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Tecnología y ciencias del agua

On-line version ISSN 2007-2422


MARTINEZ-GONZALEZ, Francisco; SOSA-PEREZ, Fermín  and  ORTIZ-MEDEL, Josefina. Behavior of soil moisture with different plant covers in the La Esperanza watershed. Tecnol. cienc. agua [online]. 2010, vol.1, n.4, pp.89-103. ISSN 2007-2422.

This paper presents a study in the La Esperanza watershed, in the municipality of Guanajuato, Mexico, to determine the behavior of soil moisture with different plant covers. Random sampling was performed considering four canopies depending on vegetation, with six replicas each: sites with oak trees (Quercus sp); with shrubs like willow ragwort (Senecio sp) and "cat's claw" (Mimosa sp); with eucalyptus (Eucalyptus sp); and without vegetation. Soil samples were collected from March to September to determine moisture and analyze the differences between each site and each canopy, correlating moisture with variables such as altitude, slope, orientation, soil texture , number of trees on the site, leaves on soil and litter thickness of soil horizons "O" and "A". The study showed that during the dry season, humidity was lower for sites with shrubs (8.3%) and oaks (8.7%) and greater for sites with eucalyptus (10.6%) and with no vegetation (9.9%); moisture loss was greater for sites with no vegetation (3.4%) and lower for sites with eucalyptus (-0.8%). During the rainy season, humidity was higher for sites with live oaks (16.6%) and lower for sites with eucalyptus trees (15.4%); sites with live oaks (7.9%) and shrubs (7.2%) had increased humidity. A review was performed with the loss and increase of humidity; sites with oaks (6.2%) and shrubs (4.2%) had greater humidity. The percentages of moisture in places with oaks (7.9%), shrubs (7.2%), and with no vegetation (6.1%) had significant differences between the dry and rainy seasons, which did not occur at sites with eucalyptus, (4.8%) where differences were minimal.

Keywords : vegetal layer; moisture percentage; moisture loss; moisture increase.

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