The effect of salinity on plant available water

Sheldon, A., Menzies, N. W., So, H.B. and Dalal, R. C. (2004). The effect of salinity on plant available water. In: B. Sing, Supersoil 2004: 3rd Australian New Zealand Soils Conference. 3rd Australian New Zealand Soils Conference (Supersoil 2004), Sydney, Australia, (1-5). 5-9 December 2004.

Author Sheldon, A.
Menzies, N. W.
So, H.B.
Dalal, R. C.
Title of paper The effect of salinity on plant available water
Conference name 3rd Australian New Zealand Soils Conference (Supersoil 2004)
Conference location Sydney, Australia
Conference dates 5-9 December 2004
Proceedings title Supersoil 2004: 3rd Australian New Zealand Soils Conference
Place of Publication Gosford, Australia
Publisher The Regional Institute
Publication Year 2004
Sub-type Fully published paper
ISBN 1 920842 26 8
Editor B. Sing
Start page 1
End page 5
Total pages 5
Collection year 2004
Language eng
Abstract/Summary Salinity acts to inhibit plant access to soil water by increasing the osmotic strength of the soil solution. As the soil dries, the soil solution becomes increasingly concentrated, further limiting plant access to soil water. An experiment was conducted to examine the effect of salt on plant available water in a heavy clay soil, using a relatively salt tolerant species, wheat ‘Kennedy’, and a more salt sensitive species, chickpea ‘Jimbour’. Sodium chloride was applied to Red Ferrosol at 10 rates from 0 to 3 g/kg. Plants were initially maintained at field capacity. After 3 weeks, plants had become established and watering was ceased. The plants then grew using the water stored in the soil. Once permanent wilting point was reached plants were harvested, and soil water content was measured. The results showed that without salt stress, wheat and chickpea extracted approximately the same amount of water. However, as the salt concentration increased, the ability of chickpea to extract water was severely impaired, while wheat’s ability to extract water was not affected over the range of concentrations examined. Growth of both wheat and chickpea was reduced even from low salt concentrations. Possible explanations for this are that the effect on growth is due to Cl- toxicity and that this occurs at lower concentrations than the osmotic effect of salinity, or that the metabolic demands of maintaining plant water balance and extracting soil water under saline conditions result in reduced growth.
Subjects E1
300103 Soil Chemistry
770402 Land and water management
Q-Index Code E1
Additional Notes CD-ROM

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Created: Thu, 23 Aug 2007, 19:37:14 EST