Methods

By: Sarah Peot, Corrie Neuens, and Josh Lahner

Field

Eight sites for soil pit excavation were selected along representative hill slope positions, including representative slope aspects (S, W, and N facing), in attempt to capture the range of topographic variability of the study site. Soil pits were excavated by hand (to a depth of 152 cm or to bedrock). Soil profiles exposed in a wall from each pit were described using standard methods and nomenclature (Soil Survey Division Staff 1993, Schoeneberger et al. 1998). These standards methods include: initial division of the profile into horizontal layers based on visual inspection of observable characteristics (e.g., color, texture, structure), detailed description of each layer, and finally, interpretation of master horizons (and vertical subdivisions thereof).  Each profile was photographed and samples of all master horizons and subhorizons were collected. Approximately six ounces of soil was taken per sample from each master horizon and vertical subdivision. The samples were sent to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Department of Geography-Soils and Physical Geography Laboratory for analysis.  Specific land-use recommendations are based on interpretive and natural classification data provided in Wing (1975). 

Laboratory

Particle-size (fine Earth fraction, less than 2 mm mean diameter) and organic carbon content analysis was conducted on all samples collected in the field (methods modified from Singer and Janitsky 1986).  Sand, silt, and clay percent were determined using the hydrometer method.  Organic carbon content was determined using the Loss-on-Ignition method (~15 g/ sample, heated to 360C for 4 hours).

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