Soil Classifications

We learned last class that we classify our soil because we need to organize as much knowledge as we have. We can do this by using soil surveys which can be found on line  or ordered for free. We found out that many people need to find out this information for different reasons. People many need to find out if the soil is suitable to build on or even to bury dead carcases. If you really think about it it is amazing how many different things are considered just by the soil type. Another reason why we classify soil is to understand the differences and relationships between soils. You need to know when building whether the soil has the stability to build upon or that the soil is constantly saturated with water. By finding this information on line many people save hours and money by just finding out this information with a click of a button.  The other reason to classify soil is to identify soil for practical purposes.

Later in our discussion of soil classification we discovered that there are thousands of different combinations of soils. There are 12 orders, 54 suborders, 211 Great Groups, 1100+ Subgroups, 7000+ Families, and “a lot!” of series. In our upcoming test we are going to have to know the 12 orders nd be able to tell one specific thing about each one. With the test being on Wednesday I feel that it’s a good idea to go ahead and write about them. Since we haven’t covered all 12 orders yet I’m going to use the textbook to gather my information.

Gellisols-sois that have near permafrost . Are common in high altitudes or at high elevations (I remember this by thinking of gelly)

Alfisols– are found in semiarid to moist area and have a high accumulation of clay. Also found in “ice-free land”

Spodosols– usually has a bleached layer beneath. The water moving through soil is acidic. Found in Boreal Forests.

Mollisols–  considered containing the most organic rich order. Found in temperate grasslands.

Aridisols- found in deserts and are the most common in the world.

Oxisols– are highly weathered soilsfound in the subtropic and tropic regions. Usually have a reddish color.

Ultisiols– found in humid areas, fairly intense weahtering and leaching occurs. The most common order in North Carolina.

Histosols– have a high organic contentandno permafrost. Usually found in swaps andbogs an are mostly saturated year round.

Vertisols– have a high content of expanding clay minerals. They undergo changes in volume and have cracks that open and close periodically. Called “Venus fly trap”

Andisols– Form from volcanic rock and are very nutrient rich.

Entisols– Very young and show ittle or no evidence of horizon development.

Inceptisols– are also very young but have development in B horizon.

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One Response to Soil Classifications

  1. ccaammii says:

    Yeah it’s pretty cool how detailed scientists determine soils. I wonder how nerdy someone has to be to decide that “I’m going to make a system to classify soil!” I think it’s funny.. But also interesting in some weird way. Just learning so much about soil is pretty awesome since most people know so little! This class is starting to become more and more interesting in my eyes

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