EFFECTS OF LOW IONIC STRENGTH SOLUTIONS ON pH OF ACID FORESTED SOILS.
'Salt effects' on soil pH are not well-documented with highly acidic soils in contact with solutions of very low ionic strength ( less than 1 mM//c/L). These dilute, acidic conditions are typical of soil solutions in many forest ecosystems. A wide range of acid forested soils were contacted with very dilute salt solutions to determine effects of low electrolyte concentrations on soil and solution pH under a variety of experimental conditions. In many soils, pH was lowered markedly following addition of dilute salt solutions. In fact, salt effects on pH (i. e. , dpH) were greatest at low concentrations of added salts (e. g. , between 0 and 0. 6 mM//c/L of added salt solutions). At least 40% of the variation in dpH among the 19 mineral soils was attributable to soil differences in low-level concentrations of water-soluble electrolytes. Leaching experiments that manipulated electrolytes in soil solution demonstrated that pH could be depressed up to 1 pH-unit by increasing salt concentrations by as little as 0. 3 mM//c/L.
Richter, DD; Comer, PJ; King, KS; Sawin, HS; Wright, DS
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