Semiarid grassland soils in western South Dakota may be as old as mid-Pleistocene, so that time has been sufficient for caliche to form. However, caliche is not present. Historical weather data were used to estimate leaching and secondary CaCO3 accumulation. Caliche should have developed. Subsoil Ca adsorbed by roots and moved upward into the herbage probably has been deflated in the ash following prairie fires to prevent caliche formation.
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