The following is a map unit description from the "Soil Survey of Norfolk and Suffolk Counties, Massachusetts (Peragallo, 1989)"
PbD-Paxton fine sandy loam, 15 to 25 percent slopes, extremely stony. This is a very deep, moderately steep, well drained soil on tops and sides of upland hills. The soil is in oval or irregularly shaped areas that range from 6 to 100 acres. Stones 10 to 24 inches in diameter cover 1 to 15 percent of the surface.
Typically, the surface layer is very dark brown fine sandy loam about 3 inches thick. The subsoil is about 24 inches thick. It is yellowish brown fine sandy loam in the upper part and brownish yellow gravelly fine sandy loam in the lower part. The substratum is extremely firm and brittle, grayish brown gravelly sandy loam to a depth of 60 inches or more. In sortie areas the soil has a redder hue throughout.
Included with these soils in mapping are small areas of Charlton soils and extremely stony Montauk soils in positions on the landscape similar to those of the Paxton soil. Also included are areas of soils that have a firm, loamy sand substratum. Included areas make up about 10 percent of the map unit.Soil properties:
Permeability: Moderate in the surface layer and the subsoil and slow or very slow in the substratum. Available water capacity: Moderate.
Soil reaction: Very strongly acid to moderately acid throughout.
Depth to bedrock: More than 60 inches.
Depth to the seasonal high water table: 1.5 to 2.5 feet.
Hydrologic group: C.
This soil is poorly suited to cultivated crops because of slope and stones on the surface. It is fairly suited to pasture. The main management concern is preventing overgrazing. Restricted grazing during wet periods helps to maintain plant densities and to reduce surface compaction. Large stones on the surface restrict the use of conventional farm equipment.
Potential productivity for northern red oak on this soil is moderate. Management concerns are slope and the hazard of erosion. Plant competition is moderate if conifers are grown. Constructing access roads and trails with grades between 2 and 10 percent and installing water bars help to control erosion. Minimizing soil disturbance and retaining the sponge-like mulch of leaves help to reduce runoff and to control erosion. Thinning crowded stands to accepted standard stocking levels allows more vigorous growth. In thinning operations it is important to remove diseased, poorly formed. and otherwise undesirable trees. Shelterwood cutting, seed-tree cutting, and clearcutting help to establish natural regeneration or to provide suitable planting sites. Removing or controlling competing vegetation allows best growth of newly established seedlings.
Slope and large stones and boulders are the main limitations to use of the soil as building sites. Extensive land shaping is needed, and large stones and boulders generally limit excavation operations. Designing buildings and lots to conform to the natural slope of the land helps to overcome the slope limitation and to control erosion in disturbed areas. Slope and the presence of large stones and boulders are the main limitations for road construction. Large amounts of cut and fill are generally needed. The large stones and boulders generally limit excavation operations.
Slope and slow or very slow permeability are limitations to use of the soil as sites for septic tank absorption fields. Permeability restricts the soil from readily absorbing effluent. Unless expensive and elaborate design is used, the effluent will surface. The large stones in the soil generally limit the installation of distribution lines. Soils that are better suited to use as septic tank absorption fields are generally nearby.
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