eesti teaduste
akadeemia kirjastus
SINCE 1952
Earth Science cover
Estonian Journal of Earth Sciences
ISSN 1736-7557 (Electronic)
ISSN 1736-4728 (Print)
Impact Factor (2020): 0.789

Evaluation of the pedodiversity, agronomical quality and environment protection ability of the soil cover of Estonian croplands; pp. 205–222

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Kaire Rannik, Raimo Kõlli


The diversity, humus status, productivity and environment protection ability of cropland soils were studied in the mild and wet pedoclimatic conditions of Estonia, located in the mixed-forest region of the North European temperate zone. Proceeding from the pedocentric principle, the soil cover is treated as a causal factor largely determining the land use, productivity level, soil management technology and environmental status of the area. The research is based on soil data from seven arable land parcels of three experimental stations, where the Cambisols, Luvisols, Retisols, Leptosols and Gleysols are dominating. The taxonomic heterogeneity and contrastiveness of arable soils were estimated at the most detailed level of soil taxa. To determine the humus cover types (pro humus forms) and to evaluate the agronomical quality of soils, the guidelines elaborated for local pedo-ecological conditions were employed. The environment protection ability of soils was evaluated as a complex indicator, which comprises the biological and physical properties of soil cover, soil climate and the character of soil cover substratum. For quantifying the pedodiversity of soil cover and the contrastiveness of soil taxa, it is recommended to use the mineral soil pedo-ecological matrix with lithogenetic and moisture scalars, and the matrix of top- and subsoil texture. The best indicators of the pedodiversity of arable lands are the soil classification taxa determined at the most detailed level and the statistically elaborated data about their spatial distribution and properties. For the precise land use the evaluation of the agronomical quality of soil cover and its suitability for crops in relation to its whole heterogeneity is indispensable. The most informative pedodiversity indicator of arable soil humus status is the humus cover type. Additionally, the problems connected with pedo-ecological equivalence and soil type-specific biodiversity are discussed. The quantitative indicators of pedodiversity enable arranging the use of croplands in harmony with the pedo-ecological properties soil cover.


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