Soil Survey of Bristol County, Massachusetts


The following Map Unit Description is from the 1981 Soil Survey of Bristol County, NORTHERN Part. Please note: map unit symbols are DIFFERENT for Bristol North and Bristol South reports, do NOT use these descriptions for Bristol South.

AmA-Amostown fine sandy loam, 0 to 5 percent slopes. This soil is deep, nearly level and gently sloping, and moderately well drained. It is on terraces, outwash plains, and deltas. Slopes are smooth or very gently undulating and are generally 100 to 600 feet long. The mapped areas are irregular in shape and range from 5 to 20 acres in size.

Typically, the surface layer is very friable, dark yellowish brown fine sandy loam about 9 inches thick. The subsoil is fine sandy loam 15 inches thick. It is friable and yellowish brown in the upper 7 inches and firm and brownish yellow in the lower 8 inches. The substratum to a depth of 60 inches is firm, light gray very fine sandy loam. The lower part of the subsoil and the substratum have distinct and prominent mottles of yellowish red and strong brown.

Included with this soil in mapping are areas of Ninigret and Scio soils that are generally smaller than 3 acres in size. Included soils make up about 20 percent of the map unit.

Permeability is moderately rapid in the surface layer and subsoil, and moderate to slow in the substratum. Available water capacity is high. Reaction is strongly acid or medium acid above the substratum, and strongly acid to neutral in the substratum. A seasonal high water table is at a depth of between 12 and 30 inches for about 5 months during winter and early in spring.

This soil has good potential for farming, and most acre- age has been previously farmed. It has fair to poor potential for most urban use, and some acreage is used for homesites. The soil has poor potential for most sanitary waste disposal facilities. It has good potential for trees, and some cleared acreage has reverted to or has been planted in trees. It has good potential for openland and woodland wildlife habitat.

The soil is suited to crops, hay, and pasture. Good tilth is easily maintained in cultivated areas. The seasonal high water table is the major concern of management. The hazard of erosion is slight on nearly level soil and moderate on gently sloping soil. Conservation management includes controlling erosion, improving tilth, increasing organic-matter content, and installing subsurface drains where needed. If this soil is farmed, the use of minimum tillage, cover crops, and grasses and legumes in the cropping system help to reduce runoff and control erosion. Mixing crop residue and animal manure into the plow layer helps to improve tilth and increase the organic-matter content. Proper stocking rates, deferred grazing, and pasture rotation are management practices that help to maintain desirable pasture plants.

The soil has few limitations for trees, but only a small acreage is in woods. Productivity is high. Important tree species are eastern white pine, red oak, and white ash.

The soil has limitations for most urban uses because of susceptibility to frost action and the seasonal high water table. The seasonal high water table and slow permeability are limitations for most sanitary waste disposal facilities. Capability subclass IIw.

Amostown Official Series Description

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