23 Dec 2010

Our Changing World - Water repellent soil

From Jesse Mulligan, 1–4pm, 3:32 pm on 23 December 2010

With drought conditions already kicking in for parts of the country, research at Plant of Food Research is highlighting a problem with New Zealand soils that farmers simply may not know about. For anyone who wants to grow plants, getting the right amount of water into the soil is extremely important. However, a recent study of North Island pastoral soils by PhD student John Carter at Plant and Food Research has found a rather unexpected problem. Ruth Beran meets his supervisor Markus Deurer who explains that rather than soaking up water, most of the soils sampled could actually repel water.