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Examples of mineral riches in the soil are Potassium, Iron, Magnesium, Sulphur and Calcium.

Soil minerals are the important substances found in soil which are basically produced as a result of the breakdown of large rocks. Examples of mineral riches in the soil are Potassium, Iron, Magnesium, Sulphur and Calcium. The mineral soil is very supportive for the plant growth. The thin layer consisting of loose material that covers the Earth’s surface is called Soil. It is composed of both organic and inorganic materials, and its formation is a lengthy process that takes upto a thousand years. Soil is formed with the help of rocks when they break into small pieces and mix with organic matter. The process is known as weathering. Thus, soil is a mixture of various substances and particles, it is the mixture of rocks minerals and soil. Besides minerals, soil consists of humus, living organisms, water and air. The organic substances formed after the decomposition of dead and decayed plants and animals is called humus. It makes the soil highly fertile. Many living organisms including microbes, worms, bacteria and fungi can be found in the soil that participate in generating the soil humus. Soil gets plenty of water through rain and underground water and also has aeration allowing living organisms to grow and function well inside the soil. Water and air in the soil are also very helpful for photosynthesis in the plants. (image will be uploaded soon)

The largest component in the soil are minerals and it makes upto 40-45 percent of the total components. The types of soil minerals are divided into two categories, which are as follows:

Soil plays an important role in various functions including food and other biomass production, biological habitat, gene pool, environmental interaction, physical and cultural heritage, and acts as a platform for man-made structures. The soil forming rocks and minerals are very helpful for the plant growth as it’s a great assistance to the plant life. A number of minerals are absorbed from the soil via the roots of the trees and plants. Most of the important minerals are magnesium and nitrate where the former helps in the production of chlorophyll allowing photosynthesis and the latter mineral is the major source of amino acids required to synthesise proteins. Absence of these essential minerals will lead to stunted plant growth.

Its formation involves breakdown of rocks in the rock cycle. Soil being a mixture of geological and organic materials, it is highly beneficial for the growth of plants. In contrast, sand is purely rocky material devoid of living organisms and therefore, sand is not great for the plant growth. Mixing manures, fertilizers or compost to the sand can turn into soil. Soil has therefore two parts, rocky materials and organic matter. Soil has a life cycle of its own.

Soil forming minerals are the major components of soil and mostly found are Sodium, Potassium and Nitrogen. Some of the other minerals of soil are as follows:

Ans. Laterite soil consists mainly of zircon, quartz, and oxides of titanium, tin, iron, aluminium and manganese, which remain during the course of weathering. Quartz is the most abundant mineral from the parent rock. The presence of laterites vary significantly according to their climate, location and depth.

Ans. The minerals found in the black soil includes Iron, Aluminium and Magnesium. Black soil is deficient in Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium and Humus. Black soil appears red in colour mainly due to its iron oxide content.

Ans. The minerals found in forest soil are organic, very acidic and have limited chemical fertility. Its texture may range from fine loams, to coarse gravels to silts, with sandy loams and sands.

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