Do We Really Need Soil? - Mr. Forsdike

Do We Really Need Soil? Lets Dig Up the Facts! Soil Contains the Minerals All Living Things Need! We Use Soil to Grow Food! Many Animals and Microscopic Creatures Live in the Soil! Grazing Animals Depend On the Plants in the Soil for Food!

Soil Helps Soak Up Rainwater So We Dont Have Flooding! Soil Components True soil is made up of 4 key components. Think MOMA to remember them Minerals Organic Material & Bacteria Moisture Air Soil Components 1. Minerals:

Minerals such as calcium, phosphorous and potassium are nutrients that are found in the soil and are required for plant growth. Minerals come from rock material known as parent material Minerals are gained through the weathering (breaking down) process into smaller elements such as sand, silt and clay Soil Components 2. Organic Material & Bacteria: The organic material are: flowers, grass, trees/branches etc that are dead and on the ground When plants and animals die they are decomposed (broken down) by bacteria in the soil

(think mold on cheese or bread) Decaying organic materials form humus, which provides nutrients and moisture for plants. - Humus is dark in colour and found on the surface or O horizon (organic layer) Soil Components 3. Moisture: - Water dissolves nutrients and is absorbed by the roots of plants. - Water also assists in the decay of organic material. Soil Components 4. Air:

- Plants need air mostly around their roots and within 30cm of the surface Lots of loose humus near their roots allows for lots of air spaces Air spaces are also created by worms and ants and other insects and small animals which tunnel through the soil. Soil Profile Soil Profiles: A profile is a side view of something Soil is made up of many layers or horizons The Soil Profile is the different layers between the O horizon and the R horizon

(bedrock) Each horizon is composed of different rock, minerals and vegetation combinations Soil Profile. O horizon is the humus layer, with partially decomposed organic matter A horizon is the topsoil, which is dark and rich B horizon is the subsoil, many minerals are built up in it C horizon is unfertile, with broken up rock fragments R horizon is unfertile, solid

bedrock Natural Vegetation Regions Natural vegetation: plants that grow without human interference 3 main types in Canada : tundra (lichens and mosses) forest (trees) grassland Natural Regions 7 natural regions (which gradually change one into the next through transition zones)

Tundra Boreal & Taiga Forest Mixed Forest Deciduous Forest Grassland; Short and Long Grassland/ Parkland Cordilleran Vegetation West Coast Forest. Each Natural vegetation regions has unique vegetation

characteristics that usually can be connected to regions climate. Vegetation Region Climate Summer/ Winter Soils Natural Vegetation Tundra cold, dry, ( very little

precipitation) more precipitation short summer short growing season Longer growing season thin soil, permafrost shrubs, mosses, lichens, small flowers

Leeching, shallow humus, grey, acidic soil Humus creates deep grey-brown topsoil rich in minerals, little leeching, good for farming More humus, dark brown, leeching, most fertile in eastern Limited humus, (long-grass prairie

has more humus = best in ) calcification Range of soils Largest vegetation region Coniferous trees Humus, leeching Lush forests Boreal and Taiga Mixed

Harsh climate Warm summers, lots of precipitation cool winters Deciduous lots of precipitation Long hot summers, mild winters, Grassland - short - long - parkland Dry, warm

Little rainfall Hot summers, cold winters Cordilleran Vegetation Wide range of temperature and rain fall Warm-cool summers, cold winters

West Coast Mild climate, heavy rain fall Warm dry summers, mild wet winters Deciduous and coniferous trees, shrubs hardwood trees, some deciduous forest

A few trees, many grasses, cactus, varies

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