nrcs.usda.gov

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Definitions (111)

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tilth


The overall physical character of soil with regard to its suitability for crop production.
Source: nrcs.usda.gov

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water holding capacity


The amount of water that can be held in soil against the pull of gravity.
Source: nrcs.usda.gov

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fungi


Multi-celled, non-photosynthetic organisms that are neither plants nor animals. Fungal cells form long chains called hyphae and may form fruiting bodies such as mold or mushrooms to disperse spores. Some fungi such as yeast are single-celled.
Source: nrcs.usda.gov

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soil health terms


(including soil properties, soil health indicators, and assessment terminology) Soil Ecology Terms (including soil organisms, biological processes, and ecology terminology) The Soil Science Society of America, Madison WI maintains an Internet Glossary of Soil Science Terms.  Soil Health Terms aggregate stability The abil [..]
Source: nrcs.usda.gov

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amoozemeter


A tool that uses a constant head of water to measure the rate of water movement in a saturated soil, and thus estimates saturated hydraulic conductivity.
Source: nrcs.usda.gov

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anthropogenic


Generated by humans. Used to indicate soil conditions, disturbances, or stresses that are created by people.
Source: nrcs.usda.gov

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assessing soil health


Estimating the functional capacity of soil by comparing a soil to a standard such as an ecological site description, a similar soil under native vegetation, a reference soil condition, or quality criteria. The objective of the assessment dictates the standard to be used. (Compare to monitoring.)
Source: nrcs.usda.gov

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attributes of soil change


Quantifiable properties used to describe the nature of soil change, including drivers, types, rates, reversibility, and pathways of change.
Source: nrcs.usda.gov

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available water capacity


Loosely, the amount of water available for plants to use. Specifically, the volume of water released from soil between the time the soil is at field capacity (the maximum water held in soil against the pull of gravity) until the time it is at the wilting point (the amount of water held too tightly in soil for commonly grown crops to extract). Loamy [..]
Source: nrcs.usda.gov

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baseline


The initial soil condition before monitoring soil quality over time. Subsequent measurements on the same soil are compared to the baseline measurement.
Source: nrcs.usda.gov


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