Year 2018, Volume 3, Issue 3

Year : 2018
Volume : 3
Issue : 3
Authors : Markela KOZAITI, Sofia KOSTOPOULOU
Abstract : In vineyards, frequent machinery traffic between the vine rows results in spatial and temporal changes in soil structure that affect the water retention properties in the root zone. Compaction effects on the soil water characteristic curve in the root zone were evaluated in three vineyards of different soil types (a Cl, a ClL, and a SiL with increased sand percentage). Soil cores were collected from a) the tilled soil on the vine-row and b) the compacted soil of ruts produced by machinery traffic within the inter-row distance. Sampling was carried out at two depths (0-15cm and 15-30cm) and at two time intervals, the first in spring when agricultural vehicles had accomplished 6-8 passes and the second in autumn, after ca 20 passes. The results of the first sampling in the beginning of the cultivation period revealed that compaction increased soil bulk density of the three vineyards in both depths. Drainage pores collapsed to smaller ones while plant available water and textural porosity increased. The effect of compaction was more pronounced on the surface (0-15 cm) of the more fine textured soils. In autumn, at the end of the cultivation period, it was found that the soil water retention characteristics in the vineyards root zone were not substantially further affected by machinery traffic. We concluded that machinery traffic impact on the studied properties was intense in spring when the soil in vineyards was loose from tillage before the cultivation period and had temporally increased moisture content which results in decreased strength.
For citation : Kozaiti, M., Kostopoulou, S. (2018). The effect of compaction on water retention in the vineyard’s root zone. AGROFOR International Journal, Volume 3. Issue No. 3. pp. 39-46. DOI: 10.7251/AGRENG1803039K
Keywords : pore size distribution, bulk density, available water, textural porosity
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