The following is a map unit description from the "Soil Survey of Barnstable County, Massachusetts (Fletcher, 1993)"

Enfield Profile

EnC-Enfield slit loam, 8 to 15 percent slopes.

This very deep, strongly sloping, well drained soil is on small hills and ridges on outwash plains and in areas of ice-contact deposits. It makes up about 0.3 percent (732 acres) of the survey area. It is mapped mainly in the Enfield-Merrimac-Carver general soil map unit. Areas are irregular in shape and range from 5 to 120 acres in size.

Typically, the surface is covered with an organic layer. This layer is about 1 inch of loose, undecomposed leaves and twigs and 1 inch of partly decomposed and well decomposed organic material. The surface layer is brown, very friable silt loam about 1 inch thick. The subsoil is about 30 inches thick. It grades from reddish brown and strong brown in the upper part to yellowish brown in the lower part. It is friable silt loam in the upper 28 inches and friable very fine sandy loam in the lower 2 inches. The substratum extends to a depth of 65 inches or more. It is yellowish brown, friable gravelly loamy coarse sand in the upper 2 inches and brownish yellow, light yellowish brown, and pale brown, loose, stratified sand and gravel in the lower part.

Included with this soil in mapping are small areas of Carver, Hinckley, Merrimac, and Plymouth soils. Also included are a few areas where slopes are less than 8 percent or more than 15 percent. Included soils make up about 30 percent of this unit.

Permeability is moderate in the subsoil of the Enfield soil and rapid or very rapid in the substratum. Available water capacity is moderate. Depth to the seasonal high water table is more than 6 feet.

Most areas are used as woodland. A few areas have been developed for homesites.

This soil is suited to cultivated crops. Good tilth can be easily maintained. Erosion is a management concern. Farming on the contour or across the slope, terracing, stripcropping, including grasses and legumes in the crop rotation, growing cover crops, and applying a system of conservation tillage help to control runoff and erosion. Mixing crop residue and manure into the surface layer helps to maintain good tilth and increases the organic matter content.

This soil is well suited to hay and pasture. The main management concern is the prevention of overgrazing, which reduces the hardiness and density of desirable plants. Proper stocking rates, timely grazing, and restricted use during wet periods help to maintain plant density and minimize surface compaction.

This soil is well suited to woodland. It is among the most productive soils in the survey area. No major hazards or limitations restrict woodland management. Removal or control of competing vegetation helps to obtain the best growth of newly established seedlings. The most common trees are white oak, eastern white pine, pitch pine, scarlet oak, and black oak.

The slope is a limitation if this soil is used as a site for buildings. Land shaping is generally needed. Buildings and lots should be designed so that they conform to the natural slope of the land. Erosion is a hazard during and after construction. Planting well suited grasses as soon as possible after the surface is disturbed minimizes the erosion hazard.

This soil is limited as a site for septic tank absorption fields because of the slope. The soil may not adequately filter the effluent. The poor filtering capacity may result in the pollution of ground water. The hazard of pollution increases with the density of housing. Installing the distribution lines on the contour or in areas that were graded during construction of the dwelling helps to overcome the slope. Precautionary measures may be necessary in some areas.

  • The capability subclass is llle.

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