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Old 01-12-2013, 09:09 AM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is online now
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Clay Platelets

The biggest problem with irrigation on soil health, is usually the problems with clay platelets...
Here is the best little introduction to Soil Structure I've ever come across...
Short, simple and yet very insightful...


http://soils.missouri.edu/tutorial/page9.asp
"... Air, water and plant roots can penetrate deeper in the soil; this can be important to plant survival during times of drought. The larger voids serve as short-term storage space for water, easily accessed by plants.

... Aggregation begins with flocculation of clay particles (platelets) into microscopic clumps called floccules; the cations that are caught between two platelets attract the negative charges on both platelets, binding them together.

... The polyvalent cations (including Ca2+, Fe3+ and Al3+) may also attract and bind with hydrophobic (water repelling) humus molecules allowing them to bind to clay surfaces. These clay-humus particles bind with each other and with grains of silt to form the smallest of the primary aggregates, perhaps as small as 0.01 mm. ...

Notice what they say here about the heaving/shrinking, wetting/drying and freeze/thaw...
"... As a soil dries out, the clay platelets move closer together and cause shrinking in soil volume. Cracks will form along tiny zones of weakness, and over the course of several wet/dry cycles this network of cracks becomes better defined. Plant roots, as they repeatedly remove water from the same vicinity, reinforce a drying pattern and contribute to physical aggregation of the soil. The process of freezing and thawing in the soil also contributes to the drying process as ice crystals form. And shrinking and swelling that results from wet-dry and freeze-thaw cycles creates tiny cracks or fissures (shrinking) and pressure (swelling) that break apart structureless masses of clay to eventually form soil peds or aggregates."
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Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
*
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  #2  
Old 01-12-2013, 09:28 AM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is online now
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This article also covers,,, Human Activity,,, and its sometimes positive and sometimes negative impact on soils:

"... Additions of fertilizer to agricultural land can have a positive effect on soil structure. By increasing plant growth and quality, roots help with stability of soil aggregates. Applications of liming material (high in calcium, a key player in flocculation) encourage better structure and tilth. Organic materials in the form of plant residue or animal manure quickly decompose and participate in the development of soil aggregates, and also provide favorable conditions for microorganisms. ...

"... Conservation tillage practices have greater benefits to the soil than conventional tillage. Under conservation practices, the need for tillage is minimized and plant residues are left on or near the soil surface. Conventional tillage requires more frequent tilling. A primary pass is made to turn plant residue several inches below the surface. This is followed by secondary tillage operations such as harrowing, which kills weeds and breaks up clods prior to planting. After planting, the soil may again be tilled for weed control and to break up any crusting of the surface soil. These multiple passes can compact the soil and result in the formation of a “plow pan” and platy structure. The amount and size of pores will decrease in this zone with concomitant air and water movement. With decreased rates of infiltration, surface runoff and soil erosion become issues. Plant roots have greater difficulty penetrating the platy structure and compacted soil, and limited rooting depth can affect plant survival. ...

An important point of destruction of soil structure is understanding the last sentence in the paragraph:

"... Irrigation, if not properly applied, can compound this problem by breaking up aggregates, increasing sodium content, and leaching clay. "
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Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
*
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  #3  
Old 01-12-2013, 09:48 AM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is online now
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"... Many types or shapes of structure occur in soils. Other soils have no true structure and are called structureless. Certain deposits, for example sands in a sand dune, are called single grain because there is little to no attraction between sand grains. On the other textural extreme, some clay soils occur as large cohesive masses and are termed massive in structure. Many soils, however, will exhibit definite and repeatable shapes that we can describe with four general categories."
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Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
*
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  #4  
Old 01-14-2013, 12:47 PM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is online now
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Based on the idea of excellent lawn care, or bedcare for that matter,,, I expect there is a way of doing things better than the way it is being done now...
I find Strong Granular Structures under mulch in the flower beds and I find moderate granular structures in a moist but not over watered lawn when I look under the lawn debris...
I find Platy structures of bare dirt lawns that recieve irrigation that appears to be in excess...
My point to all of this is to help LCOs, interestted in excellent lawns to achieve the excellent soil necessaryto get there...

Enjoy...
"... Grade describes the distinctness of the structure, and is combined with the cohesion of the soil within units compared to the adhesion between individual units. Terms that are used for grade are weak, moderate and strong.

If the structural grade is weak, aggregates are barely observable in the soil profile.

With moderate grade the structural units are well formed and easily distinguished in the soil profile. When disturbed, the aggregates part into a mixture of mostly whole units, some broken units, and some material that is not in structural units. Individual peds will part from adjoining peds somewhat cleanly.

When grade is described as strong the structural units are clearly seen in the profile and shape is easily identified. Peds separate cleanly from other peds and retain their shape when disturbed by shaking. ..."
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Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
*
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  #5  
Old 01-20-2013, 01:03 PM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is online now
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"Soil structure is the second most influential characteristic, after texture, in determining the behavior or any given soil. Soils with similar characteristics (vegetation, climate, texture, and depth) but different structure will react differently under similar conditions. Structure influences water infiltration, building site development and growth of plants. When combined with soil texture, structure influences the distribution of soil solids and pore space (called the soil bulk density). ..."

Vegetation, climate, texture, and depth may all be things that are equal,,, but becuz the "Structure" is different, that makes EVERYTHING different...

Funny how that is NOT important on a Professional Lawn/Landscaping Forum... We can't understand why we have some of the problems we have for that very reason... we can't discuss microbials or soil health, intelligently for that very reason... One thing we do very well however, is condescend to someone we don't like and express how dismayed we are that he/she is so unable to understand... or just call them ignorant...

I'm not talking down to anyone,,, just curious if soil structure matters to anyone one this forum...
WHY? ...or... WHY NOT???
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Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
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  #6  
Old 01-20-2013, 01:43 PM
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phasthound phasthound is offline
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Managing soil microbiology populations is critical to enhancing soil structures, nutrient cycling, and defending against diseases.
Read this introductory publication:
http://soils.usda.gov/sqi/concepts/s..._food_web.html
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  #7  
Old 01-22-2013, 10:35 AM
Skipster Skipster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phasthound View Post
Managing soil microbiology populations is critical to enhancing soil structures, nutrient cycling, and defending against diseases.
Read this introductory publication:
http://soils.usda.gov/sqi/concepts/s..._food_web.html
How do you propose managing soil microbiology populations? Your link doesn't provide any insight that is different from what we've discussed previously. SmallAxe might say, "Now that we know the WHY, we need to know HOW to manage these populations.

Your link backs up the uniersity links we've looked at before -- it tells us that microbes are their most active in healthy and robust plant systems. This link supports the conventional management view over the "feed the microbes" view.
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  #8  
Old 01-24-2013, 05:03 PM
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kennc38 kennc38 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
This was a very simple and succinct description of soil texture and how soil is built from molecules to visible granular structures... but one guy has a different article to post, rather than intelligently engage in discussion to help 'understanding' of the material presented... another guy diverts discussion in another direction about the article relating to agriculture... soil texture is soil texture and soil structure is soil structure, whether it is ag. or lawn, but being condescending and insulting seems to be the most important theme of the thread... now there is some nonsensical childish arguement going on,,, that no one cares about...

However, overall the mission of killing the thread was accomplished... the next time a question could've been answered by looking at the soil, it will be ignored, becuz there is still no concept of why the soil is important... the answer may be cinch bugs...
No offense Smalls, but once again the question, point or whatever else you were trying to make was not "succinct" and was not about "soil texture", but about "soil structure". If you want a simple, straightforward discussion on a topic, then I would suggest presenting the question and/or material in the same manner. I quote your "succinct" introduction before anybody else even commented:


Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
The biggest problem with irrigation on soil health, is usually the problems with clay platelets...
Here is the best little introduction to Soil Structure I've ever come across...
Short, simple and yet very insightful...


http://soils.missouri.edu/tutorial/page9.asp
"... Air, water and plant roots can penetrate deeper in the soil; this can be important to plant survival during times of drought. The larger voids serve as short-term storage space for water, easily accessed by plants.

... Aggregation begins with flocculation of clay particles (platelets) into microscopic clumps called floccules; the cations that are caught between two platelets attract the negative charges on both platelets, binding them together.

... The polyvalent cations (including Ca2+, Fe3+ and Al3+) may also attract and bind with hydrophobic (water repelling) humus molecules allowing them to bind to clay surfaces. These clay-humus particles bind with each other and with grains of silt to form the smallest of the primary aggregates, perhaps as small as 0.01 mm. ...

Notice what they say here about the heaving/shrinking, wetting/drying and freeze/thaw...
"... As a soil dries out, the clay platelets move closer together and cause shrinking in soil volume. Cracks will form along tiny zones of weakness, and over the course of several wet/dry cycles this network of cracks becomes better defined. Plant roots, as they repeatedly remove water from the same vicinity, reinforce a drying pattern and contribute to physical aggregation of the soil. The process of freezing and thawing in the soil also contributes to the drying process as ice crystals form. And shrinking and swelling that results from wet-dry and freeze-thaw cycles creates tiny cracks or fissures (shrinking) and pressure (swelling) that break apart structureless masses of clay to eventually form soil peds or aggregates."
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
This article also covers,,, Human Activity,,, and its sometimes positive and sometimes negative impact on soils:

"... Additions of fertilizer to agricultural land can have a positive effect on soil structure. By increasing plant growth and quality, roots help with stability of soil aggregates. Applications of liming material (high in calcium, a key player in flocculation) encourage better structure and tilth. Organic materials in the form of plant residue or animal manure quickly decompose and participate in the development of soil aggregates, and also provide favorable conditions for microorganisms. ...

"... Conservation tillage practices have greater benefits to the soil than conventional tillage. Under conservation practices, the need for tillage is minimized and plant residues are left on or near the soil surface. Conventional tillage requires more frequent tilling. A primary pass is made to turn plant residue several inches below the surface. This is followed by secondary tillage operations such as harrowing, which kills weeds and breaks up clods prior to planting. After planting, the soil may again be tilled for weed control and to break up any crusting of the surface soil. These multiple passes can compact the soil and result in the formation of a “plow pan” and platy structure. The amount and size of pores will decrease in this zone with concomitant air and water movement. With decreased rates of infiltration, surface runoff and soil erosion become issues. Plant roots have greater difficulty penetrating the platy structure and compacted soil, and limited rooting depth can affect plant survival. ...

An important point of destruction of soil structure is understanding the last sentence in the paragraph:

"... Irrigation, if not properly applied, can compound this problem by breaking up aggregates, increasing sodium content, and leaching clay. "
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
"... Many types or shapes of structure occur in soils. Other soils have no true structure and are called structureless. Certain deposits, for example sands in a sand dune, are called single grain because there is little to no attraction between sand grains. On the other textural extreme, some clay soils occur as large cohesive masses and are termed massive in structure. Many soils, however, will exhibit definite and repeatable shapes that we can describe with four general categories."
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
Based on the idea of excellent lawn care, or bedcare for that matter,,, I expect there is a way of doing things better than the way it is being done now...
I find Strong Granular Structures under mulch in the flower beds and I find moderate granular structures in a moist but not over watered lawn when I look under the lawn debris...
I find Platy structures of bare dirt lawns that recieve irrigation that appears to be in excess...
My point to all of this is to help LCOs, interestted in excellent lawns to achieve the excellent soil necessaryto get there...

Enjoy...
"... Grade describes the distinctness of the structure, and is combined with the cohesion of the soil within units compared to the adhesion between individual units. Terms that are used for grade are weak, moderate and strong.

If the structural grade is weak, aggregates are barely observable in the soil profile.

With moderate grade the structural units are well formed and easily distinguished in the soil profile. When disturbed, the aggregates part into a mixture of mostly whole units, some broken units, and some material that is not in structural units. Individual peds will part from adjoining peds somewhat cleanly.

When grade is described as strong the structural units are clearly seen in the profile and shape is easily identified. Peds separate cleanly from other peds and retain their shape when disturbed by shaking. ..."
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
"Soil structure is the second most influential characteristic, after texture, in determining the behavior or any given soil. Soils with similar characteristics (vegetation, climate, texture, and depth) but different structure will react differently under similar conditions. Structure influences water infiltration, building site development and growth of plants. When combined with soil texture, structure influences the distribution of soil solids and pore space (called the soil bulk density). ..."

Vegetation, climate, texture, and depth may all be things that are equal,,, but becuz the "Structure" is different, that makes EVERYTHING different...

Funny how that is NOT important on a Professional Lawn/Landscaping Forum... We can't understand why we have some of the problems we have for that very reason... we can't discuss microbials or soil health, intelligently for that very reason... One thing we do very well however, is condescend to someone we don't like and express how dismayed we are that he/she is so unable to understand... or just call them ignorant...

I'm not talking down to anyone,,, just curious if soil structure matters to anyone one this forum...
WHY? ...or... WHY NOT???
Again, not a "succinct" question. You opened yourself up to opinion and not factual evidence.
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  #9  
Old 01-25-2013, 06:55 AM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kennc38 View Post
No offense Smalls, but once again the question, point or whatever else you were trying to make was not "succinct" and was not about "soil texture", but about "soil structure". If you want a simple, straightforward discussion on a topic, then I would suggest presenting the question and/or material in the same manner. I quote your "succinct" introduction before anybody else even commented...Again, not a "succinct" question. You opened yourself up to opinion and not factual evidence.
I didn't have any questions about the article, but I found it informative and easy to understand so I knew it would be useful as information... Mr. 'A' posted 3 more 'urls' and didn't even put out relevant inserts that might be interesting... Mr. 'B' come in with snotty comments in every sentence becuz soil structure and even texture in this article doesn't apply to lawns becuz it was written by agri-science...
I didn't really expect any commentary for the post but rather put it out there so that LCOs could understand that physically handling and observing the soil, IS a useful thing to do... a diagnostic tool that would elevate conversation beyond the meaningless chatter of the past couple of days... I find that those who mock really can't grasp the full meaning of what is being presented and rather than have discussion that might help them understand they go off on personal attacks...
If you want to join forces with the mockers to attack me, don't waste your time,becuz the information I presented is the brainchild of a university, so go mock them... you're not interested and you believe that ALL lawn problems have NOTHING to do with soil texture or structure, then you go along at that level, but don't bother mocking me or information about soils... BTW the article also defined soil texture, just to be sure that everyone was on the same page... why did you miss that???
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Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
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  #10  
Old 01-25-2013, 07:43 AM
kennc38's Avatar
kennc38 kennc38 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
I didn't have any questions about the article, but I found it informative and easy to understand so I knew it would be useful as information... If you want to join forces with the mockers to attack me, don't waste your time,becuz the information I presented is the brainchild of a university, so go mock them...
First, you did post an open-ended question on your last post as shown below (see below), which probably explains why you received the posts you did and why everyone went in so many different directions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
[b][color="darkredI'm not talking down to anyone,,, just curious if soil structure matters to anyone one this forum...
WHY? ...or... WHY NOT???
Second, I am not mocking you. I simply poined to the fact that your initial post(s) were not succinct as you suggested and that whatever point you were trying to make was not exactly clear. Again, no offense, but you still haven't figured out how to effectively communicate your questions, your points, or whatever else you try to make on this forum and I have politely tried to communicate this to you in the past.

Third, I never commented on the technical content of the university studies or on your opinions on the topic(s), so please don't throw me into the group of people that are supposedly "mocking you".
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