Soil Forming (Pedogenic) Processes
The physical and chemical properties of a soil are determined by the soil forming process under which they form. Though all soils are created by the various horizon development processes of additions, transformations, translocation and removals, it is the soil forming or, pedogenic processes that determines the kind of soil that is ultimately formed.
This ultisol displays the
typical features of a soil having undergone laterization
The deep red to bright orange-red soils of the tropics are a product of laterization.
Laterization occurs in the hot, rainy tropics where chemical weathering proceeds at a
rapid rate. Soils subject to laterization tend toward the acidic and lack much organic matter as
decomposition and leaching is extreme. Exposure of the soil to the hot tropic sun by
deforestation bakes the soil dry, reducing infiltration, increasing runoff, and reducing
Figure 11.16 Mollisol soil enriched with calcium carbonate
Calcification occurs in warm, semi-arid environments, usually under grassland vegetation. Soil tends to be rich in organic matter and high in soluble bases. The B horizon of the soil is enriched with calcium carbonate precipitated from water moving downward through the soil, or upward by capillary action of water from below.
For Citation: Ritter, Michael E.
The Physical Environment: an Introduction to Physical Geography.
2006. Date visited. ../title_page.html
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