Compressibility and water availability in Albaqualf soils under different deployment times in no-tillage
ABSTRACT: The southern Brazilian lowlands have been historically used for flooded rice cultivation. Over time, heavy machinery and intensive tillage practices have resulted in soil structure disruption, soil compaction, higher production costs and lower agricultural profitability. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of different deployment times of no-tillage (NT). Soil properties including bulk density (BD), compression index (CI), preconsolidation pressure (σp), bulk density at preconsolidation pressure (BDσp), degree of compactness (DC), soil water retention curve (SWRC), plant available water (PAW) and total organic carbon (TOC) content were evaluated using a 30-yr non-cultivated field (NC), adjacent to the experimental plots as a control. The BD, σp, BDσp and DC decreased in response to NT adoption time while the soil water holding capacity increased, allowing for higher PAW. Results from this study demonstrated the positive effects of NT on the overall quality of soils.