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close this bookBetter Farming Series 04 - The Soil: How the Soil is Made up (FAO - INADES, 1976, 37 p.)
close this folderDifferent kinds of land
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentThe soil
View the documentThe subsoil
View the documentThe parent rock
View the documentExamples of different soils

The soil

Let's take a look at the hole we dug.
The earth where we find roots is the soil.
The soil has several parts.

· On the surface is the cultivated soil.

This first layer is what we work; we turn it over with a hoe or a plough; we pile it up in mounds or ridges.

In this layer you find living roots, for example, creeping roots (see Booklet No. 1) or fibrous roots (see Booklet No. 1). This is where they find their food. You also see dead roots and rotting leaves and stems.

The more this layer is deep and rich, the more fertile the soil is and the finer the plants are.

· Below this layer is the vegetable soil.

It is often lighter in colour and contains more sand.
Tap-roots go through this layer when it is not too deep (see Booklet No. 1, page 23).
There are often little pebbles below this layer.