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Helen's journal and online home
In which an old dog attempts to learn new tricks.
Dawn chorus and investigating soils
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heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: February 22nd, 2017 03:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
That soil separation was very easy to do. Just put a sample of the soil into a cylindrical jar. Around 1/3rd full is about right. Fill the jar with water and add a generous squirt of detergent. Washing up liquid is fine. Shake for a couple of minutes, then leave to settle. The sand should drop to the bottom after about 1 minute, but to get the fine clay to settle, you need to leave it for 48 hours. By measuring the thickness of the layers, you can work out the percentages of each component. It was interesting so see the difference between the two samples which were taken only a matter of a couple of metres (say 7-8 feet) apart horizontally. But there is a drop from one level to another of about 1.5 metres (say 4 or 5 feet). So the one with more clay gets flooded several times a year while the other part of the garden is above the flood level.

The other experiments involved working out moisture and air content.

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