Soil Assessment Mcfadden Pd 2

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Soil Assessment Mcfadden Pd 2 - Quiz

Questions and Answers
  • 1. 

    Soil is a mixture of weathered rock, mineral fragments, water, air and _____.

    • A.

      Sand

    • B.

      Decayed organic matter

    • C.

      Moss

    • D.

      Clay

    Correct Answer
    B. Decayed organic matter
    Explanation
    Soil is composed of various components, including weathered rock, mineral fragments, water, air, and decayed organic matter. Decay of organic materials, such as dead plants and animals, contributes to the formation of humus, which is a dark, nutrient-rich substance that enhances soil fertility. Therefore, the presence of decayed organic matter in soil is essential for supporting plant growth and providing nutrients for organisms in the soil ecosystem.

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  • 2. 

    The layer of soil that contains the most organic material is called the _____ horizon.

    • A.

      A

    • B.

      B

    • C.

      C

    Correct Answer
    A. A
    Explanation
    The layer of soil that contains the most organic material is called the A horizon. This is because the A horizon, also known as the topsoil, is the uppermost layer of soil that is rich in organic matter such as decomposed plant and animal material. It is the most fertile layer of soil and is crucial for supporting plant growth.

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  • 3. 

    All of the following cause mechanical weathering EXCEPT _____.

    • A.

      Ice

    • B.

      Tree roots

    • C.

      Burrowing animals

    • D.

      Carbonic acid

    Correct Answer
    D. Carbonic acid
    Explanation
    Mechanical weathering refers to the physical breakdown of rocks into smaller fragments without changing their chemical composition. Ice, tree roots, and burrowing animals all contribute to mechanical weathering by exerting physical force on rocks, causing them to crack or break apart. Carbonic acid, on the other hand, is a chemical weathering agent that breaks down rocks through a process called dissolution. Therefore, carbonic acid does not cause mechanical weathering and is the correct answer.

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  • 4. 

    Litter often covers the _____ horizon.

    • A.

      A

    • B.

      B

    • C.

      C

    • D.

      All of the above

    Correct Answer
    A. A
    Explanation
    The correct answer is A. The explanation for this is that litter often covers the A horizon. The A horizon is the topmost layer of soil, also known as the topsoil. This layer is rich in organic matter and nutrients, making it a prime location for the accumulation of litter. Litter, such as leaves, twigs, and other debris, can easily accumulate on the surface of the A horizon, covering it and potentially impacting the health and fertility of the soil.

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  • 5. 

    Chemical weathering is more rapid in a _____ climate.

    • A.

      Warm, dry

    • B.

      Warm, wet

    • C.

      Cold, dry

    • D.

      Cold, wet

    Correct Answer
    B. Warm, wet
    Explanation
    Chemical weathering is the process by which rocks and minerals are broken down through chemical reactions. It occurs more rapidly in a warm, wet climate because the presence of moisture and higher temperatures accelerate the chemical reactions involved. The water acts as a solvent, facilitating the dissolution and transportation of minerals, while the warmth increases the rate of chemical reactions. In contrast, cold and dry climates have slower rates of chemical weathering due to the lack of moisture and lower temperatures, which inhibit the necessary chemical reactions.

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  • 6. 

    Mechanical weathering is more rapid in a _____ climate.

    • A.

      Dry

    • B.

      Hot

    • C.

      Cold

    • D.

      Humid

    Correct Answer
    C. Cold
    Explanation
    Mechanical weathering is more rapid in a cold climate because of the freeze-thaw cycle. In colder temperatures, water can seep into cracks and crevices in rocks. When the temperature drops, the water freezes and expands, exerting pressure on the surrounding rock. This repeated freezing and thawing weakens the rock, causing it to break apart more easily. In contrast, in hot and dry climates, there is less water available for this freeze-thaw cycle to occur, resulting in slower mechanical weathering.

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  • 7. 

    Soil erosion can be slowed by _____.

    • A.

      No-till farming

    • B.

      Cutting trees from the middle of fields

    • C.

      Plowing at least three times a year

    • D.

      Farming on steeper slopes

    Correct Answer
    A. No-till farming
    Explanation
    No-till farming can slow down soil erosion because it involves leaving the soil undisturbed by not plowing or tilling it. This helps to maintain the soil structure and prevent the loss of topsoil through erosion. By keeping the soil covered with crop residue, such as crop stubble or cover crops, it reduces the impact of raindrops on the soil surface and improves water infiltration. This method also promotes the growth of soil microorganisms and improves soil health, further preventing erosion.

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  • 8. 

    The organic matter in humus is made of _____.

    • A.

      Dead/decaying animals and insects

    • B.

      Leaves

    • C.

      Sticks/branches

    • D.

      All of the above

    Correct Answer
    D. All of the above
    Explanation
    The organic matter in humus is made up of dead or decaying animals and insects, as well as leaves and sticks/branches. Humus is the dark, organic material that forms in soil when plant and animal matter decomposes. It is rich in nutrients and helps improve soil structure and fertility.

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  • 9. 

    The rate of weathering depends upon the area's _____.

    • A.

      Oxygen

    • B.

      Climate

    • C.

      Water

    • D.

      Soil

    Correct Answer
    B. Climate
    Explanation
    The rate of weathering depends on the area's climate. Climate plays a significant role in weathering processes as temperature, humidity, and precipitation patterns can affect the physical and chemical breakdown of rocks and minerals. For example, areas with high temperatures and frequent rainfall may experience more intense chemical weathering due to increased water availability and chemical reactions. On the other hand, cold climates with freeze-thaw cycles can cause mechanical weathering through the expansion and contraction of water in cracks and crevices. Therefore, climate is a crucial factor in determining the rate and type of weathering that occurs in a particular area.

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  • 10. 

    The rock and mineral fragments in soil come from rock that has been _____.

    • A.

      Blasted

    • B.

      Carved

    • C.

      Weathered

    • D.

      Chemically treated

    Correct Answer
    C. Weathered
    Explanation
    The rock and mineral fragments in soil come from rock that has been weathered. Weathering refers to the process of breaking down rocks into smaller pieces through physical or chemical means. This can occur due to exposure to elements such as wind, water, and temperature changes. As a result, the rock undergoes weathering, leading to the formation of soil.

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  • 11. 

    On steep slopes and mountains, __________________ helps reduce erosion by creating level topped areas so crops can be grown.

    • A.

      A shelter belt

    • B.

      Strip cropping

    • C.

      Mulching

    • D.

      Terracing

    Correct Answer
    D. Terracing
    Explanation
    Terracing is the correct answer because it involves creating level topped areas on steep slopes and mountains. This technique helps to reduce erosion by preventing water runoff and allowing crops to be grown more easily. Terracing involves constructing a series of steps or platforms on the slope, which helps to slow down the flow of water and prevent soil erosion. Additionally, terracing also helps to retain moisture in the soil and prevent it from being washed away.

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  • 12. 

    Soils in _________ contain little organic material are are thinner making it very hard to grow crops.

    • A.

      Tropical areas

    • B.

      Deserts

    • C.

      Prairies

    • D.

      Temperate forests

    Correct Answer
    B. Deserts
    Explanation
    Deserts have soils that contain little organic material and are thin, which makes it difficult to grow crops. The lack of organic material means that there is a limited amount of nutrients available for plants to thrive. Additionally, the thinness of the soil makes it challenging for plant roots to penetrate and access water and nutrients. These factors combined make it very hard to cultivate crops in desert areas.

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  • 13. 

    Plants cannot grow without _____.

    • A.

      Rocks

    • B.

      Soil

    • C.

      Moss

    • D.

      Pesticides

    Correct Answer
    B. Soil
    Explanation
    Plants cannot grow without soil because soil provides essential nutrients, water, and support to the roots. Soil contains minerals and organic matter that are necessary for plant growth. It also acts as a medium for roots to anchor themselves and absorb water and nutrients. Without soil, plants would not be able to obtain the necessary resources for their survival and growth.

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  • 14. 

    __________ regions are especially vulnerable to erosion because once cleared, there is very little ground cover.  

    • A.

      Desert

    • B.

      Tropical

    • C.

      Mountain

    • D.

      Prairie

    Correct Answer
    B. Tropical
    Explanation
    Tropical regions are especially vulnerable to erosion because once cleared, there is very little ground cover. The high temperatures and heavy rainfall in tropical areas promote rapid vegetation growth. However, when the vegetation is cleared, there is no longer any protection for the soil against erosion caused by wind and water. The absence of ground cover leaves the soil exposed, making it more susceptible to erosion.

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  • 15. 

    The mass of clay, silt, sand, and boulders that covers much of the United States was deposited by _____.

    • A.

      Farming

    • B.

      Glaciers

    • C.

      Ice wedging

    • D.

      Huge bulldozers

    Correct Answer
    B. Glaciers
    Explanation
    The correct answer is glaciers. Glaciers are large masses of ice that move slowly over land, picking up and carrying sediment as they go. As glaciers advance and retreat, they deposit this sediment, including clay, silt, sand, and boulders, creating the mass of material that covers much of the United States. This process, known as glacial deposition, is responsible for shaping the landscape and creating features such as moraines and drumlins.

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  • 16. 

    Ice wedging is brought about by _____.

    • A.

      Carbonic acid freezing on rocks

    • B.

      Water and oxygen reacting

    • C.

      Water freezing and thawing

    • D.

      Rocks colliding with each other

    Correct Answer
    C. Water freezing and thawing
    Explanation
    Ice wedging is a process where water enters cracks in rocks, freezes, expands, and then thaws, causing the crack to widen. This repeated freezing and thawing of water exerts pressure on the rocks, leading to the gradual breakdown of the rock material. This process is responsible for the formation of potholes, crevices, and other erosional features in rocks.

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  • 17. 

    Minerals found in the B horizon were dissolved in water and carried there by a process called _____.

    • A.

      Oxidation

    • B.

      Leaching

    • C.

      Weathering

    • D.

      Littering

    Correct Answer
    B. Leaching
    Explanation
    Minerals found in the B horizon were dissolved in water and carried there by a process called leaching. Leaching is the process of water carrying dissolved substances, such as minerals, downward through the soil profile. As water percolates through the soil, it dissolves minerals from the upper layers and transports them to the B horizon. This process is important for the movement and redistribution of nutrients within the soil profile.

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  • 18. 

    Oxidation occurs when some materials are exposed to  _________. 

    • A.

      Oxygen and water

    • B.

      Carbonic acid

    • C.

      Kaolinite

    • D.

      All of the above

    Correct Answer
    A. Oxygen and water
    Explanation
    Oxidation occurs when some materials are exposed to oxygen and water. Oxygen is a highly reactive element that readily combines with other substances, while water provides the necessary medium for the oxidation reaction to take place. When materials come into contact with oxygen and water, they undergo a chemical reaction that leads to the loss of electrons, resulting in oxidation. Therefore, the correct answer is oxygen and water.

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  • 19. 

    The B horizon is _____.

    • A.

      Rockier than the C horizon

    • B.

      Richer in humus than the A horizon

    • C.

      Lighter in color than the A horizon

    • D.

      Thinner than the C horizon

    Correct Answer
    C. Lighter in color than the A horizon
    Explanation
    The B horizon is lighter in color than the A horizon because it contains less organic matter and minerals. The A horizon, also known as topsoil, is typically darker in color due to the accumulation of organic material and nutrients. In contrast, the B horizon is often lighter in color as it consists of weathered rock fragments and minerals that have been leached from the upper layers. This leaching process removes some of the darker organic matter and minerals, resulting in a lighter color.

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  • 20. 

    Plants don't grow as well when _____ has been lost.

    • A.

      Clay

    • B.

      Topsoil

    • C.

      Parent rock

    • D.

      Slope

    Correct Answer
    B. Topsoil
    Explanation
    Plants don't grow as well when topsoil has been lost because topsoil is the uppermost layer of soil that contains the highest concentration of organic matter and nutrients. It provides a fertile environment for plant roots to anchor and absorb water and essential nutrients. Without topsoil, plants struggle to establish strong root systems and access the necessary nutrients for growth.

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  • 21. 

    _____ is a factor that affects soil development.

    • A.

      Time

    • B.

      Slope

    • C.

      Type of rock

    • D.

      All of the above

    Correct Answer
    D. All of the above
    Explanation
    All of the above factors - time, slope, and type of rock - affect soil development. Over time, weathering and erosion processes break down rocks and create soil. The slope of the land determines the rate of erosion and the movement of water, which affects soil formation. Different types of rock have different mineral compositions, which influence the fertility and characteristics of the soil that forms from them. Therefore, all of these factors play a role in soil development.

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  • 22. 

    The _____ horizon has smaller rock and mineral particles than the other layers.

    • A.

      A

    • B.

      B

    • C.

      C

    Correct Answer
    A. A
    Explanation
    The correct answer is A. The A horizon, also known as the topsoil, has smaller rock and mineral particles compared to the other layers. This is because the A horizon is the uppermost layer of soil, which is rich in organic matter and nutrients due to the accumulation of decomposed plant and animal material. The smaller particles in this layer provide a better environment for root growth and nutrient absorption by plants.

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  • 23. 

    Below the C horizon is _____.

    • A.

      Topsil

    • B.

      Rock (parent material)

    • C.

      Clay

    • D.

      Humus

    Correct Answer
    B. Rock (parent material)
    Explanation
    The C horizon is the layer of soil that is located beneath the B horizon. It is composed of weathered parent material, which is the rock material from which the soil has formed over time. Therefore, the correct answer is rock (parent material).

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  • 24. 

    Mechanical weathering _____.

    • A.

      Breaks apart rocks by physical processes

    • B.

      Occurs when chemical reactions dissolve of change the minerals in rocks

    • C.

      Occurs when iron is exposed to oxygen and water

    • D.

      None of the above

    Correct Answer
    A. Breaks apart rocks by physical processes
    Explanation
    Mechanical weathering refers to the physical processes that break apart rocks. This can occur through various mechanisms such as freeze-thaw cycles, abrasion from wind or water, and the expansion and contraction of rocks due to temperature changes. Unlike chemical weathering, which involves the dissolution or alteration of minerals in rocks through chemical reactions, mechanical weathering does not involve any chemical changes. Therefore, the correct answer is that mechanical weathering breaks apart rocks by physical processes.

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  • 25. 

    Chemical weathering _____.

    • A.

      Is caused by freezing and thawing

    • B.

      Breaks apart rocks by physical processes

    • C.

      Occurs when chemical reactions dissolve or change the minerals in rocks

    • D.

      None of the above

    Correct Answer
    C. Occurs when chemical reactions dissolve or change the minerals in rocks
    Explanation
    Chemical weathering refers to the process in which minerals in rocks are dissolved or altered by chemical reactions. This process is different from physical weathering, which involves the physical breakdown of rocks through freezing and thawing or other physical forces. Therefore, the correct answer is that chemical weathering occurs when chemical reactions dissolve or change the minerals in rocks.

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  • 26. 

    In areas where freezing and thawing occur frequently (ice wedging), rocks weather rapidly because of the _____ of freezing water.

    • A.

      Evaporation

    • B.

      Expansion

    • C.

      Leaching

    • D.

      Oxidation

    Correct Answer
    B. Expansion
    Explanation
    In areas where freezing and thawing occur frequently, rocks weather rapidly because of the expansion of freezing water. When water freezes, it expands and takes up more space, exerting pressure on the surrounding rocks. This repeated expansion and contraction weakens the rocks, causing them to break apart and weather more quickly.

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  • 27. 

    When water mixes with carbon dioxide in the air or soil, ___________ forms creating a type of chemical weathering.

    • A.

      Carbonic acid

    • B.

      Lactic acid

    • C.

      Calcite

    • D.

      Oxygen

    Correct Answer
    A. Carbonic acid
    Explanation
    When water mixes with carbon dioxide in the air or soil, it forms carbonic acid creating a type of chemical weathering. This is because carbon dioxide dissolves in water to form carbonic acid, which then reacts with minerals in the soil or rocks, causing them to break down and weather over time. Carbonic acid is a weak acid, but its continuous action can lead to the erosion and dissolution of minerals such as calcite, which is a common component of rocks like limestone.

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  • 28. 

    _____ turns and loosens soil, improving it for crops, but leaving soil vulnerable to erosion.

    • A.

      Grazing

    • B.

      No-tilling farming

    • C.

      Plowing

    • D.

      Terracing

    Correct Answer
    C. Plowing
    Explanation
    Plowing is the act of turning and loosening the soil, which helps to improve its quality for growing crops. However, plowing also leaves the soil vulnerable to erosion. When the soil is turned over, it exposes the topsoil to wind and water erosion, which can lead to the loss of valuable nutrients and organic matter. Therefore, while plowing can initially benefit crop growth, it is important to implement erosion control measures to minimize the negative effects of soil erosion.

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  • 29. 

    Soil erosion occurs _____.

    • A.

      Where grazing animals eat away all the ground cover

    • B.

      When forests are removed

    • C.

      On steep slopes

    • D.

      All of the above

    Correct Answer
    D. All of the above
    Explanation
    Soil erosion occurs when grazing animals eat away all the ground cover, when forests are removed, and on steep slopes. All of these factors contribute to the loss of soil through various mechanisms such as trampling, removal of vegetation that holds the soil together, and increased runoff on steep slopes. Therefore, the statement "all of the above" accurately describes the different scenarios in which soil erosion can occur.

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  • 30. 

    When farmers leave plant stalks in the field over the winter months and later plant crops without destroying the plant stalks to reduce soil erosion, it is called ________________.

    • A.

      Contour farming

    • B.

      Plowing

    • C.

      No-till farming

    • D.

      Terracing

    Correct Answer
    C. No-till farming
    Explanation
    No-till farming refers to the practice of leaving plant stalks in the field over the winter months and planting crops without destroying the stalks. This method helps to reduce soil erosion by providing cover and protecting the soil from wind and water erosion. By leaving the stalks intact, the soil structure and organic matter are preserved, improving soil health and fertility. Additionally, no-till farming helps to conserve moisture, enhance nutrient cycling, and reduce the need for synthetic fertilizers and herbicides.

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  • 31. 

    The three horizons in the figure below make up  __________________. 

    • A.

      A soil profile

    • B.

      A report

    • C.

      Horizon C

    • D.

      Horizon C

    Correct Answer
    A. A soil profile
    Explanation
    The three horizons in the figure make up a soil profile. A soil profile is a vertical section of the soil that shows the different layers or horizons. These horizons are formed over time due to various processes such as weathering, deposition, and organic matter accumulation. Each horizon has distinct characteristics and properties that contribute to the overall composition and fertility of the soil. Understanding the soil profile is important for studying soil formation, nutrient cycling, and agricultural practices.

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  • 32. 

    In the figure below, ________________ contains the most humus. 

    • A.

      Horizon A

    • B.

      Horizon B

    • C.

      Horizon C

    Correct Answer
    A. Horizon A
    Explanation
    Horizon A contains the most humus because it is the uppermost layer of soil, also known as the topsoil. This layer is rich in organic matter, such as decomposed plant and animal material, which contributes to the presence of humus. Horizon B is the subsoil layer, which typically has less organic matter than the topsoil. Horizon C is the parent material layer, which is composed of rock fragments and has minimal organic matter. Therefore, horizon A is the correct answer as it is the layer that contains the most humus.

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  • 33. 

    In the figure below, ________________ is most likely to contain the parent material. 

    • A.

      Horizon A

    • B.

      Horizon B

    • C.

      Horizon C

    Correct Answer
    C. Horizon C
    Explanation
    Horizon C is most likely to contain the parent material because it is the deepest horizon in the soil profile. Parent material refers to the original material from which the soil is formed, and it typically accumulates at the bottom of the soil profile over time. Horizons A and B are more likely to contain organic matter and other soil constituents that have been transported or weathered from the parent material above. Therefore, horizon C is the best candidate for containing the parent material.

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  • 34. 

    In the figure below, the leaching of minerals is most likely to occur from _____________ to ______________________. 

    • A.

      Horizon A; horizon C

    • B.

      Horizon B; horizon C

    • C.

      Horizon C; horizon A

    • D.

      Horizon A; horizon B

    Correct Answer
    D. Horizon A; horizon B
    Explanation
    Leaching of minerals refers to the process by which minerals are dissolved and washed away from the soil. In this case, it is most likely to occur from horizon A to horizon B. This is because horizon A is the topmost layer of soil and is typically rich in organic matter and minerals. As water percolates through the soil, it carries away dissolved minerals from horizon A and deposits them in horizon B, which is the layer beneath horizon A. Therefore, the leaching of minerals is most likely to occur from horizon A to horizon B.

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  • 35. 

    In the figure below, the  ___________________ is also known as subsoil

    • A.

      Horizon A

    • B.

      Horizon B

    • C.

      Horizon C

    Correct Answer
    B. Horizon B
    Explanation
    In the figure, horizon B is also known as subsoil. Subsoil is the layer of soil that lies underneath the topsoil (horizon A) and above the parent material (horizon C). It is typically composed of minerals and nutrients that have leached down from the topsoil, as well as weathered rock fragments. Subsoil plays an important role in plant growth and water drainage, as it provides support for roots and allows water to move through the soil profile.

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  • 36. 

    In the figure below, the _________________ would have the least organic matter.

    • A.

      Horizon A

    • B.

      Horizon B

    • C.

      Horizon C

    Correct Answer
    C. Horizon C
    Explanation
    Horizon C would have the least organic matter because it is the deepest layer of soil, also known as the parent material. This layer is typically composed of weathered rock fragments and minerals, with very little organic material. In contrast, horizon A is the topmost layer and contains the most organic matter, as it is rich in decomposed plant and animal material. Horizon B lies between horizon A and C and may contain some organic matter, but generally less than horizon A.

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  • 37. 

    Using the soil texture triangle below, determine what percentage of clay is in sandy clay.

    • A.

      35% - 55%

    • B.

      20% - 35%

    • C.

      0% - 10%

    • D.

      15% - 20%

    Correct Answer
    A. 35% - 55%
    Explanation
    Based on the soil texture triangle, sandy clay falls within the range of 35% to 55% clay content. This means that the soil sample classified as sandy clay contains clay particles that make up 35% to 55% of its total composition.

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  • 38. 

    A soil consists of 10% sand, 20% clay, and 70% silt. Using the soil texture triangle below, identify the soil type.

    • A.

      Silty loam

    • B.

      Silty clay loam

    • C.

      Sandy loam

    • D.

      Loamy sand

    Correct Answer
    A. Silty loam
    Explanation
    Based on the given percentages of sand, clay, and silt, the soil falls within the range of 70% silt, which is located in the middle of the soil texture triangle. Additionally, the soil contains 10% sand, which places it closer to the loam region. Therefore, the soil type can be identified as silty loam.

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  • 39. 

    Using the soil texture triangle below, identify the properties of loam.

    • A.

      40% sand, 20% clay, 40% silt

    • B.

      60% sand, 20% clay, 20% silt

    • C.

      20% sand, 30% clay, 50% silt

    • D.

      40% sand, 35% clay, 25% silt

    Correct Answer
    A. 40% sand, 20% clay, 40% silt
    Explanation
    Loam is a type of soil that contains a balanced mixture of sand, clay, and silt. The correct answer of 40% sand, 20% clay, and 40% silt aligns with this definition. This composition indicates that loam has a good balance of drainage (sand), water-holding capacity (silt), and nutrient retention (clay). The other options either have an imbalance of one or more of these components or do not match the proportions required for loam.

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  • 40. 

    On gentle slopes, planting along the natural contours of the land is called ________________

    • A.

      Contour farming

    • B.

      Terracing

    • C.

      Strip mining

    • D.

      Conservation planting

    Correct Answer
    A. Contour farming
    Explanation
    Contour farming is the correct answer because it involves planting crops along the natural contours or curves of the land. This technique helps to prevent soil erosion by slowing down the flow of water and allowing it to be absorbed by the soil. By following the contour lines, farmers can create small ridges or furrows that act as barriers to prevent runoff and retain moisture. This method is particularly effective on gentle slopes as it helps to conserve soil and water resources while promoting sustainable agriculture practices.

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Our quizzes are rigorously reviewed, monitored and continuously updated by our expert board to maintain accuracy, relevance, and timeliness.

  • Current Version
  • Mar 15, 2023
    Quiz Edited by
    ProProfs Editorial Team
  • Feb 03, 2015
    Quiz Created by
    James McFadden
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