LOCATION NICHOLSON KY+IN MO OH TN VAEstablished Series
TAXONOMIC CLASS: Fine-silty, mixed, active, mesic Oxyaquic Fragiudalfs
TYPICAL PEDON: Nicholson silt loam--cultivated. (Colors are for moist soils.)
Ap--0 to 8 inches; brown (10YR 4/3) silt loam; weak fine granular structure; very friable; many fine roots; slightly acid; clear smooth boundary. (5 to 10 inches thick)
Bt1--8 to 22 inches; brown (7.5YR 4/4) silt loam; moderate medium subangular blocky structure; friable; many fine roots; common faint brown (7.5YR 4/3) clay films on faces of peds; few fine black (N2.5/0) manganese concretions; strongly acid; gradual smooth boundary. (7 to 24 inches thick)
Bt2--22 to 28 inches; yellowish brown (10YR 5/4) silty clay loam; moderate medium subangular blocky structure; friable; common fine roots; common faint brown (10YR 5/3) clay films on faces of peds; few fine black (N2.5/0) manganese concretions; strongly acid; abrupt wavy boundary. (2 to 8 inches thick)
Btx--28 to 38 inches; brown (7.5YR 4/4) silty clay loam; weak very coarse prismatic structure parting to weak medium blocky; firm; few very fine roots between prisms and along vertical seams; common fine prominent gray (10YR 5/1) clay films on prism faces and secondary peds; common medium prominent gray (10YR 5/1) iron and clay depletions as silt coatings on prism faces and in vertical seams; common fine black (N2.5/0) manganese concretions and few fine black (N2.5/0) manganese coatings; brittle in more than 60 percent of the mass; strongly acid; gradual wavy boundary. (7 to 30 inches thick)
2Bt3--38 to 50 inches; yellowish brown (10YR 5/6) silty clay; moderate medium angular blocky structure; very firm, moderately sticky and moderately plastic; common distinct yellowish brown (10YR 5/4) clay films on faces of peds; common fine black (N2.5/0) manganese concretions; common medium distinct light olive brown (2.5Y 5/4) and gray (10YR 6/1) iron depletions; common medium strong brown (7.5YR 5/6) masses as iron accumulations; moderately acid; gradual wavy boundary. (5 to 20 inches thick)
2C--50 to 60 inches; yellowish brown (10YR 5/6) clay; massive; very firm, moderately sticky and moderately plastic; common medium prominent light brownish gray (2.5Y 6/2) iron depletions; neutral. (0 to 40 inches thick)
TYPE LOCATION: Kenton County, Kentucky, along Kentucky Highway 16, 100 yards east of Boone County line; 3.0 miles west of the village of Nicholson. latitude: 38/53/18N; longitude: 84/35/56W.
RANGE IN CHARACTERISTICS: Depth to limestone, calcareous shale, or siltstone is more than 60 inches. Depth to the fragipan is 16 to 30 inches. Reaction ranges from very strongly to slightly acid above and in the fragipan; below the fragipan the reaction ranges from strongly acid to slightly alkaline. Rock fragments range from 0 to 15 percent in the Ap, Bt, Btx, and 2Bt horizon and 0 to 35 percent in the 2C horizon.
The Ap horizon has hue of 7.5YR or 10YR, value of 4 or 5, and chroma of 2 to 4. Texture is dominantly silt loam, however in some severely eroded areas it is silty clay loam.
The Bt horizon has hue of 10YR or 7.5YR, value of 4 and 5, chroma of 3 to 6. Some pedons have redoximorphic features in shades of brown or gray below the upper 10 inches of the argillic horizon. Texture is silt loam or silty clay loam.
The Btx horizon has hue of 7.5YR to 2.5Y, value of 3 to 5, and chroma of 4 to 8. The horizon has few to many redoximorphic features in shades of gray, red, or brown. Texture is silt loam or silty clay loam.
The 2Bt horizon has hue of 7.5YR to 2.5Y, value of 4 to 6, and chroma of 4 to 8 with few to common redoximorphic features in shades of gray, red, or brown, or is an evenly mottled pattern in these colors. Texture is silty clay loam, silty clay, or clay.
The 2C horizons has colors similar to that of the 2Bt horizon. Texture is silty clay loam, silty clay, or clay and their channery and gravelly analogues.
COMPETING SERIES: These are the Apalona, Bedford, Boston, Cincinnati, Fountainville, Hosmer, Omulga, Otwell, Otwood, Solsberry, Weisburg, and Zanesville series. The Bedford soils formed in loess over Mississippian and/or Silurian age limestone, have redder hues in the lower part of the solum and substratum, and have higher Ksat values in the lower part of the solum and substratum. The Boston soils formed in loess, till, and limestone residuum. The Solsberry and Cincinnati soils formed in loess over materials of glacial origin. The Hosmer soils formed in loess deeper than 60 inches. Apalona, Fountainville, and Zanesville soils formed in loess over residuum of sandstone, siltstone, or shale. Otwell soils formed in 20 to 40 inches of loess over lacustrine and glacial outwash materials and are well drained. Otwood soils formed in a mixture of loess and silty alluvium and the underlying clayey or loamy residuum of shale, siltstone, sandstone, or limestone on stream terraces. Omulga soils have stratified materials in the lower part of the solum. Weisburg soils are formed in 22 to 40 inches of loess and in Illinoian age glacial till and clayey residuum.
GEOGRAPHIC SETTING: Nicholson soils are on nearly level to rolling upland ridgetops and shoulder slopes. Slopes range from 0 to 20 percent, but commonly are 12 percent or less. The soil formed in loess or silty material, 24 to greater than 50 inches thick overlying residuum of limestone, calcareous shale, and siltstone. Near the type location, the annual air temperature is 53.3 degrees F. and the mean annual precipitation is 41.3 inches.
GEOGRAPHICALLY ASSOCIATED SOILS: These are the Crider, Hammack, Baxter, Eden, Faywood, Lowell, Shelbyville, Lawrenceville, and Mercer series. Crider, Hammack, Baxter, Eden, Faywood, Lowell, and Shelbyville soils lack fragipans and the Eden and Faywood soils have bedrock within 40 inches.
DRAINAGE AND PERMEABILITY: Moderately well drained. Negligible to medium runoff. Permeability is moderate above the fragipan and slow or very slow in the fragipan.
USE AND VEGETATION: Nearly all areas are used for growing corn, burley tobacco, small grains, truck and fruit crops, hay, pasture, and for urban-suburban development. The original vegetation was hardwood, chiefly oaks, maples, black walnut, hickory, ash, beech, elm, hackberry, black locust, Kentucky coffee tree; eastern redcedar.
DISTRIBUTION AND EXTENT: Kentucky, Indiana, Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee, and possibly Virginia. The series is of moderate extent.
MLRA SOIL SURVEY REGIONAL OFFICE (MO) RESPONSIBLE: Morgantown, West Virginia
SERIES ESTABLISHED: Grassy Creek Project (SCS), Grant and Pendleton Counties, Kentucky, 1939.
REMARKS: When the classification of the Bedford soil series was changed from an Ultisol to an Alfisol, these soils became very similar. The Nicholson soils developed from loess (or silty material) over interbeded limestone, calcareous shale and siltstone of the Ordovician age. The Bedford soils developed from loess (or silty material) over limestone of the Missippian and/or Silurian age. The structure in the substratum of the Nicholson soils is not as well developed as that of the Bedford soils because of the interbeded calcareous shale and siltstone. Therefore, the Ksat in the substratum of the Nicholson soils is slower than the Bedford soils. The colors of the substratum for the Nicholson soils tend to be yellower than the Bedford soils. The Nicholson soils are 7.5YR or yellower, and the Bedford soils are 5YR and redder.
Diagnostic horizons and features recognized in this pedon are:
Ochric epipedon - 0 to 8 inches (Ap)
Argillic horizon - 8 to 50 inches (Bt1, Bt2, Btx, 2Bt3)
Fragipan- 28 to 38 inches (Btx)