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Missouri Soils: The Facts

Soils are not all the same.

Like snow flakes, no two are exactly the same.  Each different kind of soil is called a series.  These series are named for towns or local landmarks.  For example, Mexico soils are named for the town of the same name located in north-central Missouri.  More than 10,000 soil series have been named and described in the United States, and more are being defined each year.  There are about 500 of these soil series in Missouri.

Much of our life's activities and pursuits are related to and influenced by the soil beneath our houses, roads, septic and sewer systems, airports, parks, recreation sites, farms, forests, schools and shopping centers.  What is put on the land should be guided by the soil that is beneath it.

Soil information can help you!

One reference available to help land users determine the potentials and limitations of soils is a soil map and corresponding interpretations.  This information is available from the Natural Resources Conservation Service at the Web Soil Survey

The information available was prepared by soil scientists, who determine the properties of the soil, and predict soil behavior for a host of uses.  These predictions, often called soil interpretations, are developed to help users of soils manage the resource.