The present investigation was aimed to quantify the three principal components of the soil carbon (C) stock, namely inorganic, organic and permanganate oxidizable, in 0–5 cm and 5–30 cm soil layers, of the main Mediterranean agricultural land coverages: olive grove, olive forest, citrus grove, vineyard, arable irrigated, arable rainfed and natural soil covered by Mediterranean scrub and garrigue. We assessed the contribution of soil properties and climatic variables on soil TOC and POxC by Pearson’s correlations, multiple linear regressions, principal component analyses and variance partitioning. NAT and both olive cropping systems showed the highest TOC concentration while the other land covers showed values ranging between 8.0 and 26.6 g kg−1
. Soil POxC represented between 0.5% and 2.2% of the total soil C. A large number of interrelated factors govern soil C accumulation in Mediterranean agroecosystems. Rainfall and temperature had a selective effect on soil C distribution between the sampling areas, while among soil properties, texture exerted a prominent effect, resulting in positive effects from clay and negative effects from sand. Soil POxC concentration showed a similar trend to soil TOC in all land uses although on each of them represent a different TOC portion.
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