Using soil quality indicators to assess their production and ecological functions

Janků J., Kosánová M., Kozák J., Herza T., Jehlička J., Maitah M., Vopravil J., Němeček K., Toth D., Jacko K., Vácha R., Poláková J. (2022): Using soil quality indicators to assess their production and ecological functions. Soil & Water Res., 17: 45−58.

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The project dealt with an evaluation of the soil quality in the Central Bohemian Region in the Czech Republic. The relevant attributes and characteristics were found regarding the soils in this selected area. Based on the data from soil probes, climate characteristics, soil production function and data on the land use, the characteristics, known as soil quality indicators, were selected. Then the soils were sorted into groups which indicated their suitability for the best land use and planning. The characteristics of the soils that contributed the most to the ecosystem services provided by this part of the environment were chosen as the soil quality indicators. In order to find out how the soils are able to provide ecosystem services, two types of approaches were used – the average score and the total amount of points gained. Maps indicating the soil quality were created using the ArcGIS program. At the same time, research on the differences in the quality in two different layers of the soil was carried out. In most cases, there was a decrease in the soil quality with an increasing depth. The results of this project can be used as a basis for a new soil valuation in the Czech Republic.

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