Characteristics of non-allophanic andisols derived from low-activity clay regoliths in the Nilgiri Hills (Southern India)

Caner L., Bourgeon Gérard, Toutain François, Herbillon Adrien-Jules. 2000. Characteristics of non-allophanic andisols derived from low-activity clay regoliths in the Nilgiri Hills (Southern India). European Journal of Soil Science, 51 (4) : pp. 553-563.

Journal article ; Article de revue à facteur d'impact
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Autre titre : Caractéristiques d'andosols non allophaniques dérivés de régolithes argileux à faible activité dans les Nilgiri Hills (Inde du sud)

Abstract : Low-activity clay soils on old planation surfaces of the tropics are generally considered as stable end points of soil formation. It is therefore surprising to find Andisols on them. We characterized the properties of six profiles representative of these soils in the western part of the Nilgiri Hills (2000-2500 m above mean sea level), Southern India, where the present climatic conditions are cool (mean annual temperature 15°C) and humid (mean annual rainfall 2500 mm). Thick (50-80 cm) dark-reddish brown topsoil overlies strongly desilicated yellowish-red materials. This horizon has andic properties to a sufficient depth and the carbon content requirement of the melanic epipedon to place these soils in the Andisol order. Our data as well as the history of the Nilgiri Hills suggest that the formation of these nonallophanic Andisols resulted from the succession of two main steps. First, a 'lateritic' weathering cycle led to the relative accumulation of secondary AI and Fe oxides. Later, the accumulation of organic matter favoured by a more recent climatic change induced complexation by organic acids of AI and Fe oxides, and the production of enough metal-humus complexes to give rise to andic properties. Such soils, in which secondary AI and Fe oxides, generally considered as indicators of an advanced weathering stage, are involved in a new cycle of soil formation, are original Andisols.

Mots-clés Agrovoc : Andosol, Pédogénèse, Trait morphologique du sol, Propriété physicochimique du sol

Mots-clés géographiques Agrovoc : Inde

Mots-clés géographiques complémentaires : Inde sud

Classification Agris : P32 - Soil classification and genesis

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Caner L., French Institute of Pondicherry (IND)
  • Bourgeon Gérard, CIRAD-AMIS-AGRONOMIE (FRA)
  • Toutain François, Centre de pédologie biologique (FRA)
  • Herbillon Adrien-Jules, Centre de pédologie biologique (FRA)

Autres liens de la publication

Source : Cirad - Agritrop (

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