Soil System Sciences

Soil science

Turning unproductive soil into profits

Preeti Roychand La Trobe University AgriBio Centre for AgriBioscience Melbourne, VIC, Australia Sandy soils in Western Australia are bad soils for growing plants due to their poor nutrients and water holding capacity (see an example in Figure 1). In general, these soils are water repellent, which leads to land degradation by increasing soil erosion risk and run-off rates. Nevertheless, these soils ...[Read More]

Fire and soil microorganisms: where should we focus on?

Fire and soil microorganisms: where should we focus on?

Gema Bárcenas-Moreno University of Seville, Sevilla, Spain Currently, the complexity of soil microbial ecology on soil systems is a hot topic in the environmental sciences, since the scientific community has achieved a deep knowledge of the relevance of microorganisms in soil processes. After several decades of study of the effects of wildfires on soils, one of the main conclusions is that soil mi ...[Read More]

Sure can smell the rain

Fly, thought, on golden wings, go alight on the cliffs, on the hills, where the sweet airs of our native soil smell soft and mild! Chorus of the Hebrew slaves, Nabucco Giuseppe Verdi   Have you ever noticed the smell of rain? Why does wet soil smell so good? The smell of wet soil plants oils released into the soil during dry periods is due. These substances accumulate in the soil and mix with ...[Read More]

A dark future sprouting from sealed soil

Every year in Europe, soils covering an area larger than the city of Berlin are lost to urban sprawl and transport infrastructure. This unsustainable trend threatens the availability of fertile soils and groundwater reservoirs for future generations. A new report made public today by the European Commission recommends a three-tiered approach focused on limiting the progression of soil sealing, mit ...[Read More]