Guideline Index

Chapter 7: Managing Limiting Soil Factors

7.7 Summary

  • Apart from nutrients, many other soil-related factors (for example, slaking, dispersion, sodicity, compaction, salinity, waterlogging and soil acidification) can substantially limit plant growth.
  • Soil structure can be improved by increasing organic matter, improving drainage, and using gypsum on some soil types.
  • The solution to salinity problems is not a matter of just treating the symptoms but of managing all the factors that raise the water table and influence the well-being of the water catchment.
  • Applying lime to acidic soils will increase soil pH.
  • Limes vary in their ability to reduce acidity.
  • Limes should be applied on the basis of soil test analyses and purchased on the basis of effective neutralising values and cost.

Exercise 3 provides practice in identifying soil-related factors that can limit plant growth.