This week, we talk over saturation. It is Auguest and Clearwater / Pinellas County already have hit an above average YEARLY rain fall. Over saturation will cause plants to turn yellow and leaf loss. After a few days of this heavy rain and the ground will dry out. Make sure you turn you irrigation systems back on once the ground has dried out.
University of Florida IFAS Extension talks about the effects of Soil Saturation:
Adequate soil drainage, or lack of adequate drainage (IE:soil saturation) is influenced by soil texture and soil structure. The presence of water, land slopes, impervious subsurface layers, and compacted soil surface can also affect drainage. After a rain and normal drainage, an ideal silt loam soil for growing trees would consist of 50% solid and 50% pore space Growth and maintenance of root systems require large quantities of oxygen for respiration. When oxygen content drops below 10%, root growth of most plants will be limited. In urban situations construction activities may have altered the native soil. Available pore space is greatly reduced in compacted soil.
Flooding can cause the air filled pores in the soil to become filled with water. This creates a condition which greatly limits the amount of oxygen roots can obtain. Generally soils have 10–30% of the volume composed of air–filled spaces but the percentage decreases as water content increases. Excess soil moisture can actually interfere with water uptake by oxygen-deprived roots. The result ranges from increased stress and reduced growth to injury, to death of trees or other plants. The deposit of sediments during flood conditions also contributes to poor soil aeration. Deposits of silt or sand as shallow as three inches can be injurious, especially to newly planted trees.
Flood-stressed trees exhibit a wide range of symptoms including leaf yellowing, leaf drop (thinning), reduced leaf size and shoot growth, water sprouts (sprouts along the stem or trunk), and dieback of portions of the canopy. These symptoms may 1) progress into tree decline and death, 2) reoccur for several years and then eventually disappear, or 3) subside as early as the next year indicating rapid tree recovery.