This Ferrosol soil, derived from weathered basalt, is described as one of the best soils at Tocal as it supports a perennial native pasture that has never been fertilised.
Ferrosols have an obvious change from A to B to C horizons and have a high content of free iron in the B2 horizon.
The good physical properties, shown by the well structured surface soil that allows excellent moisture penetration, and the good drainage throughout the profile, are due to iron oxides binding the clay particles into stable aggregates. Unfortunately this type of soil only occurs in a very small corner of the property.
This soil occurs in an area of Tocal that is too steep for cultivation but it has high inherent fertility, maintaining good native pasture.
- 0cm: A horizon Dark brown light clay with a trace of gravel. Hard surface soil, topsoil has fine crumb structure, roots common, drainage good, pH 4.7
- 20cm: B horizon Dark reddish brown light medium clay with some gravel. Band of strongly weathered rock at 31-48cm, note some roots but only to 50cm, pH 6.5
- 80cm: C horizon A dark reddish brown light clay with many yellow brown rock fragments. No plant roots, drainage good, pH 6.9
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