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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Salchow, Edie
item Lal, Rattan
item Fausey, Norman - Norm
item Ward, Andrew

Submitted to: Geoderma
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/9/1996
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Maintaining soil quality and sustaining agricultural productivity are important long term goals for society as a whole to avoid famine, starvation, and conflict for food. Pedotransfer functions (PTFs) is the name given to the relationships between the basic physical properties of the soil (texture, organic matter content, density) and other properties that are important to production and resource management (water transmitting capability, water content). PTFs allow basic information from soil surveys, geographic information systems (GIS) databases, and satellite images to be translated into maps of hydrologic properties. PTFs need to be developed to describe soil quality and to monitor the effects of land management on soil quality. Pedotransfer functions were developed for the Ohio MSEA water quality study site in southern Ohio that will be useful in interpreting the effects of farming management systems on soil quality. These results are important to the proper interpretation of data from this USDA Midwest Water Quality Initiative site.

Technical Abstract: This study developed some pedotransfer functions by baseline characterization of soil physical and hydrological properties of a 40-ha field. Soil organic carbon content was correlated with clay content. Bulk density was correlated with clay and soil organic carbon. Percent water stable aggregates was correlated with soil organic carbon, bulk density, and clay content. The correlations of soil organic carbon and clay content with moisture retention at different water potentials increased from 0.65 at saturation to 0.85 at permanent wilting point. Correlation of bulk density with moisture retention was -0.9 at saturation and -0.5 at permanent wilting point. The air filled porosity at 0.006 MPa was negatively correlated with bulk density. The natural logarithm of saturated hydraulic conductivity was correlated with bulk density, saturation point, percent water stable aggregates, soil organic carbon, air filled porosity at 0.001 MPa and clay content. Both equilibrium infiltration rate and cumulative infiltration were correlated with median aggregate size, percent water stable aggregates, and air filled porosity at potentials of 0.001 MPa and 0.002 MPa. These correlated variables formed the basis for development of pedotransfer functions.

Last Modified: 10/17/2017
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