The aim of this study was to demonstrate that alluvial sediments of Wrocław ice-marginal Valley are characterized by higher con-centrations of metallic elements in relation to the adjacent areas of different soil cover genesis.
Studies of zinc and arsenic content in soils were carried out in six municipalities of Średzki district. A total of 117 soil samples from arable land was collected: 80 from Średzka Upland and 37 from Wrocław ice-marginal Valley
The process of accumulation of heavy metals in alluvial sediments in the Wocław ice-marginal Valley is so effective that, despite the heavier grain size composition of the soil cover immediately adjacent to Średzka Upland, zinc and arsenic concentrations are higher in the alluvial soils.
The aim of this study was to determine the content of arsenic in soils used for agriculture in the Ząbkowicki district. The content of arsenic in collected soil samples ranged 1.1-569.5 mg·kg-1. The standard for arable lands of Group B has been exceeded in 24 out of 231 test points. The highest concentrations occurred in the Złoty Stok commune. This is due to the output of arsenic and gold in this area. Exceeding the standard also occurred in neighboring communes: Kamieniec Ząbkowicki and Ziębice. This is due to the blowing and washing pollutions form the source of contamination, the arsenic mines in the Złoty Stok commune.
Soil texture, bulk and specific density, total porosity, and the water capacity at pF 0.2.7 were measured in Albeluvisols with more or less pronounced lithological discontinuity. The soil pits were located in the north-eastern part of the Silesian Lowland, on the glacial plain built of till blanketed with cover materials of various origin, mainly sands. Distinct albeluvic tongues with sandy texture and strong stagnic color mosaic at the contact of eluvial and illuvial horizons were identified in all profiles under study. The lowest bulk density was measured in the plough layers, while the highest in subsoil EBw horizons or glossic E/Bt horizons. Total porosity was the largest in plough layers, rapidly decreased in subsoil E horizons and then back increased with depth. Water capacity (at each measured pF value) was strongly correlated mainly with clay content and rapidly raised in E/B horizons. The highest field water capacity was measured in E/Bt horizons at low albeluvic tonguing intensity, or in deeper parts of Bt horizon at larger intensity of albeluvic tonguing into the illuvial horizon. The easily available water stock in the upper 100 cm-thick column of Albeluvisols with lithological discontinuity depends mainly on the depth of transition of eluvial (coarser) and illuvial (finer-textured) zones, similarly to typical Luvisols with the same type of textural (lithological) variability in the soil profile.
Differentiation of soil organic carbon (SOC) concentrations and pools in topsoil horizons of forest soils in the Karkonosze Mountains was examined in relation to environmental and human-induced factors, with special focus on altitudinal gradient, related climatic conditions, and a zonality of vegetation. The samples were collected from the forest litter and soil layers 0–10 cm and 10–20 cm, in 621 plots arranged in a regular network of monitoring established in the Karkonosze National Park. The concentrations of SOC were determined in laboratory and used for calculation of SOC pools. Four elevation zones were distinguished for analysis: 500–750 m, 750–1000 m, 1000–1250 m, and >1250 m. The concentrations of SOC in forest litter (38.3–44.1%) showed an insignificant increasing trend with altitude. The concentrations of SOC in the layers 0–10 cm and 10–20 cm, were in a very broad range 0.27–47.6%, thus indicating a high differentiation, and also tended to insignificantly increase along with altitude. The largest share of accumulated SOC pools was proved to be present in the layer 0–10 cm, except for the highest zone >1250 m in which forest litter contains slightly larger amounts of SOC. The pools of SOC accumulated in the 20 cm thick topsoil and forest litter turned out to vary considerably (3.6–58.2 kg·m−2), but the mean values and medians in particular elevation zones fall in a narrow range 10.5–11.9 kg·m−2, close to the values reported from the Alps. The lack of statistical significance of reported tendencies was explained by a monitoring sites-oriented random soil sampling, i.e. in forest stands of various age, species-composition and degradation degree.