Erosion by Water: Amendment Techniques

Authored by: X.-C. (John) Zhang

Managing Soils and Terrestrial Systems

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

Print ISBN: 9781138342651
eBook ISBN: 9780429346255
Adobe ISBN:


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Soil erosion by water and wind are worldwide problems and serious threats to agricultural profitability and sustainability. Soil amendments are effective means for controlling soil erosion and improving crop production. Soil amendments are materials added to soil to improve the chemical, physical, and biological properties of the soil and to promote plant growth. Common soil amendments include lime, gypsum, synthetic polymer, manure, compost, municipal and industrial wastes, and mulches derived from plant materials. Soil amendments are generally used to neutralize soil acidity, improve nutrient cycling and availability, increase soil aggregation and soil structural stability, improve soil tilth, reduce surface seal formation, increase water infiltration (decrease runoff volume), reduce soil erodibility, protect soil surface from raindrop splash erosion, obstruct overland flow, and therefore reduce soil erosion by water. The specific benefits for erosion control are derived from both the increased soil’s resistance to erosion and the decreased erosive power of raindrop splash and flowing water shear due to soil surface protection and enhanced water infiltration.

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