Managing water scarcity in European and Chinese cropping systems

Partner Publication (CVUT):

Thomas Weninger 1 , Edith Kamptner 1, Tomas Dostal 2 , Adelheid Spiegel 3 , and Peter Strauss 1
Institute for Land and Water Management, Federal Agency of Water Management, Pollnbergstraße 1, 3252 Petzenkirchen, Austria

Faculty of Civil Engineering, Department of Landscape Water Conservation, Czech Technical University Prague, Thákurova 7,
16629 Prague 6, Czech Republic

Institute for Soil Health and Plant Nutrition, Austrian Agency for Health and Food Safety, Spargelfeldstraße 191, 1220 Vienna, Austria
Received October 1, 2020; accepted November 13, 2020
Int. Agrophys., 2020, 34, 463-471

A b s t r a c t.

Reliable estimations of soil physical quality provide valuable information for the evaluation and advancement
of agricultural soil management strategies. In the agriculturally highly productive Pannonian basin in Eastern Austria, little emphasis has been placed on the determination of soil physical quality and corresponding soil degradation risks. Nevertheless, ongoing climate change, especially prolonged drought periods and higher rainfall intensity, will raise the need for appropriate soil management strategies. Soil physical quality was therefore assessed in nine soil profiles in a long-term tillage experiment which has been in operation since 1988 in Eastern Austria. Soil
samples from depths of between 2 and 37 cm and under three different tillage systems (conventional, reduced and minimal tillage) were analysed for various indicators of soil physical quality. The resulting classifications of soil physical quality in the different profiles were compared qualitatively and quantitatively together with an estimation concerning the representativeness of the soil physical quality indicators used. The outcomes showed severe soil
compaction under all tillage treatments and slight improvements in soil physical quality marginally above the working depth for the different treatments. Additionally, conversion to conservation tillage led to less pronounced improvements in soil physical quality under Pannonian conditions than have been reported in more humid climates.
K e y w o r d s: tillage intensity, soil compaction, soil water balance, soil management


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