Soil Water Holding Capacity

Water holding capacity is the total amount of water that your soil can hold. There are a couple of reference terms to describe how much water your soil is holding:

  • Field capacity is when the soil contains as much water as it can hold
  • Wilting point is when the plant can no longer access water from the soil
  • Plant available water is the difference between field capacity and wilting point.

Plant available water = Field capacity minus wilting point

Water holding capacity and plant available water varies across soil types and are important in determining the volume of irrigation required for a crop.

Calculate your readily available water on the:

WA DPIRD webpage 

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