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Hydrosols are soils which are seasonally or permanently saturated (for at least 2-3 months per year).

Hydrosols in the Mallee Region

This map of Hydrosols in the Mallee region has been developed by Jim Rowan and is based on the Land Systems of Victoria (1:250 000). It shows areas where Hydrosols are most likely to occur within the region and should only be used as a general indication of their distribution. Please note that other soil types may also occur within these mapped areas. Hydrosols may occur in areas not mapped here, however, these are most likely to be minor occurrences.

Photo: Hydrosol soil profile
A Hydrosol near Ouyen. Note gypsum

crystals in the 45-75 cm zone.

      Hydrosols occur naturally in low-lying parts of the central and northern Mallee region where saline regional groundwater reaches the surface. Soil surfaces are variably saline, depending largely on depth to the watertable. Soils which are saline to the surface are commonly red clay loams overlying gypsum. They may be bare or support extremely salt tolerant low bushes such as samphire. Soils which are non-saline at the surface but highly saline at depth, usually have a sandy surface and support shrubs such as saltbush. The area of Hydrosols is increasing in both dryland and irrigated areas because of changed hydrological conditions since European settlement.
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