The Soil as a Water Reservoir for Plants

  • Klaus Reichardt
  • Luís Carlos Timm


Soil is the central part of Soil–Plant–Atmosphere System (SPAS), being the second subsystem of the SPAS described in this book. The soil is characterized by its three components, the solid particles that are the main structural body, the soil water described as a solution of plant nutrients, and the soil air that is essential in the gas transfer between the upper atmosphere and the soil pores. Soil particles are presented in terms of their quantity leading to the concepts of soil texture and soil structure. The main characteristics of the particles are described in view to understand the physical and chemical processes that occur while studying the dynamics in the SPAS. The liquid fraction is mainly studied focusing on soil water, essential for crop growth and development and for agricultural management. Basic concepts of soil water are defined for the studies of the water cycle in the SPAS and for soil management including irrigation. Soil air is also quantified through its porosity, which can be occupied by water and air. Finally, a few words are also said about soil mechanics and soil classification.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Klaus Reichardt
    • 1
  • Luís Carlos Timm
    • 2
  1. 1.Centro de Energia Nuclear na Agricultura and Escola Superior de Agricultura “Luiz de Queiróz”University of Sao PauloPiracicabaBrazil
  2. 2.Rural Engineering Department, Faculty of AgronomyFederal University of PelotasCapão do LeãoBrazil

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