The average ionic strength of 20 West Australian soils was found to be 0.0048. The effects of three electrolytes (deionized water, CaCl2 and KNO3), three ionic strengths (0.03, 0.005 and soil ionic strength at field capacity, Is) and two soil liquid ratios (1:5 and 1:10) on the pH of 15 soils were investigated. pH measurements in solutions of ionic strength 0.005 differed the least from measurements made at Is. The differences that occurred in comparisons with distilled water or CaCl2 of ionic strength 0.03 (0.01 M) were much greater (≥0.4 pH units). An extractant with an ionic strength of 0.005 may provide a more realistic measure of pH in the field than distilled water or 0.01 M CaCl2 for West Australian soils.
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