Effects of biological practices on soil stability in a desertified area of Iran

Document Type: Research Paper

Author

Dept. Arid Zone Management Faculty of Watershed and Arid Zone Management Gorgan, Gorgan University of Agriculural Sciences and Natural Resources

Abstract

The rehabilitation of sandy desertified land in various dryland ecosystems by different management practices has a great potential to increase aggregate stability and improve soil quality. However, plants in general may have a different ability to sustain soil. The objective was to determine the effects of reclamation practices including Haloxylon ammodendron and Atriplex canescens plantation on some soil properties, soil erodibility and the relationships among soil properties and erodibility index in desertified land of Jupar in Kerman province, southern Iran. According to the research objectives, 24 soil samples from 0-20 cm depth were taken from each area, i.e. reclamation sites and control area (untreated land) by systematic – random method. Soil properties such as soil texture, structure, pH, EC, CaCO3, gypsum, bulk density, organic carbon and soil organic matter were measured. The mean weight diameter (MWD) and geometric mean diameter (GMD) were used as soil erodibility indices. The results of our study showed that MWD had positive correlation with organic carbon, CaCO3 and soil acidity values. Furthermore, according to the effect of Haloxylon on aggregate stability and its positive role in modifying soil physical and chemical properties, and also the height of this species, which can contribute in wind erosion control in this area, therefore, it is concluded that Haloxylon ammodendron had better performance in desert rehabilitation project and to stabilize sandy land in Jupar area than Atriplex canescens.

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