AbstractData are presented in this paper on the availability of moisture in Catalina clay, an Oxisol, and Cialitos clay, an Ultisol. The soils are very high in clay content and fairly high in organic-matter content. Catalina clay is high in free iron oxides with 18.2 percent, while Cialitos clay has 13 percent. Striking differences are evident as to cation exchange capacity with values of over 20 meq. for Cialitos and only around 12 meq. for Catalina. Both soils have low available water-supplying power. However, when the individual aggregates are considered, the smaller ones retain larger volumes of available water than the larger ones. This is so because moisture retained at higher tensions decreases with decreasing aggregate size, while that retained at lower tensions increases with decreasing aggregate size. These results are explained on the basis of the larger volume of small pores in larger aggregates and the larger voids created in-between smaller aggregates.
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