Cropping Systems Effect on Soil Biological Health and Sustainability

  • Krishna Saharan
  • Ummed Singh
  • K. C. Kumawat
  • C. S. Praharaj


The influence on the chemical and physical soil composition, exerted from the applied cropping system, is dominated by the amount and kind of residual plant material. The cropping system, defined by the cropping sequence and type, as well as by plant residual management and natural and/or artificial fertilization, shapes the biological soil activities and environment for the soil micro-biotic habitat. Also climate and soil type exert an influence on the soil’s biological activity in a significant amount. The effects, exerted from the farming practice on the soil microbial biomass, accumulate in a slow way and are often measureable only in the late stage, when changes in the microbial biomass already negatively affect fertility and stability of the soil ecosystem. Measuring the classical soil nutrition parameters does not always reveal these changes, and suitable soil health indicators are not established as a common standard. Soil microbial biomass turns out to be a good indicator for changes in the soil composition and shows potential for an early soil health indicator.


Cropping systems Pulses Soil biology Soil health Soil microbial biomass Soil enzymatic activity 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Krishna Saharan
    • 1
  • Ummed Singh
    • 1
  • K. C. Kumawat
    • 2
  • C. S. Praharaj
    • 3
  1. 1.College of AgricultureAgriculture UniversityJodhpurIndia
  2. 2.Department of MicrobiologyPunjab Agricultural UniversityLudhianaIndia
  3. 3.Division of Crop ProductionICAR-Indian Institute of Pulses ResearchKanpurIndia

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