107 High Desert Soil

Brown caliche
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High Desert Soil is an informal designation, with non-discrete boundaries. It applied to areas of the Mojave Desert in southern California. Generally, the desert is between 2 and 4 thousand feet in elevation. Likewise, located north of the San Gabriel, San Bernardino, and Little San Bernardino Mountains. In short, local news media use High desert to describe the area. For example, it is used on weather forecasts. Because of the high desert’s unique and moderate weather patterns. This because of local low desert neighbors. The term “High Desert” serves to differentiate it from southern California’s Low Desert. Elevation, climate, animal life, and vegetation native to these regions to make it a low desert. High desert soils are derived from these deserts.

  High Desert soils are mostly loamy sand, deep and well-drained Entisols formed in alluvium fans derived dominantly from granitic rocks and related rocks. These soils have very low organic matter, are high in potassium, and have pH’s around 7.5 to 8.0. Saline and/or alkaline surface layer occurs in places. Slopes range from 0 to 10 percent most of the time.

The San Andreas Rift Zone area and have contributed to the complexity of the parent rocks. Cajon, Hesperia, and Rosamond are very common soil in the region. These soils consist of clay loams, with rooting depths between 10 to 40 inches. Parent materials of mixed material derived from weathered basalt. The average annual rain ranges between 10 and 14 inches. Vegetation is defined by blue grama, western wheat, and sagebrush.

Vegetation observed include western wheat, fringed sage, squirreltail, blue grama, sagebrush, prickly pear, juniper, snakeweed, prairie Junegrass, single and rabbitbrush.


Aquifers are used for wildlife and recreation. It can be used for crop production if irrigation is available. In fact, we have grown crops using irrigation in deserts for millennia. Thus, irrigation water comes from rivers or aquifers. Aquifers are underground areas of porous rock. Likewise, it can be full of sand and gravel that hold lots of water. Irrigation in most desert regions causes a buildup of salt in the soil. Some plants can tolerate more salt than others. But, salt in the soil affects plant growth and yield. When the salt levels are too high, plants die. SOURCES • http://celosangeles.ucanr.edu/Agriculture/High_Desert_Soils/

Additional information

Weight11.5 oz
Dimensions4.2 × 2.7 × .85 in

0 Powder, 03 Sand and Gravel