Soil Biology is Essential for the Landscape to Function – Part 2

National Mall Soil in Washington, DC image: Barrett Kays
National Mall Soil in Washington, DC
image: Barrett Kays

In Soil Biology – Part 1, I discussed how to manage soil biology across a landscape to promote denitrification to reduce the amount of nitrogen in stormwater or groundwater.  In Part 2, I will discuss how soil biology and soil wetness cause changes in the colors of the soil profile.

Why are these color features important to landscape architects?  If you want to design planting or restoration plans that are in harmony with nature and produce the results you want, you need to understand the spatial pattern of soil wetness across a landscape.  You can do this by viewing the color features in the soils.  In addition to the spatial pattern, it allows you to know the rise and fall of a shallow water table under your site.

Continue reading