Soil Types: Sandy soil, Clay soil, Loamy soil, Alluvial soil, Red soil, Peat soil

Soil Types
  •  The term soil is derived from a latin word ‘Solum’ which means floor.
  • Soil is the basic substratum for all forms of life in the world.
  • Soil as a complex physical biological system providing support, water, nutrients and oxygen for plants.
  • The branch of science, concerned with the study of soil, is termed pedology or edaphology (Soil science)
  •  Soil may be defined as a thin layer of earth’s crust which serves as a natural medium for the growth of plants.
  • It may be of six types mainly

1.Clay soil 
  • It consists of very fine grained material with very less air spaces.
  • It is difficult to work with since most of the time there is a chance of water logging and harm to the roots of the plant.
  • It is not a suitable type of soil for any garden, as it becomes hard during hot season and renders it difficult for the roots to spread.
  • Generally speaking, soil containing more than 35% of clay is unsuitable for rowing plants
  • Feels lumpy and sticky when very wet
  • Rock-hard when dry
  • Clay drains poorly
  • Few air spaces
  • Warms slowly in spring
  • Heavy to cultivate
2. Sandy soil
  • This type consists of rock and mineral particles.
  • Sandy soil is formed by the disintegration and weathering of rocks such as limestone, granite, etc.
  • Sandy soil is easy to handle since it is light and porous.
  • It provides good aeration and drainage but dries out quickly.
  • Free-draining soil
  • Gritty to the touch
  • Warms up quickly in spring
  • Easy to cultivate
  • May lack nutrients, which are easily washed through the soil in wet weather (often called a "hungry" soil.)
3.Peat soil
  • Contains a much higher proportion of organic matter (peat) because the soil’s acidic nature inhibits decomposition
  • But this means there are few nutrients
  • Dark in colour
  • Warms up quickly in spring
  • Highly water retentive and may require drainage if the water table is near the surface
  • Fantastic for plant growth if fertilizer is added

4.Loamy soil
  • This soil consists of sand, silt and clay in relatively even concentration (40-40-20% concentration respectively).
  • Loamy soils generally contain more nutrients and humus than sandy soils and have better drainage and infiltration of water and air than silty soils, and are easier to till than clay soils.
  • Loam is considered ideal for gardening and agricultural uses because it retains nutrients and water well while still allowing excess water to drain away.
  • Loam is found in a majority of successful farms in regions around the world known for their fertile land.
  • This soil is easy to work over a wide range of moisture conditions.
  • The perfect soil
  • Good structure
  • Drains well
  • Retains moisture
  • Full of nutrients
  • Easy to cultivate
  • Warms up quickly in spring and doesn’t dry out in summer
5. Alluvial soil
  • It is the sediment of rivers and streams and rich in humus(decomposed organic matter).
  • This soil is excellent for ferns and palms
  • Alluvial Soil is best for crops like - Wheat, Rice, Cotton, Jute, Barley, Corn, Oilseed, Coffee, Potatoes, Chili, Cloves etc
6. Red soil
  • Red earth with soft fine particles dissolve quickly in water is suitable for most plants including pot plants.
  • It is rich in Iron, phosphate, lime, potash and humus and supports wide crop diversity.  
  • Red Soil is best for crops like - Cotton, Wheat, Pulses, Tobacco, Jowar, Linseed, Millet, Potatoes and Some Fruits etc. 
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