Thursday, July 05, 2012

Soils of India

The Indian council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) has divided the soils of India into 8 major groups:
Alluvial Soils including the coastal and deltaic alluvium:
Agriculturally, these are the most important soils.
It covers 24% of the country’s total area. Mainly found in Central plains extending from Punjab to Assam; Eastern and Western Coastal plains and deltaic region.
Alluvial soil is transported or inter-zonal soil. It is divided into Khadar (newer) and Bhangar (older).
This soil is, however, deficient nitrogen and humus content; unsuitable for water retentive plantation e.g. cotton. Suitable for the cultivation of rice, wheat, sugar cane and vegetables.

Black cotton soils:
This is also called regur soil.
Main areas include Deccan Trap, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, U.P. and Rajasthan. Black Soils are usually deficient in nitrogien, phosphate and humus but rich in potash, lime, aluminium, calcium and manganesium. The soil is moisture retentative and it has a high degree of fertility.
It is suitable for the cultivation of cotton, cereals, oilseeds, tobacco, groundnut and citrus fruits.

Red Soils:
This type of soil occupies about 70% of the total area in Tamil Nadu, Chotanagarpur, a few parts of Andhra Pradesh and Orissa.
They comprise red looms and due to oxidation of ferro- magnesium these soils have developed in Peninsular India.
Red soils have a concentration of Iron, absence of lime, kankar, carbonates, humus, phosphoric acid and are neutral to acid reactions. Favourable for the cultivation of pulses and coarse grains.

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