Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/soil-2021-91
https://doi.org/10.5194/soil-2021-91

  10 Sep 2021

10 Sep 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal SOIL.

Potential effect of wetting agents added to agricultural sprays on the stability of soil aggregates

Antonín Kintl1, Vítězslav Vlček2, Martin Brtnický2,3, Jan Nedělník1, and Jakub Elbl1,4 Antonín Kintl et al.
  • 1Agricultural Research, Ltd., Zahradní 1, 664 41 Troubsko, Czech Republic
  • 2Department of Agrochemistry, Soil Science, Microbiology and Plant Nutrition, Faculty of AgriSciences, Mendel University in Brno, Zemědělská 1, Brno 61300, Czech Republic
  • 3Institute of Chemistry and Technology of Environmental Protection, Brno University of Technology, Faculty of Chemistry, Purkynova 118, 621 00 Brno, Czech Republic
  • 4Department of Agrosystems and Bioclimatology, Faculty of AgriSciences, Mendel University in Brno, Zemědělská 1, 613 00 Brno, Czech Republic

Abstract. The presented research deals with the issue of the potential effect of adjuvants/wetting agents (WA) added to the spray mixture for stability of soil aggregates (SAS) in agricultural soil. Nine localities were chosen in the Czech Republic. Each locality was mapped using soil pits (depth min. 1.4 m). A total of 54 mixed samples were collected from the topsoil horizon in the selected localities. The samples were exposed to the action of four different types of wetting agents (organosilicone wetting agent; methyl ester of rapeseed oil; mixture of methyl ester palmitic and oleic acids; Isodecyl alcohol ethoxylate). SAS was determined before and after the addition of WA. Average values of SAS across the sampling point exhibited a demonstrable trend: the SAS value of control sample (without WA application) was at all times higher than in samples with the addition of WA (organosilicone wetting agent; mixture of methyl ester palmitic and oleic acids; Isodecyl alcohol ethoxylate), on average by more than 15 %. If the measured SAS values are compared in terms of overall means, it is obvious that the control variant always exhibited the highest SAS value (44.04 %) and the variants with the application of WA showed always SAS values lower by min. 16 %. All soil samples were also analysed for basic soil parameters (glomalin, Cox, pH, Na, P, Ca, K, Mg) in order to determine their potential influence on SAS and a possible elimination of the negative impact of WA. In this respect, only a significant influence of Cox content on SAS was recorded, which positively correlated with SAS.

Antonín Kintl et al.

Status: open (until 22 Oct 2021)

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Antonín Kintl et al.

Antonín Kintl et al.

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Short summary
We have started to address this issue because the application of wetting agents is very widespread within the European Union and is often considered desirable because it increases the effectiveness of pesticides. While pesticides are thoroughly tested for their impact on the environment as a whole, testing for the effects of wetting agents is minimal. Today, there is no research on their impact on the soil environment.