Soil Vocabulary Andrea Williams 3rd Grade Hillpoint Elementary School Soil! A natural resource found in our own backyard!! Soil is the loose material in which plants can grow in the upper layer of Earth. It is made up of rock, humus, air, and water. Soil is made up of 5 important components and has 3 layers! The 5 Components of Soil Read these with me! • Humus • Sand • Silt • Clay • Rock Humus This is decayed (rotten, rotting) plant and animal matter in the soil. It provides nutrients to the soil. **Do you remember where it can be found? ***How do you think humus is formed? Click on the mushroom to see the answer. Back Sand Sand is made up of small grains of weathered rock. DOES NOT hold water well! Few nutrients Silt Made up of very small pieces of broken rock. Sand > Silt > Clay Clay • Can be red or yellow! • Holds water well! • Contains nutrients! Back 3 Layers of Soil! Read these with me! • Topsoil • Subsoil • Bedrock Topsoil • This is the top layer. • It is where animals live and plants grow. • It is a mixture of humus and rock fragments. • It is the best layer for growing plants! Back Subsoil • Made up mostly of clay • Under the topsoil • Not as good for growing plants Bedrock This is the third and bottom layer of soil. It is under the subsoil. It is made up of weathered rock and solid rock. The worst part of soil for plant growth. Nutrients These are the materials that plants and animals need to grow. Do you remember where they can be found in soil? What layer? Check here Which components? Check here Weathering (breaks down) When rocks and other materials on the Earth’s surface are broken down into smaller pieces by weather, water, and living things. Beach in Corolla, N.C Weathering of the rocks and stumps in Corolla, N.C. Erosion (moves it) This is a force that gradually wears away soil and its nutrients. Can be caused by natural elements such as wind, water, and ice. This is because of the flow due to gravity. *Check out this experiment on erosion. Beach in Corolla, N.C Some more pictures of Erosion! Beach in Corolla, N.C. Beach in Corolla, N.C.