It can take more than 1000 years to form a centimeter of topsoil.

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The International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) is the global union of soil scientists. The objectives of the IUSS are to promote all branches of soil science, and to support all soil scientists across the world in the pursuit of their activities. This website provides information for IUSS members and those interested in soil science.

IUSS Alert - 20 (December 2006)

Information for and from the global soil science community


Almost 1.5 million (English) articles are now available on Wikipedia (the web based free encyclopedia) and many more in dozens of other languages. There is a reasonable amount of soil information on Wikipedia that is freely available but many branches are absent. There is a Wikiproject on soil and join this group to assure that soils are well-represented in the global knowledge tap as Wikipedia is now the first stop for many people in their search for information on science topics. Although anyone can edit any article, its accuracy on science topics is surprisingly high (Nature 5 October 2006). There are other initiatives underway that give more credit to authors like Citizendium

Glossaries & Dictionaries

The American Geological Institute's geoscience resource publication is now available online. Available for both individual and institutional licensing, the "Online Glossary" is searchable using terms, words within terms or definitions, and categories. The "Online Glossary" offers all of the terms included in the latest print edition of the "Glossary" plus over 1,000 updates that have been made since the publication of the print edition in 2005. The "Online Glossary" includes several enhancements over the print edition. Images are displayed for rocks, minerals, fossils and landforms. Most of the glossary terms are also available in Spanish. To learn more about the "Online Glossary of Geology", access to a free 30-day trial, and licensing information, click here

There are also various soil science glossaries and dictionaries online (and for free):

Glossary of soil science terms SSSA

Canadian Soil Information Systems glossary

Soil and mineralogy glossary

Soil tectonics glossary

DPI Australia glossary

Soil and land evaluation glossary

Acid sulfate soils glossary glossary

Hydropedology newsletter (and others)

The Newsletter of the Hydropedology Working Group is available on the IUSS Website. This Newsletter full with news skilfully compiled by Dr Henry Lin is a must read for anyone interested in hydrology and pedology.  There are also other newsletters available on the IUSS website, like those of: Commission for History, Philosophy and Sociology of Soil Science, Commission Pedometrics and Commission on Paleopedology 

European Soil Database - freely available

The publication European Soil Database v2 Raster version - 1km x 1km (which contains a 1 km raster version of the vector based soil geometry of the European Soil Database) and European Soil Database v2 Raster Library -1km x 1km (which is a collection of prepared raster data files for most attributes of the SGDBE and PTRDB databases of the European Soil Database v2) are available.  The European Soil Bureau Network decided that the vector versions of both the European Soil Database (ESDB) v1.0 and v2.0 could is now publicly and freely available. To register for access to and download of the data, please consult

(Advertisement - product focus)

Eijkelkamp's ergonomical hand auger set

The ergonomic hand auger set is used to carry out manual drilling and sampling in a great variety of different soils in an ergonomically sound way. It is particularly suitable for general soil investigation as well as taking samples for such activities as environmental research. It can carry out drillings to a depth of 5 m, depending on the depth of the groundwater, the build-up of the soil and the nature of the material to be drilled into. Extensions of 50 cm can be added to the soil drilling system.

For more information click here 

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