Soil erosion and earthworm population responses to soil management systems in steep-slope vineyards ..

https://doi.org/10.17221/439/2010-PSECitation:Vršič S. (2011): Soil erosion and earthworm population responses to soil management systems in steep-slope vineyards .. Plant Soil Environ., 57: 258-263.
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This study is aimed at investigating the effect of different vineyard soil management systems on soil erosion and earthworm (Lumbricidae) population. Three soil management systems were investigated: permanent green cover (control), straw-cover and periodic soil tillage. Inter-row periodic soil tillage was applied in 2002 and 2003 (May and August), and straw-cover in May 2002. Periodic soil tillage resulted in increased erosion, i.e. 1746 kg/ha of soil/per year, on average. The greater portion of erosive events occurred after tillage in summer (August 2002), which was accompanied by heavy rainfall and slow renewal of grass cover (slower than in spring). The lowest average amount of soil erosion was observed in the treatment with straw-cover (56 kg/ha per year). This management system provided better environment for earthworm populations, most of which were found close to the soil surface, especially in the dry year 2003. In periodical soil tillage, the majority of earthworms were found in the soil horizon not disturbed by the tillage, i.e. at the depth of 10–20 cm. The lowest number of earthworms (only 2 per m2) was recorded in the herbicide intra-row strip.  
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