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Soil Profile

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By
Saad Farooqi,
Abdur Rahman,
Junaid Ghani

Published in: Environment
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Soil Profile

  1. 1. Presented by: Saad Farooqi, C#01 Abdur Rahman, C#02 Junaid Ghani, C#03 BS, 7th Semester DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL & CONSERVATION SCIENCES UNIVERSITY OF SWAT 110/20/2015
  2. 2. Soil  Major part of the natural environment,  Vital to the existence of life on the planet.  Soil is the result of the process of the gradual breakdown of rock, such as weathering and erosion  Soil is made up from four constituents:  mineral material,  organic material,  air and  water. 2
  3. 3. Soil Profile  The soil profile is one of the most important concepts in soil science.  The soil profile is defined as a vertical section of the soil that is exposed when a soil pit, or hole, is dug from the surface of the soil to the underlying bedrock. 3
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  5. 5. Soil Structure 5  Combination or arrangement of primary soil particles.  Soil particles are:  Sand  Silt  Clay
  6. 6. Cont,,  Sand: Natural occurring rough material,  The size of sand particles range between 2.0 mm and 0.05 mm.  Silt: Small particles, and size is between sand and clay.  Silt size as 0.05 mm and 0.002 mm.  Clay: very fine particles  And clay, less than 0.002 mm.  Notice that clay particles may be over one thousand times smaller than sand particles. 6
  7. 7. Soil Composition  Soil composition is an important aspect of nutrient management.  The basic components of soil are:  Minerals/Nutrients 45%,  Organic matter 5%,  Water 25% and  Air 25%. 7
  8. 8. Factors of Formation Soil is formed by…  Parent Material: the original soil transported from elsewhere, usually by wind or water, at different speeds  Climate: the amount, intensity, timing, and kind of precipitation that breaks down parts of ecosystem (i.e. rocks, trees) into soil  Topography: Slope and Aspect affect the angle of the land. 8
  9. 9. Cont,,  Biological: Plants, animals, microscopic organisms, and humans interact with soil in different ways.  Time: the amount of time it takes for the four factors (above) to interact with each other. 9
  10. 10. Soil Colour  Two types of soil on the basis of colour 1) Dark Colour Soil 2) Light Colour Soil 1.Dark Colour Soil:  Rich with a lot of organic matters. 2. Light Colour Soil:  Not so rich with organic matters 10
  11. 11. Components of the Soil Profile  A soil horizon makes up a distinct layer of soil.  The soil profile extends from the soil surface to the parent rock material.  The regolith includes all of the weathered material within the profile. The regolith has two components: Solum Saprolite. 11
  12. 12. Cont,,  Solum  The solum includes the upper horizons with the most weathered portion of the profile.  Surface and subsoil layers.  O, A and B Horizons.  Saprolite  The saprolite is the least weathered portion that lies directly above the solid, parental bedrock  C Horizon 12
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  14. 14. Master Horizons  Horizons based on color, roots, structure, rock fragments.  Master Soil Horizons are depicted by a capital letter in the order (from top to down):  The master horizons are represented by the letters:  O Horizon  A Horizon  E Horizon  B Horizon  C Horizon  R Horizon 14
  15. 15. O Horizon  Surface horizon that is comprised of organic material at various stages of decomposition.  Surface-layer, at depths of 0-2 feet.  Dark in color, soft in texture.  Leaf litter – leaves, needles, twigs, moss, lichens that are not decomposing.  Humus - rich organic material of plant and animal origin in a stage of decomposition 15
  16. 16. A Horizon  “Topsoil” or “Biomantle” Horizon.  largely consists of minerals (sand, silt, and clay)  Topmost layer of mineral soil, at depths of 2-10 feet.  Some humus present, darker in color than layers below.  Biomantle - most biological productive layer; earthworms, fungi, and bacteria live this layer.  Smallest and finest soil particles. 16
  17. 17. E Horizon  The “Leaching Layer” Horizon  Small layer between A & B horizons  At depths of 10-15 feet  Light in color, mainly sand & silt  Poor mineral and clay content due to leaching – the loss of water-retaining plant nutrients to the water table  Soil particles larger than in A horizon but smaller than in B horizon. 17
  18. 18. B Horizon  The “Subsoil” Horizon.  At depths of 10-30 feet.  Rich in clay and minerals like Fe & Al.  Some organic material may reach here through leaching.  Plant roots can extend into this layer  Red/brown in color due to oxides of Fe & clay. 18
  19. 19. C Horizon  The “Saprolite” Horizon.  At depths of 30-48 feet.  Made up of large rocks or lumps of partially broken bedrock.  Least affected by weathering and have changed the least since their origin.  Devoid of organic matter due to it being so far down in the soil profile. 19
  20. 20. R Horizon  The “Bedrock” Horizon.  At depths of 48+ feet.  Deepest soil horizon in the soil profile.  Continuous mass of bedrock.  Colors are those of the original rock of the area. 20
  21. 21. Cont,, 21
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