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Journal of the Indian Society of Soil Science
Year : 2000, Volume : 48, Issue : 2
First page : ( 220) Last page : ( 228)
Print ISSN : 0019-638X.

Potassium Fixation Characteristics of Major Benchmark Soils of India

Rao Ch. Srinivasa1, Rupa T.R., Rao A. Subba, Bansal S.K.2

Indian Institute of Soil Science, Nabibagh, Berasia Road, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, 462038.

Present addresses:1 Indian Institute of Pulses Research, Kalyanpur, Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh.

2 Potash Research Institute of India, Sector 19, Dundshera, Delhi-Gurgaon Road, Gurgaon, Haryana, 122001.

Received:  November,  1998; Accepted:  March,  2000.


Fixation of added fertilizer potassium (K) is an importanl reaction in the dynamics of soil K and it affects availability of K to crop plants. Twenty two major benchmark soils of India were studied for their K fixation characteristics. Fixation of added K increased with the rate of added K irrespective of soil mineralogy and depth. Surface soils of smectitic Vertisols and vertic sub-groups showed greater K fixation (26 to 32%), followed by illitic Inceptisols, Alfisols, Entisols and Aridisol (23 to 29%) whereas lower fixation values were found for kaolinitic Alfisols and Inceptisols (17 to 23%). In case of subsurface soils, illitic group showed the maximum K fixation followed by smectitic and kaolinitic soils. The overlapings among the soils belonging to different mineralogical groups as regard to the extent of K fixation were ascribed to the composition of the associated minerals in silt and clay fractions of soils. The study highlights the need for more studies on K fixation in relation to the associated minerals in addition to the dominant mineral in a particular soil.



K fixation, soil depth, texture, mineralogy, benchmark soils.


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