Z is for Podzol

“Podzol Soils occur in areas of high rainfall and are usually associated with forest trees with an acid litter. The soils occur mainly in materials from silica-rich rocks. They cover 13% of New Zealand.”

In the Labs for Lincoln Uni’s Level 1 Soil Science course this week we have been looking at different soil profiles, describing horizons and classifying them to the NZ Soil Classification. Podzol is one that the students get to and ponder for a while. It’s abundance of different horizons can be quite confusing at first, but after working through them, can be appreciated as a beautiful.

Podzols - Landcare Research
Photo Credit: https://soils.landcareresearch.co.nz/describing-soils/nzsc/soil-order/podzol-soils

A Podzol generally has an Ah horizon, followed by a E, then all or one of; Bh, Bs, Bfm, making for a colourful soil description and something to get fresh soil science minds working. The E horizon is an eluviated horizon, where the weathering over thousands of years has leached any nutrients, organic matter, iron and aluminium oxides out of it making it a very pale horizon.

Read more on LandcareResearch’s ‘Describing Soils’ Webpage

References:

https://soils.landcareresearch.co.nz/describing-soils/nzsc/soil-order/podzol-soils

https://www.landis.org.uk/services/soilsguide/series.cfm?serno=729

Published by

Sephrah

I am a Soil Science PhD student at Lincoln University, New Zealand.

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