Environmental Earth Sciences

, Volume 61, Issue 6, pp 1105–1111

Soil moisture dynamics under different land uses on karst hillslope in northwest Guangxi, China

Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s12665-009-0428-3

Cite this article as:
Chen, H., Zhang, W., Wang, K. et al. Environ Earth Sci (2010) 61: 1105. doi:10.1007/s12665-009-0428-3


Temporal and spatial dynamics of soil moisture are little known on karst hillslope with shallow soil in subtropical region. The objectives of this paper were (1) to investigate the temporal dynamics of soil moisture at depth of 0–10 cm under different land uses; and (2) to understand the relationship between mean and coefficient of variation (CV) of moisture contents on karst hillslope in northwest Guangxi, China. Soil moisture contents had a moderate variation (CV 17.5–30.3%) over an 8-month period and they had a significant difference among different land uses at the 0.01 level with a decreasing order: native scrubland > abandoned cropland and sloping cropland > economic forestland. There were higher mean and lower CV of moisture contents in rainy season than those in drought season. Mean and CV of moisture contents had a significant negative linear relationship except in abandoned cropland with higher soil and vegetation heterogeneity. This suggested that spatial variability of soil moisture within sampling sites would decrease when soils were wet and increase when soils were arid. Compared with rainy season, more soil samples may be needed and the interval for sampling should be shortened in drought season. Such information provided some insights to better understand the dynamics and variability of soil moisture at a larger scale in karst region of southwest China.


Soil moisture dynamicsLand useTopographyHillslopeKarst region of southwest China

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hongsong Chen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Wei Zhang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kelin Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Wei Fu
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Key Laboratory for Agro-ecological Processes in Subtropical Region, Institute of Subtropical AgricultureChinese Academy of SciencesChangshaPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Huanjiang Observation and Research Station for Karst EcosystemsChinese Academy of SciencesHuanjiangPeople’s Republic of China