RESEARCH PAPER
Soil degradation mitigation in continental climate in young vineyards planted in Stagnosols
 
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1
Department of General Agronomy, University of Zagreb, Faculty of Agriculture, Zagreb 10000, Svetošimunska cesta 25, Croatia
2
Laboratory of Environmental Management, Mykolos Romeris University, Ateities st. 20, LT-08303 Vilnius, Lithuania
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Leon Josip Telak   

Department of General Agronomy, University of Zagreb, Faculty of Agriculture, Svetošimunska cesta 25, 10000, Zagreb, Croatia
Final revision date: 2021-10-14
Acceptance date: 2021-10-21
Publication date: 2021-12-06
 
Int. Agrophys. 2021, 35(4): 307–317
 
HIGHLIGHTS
  • The young vineyards raised on Stagnosols have a high susceptibility to degradation.
  • Tillage degraded soil structure and soil organic matter, while it increased sediment loss.
  • Mulching did not impact soil properties, while it decreased sediment loss
  • Grass-covering preserved soil organic matter and structure, while it decreased sediment loss
KEYWORDS
TOPICS
ABSTRACT
Intensive soil management in vineyards makes them vulnerable to the degradation of physical characteristics and soil erosion. Sustainable management practices in young vineyards should be adopted to ensure soil longevity and ecosystem stability. The aim of this research was to compare the effects of grass-covering and straw-mulching on the mitigation of soil degradation through the reduction of chemical and physical soil degradation and initial soil erosion. The soil sampling and rainfall simulations were performed in an immature vineyard, which was established in Stagnosol, in a semi-humid climate in order to study the intrinsic relationships between soil properties and soil degradation/erosion. The grass-covering treatment significantly increased the values of soil organic matter, mean weight diameter, water-stable aggregates, ponding and runoff times, and significantly reduced the values of water runoff, sediment concentration, sediment loss, carbon loss, phosphorous loss and as a consequence, increased the available phosphorous, and soil water content. The opposite result was observed for the tilled treatment. Straw-mulching did not affect soil properties, however it decreased water, soil, and nutrient losses. Grass-covering is highlighted as the most sustainable soil management strategy as it mitigates water, sediment and nutrient losses in young vineyards.
FUNDING
This work was supported by the Croatian Science Foundation through the project "Soil erosion and degradation in Croatia" (UIP-2017-05-7834) (SEDCRO) (2018-2023).
CONFLICT OF INTEREST
The authors declare no conflict of interest.
 
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