Topic – Three Types of Soil

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Three Types of Soil

Most soil contains three types of particles: sand, silt, and clay. These different types of particles create different types of soil.

Sandy soil is made mostly of sand particles. Water soaks quickly down through this type of soil. (When water runs quickly through soil, we say that the soil drains quickly.) If you squeeze sandy soil in your hand, it does not stick together well.

Loam has equal amounts of sand, silt, and clay particles. Water drains from this type of soil more slowly than from sandy soil. If you squeeze loamy soil in your hand, it sticks together fairly well.

Clay soil is made mostly of clay particles. Water drains very slowly from this type of soil. If you squeeze clay soil, it sticks together very well.

Water, Air, and Nutrients

Plants need water, air, and nutrients. Nutrients in soil mix with water. Plants get nutrients when their roots take in water.

If water drains from soil too quickly, plant roots do not have much time to take in water and nutrients. Plants will not grow well in soil that drains too quickly.

If water drains from soil too slowly, the spaces between soil particles stay filled with water for a long time. Plant roots will have a lot of time to take in water and nutrients. Some plants grow very well in swamps, lakes, and rivers. Other plants do not grow well in soil that is too wet.

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