Unit4 Hydric Soil Lecture 1 - Unit 4 Lecture 1 Soil Science...

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1 Unit 4: Lecture 1 Unit 4: Lecture 1 Soil Science and its Application to Hydric Soils Wade Hurt, USDA, NRCS, NSSC and University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, Steve Sprecher, US Army Corps of Engineering, South Bend, IN Mike Whited, USDA, NRCS, WLSI, Amherst, MA. Soil Soil, as an environmental parameter, supports or has the ability to support rooted plant growth. In this sense, soil: – Has a lower limit of bedrock or the rooting depth of plants (or other biological activity). – Has an upper limit of air. – Has a lateral limit of water too deep for rooted plants or other Nonsoil material unsuited to plant growth.
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2 Nonsoil These areas lack soil genesis and/or do not support rooted plants. Examples are: – Badlands – Beaches – Rubble lands – Rock outcrops – Glaciers – Deepwater habitats Nonsoil Badlands are usually soft sedimentary bedrock outcrops, no soil genesis and support very limited plants (upper photo) Beaches (lower photo) are the most common nonsoil material in the U.S. Soil Forming Factors Soil is dynamic, formed from natural bodies on the Earth’s surface and modified by five soil forming factors of climate, parent material, organisms, topographic relief, and time (Jenny. 1941).
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3 Varying one soil forming factor (others remain the same): Climate - Soil in dry climates have lower organic matter content and lighter colors than soils in moist climates. Parent material - Soil derived from coarse material (sands) have lower water holding and nutrient holding capacity than soils formed from finer material (clays). Topographical relief - Concave landforms retain water while convex landforms release water more readily. Organisms - Soil developed under herbaceous vegetation have more organic matter content than soil developed under forests. Time - Older soils are thicker and have more horizons than younger soils. Major Horizon Designations O Horizon, zone of organic matter in varying stages of decomposition.
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