ORCA General Poster Session (Virtual)

Title

Relationship between Topography Positions and Soil Properties in Agricultural Landscapes of Kentucky and Tennessee

Presenter Information

Kaitlin HatchettFollow

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

Major

Agriculture Systems Technology

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Iin Handayani

Presentation Format

Poster Presentation

Abstract/Description

Relationship between Topography Positions and Soil Properties in Agricultural Landscapes

of Kentucky and Tennessee

K. Hatchett and I.P. Handayani

Hutson School of Agriculture, Murray State University, Kentucky

Abstract

Topography plays an important role in controlling both hydrological and soil processes at the landscape scale. Along with parent material, climate, biota, and time, it is one of the fundamental soil forming factors. In general, the influence of topography on soils is a result of the combined effects of slope aspect, water dynamics, and/or erosion and deposition. Therefore, the objective of this research was to evaluate the effect of topography on agricultural soil properties. In this study, soil water retention, soil organic carbon (SOC), particulate organic matter (POM), water stable aggregates (WSA) and soil pH were analyzed from soil samples collected from two locations, each at different topographic positions. Undisturbed and disturbed soil samples were collected from agricultural fields located in Kentucky and Tennessee. The fields in Kentucky were under hemp productions. On the other hand, the fields in Tennessee were dominated by corn-soybean cropping systems. The data indicates that SOC, POM and WSA varied by slope position, but not by location. SOC and WSA had decreased, while soil compaction increased at the mid-slope compared to the summit and toe-slope positions resulting in lower WHC. In general, this research shows that over time, increases in SOC did improve aggregate formation and decrease soil compaction, resulting more soil aeration in hemp fields. The relationship between these soil properties and slope confirmed the importance of topography on the spatial variability of the landscapes. In addition, the use of soil horizon descriptions for each slope allows comparison between locations for each landscape position and assists with the identification of eroded soils.

Key words: Organic Carbon, Soil Water Retention, Particulate Organic Matter, Water Stable Aggregates

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Sigma Xi Poster Competition

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Relationship between Topography Positions and Soil Properties in Agricultural Landscapes of Kentucky and Tennessee

Relationship between Topography Positions and Soil Properties in Agricultural Landscapes

of Kentucky and Tennessee

K. Hatchett and I.P. Handayani

Hutson School of Agriculture, Murray State University, Kentucky

Abstract

Topography plays an important role in controlling both hydrological and soil processes at the landscape scale. Along with parent material, climate, biota, and time, it is one of the fundamental soil forming factors. In general, the influence of topography on soils is a result of the combined effects of slope aspect, water dynamics, and/or erosion and deposition. Therefore, the objective of this research was to evaluate the effect of topography on agricultural soil properties. In this study, soil water retention, soil organic carbon (SOC), particulate organic matter (POM), water stable aggregates (WSA) and soil pH were analyzed from soil samples collected from two locations, each at different topographic positions. Undisturbed and disturbed soil samples were collected from agricultural fields located in Kentucky and Tennessee. The fields in Kentucky were under hemp productions. On the other hand, the fields in Tennessee were dominated by corn-soybean cropping systems. The data indicates that SOC, POM and WSA varied by slope position, but not by location. SOC and WSA had decreased, while soil compaction increased at the mid-slope compared to the summit and toe-slope positions resulting in lower WHC. In general, this research shows that over time, increases in SOC did improve aggregate formation and decrease soil compaction, resulting more soil aeration in hemp fields. The relationship between these soil properties and slope confirmed the importance of topography on the spatial variability of the landscapes. In addition, the use of soil horizon descriptions for each slope allows comparison between locations for each landscape position and assists with the identification of eroded soils.

Key words: Organic Carbon, Soil Water Retention, Particulate Organic Matter, Water Stable Aggregates