Nutrients present in soil aggregates are essential for maintaining the productive capacity of agroecosystems and environmental quality. The aim of this study was to evaluate the chemical properties of macroaggregates of a Humic Dystrudept cultivated with onions under a no-till vegetable system (NTVS) compared to the conventional tillage system (CTS) and a forest area in Ituporanga, SC, Brazil. The treatments consisted of the following single and mixed cover crops with onion under the NTVS: spontaneous vegetation, 100 % black oats, 100 % rye, 100 % oilseed radish, intercropped oilseed radish (14 %) + rye (86 %), and intercropped oilseed radish (14 %) + black oat (86 %). Additionally, we evaluated two areas, one with onion grown under the CTS for ±37 years and an area under forest for ±30 years, both adjacent to the experiment. Five years after implementation of the treatments with cover crops, we collected undisturbed soil samples at depths of 0.00-0.05, 0.05-0.10, and 0.10-0.20 m, and we obtained macroaggregates (8.00 mm > Ø ≥ 2.0 mm). We analyzed total organic carbon (TOC), pH in water, Ca2+, Mg2+, Al3+, H+Al, K+, and P in the macroaggregates. The conversion of onion-growing areas from the CTS to the NTVS after five years increases TOC, pH, Ca, Mg, and K in soil macroaggregates at the depth of 0.00-0.05 m. There is increased K content in the macroaggregates of soil under the NTVS at all depths evaluated in this study compared to the CTS. The use of millet in the CTS increases P content at depth (0.05-0.10 and 0.10-0.20 m). Intercropping black oat + oilseed radish increases Ca content at the 0.10-0.20 m depth in comparison to the black oat, rye + oilseed radish, and control treatments, and increases Mg content as well, compared to the other cover crops at the depths of 0.05-0.10 and 0.10-0.20 m.
sustainable agriculture; nutrients, soil structure; Alliun cepa L.; organic carbon in aggregates