Effects of long-term agricultural land use on soil properties along the austrian-hungarian border. Part I. Soil mineralogical, physical and micromorphological parameters
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Institute of Soil Research, University of Agricultural Sciences, Gregor-Mendel-Str. 33, A-1180 Vienna, Austria
Research Institute for Soil Science and Agricultural Chemistry (RISSAC) Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Herman Otto u. 15, H-1020 Budapest, Hungary
Acceptance date: 1998-10-20
Int. Agrophys. 1999, 13(1): 15–39
The aim of this study was to assess the influence of different long-term agricultural practices on the mineralogical, physical and micromorphological composition of soils along the Austrian-Hungarian border, where Austrian and Hungarian agricultural soils (3 transects with different soil type and cultivation system) were compared with former uncultivated Iron Curtain refe-rence soils. The mineralogical results indicated that under undisturbed conditions in the reference zone a higher weathering of illite and formation of smectite occurred. The compacting effects of cultivation were reflected in higher bulk density, decrease of total porosity and soil aggregate stability. Pore size distribution showed a stronger decrease of coarse pores, especially in Hungary, where heavy machines were used, but without affecting hydraulic conductivity. Higher biological activity in topsoils of the untillaged areas was observed in all transects, leading to a more crumby structure, whereas in the tillaged soils a subangular, cracky microstructure had developed.