Agronomy and Horticulture Department



Soil Genesis and Development, Scenario 1 - Agroecosystem Soil, Food and Fiber

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Plant and Soil Sciences eLibrary (PASSeL) Lesson


Copyright © 2006 Plant and Soil Sciences eLibrary. Used by permission.

This lesson was developed by Martha Mamo, Timothy Kettler, and Dennis McCallister at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln; Jim Ippolito at Colorado State University; Ron Reuter at Oregon State University; Christoph Geiss at Trinity College-Connecticut; and William Zanner at the University of Minnesota. Development of this lesson was supported by the National Science Foundation Course, Curriculum, and Laboratory Improvement Program (NSF-CCLI), Award Number DUE-0042603. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of NSF.


This case study addresses how soil formed in different geographical locations of the world influences food and fiber production.


  1. Define physical, chemical, and biological weathering processes.
  2. Identify the factors of soil formation.
  3. Describe how soil forming factors may interact to produce different soils.
  4. Identify and describe the main soil horizons.
  5. Use a map to identify the soil order at a particular geographic location.
  6. Given the soil order at a specific geographic location, identify the soil forming factors that influenced soil formation.