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Cultivation affected the level of inorganic phosphorus more than the organic pool of the Pampas soils in Argentina

Alvarez, Roberto, Gangi, Daniela, Caffaro, María, Molina, Cecilia, Berhongaray, Gonzalo
Archiv für Acker- und Pflanzenbau und Bodenkunde 2019 v.65 no.7 pp. 1022-1033
crop rotation, inorganic phosphorus, land use, pampas soils, pastures, phosphorus content, trees, Argentina
The effects of land use on soil organic and inorganic phosphorus (P) stocks were assessed in the Pampas, Argentina. Three hundred and eighty-six paired sites widely distributed over an area of ca. 50 Mha were sampled. Land use types included soils under trees, uncropped soils, cropped soils at the pasture phase of a mixed rotation, cropped soils at the crop phase of a mixed rotation, and flooded soils. Slight differences in organic P stocks were found among land uses. Organic P was 21–35% lower in flooded soil than in the other treatments in the 0–100 cm depth. Inorganic P was significantly lower (ca. 27%) in pasture and cropped soils than in the uncropped controls at 0–25 cm depth. The ratios of organic P/inorganic P and organic C/organic P decreased with depth and did not significantly differ among the sites. The influence of cultivation on inorganic P to a depth of 100 cm depended on the initial phosphorus content of the soil. Soils rich in phosphorus lost substantial amounts of their phosphorus stocks, in some cases losses were as high as 70%, whereas phosphorus-poor soils presented only small changes in their inorganic P levels.