Any experiences with caliche?
Three years ago, I discovered caliche in my yard while digging a hole for a tree. About three feet down, I hit a layer of soil that was about like concrete. (Next time I'll pour some Phosphoric acid on it and wait. :)
Since then, I've become a little more informed about caliche, its origin, and its nature.
This summer, the city started converting a farmer's field into a city park with two ponds. While walking through the excavations, I found caliche about 5" thick. It seemed to be forming at a depth of 3-4 feet. The pond excavation has a clear ring of whitish material at that level. In other locations where they dug out the topsoil to create parking, they dug down to the caliche and stopped there. (I wonder if they realize that they're paving on that layer?)
The field has a history of being farmed in corn, wheat, and turf sod. I suppose that it has also seen use as a potato field at some point. Irrigation was either flood irrigation, or a pressurized sprinkler system. The general environment is somewhat dry with average rainfall in the 10-11" year range, mostly in the November through May timeframe.
In the southwest, I hear that caliche forms very near to the surface of the soil. In the east, (in Connecticut) I found caliche while attempting to dig a hole for my sister's spruce trees. That was a surprise.
I am curious to hear how people are dealing with caliche in their areas.