Department of Plant Science
Since yield predictions for 1,874 South Dakota soil phases were available it was decided to develop a method to rate soils according to their relative crop and grass producing ability. The method developed to rate soils can be adapted for a county, region land resource area, or for an entire state. Range crops under non-irrigated conditions were used to calculate the final soil productivity rating for each soil phase. There are three steps in the procedure used to calculate the final soil productivity rating: 1) determine a comparative crop rating for each soil phase for soils capable of being cropped; 2) calculate a comparative range rating for soils adapted for grass or range; and 3) determine a balance point factor used to relate crop ratings with range ratings. Results are printed by computer in two formats, a high-low array and an alphabetical array. Ratings correlate with soil properties, precipitation and land sale figures. Ratings can be used to evaluate land and to compare soils which have different properties and environments within a county or between counties.
South Dakota soil ratings, soil productivity, soil production rating system
South Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station, South Dakota State University
Malo, D. D. and Westin, F. C., "Rating South Dakota Soils According to Productivity" (1979). Research Bulletins of the South Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station (1887-2011). 662.