Drainage: Soil Salinity Management

Authored by: Glenn J. Hoffman

Managing Water Resources and Hydrological Systems

Print publication date:  July  2020
Online publication date:  July  2020

Print ISBN: 9781138342668
eBook ISBN: 9781003045045
Adobe ISBN:


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Soil water must drain through the crop root zone when salinity is a hazard to prevent salts from increasing to levels detrimental to crop production. Drainage occurs whenever irrigation and rainfall provide soil water in excess of the soil’s storage capacity. Regardless of the climate, if soluble salts are present, water in excess of that needed to satisfy the crop water requirement must be provided to leach excess salts. Leaching may be accomplished continuously or at intervals, depending on the degree of salinity control required. It may take decades or as little as one season, depending on the hydrogeology of the area, but without drainage, agricultural productivity cannot be sustained where salinity is a threat.

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