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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Morris, Minnesota » Soil Management Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #230846

Title: Soil water retention within an eroded and restored landscape

item Schneider, Sharon
item Lindstrom, Michael

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/30/2008
Publication Date: 7/30/2008
Citation: Eynard, A., Schumacher, T.E., Papiernik, S.K., Lobb, D., Lindstrom, M.J. 2008. Soil water retention within an eroded and restored landscape [abstract]. Soil and Water Conservation Society. p. 99.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Significant changes in soil properties and productivity have occurred as a result of intensive row crop production. Many of these changes are related to soil loss from water, wind, and tillage erosion. Soil is lost from convex and steeper landscape positions and deposited in concave lower landscape positions. Transport of soil from the lower landscape positions to eroded parts of the landscape is one approach that has been used to restore lost productivity. The effect of topsoil replacement on eroded areas may postpone the development of crop water stress with concomitant benefits to productivity. The objective of this study was to examine the effect of topsoil addition and removal on pore size distribution and plant available water in a soil restoration experiment. Measurements were taken from areas of topsoil addition on the shoulder and from areas of topsoil removal on the foot slope and compared to adjacent controls. Soil water retention was measured from the surface horizon and from samples collected at 10-20, 20-40, 40-80, and >80 cm depths. Water retention was measured at tensions of 0.002, 0.004, 0.006, 0.008 MPa using a tension table, 0.03 and 0.1 MPa using a pressure ceramic plate, and at 1.5 MPa using dew point potentiometry. Soil water retention findings will be presented in relationship to its effects on estimates of the soil productivity index.