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Geosciences LibreTexts

9.10: Activity 1 - Soil Formation

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    1. Identify the parent material/s for each local soil. Use the appropriate name (e.g. residuum, colluvium, etc. and the rock type if the parent material is residuum; e.g. residuum – shale).

    Soil Series Parent Material Rock type Soil Series Parent Material Rock type






    1. Define argillic horizon.
    2. Define Aridisol.
    3. Define mollic epipedon.
    4. Define cambic horizon.
    5. Compare the rate of nitrate fertilizer leaching in an arid climate versus a humid climate.
    6. Compare the rate of soil profile development in the Brazilian rainforest versus on the prairie east of Laramie.
    7. How would soil temperature, evaporation, and soil formation differ for soils forming on north versus south facing slopes (assume the same parent materials and landscape positions)?
      • North aspect:
      • South aspect:
    8. What differences can be expected in two soils formed from the same parent material, but where one soil occurs on a 1 % slope (summit) and the other soil occurs on a 35 % (backslope) slope with all other soil-forming factors being the same?
      • 1 % slope:
      • 35 % slope:
    9. How does soil color change with depth for the soil profile? Explain.
    10. How does soil texture change with depth for the soil profile? Explain.
    Soil order
    Soil series
    Land use
    landscape position
    Slope %
    Water runoff class
    Water permeability class

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    REMINDERS/Assignments for next week’s lab:

    1. Study for pre-lab Quiz on material from Lab #10: Soil Ecology
    2. Watch one of the videos listed under Lab 10 “Additional Resources”
      • Write a paragraph describing:
        1. One thing you learned from the video you chose
        2. An interesting fact about what you learned iii. How it relates to another field of study
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