of a Typic Paleudult soil 18 years after setting up permanent plant cover between the rows of an orange grove. A randomized block experimental design was used, with three replications. Three groundcover treatments subjected to mowing between the rows of the grove, as of establishment of the orange grove in 1993, were studied: Paspalum notatum grass, the Arachis pintoi legume, and spontaneous vegetation. One hundred and eight undisturbed soil samples were collected in 2011 at the 0.00-0.10 m (87 g kg-1 clay) and 0.10-0.20 m (122 g kg-1 clay) depths under and between the wheel tracks of the machines between the rows of the orange grove consisting of sandy clay texture soil. Preconsolidation pressure was not dependent on soil water content, bulk density, or organic carbon content. Preconsolidation pressure from soil compression curves (25; 50; 100; 200; 400; 800; and 1,600 kPa) at water content under three potentials (-80; -330; and 1,000 hPa), soil bulk density, and soil organic carbon were determined. The preconsolidation pressure under the wheel tracks between the orange rows in the 0.00-0.10 m layer was lower in the legume and spontaneous vegetation treatments. Ongoing maintenance of the grass managed through mowing between the rows of the orange grove led to greater soil load-bearing capacity under the wheel tracks in the sandy surface layer.

Keywords : cover plants; preconsolidation pressure; soil bulk density; soil compaction; sandy soil.

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