Authored by: C.T. Hallmark , D.P. Franzmeier

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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The central concept of Alfisols embraces soils of the semiarid to humid climates with light-colored surfaces and subsoils moderately rich in basic cations, formed, at least in part, by movement of clay from overlying horizons into the subsoil. Most Alfisols developed under deciduous forest vegetation in humid climates and grass or savannah vegetation in drier regimes. In loamy and silty Alfisols of the humid regions, fragipans are not uncommon; in drier climates, incomplete leaching of salts and carbonates can result in concentrations of secondary carbonates, gypsum, amorphous silica, or enrichment of exchangeable Na. As the processes of formation of Alfisols require both time and energy, most are found on geomorphic surfaces that are of Pleistocene age or older. They form on a wide variety of parent materials.

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