Assessing land use induced changes in soil properties is essential for addressing the issues of land use planning and sustainable land productivity in highlands of Ethiopia. The surface and profile soil samples were collected from forest (FL) cultivated (CL) and grass/pasture lands (GL) in Doko Yoyira (DY), Aiezo Tula (AT) and Gendona Gembela (GG) in Chencha district, Gamo-Gofa zone in May 2014, which aims to assess different soil physicochemical properties. At surface layer of 0-20 cm, the results did not show any significant difference (P<0.05) for land uses and sites. However, differences were noticed for land uses and sites in terms of certain soil characteristics determined on soil profile basis. The cultivated soils contained less soil organic carbon and total nitrogen compared to forest and grasslands. Hence, forest and grassland systems could maintain organic carbon and nitrogen stocks in the soils. The findings have implications for developing sound land use policy to combat on ongoing soil degradation in the area.
Key words: Land use, soil physicochemical, profile, surface.
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