Factors of soil diversity in the Batumi delta (Georgia)
Abstract. The aim of this study was to determine certain basic properties of soils in the Batumi delta (southwestern Georgia) to determine the relationships of studied properties and to identify differences with regards to these properties between different sampling sites in the delta that were selected based on the delta morphology. In this context, a total of 125 soil samples were collected from five different sampling sites, and the clay, silt and sand content of the samples were determined along with their mean weight diameter (MWD) values, aggregate stability (AS) values, amount of water retained under −33 (FC) and −1500 kPa (WP) pressure and organic matter (OM) content. Correlation analysis indicated that clay content and OM were positively correlated with MWD, and OM was positively correlated with AS. However, the sand content was found to be negatively correlated with MWD. In addition, clay, silt and OM content were positive correlated with FC and WP. Variance analysis results determined statistically significant differences between the sampling sites with respect to all of the evaluated properties. The active delta section of the study area was characterized by high sand content, while the lower delta plain was characterized by high OM and AS values, and the upper delta plain was characterized by high MWD values, high FC and WP moisture content levels and high clay and silt content. In conclusion, it was demonstrated that the examined properties were significantly affected by the different morphological positions and usages of these different areas. These results may help with the management of agricultural lands in the Batumi delta, which has never been studied before.