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Soil water repellence is caused by an accumulation of waxy organic matter in the soil surface. It is worse in sandy textured topsoils.
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.
One-off deep tillage can reduce the severity of soil water repellence.
Furrow sowing forms micro-relief, small ridges and furrows, into which water can be harvested.