Evaluation of the effect of an orange oil based soil Ameliorant on selected soil physical properties

Viljoen, Daniel Willem (2013-03)

Thesis (MScAgric)--Stellenbosch University, 2013.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: A new orange oil based soil ameliorant is available on the market. Apart from the orange oil, the other main constituents of the product are a nonionic surfactant and an anionic surfactant. Surfactants are used in the agricultural sector, amongst others, as a countermeasure for soil with poor infiltrability or with hydrophobic characteristics. Farmers who applied the orange oil based soil ameliorant to the soil observed a positive growth response by the crop. However, the main concern about surfactants is that it can cause the soil to disperse and thereby decrease the infiltration and saturated hydraulic conductivity thereof. The aim of this study was therefore to determine the effect which this product might have on the following selected soil physical properties: bulk density, aggregate stability, soil strength and unsaturated hydraulic conductivity. The product was applied on four farms on soils with different textures: Dublin Farm (22% clay), Wansbek (20% clay), Toitskraal (7% clay) and Two Rivers (3% clay). Field studies were repeated at Dublin Farm and Toitskraal to study the longevity effect of the product. Differences in bulk density were not attributed to the effect of the product, but to spatial variation. The aggregate stability at the 50 mm depth tended to decrease after application of the product at Dublin Farm trial 1, Toitskraal trial 1 and at Wansbek. At Dublin Farm trial 2 and Toitskraal trial 2 the application of the product tended to increase the aggregate stability. For Dublin Farm trial 2 and Wansbek the shear strength at the 50 mm depth tended to increase with increased application rates. The opposite was observed at Toitskraal and Two Rivers. The unsaturated hydraulic conductivity tended to be higher at the 0 mm depth for the treated soils at all of the trials except Toitskraal trial 2. From the aggregate stability results it is clear that the initial effect of the product was detrimental which can be attributed to the anionic surfactant. The long term effect can be attributed to the effect of the nonionic surfactant. The differences in shear strength can be attributed to aggregate stability (for Dublin Farm trial 2) and bulk density (for Two Rivers). There is however no explanation for the results found at Toitskraal and Wansbek. From the linear regression of bulk density against unsaturated hydraulic conductivity for Wansbek and Two Rivers it is clear that the application of the product definitely had an influence on the unsaturated hydraulic conductivity. For both farms, the correlation between bulk density and unsaturated hydraulic conductivity was better for the control than for the treated soils. To conclude with, the application of the product according to the recommended application rate, resulted in a slightly detrimental effect to the soil on the short term, but on the long term it tended to have a slightly positive effect on the soils.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: ‘n Nuwe grondverbeteringsproduk met lemoenolie as ‘n basis en ‘n nie-ioniese en ‘n anioniese benattingsmiddel as hoof bestandele, is op die mark. In die landbou sektor word benattingsmiddels onder andere gebruik as ‘n teenvoeter vir gronde met swak infiltrasie of hidrofobiese eienskappe. Die grootste voorbehoud omtrent die gebruik van benattingsmiddels is die moontlike afname in infiltrasie en versadigde hidroulieses geleivermoë as gevolg van klei dispergering. Positiewe reaksies van die gewasse is waargeneem deur boere wat van die produk gebruik maak. Die doel van die studie was dus om die moontlike effek van die bogenoemde grondverbeterings produk op die volgende geselekteerde grondfisiese eienskappe te bepaal: bulkdigtheid, aggregaatstabiliteit, grondsterkte en onversadigde hidrouliese geleivermoë. Die produk is toegedien op vier plase met verskillende grondteksture: Dublin Farm (22% klei), Toitskraal (7% klei), Wansbek (20% klei) and Two Rivers (3% klei). ‘n Ondersoek na die lewensduur van die produk is gedoen deur ‘n opvolg studie te doen by Dublin Farm en Toitskraal. Vir die bulkdigtheid resultate kon geen van die verskille toegeskryf word aan die effek van die produk nie. Die aggregaate stabiliteit by die 50 mm diepte van Dublin Farm proef 1, Toitskraal proef 1 en Wansbek, het geneig om laer te wees vir die behandelde gronde. Die aggregaatstabiliteit by die 50 mm diepte van Dublin Farm proef 2 en Toitskraal proef 2 het geneig om hoër te wees vir die behandelde gronde. Die skuifsterkte by die 50 mm diepte by Dublin Farm proef 2 en Wansbek, het geneig om toe te neem met ‘n toename in toedienings hoeveelheid, terwyl die teenoorgestelde tendens by Toitskraal en Two Rivers waargeneem is waar minder klei teenwoordig is in die grond. Die onversadigde hidroliese geleivermoë het geneig om hoër te wees by die 0 mm diepte van al die plase met die uitsondering van Toitskraal proef 2. Dit is duidelik vanaf die aggregaatstabiliteit resultate dat die aanvanklike effek van die produk nadelig is en dit kan toegeskryf word aan die effek van die anioniese benattingsmiddel. Die langtermyn effek kan toegeskryf word aan die nie-ioniese benatingsmiddel wat aggregaatstabiliteit kan verbeter. Die verskille in skuifsterkte kan toegeskryf word aan die verskille in aggregaatstabiliteit (vir Dublin Farm proef 2) en bulkdigtheid (vir Two Rivers). Daar is egter geen verklaring vir die verskille in skuifsterkte by Toitskraal en Wansbek nie. Die liniêre regressie van bulkdigtheid teenoor onversadigde hidroliese geleivermoë van Wansbek en Two Rivers dui aan dat die produk ‘n invloed het op die onversadigde hidroliese geleivermoë. Vir albei plase het die kontrole die beste liniêre verband tussen die twee grondeienskappe gehad, met ‘n swakker korrelasie vir gronde waar die lemoenolieproduk toegedien is. Dus kan die afleiding gemaak word dat op die korttermyn het die produk ‘n geringe negatiewe effek op die grond, maar op die langtermyn neig dit om ‘n positiewe effek te hê.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/79826
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