Farmland in western Iowa and eastern Nebraska affected by flooding early this year and not planted to any crop has potential economic and soil environmental consequences if the soils are left unattended. Long-term damage to soil in areas of significant flooding need to be considered when planning for next season’s crop.
Several changes that take place when soil is under saturated conditions for an extended period of time can be carried into the next season. One of these potential changes is the change in biological health of the soil, with the greatest concern being when soil is left unplanted to any crop or cover crop. The existence of growing plants in such areas will help build up the microbial community in the root zone, which is essential to nutrient cycling, especially phosphorous.
Iowa State University
Al-Kaisi, Mahdi, "Management Considerations for Post Flooding Soils" (2011). Integrated Crop Management News. 276.
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