Soils provide anchorage, hold water plus air and supply nutrients to plants. Studies on the nature and properties of soils are therefore essential for understanding soil-vegetation interactions in forest ecosystems. The Division of Soil Science, established in December 1976 has undertaken several problem-oriented projects in following areas:
Taungya in relation to properties, erosion and management of soils
Studies on the nature and properties of soils in plantations across Kerala
Effect of monoculture on soils
Influence of site factors in plantations of various species
Protocols for Foliar analysis to assess soil test methods for NPK
Land degradation and restoration in the human impacted landscapes
The Division has also undertaken studies of an advisory nature for the Kerala Forest Department by answering queries on various aspects based on field investigations. These investigations will generate soil database useful in forest management.