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Morphological and Physicochemical Properties of Basaltic Soils on a Toposequence in Ikom, South Eastern Nigeria

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Three profile pits were sunk along a toposequence of basaltic soils in Ikom, Cross River State to determine their morphological and physicochemical properties. The profile pits were morphologically described and thirteen (13) soil samples were collected from different horizons of the profiles for physicochemical analysis. Morphologically, the soils were deep and well drained with no concretions. The colour of the surface soils varied between dark reddish gray (5YR4/2) and dark brown (7.5YR 3/2) to dark reddish brown (5YR 3/4), while that of the subsurface varied between red (2.5YR 4/6) to reddish brown (2.5YR 4/4). The soils had sub-angular blocky structure of different grades and classes with predominantly clayey texture in the Ap horizons and very gravelly clayey texture in the Crtg horizons. The chemical analysis revealed that exchangeable Ca2+ was the most dominant cation amongst the exchangeable bases. The soils were low in total nitrogen, organic carbon, available phosphorus and very high in base saturation. The study showed that the soils are moderately fertile and as such, a lot has to be done to improve their fertility status through the application of organic and inorganic fertilizers with good management practices such as mulching with crop residue after harvest, sowing of crops at low density per hectare, conservative tillage, strip cropping, crop rotation and shifting cultivation to ensure sustainable productivity.
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  • Department of Soil Science, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria
  • Department of Soil Science, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria
  • Department of Soil Science, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria
  • Department of Soil Science, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria
  • Department of Soil Science, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria
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