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International Journal of Agricultural and Applied Sciences, June 2021, 2(1):68-79 

ISSN: 2582-8053


Research Article


Soil properties among Indian Central Himalayan agroecosystems as affected by altitude and size variations


Charu Shahi, SS Bargali and Kiran Bargali

Department of Botany, DSB Campus, Kumaun University, Nainital

Corresponding author e-mail: charusha91@gmail.com

 (Received: 11/12/2020; Revised: 10/04/2021; Accepted: 12/06/2021)  



The present study has been performed among Central Himalayan agroecosystems (AGEs)  to analyze the changes in some physico- chemical properties of soils along four altitudes viz. very low (VLA), low (LA), mid (MA) and high altitude (HA). The AGEs were categorized into three size classes i.e. small, medium, and large based on the regional availability of landholding sizes. Results revealed that the size of the AGEs significantly affected only physical parameters of the soil while chemical parameters remain unaffected, this may be due to the regional similarity in management practices of AGEs which governed by the identical seasonal cropping patterns, local food selectivity and economic status of the peasant. The soil bulk density was recorded maximum at VLA (1.00 g cm-3) and decreased with increasing altitude and sizes of agroecosystem thus the correlations were significant. Water holding capacity depicted positive relation with porosity (r= 0.229, P<0.01) and OC (r= 0.273) while negative relation with silt (r= -0.172), bD (r= -0.221,) and pH (r= -0.081). Soil nitrogen was reported highest at MA in medium sized agroecosystems, during the rainy season (0.287 %) followed by winter (0.257 %) and summer season (0.243 %). Overall maximum soil carbon stock was observed at MA (41.41 t ha-1) > HA (37.85 t ha-1) > LA (33.00 t ha-1) > VLA (30.16 t ha-1). Suitable management practices of higher altitudes reflected as the high fertility of the soil in those regions (SQI= HA> MA> LA> VLA) which must be followed by the farm managers of lower altitudes.

Keywords: Himalayan agroecosystems, altitudes, size variations, soil properties, organic matter