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Effect of Eastern Gamagrass on Infiltration Rate and Soil Physical and Hydraulic Properties

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Pp. 265-268 in Preferential Flow, Water Movement and Chemical Transport in the Environment, Proc. 2nd Int. Symp. (3-5 January 2001, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA), eds. D. D. Bosch and K. W. King. St. Joseph, Michigan: ASAE  701P0006.(doi:10.13031/2013.2123)
Authors:   C. L. Perrygo, A. Shirmohammadi, J. C. Ritchie, and W. J. Rawls
Keywords:   Eastern gamagrass, Macropores, Infiltration rate

Infiltration and soil hydraulic properties were measured for a loam soil at the soil surface and at a 30 cm depth beneath eastern gamagrass and tall fescue field plots. The experiment was repeated during February, May, August, and November of 1998. In-situ measurement of infiltration at 0 and -5 cm tension was performed using a tension infiltrometer. Undisturbed soil samples were collected and saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks), soil water characteristic, and bulk density were determined. Results of the laboratory analysis found insignificant differences for Ks and bulk density. Significantly higher final infiltration rates were found for eastern gamagrass compared to tall fescue at the surface and 30 cm depth. This may be attributed to the thicker and deeper rooting system in eastern gamagrass and its biological loosening effect, which increases macropore flow. This study concluded that eastern gamagrass increased the infiltration of water and improved soil physical and hydraulic properties.

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