Soil-water conditions provide valuable insight into the hydrologic system in an area. A soil-water balance quantitatively summarizes soil-water conditions and is based on climatic, soil, and vegetation characteristics that vary spatially and temporally. Soil-water balances in the Great Plains of the central United States were simulated for 1951-1980. Results of the simulations were mean annual estimates of infiltration, runoff, actual evapotranspiration, potential recharge, and consumptive water and irrigation requirements at 152 climatic data stations. A method was developed using a geographic information system to integrate and map the simulation results on the basis of spatially variable climatic, soil, and vegetation characteristics. As an example, simulated mean annual potential recharge was mapped. Mean annual potential-recharge rates ranged from less than 0.5 inch in much of the north-central and southwestern Great Plains to more than 10 inches in parts of eastern Texas and southwestern Arkansas.
Additional publication details
Simulation and mapping of soil-water conditions in the Great Plains