, Volume 56, Issue 3, pp 201–212 | Cite as

Soil parent materials and soil properties in two separate catchment areas on the Jos Plateau, Nigeria

  • E.A. Olowolafe


On the Jos Plateau, soils derived from basalt and volcanic ash are much more intensively and extensively utilized for agricultural purposes than the granite soils. This study was carried out to determine the differences that may have contributed to this discrimination. Twenty four soil profiles were dug and described in two separate catchment areas that really portray the variance. Soil samples were analysed using standard procedures. The results show that basalt and volcanic ash-derived soils have relatively deeper profiles, lower bulk density, higher contents of clay, organic matter, exchangeable bases, micro-nutrients (Cu & Zn) and weatherable minerals. They are also higher in their CEC and base saturation percentage while available water capacity, hydraulic conductivity and natural water content are more adequate in them. Hence, the basalt and volcanic ash soils are more favourable for crop growth while the deficiencies in granite soils present more constraints to agricultural land use. Consequently, there are differences between the soil types in their crop-yielding capacities. These differences constitute a reflection of soil parent material influence. Agriculture in the area is mainly low-input. There is the need for improved management practices for the enhancement of soil conditions of granite areas in particular and the whole area in general.

catchment areas Jos Plateau Nigeria soil parent materials soil properties 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • E.A. Olowolafe
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Geography and PlanningUniversity of JosJosNigeria

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