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A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF PHYSICAL AND CHEMICAL PROPERTIES OF TWO CULTIVATED AND FORESTED ORTHIC PODZOLS

G. J. F. MILLETTE, R. G. LEGER, R. E. BAILEY

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Soils cultivated for 60 yr were compared with uncultivated forested soils at 10 sites in Appalachian Quebec. All soils belonged to the Humo-Ferric Podzol Great Group, five sets of comparisons being located on the Ascot soil series and five on the Greensboro. Comparisons were made between corresponding soil horizons, analytical data being derived from the bulking and analysis of six sample cores per horizon. Cultivation increased weight of soil in the solum and in the whole profile of both the Greensboro and the two soil series combined; bulk density was slightly affected. Field capacity, permanent wilting point and available water of the surface and sub-surface layers, in the solum and in the whole profile, were significantly increased by cultivation. The increase of available water was accompanied by a corresponding decrease in gravitational water. The content fine clay was significantly decreased in the surface layer and in the solum, while it was increased significantly in the C horizon by cultivation which also decreased the acidity of the surface and sub-surface in both series. There was a marked increase in organic matter content, but the level of fulvic acid was relatively unaffected by cultivation, indicating that the increased H/F ratio was primarily due to an increase in humic acid. Generally, Al content was not significantly changed, while significant increases in Fe and Mn were observed in the surface and solum of cultivated profiles. A deduction is made that cultivation has regraded podzol profiles into Dystric Brunisol ones which have started to evolve already toward kinds of Luvisolic profiles.