Physicochemical Properties of Soil under Different Forest Types in the Western Ramganga Valley (Uttarakhand Himalaya, India)
Asian Plant Research Journal,
The physicochemical properties of soils of six forests varying in elevation (lower, middle, and upper), slope, aspects, and floristic composition viz. L1 (Oak mixed), L2 (Chir pine), M1 (Rhododendron mixed), M2 (Rhododendron mixed), U1 (Abies mixed) and U2 (Abies mixed) from Western Ramganga Valley (Chamoli, Uttarakhand Himalaya, India) were scrutinized. The composite soil samples from three depths (0–10 cm, 11–20 cm, and 21–30 cm) were collected during the different seasons and the physicochemical parameters were analyzed using standard manual and protocol. Texture, bulk density, moisture content, water holding capacity, organic matter, organic carbon, pH, nitrogen content, available phosphorus, exchangeable potassium and C:N ratio of soil samples from each forest site were analyzed and discussed. It was observed that the physical properties of soils either do not vary across the three depths (0–10 cm, 11–20 cm, and 21–30 cm) or show slight changes whereas chemical properties show notable variations comparatively. The significant variation (ANOVA, P < 0.05) was observed in the soil texture (sand, silt, and clay contents), moisture content, water holding capacity, and nitrogen content across the six forest types (study sites). The soil texture ranged between loam and sandy loam which is considered supportive for plant growth. Besides, the lower bulk density and higher soil organic carbon and organic matter with other determined parameters in the studied soils indicate that the studied six forests have sustained nutritive soils. It can be concluded from the present results that the soil physicochemical properties vary with changes in the vegetation composition (forest types) at different elevations in Western Himalaya. Further elaborative study will be done to ascertain interrelationship among the vegetation and soils.
- Himalayan forests
- composite soil sample
- soil characteristics
- plant nutrients
How to Cite
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