Freshwater wetlands located in dryland environments are characterised by high evapotranspiration rates and frequent periods of desiccation, which strongly influence the water chemistry and solute budgets of these systems. The transpiration of groundwater, especially by trees, is an important mechanism through which dryland wetlands can lose water. This process can lead to groundwater salinization and the precipitation of substantial quantities of mineral phases within the soil, the accumulation of which can have profound consequences for wetland structure and function. This paper aims to bring together current knowledge on the processes that result in solute accumulation and chemical sedimentation which assist in maintaining freshwater conditions in many seasonal dryland wetlands. Examples from central and southern Africa, Australia and South America are presented to illustrate the geomorphically diverse settings under which chemical sedimentation can occur, and the importance of these processes for the resilience and longevity of dryland wetlands. We show that the localised development of saline groundwater and subsurface precipitation of minerals within soils can play a key role in creating and maintaining the habitat diversity of dryland wetlands. Wetland vegetation focuses the accumulation of deleterious constituents, thereby preventing widespread salinization and playa-lake formation, and thus ensuring that the bulk of the surface water remains fresh. Although such processes remain widely understudied, we suggest that chemical sedimentation could be a common phenomenon in many dryland wetlands and have important implications for the future management of these ecosystems.