Water Absorption in Soil

Soil and its Formation

The definition of soil is something we are all well familiar with. Soil varies according to its structure and composition. Generally, it can be defined as the material found on the surface of the earth that is composed of organic and inorganic material. We have various soil types like clay, loam, silt, sand, etc. Soil is made up of fine rock particulate of various sizes. These are derived from the weathered igneous and sedimentary rocks after environmental factors like heat, wind, rain, cold, etc. have acted upon the rock particles. This caused them to break down to smaller particles which on accumulation in shallow or flat surfaces eventually come to constitute the soil. Soil formation has been going on in this planet for a very long time, about billions of years ago. It happens to be a process that will continue as long as this planet exists.

Water Absorption in Soil

Take the sandy soil of extremely small sized rocks which is known for aeration but not for water retention. On the other hand, clay soils have colloidal particles that can hold water but are very poor in aeration. Rock particles of big sizes do not hold any water between them. In fact, any such soil consisting of rock particles which do not hold water in between them is not good for the development of root system. This is because water the holding capacity of the soil is abysmal. However, if you are wondering which type of soil retains maximum amount of water then the soil is loam. Loam provides good aeration and proper capillary spaces to hold water. It has the mixture of clay, sand and decomposed organic material called humus. Thus, this soil is considered to be the best soil for the growth of plants since it has good water holding capacity. A lot of other factors like infiltration rate, permeability , percolation etc. affect the water absorption of soil too.

Practise This Question

Percolation rate and moisture absorption percentage describe similar quantities. Say true or false.