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Alluvial Soil | Formation, Use and Properties

Alluvial soil is primarily found around rivers, where it is carried by streams as rocks weather. Tall grasses, woodlands, and various crops like rice, wheat, sugarcane, tobacco, maize, cotton, soybean, jute, oilseeds, fruits, and vegetables all cover the soil in most places. This soil has very soft strata with the least quantity of humus and nitrogen, but enough phosphate. The amounts of iron oxide and lime vary greatly between different geographical areas. Due to its great porosity, alluvial soil is one of the best soil types and requires the least amount of water.

Alluvial can range in composition from silt clays to drift sand and rich, loamy. This soil makes up more than 46% of India’s total land area, making it one of the richest nations in the world.

Alluvial parent material features, particularly when the soils are new, have a significant impact on the morphological, physical, chemical, and mineralogical qualities of alluvial soils. The other soil-forming elements affect the final soil qualities as alluvial soils mature over time.

alluvial soil

The history of alluvial deposition is frequently at least partially preserved in alluvial soils. In addition to preserving the passage of time since deposition, landform stability, and/or truncation, soils form on stable or truncated surfaces. These types of soils are helpful for soil-geomorphic investigations because of this. Alluvial surfaces’ soil formation has been used to compare surfaces of similar eras, understand paleoclimate, and gauge the activity of faults that pass through them.

Classification of Alluvial Soils

The Soil Taxonomy System’s formative element “fluid” is used to denote the stratified nature of recent alluvial soils and their alluvial origin. The suborder of Fluvents includes better-drained entisols with high organic carbon concentrations (more than 0.2%) at depth (125 cm) or an erratic decline in organic carbon with depth. By soil moisture regimes, fluvents are further categorized into “great groups”. Fluvaquents are alluvial entisols that are soaked throughout a typical year for extended periods. Because soil organic carbon levels are frequently low in dry areas, many young alluvial soils in arid climates are categorized as Torriorthents.

Characteristics of Alluvial Soil

  • The northern plains and river basins are covered in these soils.
  • It ranges in color from light grey to ash grey.
  • The soil can be either clay or sandy loam in composition.
  • Variations of the soil texture can be observed vertically and horizontally
  • Alluvial soils may contain a larger amount of organic content
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