This volume is an update of the book, Soil Sampling and Methods of Analysis, first published in 1993. The aims of this second edition remain the same as those of the earlier edition—to provide a compilation of soil analytical and sampling methods that are commonly used, straightforward, and relatively easy to use. The materials and procedures for these methods are presented with sufficient detail and information, along with key references, to characterize the potential and limitation of each method.
As methods develop, so do their degree of sophistication. Taking these developments into account, the second edition includes several chapters that serve as ‘‘primers,’’ the purpose of which is to describe the overall principles and concepts behind a particular type or types of measurement, rather than just methods alone.
All of the chapters retained from the earlier edition have been modified and updated. The second edition also introduces new chapters, particularly in the areas of biological and physical analyses, and soil sampling and handling. For example, the ‘‘Soil Biological Analyses’’ section contains new chapters to reflect the growing number and assortment of new microbiological techniques and the burgeoning interest in soil ecology. New chapters are offered describing tools that characterize the dynamics and chemistry of soil organic matter. A new section devoted to soil water presents up-to-date field- and laboratory-based methods that characterize saturated and unsaturated soil hydraulic properties.
This second edition of Soil Sampling and Methods of Analysis comprises 7 sections and a total of 85 chapters and 2 appendices written by 140 authors and co-authors. Each section is assembled by two section editors and each chapter reviewed by at least two external reviewers. We are grateful to these people for their diligent work in polishing and refining the text and helping to bring this new volume to fruition. We particularly thank Elaine Nobbs for her support in working with the many authors involved in writing this book.
We offer this new edition of Soil Sampling and Methods of Analysis in the belief that it will continue as a useful tool for researchers and practitioners working with soil.
M.R. Carter and E.G. Gregorich
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