I was reading a study (Growing trees on salt-affected land) talking about planting eucalyptus trees on salinity and water logging affected lands, which can reclaim the land as farmland after one or two decades.

If I want to plant some eucalyptus trees, what is the maximum salinity and water logging in which it can grow?

Examples of salinity and water logging with increasing severity:

Picture of flooded field

  1. Flooded field

Water damaged field

  1. Water damaged field

Standing water in field

  1. Standing water in field

Water logged area

  1. Water logged shoreline

Are any of these examples possible places in which eucalyptus trees can be planted?

2 Answers 2


Your articles clearly tell you the limit of salinity (still negotiable) and the ability to deal with water logged roots. Ancient societies used this tree to do the same stuff and they didn't have the ability to test for amount of salinity. Cool tree, I did not know that Eucalyptus could survive this chemically attenuated low AIR environment! What is it you want to do with this land? I do not see any plant being able to desalinize the soil to the level most plants are able to tolerate. Need to see the extent of your water logged land and your soil tests. You do have soil tests, yes? Before and after if possible. You should be in touch with your Cooperative Extension Service anyway. THEY would know in more detail what you are dealing with. Soil tests are cheap (used to be free) from Cooperative Extension Service that are part of a major University near you. Please contact them and pass to us their recommendations. What kind of soil do you have? Clayish or Sandyish? How will you know the limits of salinity? What plants do you want to accommodate?

  • Water logging and salinity ruins farmlands and causes farmers to abandon their land. Eucalyptus trees can repair this land, so I had an idea to buy some abandoned farmland which would very cheap, and plant some trees in it, so after 10 or 20 years I can sell the trees, and sell the land... I suppose I'm in over my head, knowing nothing about plants, but now I see what I can do is get a soil test on that land and see how I go.... Why do all this? Life is too long/short trying to find something to do. Will post back if/when I progress.
    – Eric
    Nov 24, 2016 at 6:55
  • But life is more solid when you understand all the life around you that doesn't yak a whole bunch. Your involvement with your land will ground you like nothing else will. It is good to feel in over your head, there is a lot to know and everything is linked together!! Your decisions should not be based on monetary profit. Money is nothing to get too excited about in relation to being part of the real world. I know I sound so goo goo ga ga. Grins. I am dead serious however. Sometimes the best decisions are just a 'gut instinct'. No tree could change what makes the soil saline and wet.
    – stormy
    Nov 24, 2016 at 7:21
  • I wanted to do this because I saw there was a problem in Pakistan where more and more farmland became saline and wet, and thought maybe it could be solved by looking at how saline and wet land normally gets "rebalanced" by nature - it turned out to be eucalyptus trees. And I worried about the money because it has to at least break even economically for it to be done repeatedly. But you're right I probably am not the person to do this.
    – Eric
    Nov 24, 2016 at 23:01
  • Of course you could be the person to organize a way to improve farmland! But you might just be seeing all the negatives all at once. Lots of work, anything worth pursuing will always be hard hard work. Weigh and balance, comes a time one gets tired of all the work! Grins. What I'd like to know is how this land got so salty and marshy. If one goes to all the trouble you don't want a high tide and have it all made worthless. Saline and wet is incredible habitat to LOTS of animals. To go up against 'nature' is kinda asking for headaches, work and mistakes, to have to begin again.
    – stormy
    Nov 25, 2016 at 4:26
  • Ok. I shall see then. The land became saline and wet because previous farmers used irrigation water without proper drainage and eventually the water table rose and the salt buildup from all the irrigation, rise up from the water table into the surface through capillary action, turning the land saline and wet. :)
    – Eric
    Nov 25, 2016 at 9:21

Sorry no. Some Eucalyptus (River red gums) will grow in fresh water, but they have to have the high water level as seedlings to grow the right structures. But none of the Eucalypts are salt tolerant - in Australia they are dead before salt is visible on the soil.

Search about "wetland salinity" for more information, or search with keywords of "salinity" and "revegetation"

Eucalypts can be grown before wetland salinity becomes a problem, they use up the water far below the surface, slowing down the degradation.

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