Restoring degraded soil structure (journal)

Patterns and Factors of Soil Structure Recovery as Revealed From a Tillage and Cover-Crop Experiment in a Compacted Orchard

Degraded soil structure recovery is much less documented than structure degradation and compaction. In this field experiment, the effects of rotary spade tillage followed by Sorghum cover crop on the degraded structure of the soil from an orchard were evaluated. A large and significant improvement of the structure quality scores were obtained. Analysis revealed a significant impact of the tillage and root development on the structure recovery, larger than the effect of SOC content. This structural change pattern was similar to those reported from other studies. Though the observed final structure quality of the top layer was good, its vulnerability remains large due to its small SOC to clay ratio.