How does soil texture affect agricultural production


Soil texture may limit which crops can be grown. For example, root crops, such as carrotsand onions, perform best in a sandy soil because it is loose and allows the plants to expand. Onthe other hand, some crops may experience stunted growth in a sandy soil because the soillacks water- and nutrient-holding ability. Soil Structure

Organic matter is an important contributor to soil texture and helps to ameliorate stickiness and also helps sandy soils hang together, making them feel more loamy. Soil texture has a major influence on agriculture as it influences aeration, water movement and storage, nutrient holding capacity and erodibility.


How does soil texture affect plant growth?

Soil texture determines the rate at which water drains through a saturated soil; water moves more freely through sandy soils than it does through clayey soils. Once field capacity is reached, soil texture also influences how much water is available to the plant; clay soils have.

Are there any risks associated with particular soil textures?

Good soil and water conservation practices are always recommended for all soils; however, there are a number of risks associated with particular soil textures that good farm managers should consider. Fortunately, there are also management practices that can be adopted to reduce these risks. Sandy soils

How does soil erosion affect agriculture?

However, the impacts of climate change and deforestation are increasing soil erosion, which is damaging the productivity of farms around the world. Below we discuss what soil erosion is and how it is caused, as well as how it impacts agriculture.

What is soil texture?

Soil texture refers to the relative proportion of the various particles of soil. Soil texture can be determined by various methods and these methods include Soil texture can be determined by feeling.


Why is soil texture important in agriculture?

The texture of a soil is important because it determines soil characteristics that affect plant growth. Three of these characteristics are water-holding capacity, permeability, and soil workability. Water-holding capacity is the ability of a soil to retain water.

How does soil texture affect soil productivity?

Soil texture also determines the rooting system and, thus, regulates the soil CO2 efflux. Therefore, soil with lower water storage capacity, unsaturated hydraulic conductivity and lower fertility have slower root growth in coarser texture than in finer texture (Högberg and Högberg, 2002).

How does texture affect soil?

Texture indicates the relative content of particles of various sizes, such as sand, silt and clay in the soil. Texture influences the ease with which soil can be worked, the amount of water and air it holds, and the rate at which water can enter and move through soil.

What is soil texture in agriculture?

Definition of soil texture? Soil texture refers to the relative proportion of the various particles of soil. In other words it refers to the degree of fineness or correctness of the various soil particles present in a given sample of soil. the particles that make up a soil sample include gravel sand silt and clay.

What is soil texture and its importance?

Soil texture is an important soil characteristic that influences stormwater infiltration rates. The textural class of a soil is determined by the percentage of sand, silt, and clay. Soils can be classified as one of four major textural classes: (1) sands; (2) silts; (3) loams; and (4) clays.

Why is texture an important soil property for agriculture quizlet?

Why is texture an important soil property? It strongly influences the soil’s ability to retain and transmit water and air, both of which are essential to plant growth.

How does soil texture affect nutrient availability?

Texture is defined as the proportion of sand, silt, and clay in the soil. High clay content increases CEC and thus the ability to hold nutrients, while high sand content decreases the CEC and nutrient holding capacity. Sandy soils also have large pore spaces, allowing more leaching of nutrients.

In what type of soil texture will root crops grow best?

Sandy loam has a good texture, without heavy clods of clay or accumulations of rock. This is the best soil for growing root crops where the roots need unobstructed, even soil.

How does soil texture affect soil structure and its components?

The texture of a soil determines soil water-holding capacity, permeability, and soil workability. Sand, silt, clay, and organic matter particles in a soil combine with one another to form larger particles. Soil structure is the arrangement of the soil particles into aggregates of various sizes and shapes.

How does soil structure affect plant growth?

Soil structure not only affects the ability of roots to grow and to supply the leaves with water and nutrients; if adverse, it also induces them to send hormonal signals that slow the growth of the shoot, even if they are currently able to take up adequate water and nutrients.

What is soil texture?

Soil texture is the composition of size of grains constituted of minerals. There are three types of grains i.e. sand (2-0.05 mm), silt (0.05-0.002) and clay (below 0.002) cont rols the soil texture.

Why is soil mapping important?

In this context, soil mapping is important to provide spatial information, which can be performed using remote sensing (RS) techniques. Modeling through use of satellite data is uncertain regarding the amplitude of replicability of the models. The aim of this study was to develop a quantification model for soil texture based on reflectance information from a continuum of bare soils, obtained by overlapping multi-temporal satellite images, and apply this model to an unknown region to evaluate its applicability. Spectral data were extracted from two Landsat TM 7 satellite images containing only bare soil, representing two distinct regions in Brazil (Area 1 and Area 2). The spectral data (obtained from six bands) and laboratory data (particle size from the 0.00-0.20 m layer) of Area 1 were modeled and extrapolated to Area 2. The bare soil images differentiated textural classes as sandy, sandy loam, clayey loam, clayey, and very clayey soil. The coefficients of determination between the determined and estimated values were higher than 0.5 and errors lower than 13 % for Area 1 and 30 % for Area 2, indicating applicability of the model to unknown areas.

How does sustainable agriculture affect the environment?

Sustainable agriculture requires that soil and water quality be maintained. Some farm practices have the potential to cause environmental harm , which may affect rural and urban areas alike. Many of the potential negative impacts of farming can be greatly reduced by the use of Best Management Practices. These are agricultural practices that reflect current knowledge about conserving soil and water without sacrificing productivity.

What is soil texture class?

Soil texture class is a result commonly reported by soil testing labs and displayed on soils maps. It is also one of the most important factors in determining crop yields.

Why are sandy soils called light soils?

Differences in soil texture were recognized early in the history of agriculture. Sandy soils were called ‘light’ because they were easy to till. Silt and clay soils were called ‘heavy’ because of the extra energy required to pull a plough through them.

What does the word “loam” mean in soil?

The word loam is used to indicate that the properties of all three size classes are equally evident in the soil. In naming texture classes, soils are grouped according to the dominant class and modifiers are added to indicate the secondary importance of a particular size group. For example, a silt loam shows properties of all the classes (loam) but is notably slippery when wet (silt).

What are the properties of clay soil?

Surface structure can become degraded in clay soils, forming a crust. Crusting limits infiltration and increases runoff. When wet, clay soils are easily compacted, which also increases runoff. The runoff may contain contaminants and could affect the quality of surface and ground water. Clay-sized sediment, because of its very small size, is very slow to settle out of dugouts, streams and lakes. This can greatly increase water treatment costs.

What is sandy soil?

Sandy soils have relatively large spaces between particles, which provide for rapid downward water movement. Substances, dissolved in leaching waters, are readily transported deep into the soil and potentially to groundwater. Agricultural activities such as pesticide mixing and tank rinsing, and storage of manure, fertilizer and fuels may pose particular risks on sandy soils.

How does oil affect the groundwater supply?

One litre of oil can make two million litres of water unfit for drinking by humans. Contamination of groundwater may also have long-term impacts on many other users of the aquifer.

Why is soil important in agriculture?

In soil-based agriculture, soil health is the most important foundation of a healthy farm ecosystem. Yet most of the common farming techniques employed in industrial crop production, such as synthetic fertilizer application and monocropping, can degrade soil over time, causing a cascade of problems necessitating the use …

How does agriculture affect the ecosystem?

Sustainable and regenerative agriculture seeks to ameliorate soil health, se questering carbon, storing water and building healthier farm ecosystems along the way.

What is monocropping in agriculture?

Monocropping, or even the “simple” crop rotation mentioned above, causes a cascade of problems, necessitating not only the use of synthetic fertilizers (because soil becomes depleted), but also the use of pesticides to control pests, like soil fungi , insects and other agricultural nuisances.

What is soil erosion?

In agriculture, soil erosion usually refers to topsoil particles wearing away through wind, water and through farming activities, like tillage. 29 Erosion is caused by many different factors, but poor soil management, including tilling, can cause significant erosion over time, as can practices such as not planting cover crops in winter and not mulching. 30 Tillage erosion can cause both wind and water erosion as poorly-managed soils are more susceptible to both. 31

Why is erosion bad for agriculture?

In some cases, this loss causes a change in the structure of agricultural soils, which can, in turn, lead to increased susceptibility to drought. 32 Eroded soil can turn into runoff and wash into local waterways, carrying not only soil particles, but any contaminants in that soil (such as synthetic fertilizer and pesticides). 33 Wind erosion can cause significant topsoil loss, as well as health problems, property damage, and harm to crops. 34 Erosion can also be a cause of flooding, as damaged soil cannot absorb as much water as healthy soil.

What is the practice of growing the same crop on the same plot of land, year after year?

Monocropping is the practice of growing the same crop on the same plot of land, year after year. This practice depletes the soil of nutrients (making the soil less productive over time), reduces organic matter in soil and can cause significant erosion.

What are the effects of nitrogen fertilizer on plants?

1112Some types of nitrogen fertilizer can cause soil acidification , which can affect plant growth. 13Excessive fertilizer use can also cause a buildup of salts in soil, heavy metal contamination and accumulation of nitrate (which is a source of water pollution and also harmful to humans). 14.

How does soil erosion affect agriculture?

Soil erosion can negatively impact agriculture by reducing crop yields and quality. In an era where the population continues to grow rapidly, the agricultural sector is being put under increasing pressure to respond and produce enough food for our growing society.

How much of the world’s agricultural land is affected by erosion?

It is estimated that as much as 80% of the world ’ s agricultural land is suffering from what is considered moderate or severe levels of erosion. Also, almost all human food source comes from the land, with an estimated 99.7% of food calories coming from this source and just 0.3% coming from aquatic ecosystems.

Why is organic farming important?

Switching to organic farming methods is being encouraged in the agricultural sector not only to reduce soil erosion and product crop yields but also for the other numerous environmental and health benefits it brings.

Why do farmers switch to row crops?

Also, there has been a recent trend in the US for farmers to switch to certain row crops, like corn, because its value has doubled, while its susceptibility to soil erosion is putting entire farms at risk of financial failure.

What is soil erosion?

Soil erosion refers to the process whereby the top layer of soil is removed. While it is a natural process, caused by the weather, it is also caused by human activity, and it can cause harm to agricultural processes when it occurs rapidly and excessively.

Why is it important to protect the land that food is grown on?

This highlights the vital need to protect the land that food is grown on to prevent a food crisis. With the soil being eroded at rates between 10 to 40 times faster than the rates at which it is being renewed, it is essential to address the causes of soil erosion to limit the detrimental effects to agriculture.

Can grazing animals cause soil erosion?

Agricultural processes themselves can also cause soil erosion. Grazing animals can induce this effect by eating the plants covering the topsoil, exposing it to the elements, and churning up the ground pacing back and forth over its surface.

What are the factors that affect soil productivity?

Soil productivity factors that are usually diminished by soil erosion include direct loss of soil fertility, loss of soil organic matter, deterioration of soil structure, and decreased water-supplying capacity (capaci ty to provide water to growing plants). The primary seat of fertility of many soils is the topsoil.

How does humankind affect soil?

Humankind can also have a tremendous impact on soil productivity through its effects on the dynamic soil properties. Agricultural management decisions regarding tillage, fertilization, crop rotation, irrigation, and drainage are among the practices that can significantly affect soil productivity. View chapter Purchase book.

Why should farmers use CRM?

Conflicting results occur due to the large number of complex interactions associated with residue quality, soil-related factors, health of the previous crop, potential susceptibility of the next crop and management options such as cultivar selection, crop rotation and planting date. Results suggest that no one CRM system is superior under all conditions. Thus, farmers have a responsibility in making management decisions that will enable them to optimize crop yields and minimize environmental impacts. Multidisciplinary and integrated efforts by a wide variety of scientists are required to design the best site-specific systems for CRM practices to enhance agricultural productivity and sustainability while minimizing environmental impacts.

What is sustainable agriculture?

Sustainable agricultural systems strive to restore and enhance inherent soil qualities and productivity through improved conservation and management practices, while reducing use of commercial inputs. The USDA has supported a Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program since 1988.

How does urban sprawl affect agriculture?

Urban sprawl will also have an adverse impact on global agricultural productivity levels, as on average, land used for development tends to be highly productive land, and it is no longer available for agricultural use when diverted to urban development. Another challenge is water scarcity.

Why are soil resources important?

Soil resources are so important for a myriad of reasons. It has been reported that most of the productive agricultural land is already in cultivation. Another challenge that is impacting agricultural land is desertification, which is increased by poor land management practices such as deforestation, over-grazing, improper irrigation practices, over-cropping or other factors where soil health and soil biology is significantly impacted, and soils are degraded. Salinization also affects cultivated areas when salts are built up to levels that are harmful to crops and reduce productivity, or when saline water is used for irrigation. Improper management of water resources could also contribute to salinization of aquifers, which could negatively impact irrigated areas. Urban sprawl will also have an adverse impact on global agricultural productivity levels, as on average, land used for development tends to be highly productive land, and it is no longer available for agricultural use when diverted to urban development.

Why is soil productivity important?

More than ever, it is of critical importance to conserve the world’s soil resources so that the needed increases in agricultural production to feed 9–10 billion people can be achieved .

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Rodale Institute long term Farming System Trial organic versus conventional management on the same soil.

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Two very important issues is if the agricultural practices create compaction reducing the absorption of air and water and decreasing root growth.

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Soil structure and aggregate formation can be influenced by the soil biota, for instance by earthworms, who are sensitive to tillage practices or affected by different agro-chemicals (pesticides).


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