Soils of Vermont: Key Points

Soils of Vermont website





Current Issue

1. Discuss the five factors of soil formation. 7.15

2. Identify and be familiar with basic soil properties, including physical, chemical and biological properties. 7.15

3. Discuss the role of soils in environmental degradation including soil erosion, non-point source pollution, and other types of pollution as well as broader issues such as global warming. 3.9

4. Discuss the role of soils in land use issues such as building site development, prime farmland and wetland preservation, septic system siting, and recreation development. 3.9

5. Recognize the importance of soils for agricultural production and the importance of managing soils sustainably on a global level in the face of mounting population pressure and urban sprawl. 3.9

6. Use the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) County Soil Survey to locate soil types and other information about the soils and understand how this information can be used. 1.8, 1.10, 7.1

Overarching Concepts
Soil has physical, chemical and biological properties and can be studied, classified and mapped based on these properties.

Soils are a functionally important part of the environment and interact with other major factors in the environment, including the atmosphere and the hydrosphere.(Soil Functions)

Environmental relationships between the soil and other factors can be interrupted and influenced by human activities, such as development, agriculture, waste disposal, resource extraction and pollution.

Global sustainability for humans is highly dependent on managing and conserving soils for multiple uses including crop production, forestry, and habitat diversity.
Mrs. Steiner - Science Educator 2009
Copyright Susan Steiner and her students unless otherwise noted.
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VT Judging Guide
NH Judging Guide 

From The Surface Down Handbook USDA  pdf

Online resource: Soil Systems Outline

Key to Soil Texture by Feel website
Soil Triangle  picture

Soil Profile Development animation

Profiles Key concepts for MA

Windham county Soils Survey  pdf

NRCS Soil Survey Manual

Soil Survey Arial Photo

Web Soil Survey
   Related Soil Links

Vermont Center for 
Geographic information

USGS U.S. Geological 

Plant and Soil Science

Vermont State Soil  website
Fall 2009