Simple tests for the determination of soil texture and topsoil quality

A.1Soil texture assessed by handling properties
  1. Moisten 10–20 g (i.e. a dessert-spoonful) of soil and knead into a firm dough—sand will feel gritty, silt will feel soft and silky, clay will be stiff and tenaciously sticky.
  2. By trying to form shapes in the sequence 1–5 in Table A. 1 the shape achieved furthest down the list will indicate the soil texture class.
A.2Clay content assessed by the Adams and Stewart soil-binding test (ASSB or ‘motty test’)

Because of the risk of errors in preparation it is advisable always to include a standard soil with each batch of determinations.

1.Place on a saucer a golf-ball-size sample of soil roughly 50 g (2 oz) for a mineral ...

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