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AG 510 / SSAC 510 / WST 510 MANAGEMENT OF PROBLEM SOILS AND WATERS                                                                               (3L+1P) I

Objective
  To educate students about basic concepts of problem soils and waters, and their management. Attention will be on management of problem soils and safe use of brackish water in relation to crop production.

Theory

UNIT I
  Area and distribution of problem soils – acidic, saline, sodic and physically-degraded soils; origin and basic concept of problematic soils, and factors responsible.

UNIT II
  Morphological features of saline, sodic and saline-sodic soils; characterization of salt-affected soils
     - soluble salts, ESP, pH, physical, chemical and microbiological properties.

UNIT III
  Acid soils - nature of soil acidity, sources of soil acidity, effect on plant growth, lime requirement. Management of acid soils, biological sickness of soils and its management.

UNIT IV
  Management of saline and sodic soils; salt tolerance of crops - mechanism and ratings; monitoring of soil salinity in the field; management principles for sandy, clayey, red lateritic and dryland soils.

UNIT V
  Agronomic practices in relation to problematic soils; cropping patterns for utilizing poor quality ground waters.

UNIT VI
  Quality of irrigation water; management of  brackish water for irrigation; salt balance under irrigation; characterization of brackish waters.

UNIT VII
  Salt stress: meaning of salt stress and its effect on crop growth, salt stress injury and resistance in plants, practical ways to overcome the effect of salt stress through soil and crop manipulations.

Practicals
  Characterization of acid, acid-sulfate, salt-affected and calcareous soils. Determination of cations (Na+, K+, Ca++ and Mg++) in ground water and soil samples. Determination of anions (Cl-, SO --, CO -- and HCO -) in ground waters and soil samples. Determination of electrical conductivity and gypsum requirement of salt-affected soils. Determination of soil pH and lime requirements of acid soils. Demonstration of salt stress / injury on plants under laboratory conditions. Visit to salt- affected / acid soil areas (CSSRI / CPRI).

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