University of Florida


Current Projects

Soil Amendments for Mitigation of Compacted Soils

Sponsor: Florida Department of Environmental Protection

Timeline: 9/13/2007 – 9/30/2010


Compaction of soils commonly occurs during construction by heavy equipment. This results in reduced porosity and infiltration rates which lead to increased runoff. To determine the potential of two soil amendments (compost and fly ash) to mitigate compaction, 21 lysimeters were filled with each two soils (Orangeburg Sandy Loam and Arredondo Sand) for a total of 42 lysimeters. The soils were compacted to levels representative of observed compaction levels as a result of construction activity in North Central Florida. Runoff volumes and rates were monitored from both natural and simulated rainfall events. Amendment treatments (amendments: null, compost, fly ash; depths: 0, 15 and 30 cm) were then applied to the lysimeters. Runoff volumes and rates are recorded. In addition, runoff and leachate water samples were collected for constituent analysis to determine potential water quality impacts. As a precursor, a column study analyzing leachate from various for ratios of soil and amendment was conducted to determine potential runoff and leachate analytes for the lysimeter study. This research will evaluate the potential for these amendments to mitigate compacted soils in Florida.