AK Natural Resources
Updated: May 23rd, 2010 - 21:01:09
| State Soil of Alaska
By USDA - NRCA
Apr 20, 2008, 19:43 PST
The State Soil of Alaska
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Tanana Soil Profile (undisturbed with permafrost):
- Surface layer: dark brown organic material
- Subsurface layer: black mucky silt loam
- Subsoil - upper: olive brown silt loam
- Subsoil - lower: gray and olive brown very sandy loam
- Substratum: gray and olive brown permanently frozen silt loam and sandy loam
The Tanana series consists of a mantle of mixed
silty micaceous loess and alluvium overlying coarser
textured alluvium. Under climax native vegetation,
Tanana soils are poorly drained and contain
permafrost within 50 inches of the surface. If the
surface vegetation and organic mat is disturbed,
either through wildfi re or cultural activities such as
farming, the soil will warm and become well drained.
Tanana soils are on alluvial terraces. They support
a native plant community of aspen, paper birch,
white spruce, and black spruce. When cleared and
developed for agriculture, Tanana soils are used for
hay and pasture, small grains, and vegetables.
The Tanana series was established in the Yukon-
Tanana Area of Alaska in 1914. It was named after
the Tanana River, whose name in-turn was derived
from the Athabaskan word for “mountain river”.
Tanana soils are extensive throughout the lowland
areas of Interior Alaska. Tanana soils are important
agricultural soils in Alaska.
The mean annual precipitation is about 12 inches, and the mean annual temperature is about 26 degrees F.
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