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Mention the forces of nature that affect the formation of soil.

Last updated date: 25th Jul 2024
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Hint: Soil is the thin layer of material covering the surface of the earth. It is made up mainly of
mineral particles
organic materials
living organisms

Complete answer:
Soil horizons are the layers in the soil as you move down the soil profile which sometimes are difficult to distinguish thus the soil profile may have soil horizons that are easy or difficult to distinguish. Most soils exhibit 3 main horizons named as:
• A horizon which is humus-rich topsoil where nutrient, organic matter and biological activity are highest therefore most plant roots, earthworms, insects and microorganisms are active there.
• B horizon which is clay-rich subsoil. This horizon is often less fertile than the topsoil but holds more moisture compared to top-soil. .
• C horizon formed by underlying weathered rock from which the A and B horizons form.

Soil forms continuously and slowly from the gradual breakdown of rocks through the process called weathering. It can be a physical, chemical or biological process: physical weathering means breakdown of rocks from the result of a mechanical action, chemical weathering means breakdown of rocks through a change in their chemical makeup this can happen when the minerals within rocks react with water, air and other chemicals and biological weathering means the breakdown of rocks by living things. Five main interacting factors affect the formation of the soil are:
• Parent material i.e minerals forming the basis of soil
• Living organisms that influences soil formation
• Changes in climate affecting the rate of weathering and organic decomposition
• Grade of slope affecting drainage, erosion and deposition called topography
•Time which influences soil properties.

Thus, the forces of nature that affect the formation of soil are changes in temperature, wind and running water.

Note: Most plants get their nutrients from the soil and plants are the main source of food for humans, animals and birds. Thus this implies most living things on land depend on soil for their existence.