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Soil Science Society of America Journal Abstract -

Multiple Working Hypothesis in Soil Genesis1


This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 29 No. 6, p. 717-724
    Received: Dec 9, 1964
    Accepted: Aug 4, 1965

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  1. R. W. Arnold2



Current theories of soil genesis emphasize variable rates of processes in the differentiation of soils, and include the implication that soils of similar morphology may have travelled different pathways. Multiple hypotheses, proposed as explanations of observed soil features, may be expressed as sequential models, each depicting an alternate mode of development.

The genesis of neo-skeletans in subsoils of some Udolls is examined in four models. Soil morphology, empirically related to different environmental conditions (state factors), is interpreted as the consequence of a combination of variable rate genetic processes. It is concluded that polygenesis is likely involved in the development, maintenance, and/or preservation of neo-skeletans in Udoll subsoils. Regardless of the genetic pathway, the resulting soils are believed to be youthful entities within a genetic spectrum whose striking morphological features have been dominantly influenced by translocations of inherited clay.

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