Soil hydrology and soil properties on a partially reforested hillside in the Central Alps
S. Grashey-Jansenhttps://doi.org/10.17221/2/2012-JFSCitation:Grashey-Jansen S. (2012): Soil hydrology and soil properties on a partially reforested hillside in the Central Alps. J. For. Sci., 58: 363-371.
The landscape on southern exposed hillsides in the inneralpine Vinschgau Valley (Northern Italy) is shaped by many thousand years of cultivation. Phases of intensive land use and deforestation were followed by phases of natural regeneration and later by governmental programs of reforestation. The result in the present landscape is the juxtaposition of reforested woodland (RF-areas) and xeric grassland with steppe species (XG-areas) on the same hillside. The scenic and ecological contrast presents ideal conditions for comparative studies in ecology, forest and soil science. On the side of soil science especially the depth and intensity of soil development on the whole hillside have been underrated, whereas the existence of podzolised soils in the reforested area has mostly been overrated so far. One aim of this study was to investigate differences in the development of soils. A further aim was the comparative investigation of the recent hydrological and physical properties as well as the present dynamics of the hillside soils. With regard to that some results of the field and laboratory studies are presented which are contradictory to results of other studies concerning this region.Keywords:
soil hydrology; soil properties; reforestation; water flux; infiltration