Description of practice

Halophytes are salt-tolerant plants. They can be used for human consumption, forage and animal feed or as oilseed and energy crops. They can also be used for desalination and phytoremediation purposes.

Examples of how to use halophytes Further information
(see Note below)

AMP36 01

Halophytic grasses for rehabilitation of severely saline soil

Halophytic grasses (such as Dixie grass) are planted as a cover crop for the ecological restoration of severely salt-affected soil. The grasses maintain a soil cover, enhance biodiversity and can be used as cattle feed.

 

»WOCAT technology 4158

AMP36 02

Salt-tolerant vegetables in salt-affected soil

Salt-tolerant vegetables (e.g. beets, radish, kale, spinach, tomato) are grown in saline soils on a rotational basis. Double-row beds minimize salt accumulation around the seeds with furrow irrigation.

 

»WOCAT technology 1316

AMP36 03

Sea wattle (Acacia ampliceps) to remediate severely salt-affected land

The leguminous shrub Salt wattle (Acacia ampliceps) is planted on dikes in severely salt-affected land. Over time the soil becomes less saline, the shrubs improve the microclimate, understorey plant species improve and the branches can be used for forage and fuel.

 

»WOCAT technology 4149

AMP36 04

Apocynum to protect and profit from saline soils

Drought- and salt-tolerant dogbane (Apocynum pictum and A. venetum) species are planted to protect barren saline soils from wind erosion. They are deep-rooted plants that tap groundwater and (importantly) are also cash crops. 

 

»WOCAT technology 1721

AMP36 05

Indigofera (Indigofera tinctoria) to restore marginal lands

Cultivation of Indigofera (Indigofera tinctoria) can restore degraded saline lands with low agricultural potential. The plant produces natural indigo dye that is of high commercial value.

 

»WOCAT technology 4035

AMP36 06

Poplar trees for bio-drainage

Poplar trees, known for their tolerance to waterlogging and salinity, are planted to provide ‘bio-drainage' and wood. Excess water is rapidly taken up and transpired, improving conditions for annual crops.

 

»WOCAT technology 1098


Note: Most of the Further information links are to a full description of the example in the WOCAT database. However sometimes the link may be to similar practices or a research paper. Occasionally the link is to a commercial product in which case it should be understood that this does not imply any endorsement of the product by iSQAPER.