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Geography Soil Notes

by: Megan Hanson

Geography Soil Notes GEOG 1414

Megan Hanson

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These are the notes for GEOG 1414 for the soil portion.
Physical Geography
Tongxin Zhu
Class Notes
GEOG 1414 geography soil notes chapter
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Megan Hanson on Monday April 11, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to GEOG 1414 at University of Minnesota Duluth taught by Tongxin Zhu in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 55 views. For similar materials see Physical Geography in Geography at University of Minnesota Duluth.

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Date Created: 04/11/16
4/05/16  Soil develops due 5 factors: important o Climate o Organisms o Parent materials o Relief o Time  Climate: precipitation (water) and temperature o Water:  More water = faster decomposition  More water = faster leaching  More water = faster chemical weathering  More water = faster translocation o Temperature:  High temperature = faster chemical weathering rates  High temperature = faster organic decomposition  Organisms – nutrient recycling (by up taking/decomposition) o Grassland = rapid cycling o Deciduous forest = intermediate cycling o Evergreen forest = slow cycling  Parent materials o Texture:  Ex. Granite = clay soil, fertile  Sandstone = sandy soil o Chemical composition:  Limestone = ca++ rich soil  Sandstone = few nutrients  Relief: o Erosion/decomposition o Drainage/condition  Time  Classification system: o US Soil conservation service o 12 soil orders o 47 suborders, 230 great groups, 6,000 subgroups, 15,000 soil series 12 Soil Orders:  Oxisols – oxi = oxide: rich in iron and aluminum oxides o Often develop in tropical rain forest o Soil formation processes:  Warm, wet = rapid dissociation of clays = Fe, Al, silica  Components migrate differentially:  Silica is dissolved and leached from soil profiles  Fe and Al remain and rapidly oxidized to form laterite o Soil nutrients: low in nutrients, acidic, low fertility for agriculture o Typical profile:  O: missing  A: red, Fe/Al enrichment  B: dark red, even more Fe/Al o Of all off the forest soils, lease distinct horizon  Alfisols/Ultisols o Alf = aluminum and iron o Ult = ultimate o Climate – humid continental/subtropical  Wet: fair amount of leaching, translocation of materials in profile  Warner than subarctic: intermediate rapidly weathering and decomposition o Vegetation: broadleaf, deciduous trees  More nutrients concentrated in litter than Oxisols  Litter decomposes readily to humus o Dominant soil forming process: translocation of clays (they do not dissociate) o Typical profile:  O: litter = humus  A: dark brown  E: lighter brown, clay removed  B: brown to red, clay accumulated o Differences between alfisols and ultisols:  Alfisols develops in colder climates – humid continental (MN/WI)  Ultisols develops in warmer climates – humid subtropical  Alfisols found on younger parent materials – glacial deposit  Ultisols: older – granite  Spodosols – spodos = wood ash o Often found in subarctic (needle-leaf forests) – Canada o Wet = nutrient leaching = acidic soils (low fertility) o Cold = slow organic matter decomposition = liter accumulation o Profile:  O: thick accumulation of litter  A: missing  E: ash gray  B: bright orange iron coatings  Mollisols – molli = soft o Mid-latitude prairie o Climate: less precipitation, less leaching – only soluble bases are leached o Ca++ < Mg++ < K+ < Na o Vegetation: grasses – fast cycling o Humification – humus accumulates in thick A horizon o Calcification – selective leaching allows removal of more mobile bases  Ca remains behind  Forms white chalky layers of calcium carbonate o Typical soil profile:  O: dried grass mulch  A: thick, dark brown to black  B: brown, usually has white calcium layer at depth


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