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One-off deep cultivation can reduce the severity of soil water repellence.
One-off soil inversion results in the complete burial of the water repellent topsoil in a layer typically at a depth of 15 to 35 cm, and brings to the surface a layer of wettable subsoil.
Confident identification of soil compaction to restrict crop or pasture growth uses diagnosis combining visual symptoms of plant, root and soil features.
Soil wetting agents reduce the effects of repellence by lowering the surface tension of the water which improves infiltration.
Furrow sowing forms micro-relief, small ridges and furrows, into which water can be harvested.
Water repellence develops when there is an accumulation of hydrophobic organic substances in a susceptible soil. Hydrophobic compounds are derived from plant and microbial sources.
Water repellence results in uneven wetting of soil in autumn which can result in patchy and staggered crop and pasture emergence. Sandy soils are particularly susceptible.
Subsurface compaction is a widespread constraint in Western Australian cropping areas.
Some biological processes can impact on the severity and expression of soil water repellence. Certain soil microbes can degrade and break down the waxes that cause soil water repellence.
Banded wetting agents can make dry furrow sowing of water repellent soils more reliable.