Assessment of Spatial Variability of Physico-chemical Properties of Soil at Crop, Soil and Pest Management Research Farm, FUTA

Olubanjo, O. O.* and  Ayoola, S.O.

Department of Agricultural and Environmental Engineering, Federal University of Technology, Akure,  Nigeria

*Correspondence to:

Article Number: se-j-arjee-2020.0301001; Volume 3(1), pp 1-20, April, 2020

Abstract: Soil is an important natural resource for growing plants and the suitability of the soil for crop production is based on the quality of the soil’s physical, chemical and biological properties. The objectives of the study were to determine the soil physical and chemical properties and characterize the spatial variability of soil physico-chemical properties across the study area. The study was conducted at Crop, Soil and Pest Management Research Farm, Futa. Soil samples were collected from six sampling depths between 0-60 cm at an interval of 10 cm at different 20 points across the field while coordinates of the soil sampling points were determined using Global Positioning System (GPS) procedures. The test for variance was carried out on the physical properties of %sand, %silt, %clay, bulk density (g/cm3), %porosity, %water holding capacity (WHC) and soil hydraulic conductivity and chemical properties on pH, organic matter content (%), total nitrogen (%), available phosphorus (ppm), calcium, magnesium, sodium and potassium (cmol/kg), and effective cation exchange capacity (cmol/kg). The laboratory analysis (soil textural analysis) revealed that the soil types at the site were predominantly Sandy Clay Loam. Gravimetric soil moisture content and the water holding capacity (WHC) in all the 20 sampling spots at the topsoil has a mean value of 9.13% ± 1.90 and 52.43%±2.45 respectively. The minimum and maximum hydraulic conductivity (K) value at the distribution show a moderately skewed distribution of the K data and the distribution is positively skewed. The mean pH value of the soil in the study site was found to be slightly acidic and the soils were low in soil OM. The CEC, Mg2+, OC, TEB and TN indicated a significant difference for soil chemical properties. The physical and chemical properties of the study were found to be optimal for crop production, fertility assessment and land use management practices for crop productions and drip irrigation is suitable for the study area.

Keywords: Spatial variability, Soil physico-chemical property, GPS procedures, Sampling point, Land use management practices, fertility assessment

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Article Number: se-j-arjee-2020.0301001