Comparing the Physical Quality of Polish Chernozems Classified in Various Complexes of Agricultural Suitability
Jan Paluszek
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Institute of Soil Science, Environment Engineering and Management, University of Life Science in Lublin,
S. Leszczyńskiego 7, 20-069 Lublin, Poland
Submission date: 2015-08-26
Acceptance date: 2015-10-12
Publication date: 2016-01-25
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2016;25(1):259–271
The objective of this study was the estimation of water and air properties of Polish Chernozems developed from loess, classified in various complexes of agricultural suitability. Twelve Chernozems situated in various physical geographic mesoregions of Poland were selected for the study. Chernozems classified in the very good wheat complex were characterised by significantly lower soil density, but greater field water capacity (expressed in kg·kg-1 and m3·m-3), water capacity at permanent wilting point, and content of micropores with equivalent diameter <0.2 μm compared to Chernozems from good and deficient wheat complexes. Chernozems classified in the particular complexes of agricultural suitability did not differ significantly in terms of their maximum water capacity, retention of water usable for plants, hydraulic conductivity in the saturated zone, total porosity, content of macropores >20 μm, content of mesopores with equivalent diameter of 0.2-20 μm, relative field capacity, air permeability at the state of field water capacity, and the index of physical quality S according to Dexter. Based on the absolute values of the calculated index S the physical quality of all Chernozems under study was estimated as very good. Among the particular properties the most favourable were the following: soil density, total porosity, field water capacity, and retention of water usable for plants, whereas the air capacity and permeability at the state of field water capacity and the saturated hydraulic conductivity were most frequently estimated as good or medium.