Salinity is a common term used to represent various salt levels, for example, sodium chloride, magnesium and calcium sulfates and bicarbonates. Something like 7% of the surroundings' surface and 5% of established land in the world is now confused by extreme salinity, fundamentally created by inadequate waste and low quality watering systems. According to a review, about 6.0 million ha of cultivated land in Pakistan is influenced by salinity, causing an expected 62% loss in agricultural incomes.

Now, saline soils cover just about 11 million ha i.e. around 55 percent of entire arable soils, dangerously affecting the country's budget and slowing down countrywide yield. Saline soils are affecting plant yield all over the earth. The entire worldwide region of saline-disturbed soils has been estimated to be around 830 million ha. 

Distinctive sorts of soil salinity impact rural efficiency, for example, watering system actuated salinity and "transitory" dry-land-living salinity. Soil salinity has turned into a fundamental normal burden that decreases the rural generation all over the world. Around 6.67 million ha of land in Pakistan is salt-partial, in view of which 1.89 million ha is salty, 1.85 million ha is absorptive salt-sodic, 1.39 million ha is resistant salt-sodic and 0.28 million ha is sodic in natural surroundings. Out of 6.67 million ha saline territories occurs on land of 2.22 million ha in Punjab. In Sindh 2.11 million hectares, In Baluchistan 2.31 million hectares and in KPK 0.4 million hectares.

The majority of the saline soil occurs for natural reasons, an excess of salt for an extended period in dry to semi-arid areas of the world. Plants acquire different essential supplements in dissolvable structure and the plant improvement is diminished by pointless expansion of these solvent salts. A lethal level of salt diminishes the capacity of a plant to draw water from the earth and slows down development of plants because of osmotic or saline push and water stress. Leaf development slows because of expansion in soil saltiness which is the most basic in light of osmotic after effect of the saline around the roots.

Higher absorption of soluble salts in soil cause a decrease and delay in germination of seeds of many species. Salts may affect growth rate to an important level. Therefore, under salt stress seeds with more sprouting rate may be relied upon to achieve a great growth rate and express sprout foundation and subsequently crop yield.

By: Dr. Rashad Mukhtar Balal, Muhammad Wajid Khan, Dr. Gulzar Akhtar

For more information:
Dr. Gulzar Akhtar (e-mail)
Assistant Professor (IPFP)
Department of Horticulture
University College of Agriculture
University of Sargodha
Punjab, Pakistan