Effects of nature management on soil functions : development of a method to characterize soil functions and assess the effect of nature management measures

V. Geissen, A. Smit, K.B. Zwart

Research output: Book/ReportReportProfessional


Assessments on the sustainability of soil use and management are based on the conservation and improvement of soil functions. A major problem in the use of soil functions in those assessments is the fact that no or few quantitative methods exist to characterize soil functions in the field. It is therefore important to define key properties or indicators that should be measured to characterize the state of soil functions. In this study soil functions which are important in the natural environment or in nature development sites were identified. Those were the habitat function, the C-storage and the filter, buffer and reactor function. Then physical, chemical and biological soil properties which characterize each of these soil functions were identified and the effects of soil management measures on each of these soil parameters were analyzed. Finally a list of soil properties that indicate the effect of nature management measures of soil functions was produced. Soil depth, SOM, availability of nutrients (N and P) and pollutants, structure, macro porosity. Biological activity, pH, CEC and BS are key properties for identifying the effect of measurements on the soil functions.
Original languageDutch
Place of PublicationWageningen
Number of pages36
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Publication series

ISSN (Print)1566-7197


  • soil management
  • soil physics
  • soil chemistry
  • sustainability
  • nature management

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