usaid-gov/west-usambara-plateau-soil-properties-and-nwbq-rpfu
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West Usambara Plateau Soil Properties and Classification Data

In this manuscript, we synthesize current and legacy data from multiple studies to better understand the distribution and diversity of soil types and their properties in the Plateau physiographic region of the West Usamabara Mountains in Northeastern Tanzania. Analysis of soil properties and soil classification in the resulting dataset of 468 sites by land use, landscape position, and elevation revealed important relationships relevant for management and land use planning. These sites occurred across a range of landscape positions and an elevation gradient from 1040 – 2240 m.a.s.l. Soil diversity at the U.S. Order and WRB Reference Group levels was higher than expected, with five U.S. soil orders and seven WRB Reference Groups described in the dataset, and the highest soil diversity occurring at lower landscape positions. We found that soil organic carbon (SOC) and pH were two master variables that were correlated most other soil properties. Sites under cultivated land uses had the lowest topsoil soil organic carbon (SOC) concentrations, and SOC generally increased with increasing elevation. Mature forest and charcoal production areas did not significantly differ in their depth distributions of SOC. Valley soils had significantly lower surface SOC concentrations but higher exchangeable bases and pH values than all other landscape positions. Soil pH decreased by an average of 3.5 units across the entire elevation gradient and decreased by 1 unit with elevation even after SOC, land use and landscape position were included in multiple regression models. Local pedotransfer functions were developed to assist with the use of pH, clay and SOC as proxies for more difficult to measure soil properties such as cation exchange capacity (CEC) and base saturation (B.S.), bulk density and total phosphorus. Phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) were

identified as the most likely limiting nutrients in West Usambaran plateau soils in general. This information is critical for sustainable land management which will be applicable to the soils of other mountain complexes in the Eastern Arc chain.

Columns

NameSocrata field nameColumn name in sgr mountData typeDescription
HorizonhorizonhorizonNumber
AspectaspectaspectNumber
TN_UMNtn_umntn_umnText
Jelinski_BDjelinski_bdjelinski_bdNumber
TEB_ICRAFteb_icrafteb_icrafText
ExCa_cmolc_kgexca_cmolc_kgexca_cmolc_kgText
SiltsiltsiltNumber
ExMg_cmolc_kgexmg_cmolc_kgexmg_cmolc_kgText
SOC_UMNsoc_umnsoc_umnText
TEBtebtebText
BSbsbsText
BS_scaledbs_scaledbs_scaledText
AFSIS_BDRULEafsis_bdruleafsis_bdruleText
MImimiNumber
MATx10_Cmatx10_cmatx10_cNumber
PET_mmpet_mmpet_mmNumber
P_RatioBrayTotalp_ratiobraytotalp_ratiobraytotalText
P_RatioParentp_ratioparentp_ratioparentText
MAP_mmmap_mmmap_mmNumber
AuthorauthorauthorText
WRB_Groupwrb_groupwrb_groupText
ExK_cmolc_kgexk_cmolc_kgexk_cmolc_kgText
IncludeTopincludetopincludetopText
PositionpositionpositionText
CropcropcropNumber
USOrderusorderusorderText
ElevationelevationelevationNumber
CultivatedcultivatedcultivatedNumber
P_DifferenceParentp_differenceparentp_differenceparentText
IncludeincludeincludeText
LandUselanduselanduseText
AspectCataspectcataspectcatText
TNtntnNumber
PitpitpitNumber
SOCsocsocNumber
ClayclayclayNumber
BottombottombottomNumber
C_Nc_nc_nNumber
NamenamenameText
NumbernumbernumberNumber
pH_KClph_kclph_kclText
ToptoptopNumber
AverageaverageaverageNumber
SandsandsandNumber
RIririText
pH_H2Oph_h2oph_h2oNumber
BrayPbraypbraypText
TotalPtotalptotalpText
TEB_Allteb_allteb_allText
ExNa_cmolc_kgexna_cmolc_kgexna_cmolc_kgText
CEC_Accec_accec_acText
CECClaycecclaycecclayText
Upstream Metadata