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Federal Research Center 
"Krasnoyarsk Science Center of the Siberian
Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences"

 Федеральный исследовательский центр «Красноярский научный центр Сибирского отделения Российской академии наук»

Federal Research Center 
"Krasnoyarsk Science Center of the Siberian
Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences"

Krasnoyarsk scientists told about soils of the main agricultural areas of the region

30 June 2020 г.

Красноярские ученые рассказали о почвах основных земледельческих зон края
An open field seminar was held at the Krasnoyarsk Science Center SB RAS, where specialists from the Krasnoyarsk Research Institute of Agriculture of FRC KSC SB RAS told the guests from the Krasnoyarsk State Agrarian University, Krasnoyarsk Agricultural College and scientists from the institutes of physics and biophysics about soils that are common in the main agricultural areas of the region, necessity to study them, relationship of soil science with other fields of agricultural science as well as how important knowledge of the quality indicators of land resources is in order  to obtain a large and high-quality crop yield.

The best soils are chernozem soils. It is these soils that produce a high yield. Most of the Russian chernozems are located in Siberia, amounting to about 27 million hectares. Half of these lands are located in the Krasnoyarsk Region and Altai. Chernozems in  Krasnoyarsk are considered to be the most fertile in all Siberia. “Soil in Russia is a resource that must be valued on an equal basis with forest, oil, gas, and coal. But it should not be supposed that there is a lot of black soil in Siberia. For example, in the Krasnoyarsk Region, the share of chernozems in the entire soil cover is only 2%, ”says Alexander Shpedt, Doctor of Agricultural Sciences, Acting Director of the Federal Research Center KSC SB RAS.

The fertility of Siberian soils should not be overestimated, as the scientist notes. Despite the fact that our soils are balanced in macro and microelements, and agricultural producers feel comfortable on such lands, chernozems can easily lose their properties. In addition to the negative balance of nutrients in agrocenoses, when plants “take” nutrients from the soil, their fertility decreases under the influence of water and wind erosion. “If you look at our experimental fields, on the territory of the Minino experimental production facility, which are typical of the agricultural area of the Krasnoyarsk forest-steppe, you can see that the soil hardly has any protective cover. Wind and spring water result in the development of wind and water erosion in the fields, ”says Yuri Trubnikov, Doctor of Agricultural Sciences, chief researcher at the Research Institute of Agriculture of the Federal Research Center KSC SB RAS.

While studying the state of the land resources in the region, researchers at the Krasnoyarsk Research Institute of Agriculture , estimated the black soil in Krasnoyarsk using soil-ecological indices. Such estimations take into account climatic indicators, agrochemical and agrophysical properties of soil, as well as a number of environmental factors, including temperature, moisture, frost-free periods, etc. It turned out that in Krasnoyarsk the chernozems outperform soils in other regions of Western and Eastern Siberia in terms of fertility parameters. The scientists attribute this to the geographical location of the region with enough rainfall and agroecological conditions contributing to the favorable growth and development of plants. “The Omsk and Altai regions lose out because their arid conditions affect agriculture,” says Yuri Trubnikov

It is important not only for scientists involved in soil science, agricultural chemistry, and agriculture to study the soil, but also for breeders, botanists, and ecologists. Any plant develops in particular soil and environmental conditions. Therefore, the genesis of soils and plants are interconnected. This is the methodological basis for testing new varieties, which is carried out on variety-testing stations located in various soil and climatic zones.

“The soil genesis closely echoes the plant genesis,” explains Yuri Trubnikov, “any plant is formed under the influence of certain landscape factors. If we consider the soil as a mirror of the landscape, its relationship with plants becomes obvious, as it is, actually, the same agroecological object. Features of the plant growth and development are closely associated with soil. ”

Currently, scientists from various institutes of the Krasnoyarsk Science Center SB RAS are developing a new  remote method for analyzing soil properties. Researchers at the L.V. Kirensky Institute of Physics, Institute of Biophysics and Research Institute of Agriculture are participating in the study. This interdisciplinary research would lead to the creation of a system for the automated determination of soil parameters, both in the laboratory and in the field, using remote sensing methods. The data complex will include information on moisture, particle size distribution, structural composition, temperature, content of readily soluble salts and other elements in the soil. This will create a new agrophysical scientific direction in Krasnoyarsk, which is not yet present in the region.

The future plans of the researchers also include the establishment of a soil museum at the Research Institute of Agriculture of FRC KSC SB RAS. During the open field seminar, the researchers selected several monoliths, meter deep sections of the soil, thereby laying the foundation for the future museum collection.