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This article in SSSAJ

  1. Vol. 52 No. 3, p. 753-758
    Received: June 16, 1987

    * Corresponding author(s):
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Basal Mixing Zones in Loesses of Louisiana and Idaho: I. Identification and Characterization

  1. B. A. Schumacher ,
  2. G. C. Lewis,
  3. B. J. Miller and
  4. W. J. Day
  1. Lockheed EMSCO, 1050 E. Flamingo Road, Las Vegas, NV, 89119
    Plant, Soil, and Entomological Sci., Univ. Idaho, Moscow, ID, 83843
    Agronomy Dep., Louisiana State Univ., Baton Rouge, LA, 70803



The thickness and character of basal mixing zones in loess with different underlying materials and in different climates were studied in Louisiana and Idaho. Peoria loess in Louisiana is underlain by sandy braided stream deposits, clayey alluvium, and an older Sicily Island loess. In Idaho, materials underlying loess deposits include glacial till, basalt, Pliocene sediments, and a paleosol developed in loess. Multiple criteria, divided into primary and secondary indicators, were used in the identification of basal mixing zones. The primary indicators of basal mixing zones were field morphology and particle-size distribution. Secondary indicators include total elemental analyses, clay mineralogy, CaCO3 equivalence, exchangeable cations and soil reaction listed in order of decreasing sensitivity. In Louisiana, basal mixed zones varied in thickness from 61 to 124 cm while in Idaho, basal mixed zones were between 8 and 40 cm thick.

Approved for publication by the director of the Louisiana Agric. Exp. Stn. as manuscript number 87-09-1159. Contribution of the Agronomy Dep., Louisiana Agric. Exp. Stn., Louisiana State Univ. Agric. Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70803.

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