SHEILA TERRY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SHEILA TERRY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Soil analysis. Beaker containing a sample of soil in water to show the relative proportions by volume of sand, silt and clay. This method is used to determine the profile or type of a soil. The largest and heaviest particles sink to the bottom and the smallest and lightest remain on top. At the bottom are sand particles, above which are silt particles, and at the top are clay particles. This soil comprises about two-thirds sand and one-third silt and clay. It is classed as a sandy loam. Loamy soils are better for plant growth than sandy soils because they retain more water and nutrients.
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