Authored by: Paul A. McDaniel , David J. Lowe , Olafur Arnalds , Chien-Lu Ping

Handbook of Soil Sciences Properties and Processes

Print publication date:  November  2011
Online publication date:  November  2011

Print ISBN: 9781439803059
eBook ISBN: 9781439803066
Adobe ISBN:


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Andisols are soils that typically form in loose volcanic ejecta (tephra) such as volcanic ash, cinders, or pumice. They are characterized by andic properties that include physical, chemical, and mineralogical properties that are fundamentally different from those of soils of other orders. These differences resulted in a proposal to recognize these soils at the highest level in the USDA soil classification system (Smith, 1978). In 1990, Andisols were added to Soil Taxonomy as the 11th soil order (Soil Survey Staff, 1990; Parfitt and Clayden, 1991). A very similar taxonomic grouping, Andosols, is 1 of the 32 soil reference groups recognized in the World Reference Base for Soil Resources (IUSS Working Group WRB, 2006). Andisols(and Andosols) are classified on the basis of selected chemical, physical, and mineralogical properties acquired through weathering and not on parent material alone. Both soil names relate to two Japanese words, anshokudo meaning “dark colored soil” (an, dark; shoku, color or tint; do, soil) and ando meaning “dark soil.” Ando was adopted into western soil science literature in 1947 (Simonson, 1979).

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