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Recio-Vazquez L.,CSIC - National Museum of Natural Sciences | Almendros G.,CSIC - National Museum of Natural Sciences | Knicker H.,Institute for Natural Resources and Agrobiology CSIC | Carral P.,Autonomous University of Madrid | Alvarez A.-M.,Autonomous University of Madrid
Geoderma | Year: 2014

Current environmental research is paying increasing attention to reliable analytical surrogates of soil quality. In this work a series of molecular features of soil organic matter were studied in different soil types from Central Spain with the purpose of identifying the soil functions most closely correlated with specific pools of soil organic matter and their structural characteristics. Soil physical variables-including bulk density, total porosity, aggregate stability, available water capacity and water infiltration parameters (Kostiakov's equation coefficients)-were determined. The major soil organic fractions (lipids, particulate free organic matter, fulvic acids, humic acids and humin) were quantified using standard procedures and the soil organic matter was characterised by spectroscopic techniques. Statistical data treatments including simple regression, canonical correlation models and multidimensional scaling suggested two well-defined groups of physical properties in the studied soils: (i) those associated with organic matter of predominantly aromatic character (e.g., water infiltration descriptors), and (ii) soil physical variables related to organic matter with marked aliphatic character and comparatively low degree of humification (e.g., porosity, aggregate stability, available water capacity and field air capacity). From the practical viewpoint, the results support the idea that the detailed structural study of the soil organic matter is useful for accurately monitoring soil physical status. The only determination of total soil organic carbon ought to be complemented with qualitative analyses of the organic matter fractions, at least at the spectroscopic level, which to large extent help to explain the origin of the variability in soil physical properties and can be used for the early diagnosis of possible degradation processes. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.

Linan J.,Institute for Natural Resources and Agrobiology CSIC | Cantos M.,Institute for Natural Resources and Agrobiology CSIC | Troncoso J.,Institute for Natural Resources and Agrobiology CSIC | Garcia J.L.,Institute for Natural Resources and Agrobiology CSIC | And 2 more authors.
Central European Journal of Biology | Year: 2011

Holm oak (Quercus ilex L.), a typical evergreen tree of the Mediterranean area, is very important due to its ecological and economical values. Propagation of this species is extremely difficult and traditionally carried out only by seed germination. In this work, mature acorns were germinated in vitro and in peat substrate in aseptic and non-aseptic conditions. Explants from the seedlings obtained were propagated in vitro in WPM plus 4 μM BA. Plant regeneration was achieved from hypocotyls and root segments cultured in vitro on modified Gamborg medium plus 20 μM BA and 20 μM NAA. 13.8% of the hypocotyls and approximately 30% of the root segments developed both shoots and roots after 30 days of culture. Rooting of stem segments was obtained both in vitro and ex vitro by basal dipping in IBA solutions. Within ex vitro rooting, mother plant age had major influence on the percentage of rooting of the cuttings as the younger plants showed higher ability to root. In this way, Q. ilex plants could be propagated and cloned. The procedure described here would be a very useful tool for breeding programs since vegetative propagation of selected individuals can be achieved. © 2011 Versita Warsaw and Springer-Verlag Wien.

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