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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 39 No. 3, p. 540-543
    Received: Sept 27, 1974
    Accepted: Jan 2, 1975

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Percolation Losses of Phosphorus, Calcium, and Potassium from Some Minnesota Forest Soils1

  1. R. C. Severson,
  2. D. F. Grigal and
  3. H. F. Arneman2



Studies were conducted on two soil types (Omega loamy sand and Cloquet sandy loam) representative of a large area of forested soils in the northcentral region of the United States. Three undisturbed soil columns were extracted from each soil under two vegetation types, hardwoods and conifers. The columns were leached both before and after laboratory-simulated litterfall and following burning of the litter. Additional columns were extracted from an Omega-conifer site which had undergone a prescribed burn in fall, and were used as a comparison with those burned in the laboratory. There were virtually no differences between ion concentrations in solution at the base of the columns following either laboratory burning or prescribed burning in the field. Severe leaching of freshly fallen litter or of burned litter resulted in similar losses of materials in solution. In general, all laboratory treatments had similar effects on ionic losses and in no case were losses large. The estimated annual losses from the soil were of the same magnitude as the annual inputs of ions to the soil system via precipitation. The small losses from the soil found in this study lead to the implication that major losses of materials following severe environmental disturbance are associated with surface runoff. If water percolates through soil material before entering streams, even after severe disturbance, small losses generally will occur.

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