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Scientia Agricola

On-line version ISSN 1678-992X

Abstract

COOPER, Miguel et al. Hydro-physical characterization of soils under tropical semi-deciduous forest. Sci. agric. (Piracicaba, Braz.) [online]. 2012, vol.69, n.2, pp.152-159. ISSN 1678-992X.  https://doi.org/10.1590/S0103-90162012000200011.

The study of the hydro-physical behavior in soils using toposequences is of great importance for better understanding the soil, water and vegetation relationships. This study aims to assess the hydro-physical and morphological characterization of soil from a toposequence in Galia, state of São Paulo, Brazil). The plot covers an area of 10.24 ha (320 × 320 m), located in a semi-deciduous seasonal forest. Based on ultra-detailed soil and topographic maps of the area, a representative transect from the soil in the plot was chosen. Five profiles were opened for the morphological description of the soil horizons, and hydro-physical and micromorphological analyses were performed to characterize the soil. Arenic Haplustult, Arenic Haplustalf and Aquertic Haplustalf were the soil types observed in the plot. The superficial horizons had lower density and greater hydraulic conductivity, porosity and water retention in lower tensions than the deeper horizons. In the sub-superficial horizons, greater water retention at higher tensions and lower hydraulic conductivity were observed, due to structure type and greater clay content. The differences observed in the water retention curves between the sandy E and the clay B horizons were mainly due to the size distribution, shape and type of soil pores.

Keywords : Ultisol; Alfisol; water retention; soil functioning; image analysis.

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