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CitationMcGinnies, W. J., Osborn, L. W., & Berg, W. A. (1976). Plant soil microsite relationships on a salt grass meadow. Journal of Range Management, 29(5), 395-400.
PublisherSociety for Range Management
JournalJournal of Range Management
AbstractAt least one million acres of potentially productive meadows in the central great plains are dominated by low value saltgrass. Soil chemical and physical factors have been measured to establish a microsite classification of vegetation-soil relations. The microsites are "slickspot," "level," "mound," and "swale." The mound microsite is dominated by alkali sacaton and produces the highest basal area ground cover. The slickspots were dominated by saltgrass, but average basal area was less than 10%. The level sites produced a mixture of saltgrass, blue grama, and alkali sacaton. The swales contained a mixture of saltgrass, western wheatgrass, and threadleaf sedge. The greatest hindrance to the conversion of these meadows to high quality pasture is that they are on a solonetz soil. The A horizon was a favorable habitat for plant growth; it was neither saline nor alkaline. The B horizon was a serious problem to plant growth because it is hard when dry and impermeable when wet. The C horizon is saline, but it remains moist or wet throughout the growing season.