Soil Health Concepts
What is soil?
Representative and State Soils in the Northeast:
Soil types across the nation and the world are varied. They form with the diverse in uences of local climate, organisms, topography, bedrock or underlying sediment type (parent material), and the effects of time. Areas of similar soils are grouped and labeled as a soil series. The series name is usually derived from a town or landmark in the area where the soil was first recognized. Soil series are not bound by political boundaries, therefore a given soil series does not necessarily occur within the con nes of only one state. The soil map delineating the soil series informs the land manager of the soil’s inherent quality, that cannot be changed through soil management.
According to the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), a state soil represents a soil series that has special signi cance to a particular state. Each state has selected a state soil (Figure 1.01). Of those, 20 have been legislatively established as “Official State Soils” and share the same level of distinction as of cial state owers and birds.
Soil is at the foundation of everything that we and the other life on earth need to live, including food, ber, habitat, shelter, recreational space, clean air and water, and more. But first, what is it?