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Sandy Clay Loam, Loam and Silt Loam Soils

Appearance of sandy clay, loam, and silt loam soils at various soil moisture conditions

Available Water Capacity = 1.5 to 2.1 inches per foot

Percent Available: Currently available soil moisture as a percent of available water capacity.
Inches per Foot Depleted: Inches of water currently needed to refill a foot of soil to field capacity.

0 to 25 percent available 2.1 to 1.1 inches per foot depleted

Dry, soil aggregations break away easily, no staining on fingers, clods crumble with applied pressure. (Not pictured)

25 to 50 percent available 1.6 to 0.8 inches per foot depletedPicture of soil sample after squeezing in the hand, description as follows:

Slightly moist, forms a weak ball with rough surfaces, no water staining on fingers, few aggregated soil grains break away.

 

 


50 to 75 percent available 1.1 to 0.4 inches per foot depletedPicture of soil sample after squeezing in the hand, description as follows:

Moist, forms a ball, very light staining on fingers, darkened color, pliable, forms a weak ribbon between the thumb and forefinger.

 

 


75 to 100 percent available 0.5 to 0.0 inches per foot depletedPicture of soil sample after squeezing in the hand, description as follows:

Wet, forms a ball with well-defined finger marks, light to heavy soil/water coating on fingers, ribbons between thumb and forefinger.

 

 


100 percent available 0.0 inches per foot depleted (field capacity)

Wet, forms a soft ball, free water appears briefly on soil surface after squeezing or shaking, medium to heavy soil/water coating on fingers. (Not pictured)