Soil Chemical Properties
Soil chemical and biological properties are two important yet often underappreciated aspects of managing healthy turf. Their importance is becoming more appreciated with the contemporary practices of adding materials with improved soil cation exchange capacity, as well as boosting beneficial soil microorganisms. Topics covered in this chapter include soil organic matter, cation exchange capacity, soil pH, buffer capacity, base saturation, soil salinity, and available soil nutrients. These properties not only directly influence the turfgrass stand but also indirectly influence other soil characteristics such as nutrient and pesticide leaching, disease/nematode activity, and availability of native and applied nutrients. The latest knowledge on beneficial soil organisms, their interaction with each other, and how management practices influence their populations is covered as well as benefits of using microbial inoculants, compost teas, and biostimulants.