Soils:
One of Our
Natural
Resources!
Some call it dirt…..But it is
Soil !!!
Soil is made of
loose, weathered
rock and organic
material.
The rock material
in soil contains
three noticeable
parts: sand, clay,
and silt.
Soil, on the
average,
consists of 45%
mineral, 25%
water, 25% air
and 5% organic
matter.
This is just an
average!
There are
thousands of
different soils
throughout the
world.
Five important
factors influence
the specific soil
that devel...
Parent Material
This refers to the
minerals and
organic materials
present during
the soil’s
formation.
Parent Material
Materials from
volcanoes,
sediment
transported by
wind, water, or
glaciers are
some examples.
Question Break!
Think about the soils in
our area. Where do you
think our “parent
material” came from?
Our parent material is
mainly Marine sediment
(ocean in origin), or
produced by steam-river
action.
It may be thousands of...
Climate
The climate of a
particular region
can have a major
influence on the
rate of soil
formation.
Climate
Weathering
processes like the
cycles of freezing
and thawing, along
with wetting and
drying vary with
each region.
Living Organisms
Both plants and
animals help
create soil.
Living Organisms
As they die, organic
matter
incorporates with
weathered parent
material and
becomes part of
the soil.
Question Break!
Can you think of some
organisms that might
help mix and enrich the
soil?
Living
Organisms
The actions of
moles,
earthworms,
bacteria, fungi,
and round worms
mix and enrich
the soil.
Topography
The slope or
hilliness of a
region can have
a major influence
on the moisture
and erosion of
soils.
Topography
In many regions,
moist, poorly
drained soils are
located in low
areas.
Topography
Drier, well drained
soils are often
found in sloping
hillsides. Erosion
is often a
problem here
and can lead to...
Time
It takes hundreds
of years to form
one inch of soil
from parent
material.
Time
Only the top few
centimeters are
productive in the
sense of being
able to sustain
plant growth.
Time
This is why soil
conservation is
so important!
Soil Profile
In a cross-section
of soil, various
zones are
formed.
O Horizon: Organic Layer
It consists of leaf
litter and other
organic material
lying on the
surface of the
soil.
A Horizon: Topsoil
This layer is
usually loose
and crumbly with
varying amounts
of organic
matter.
A Horizon: Topsoil
This is generally
the most
productive layer
of the soil.
Conservation
efforts are
focused here!
B Horizon: Subsoils
Subsoils are
usually lighter in
color, dense and
low in organic
matter.
C Horizon: Transition
This layer of
transition is almost
completely void of
organic mater and
is made up of
partially weat...
Bedrock
Below the C
horizon the
unweathered
bedrock will be
found.
Last Question!
What would happen to
land based life as we
know it, if there was no
soil layer?
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Soils

  1. 1. Soils: One of Our Natural Resources!
  2. 2. Some call it dirt…..But it is Soil !!! Soil is made of loose, weathered rock and organic material.
  3. 3. The rock material in soil contains three noticeable parts: sand, clay, and silt.
  4. 4. Soil, on the average, consists of 45% mineral, 25% water, 25% air and 5% organic matter. This is just an average!
  5. 5. There are thousands of different soils throughout the world. Five important factors influence the specific soil that develops.
  6. 6. Parent Material This refers to the minerals and organic materials present during the soil’s formation.
  7. 7. Parent Material Materials from volcanoes, sediment transported by wind, water, or glaciers are some examples.
  8. 8. Question Break!
  9. 9. Think about the soils in our area. Where do you think our “parent material” came from?
  10. 10. Our parent material is mainly Marine sediment (ocean in origin), or produced by steam-river action. It may be thousands of feet deep!
  11. 11. Climate The climate of a particular region can have a major influence on the rate of soil formation.
  12. 12. Climate Weathering processes like the cycles of freezing and thawing, along with wetting and drying vary with each region.
  13. 13. Living Organisms Both plants and animals help create soil.
  14. 14. Living Organisms As they die, organic matter incorporates with weathered parent material and becomes part of the soil.
  15. 15. Question Break!
  16. 16. Can you think of some organisms that might help mix and enrich the soil?
  17. 17. Living Organisms The actions of moles, earthworms, bacteria, fungi, and round worms mix and enrich the soil.
  18. 18. Topography The slope or hilliness of a region can have a major influence on the moisture and erosion of soils.
  19. 19. Topography In many regions, moist, poorly drained soils are located in low areas.
  20. 20. Topography Drier, well drained soils are often found in sloping hillsides. Erosion is often a problem here and can lead to lose of topsoil.
  21. 21. Time It takes hundreds of years to form one inch of soil from parent material.
  22. 22. Time Only the top few centimeters are productive in the sense of being able to sustain plant growth.
  23. 23. Time This is why soil conservation is so important!
  24. 24. Soil Profile In a cross-section of soil, various zones are formed.
  25. 25. O Horizon: Organic Layer It consists of leaf litter and other organic material lying on the surface of the soil.
  26. 26. A Horizon: Topsoil This layer is usually loose and crumbly with varying amounts of organic matter.
  27. 27. A Horizon: Topsoil This is generally the most productive layer of the soil. Conservation efforts are focused here!
  28. 28. B Horizon: Subsoils Subsoils are usually lighter in color, dense and low in organic matter.
  29. 29. C Horizon: Transition This layer of transition is almost completely void of organic mater and is made up of partially weathered parent material.
  30. 30. Bedrock Below the C horizon the unweathered bedrock will be found.
  31. 31. Last Question!
  32. 32. What would happen to land based life as we know it, if there was no soil layer?
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